Arc welding is nowadays very commonly used by DIYers. The process, which consists of taking advantage of the very strong heat of an electric arc to merge two metal pieces, dates back to the beginning of the 19th century.e century.
Sir Humphry Davy, a great physicist, made the first electric arcs by means of carbon electrodes in 1800. In France, the experiments of Auguste de Méritens and his Russian disciple Nikolai N. Bernardos allowed a reliable use of the electric arc.
The patents of the first welding machines were filed between 1881 and 1887 in France, England and the United States. In 1890, metal electrodes were patented by the engineer Charles L. Coffin in Detroit, one of the world capitals of the iron and steel industry.
The stabilization of the arc is obtained by the Swede Oscar Kjellberg, who develops the coating of the electrodes.
Between 1914 and 1945, the progress of the arc welding is constant: the underwater use of the process, for example, is patented in the USSR in 1932.
We also learn to use special gases (argon, helium) to further increase the heating performance of the arc, with electrodes (tungsten) for welding on aluminum.
Different arc welding standards have since been developed to use this technique on all types of metals, from the bench to the largest metallurgical works.