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Manual Welding VS. Robot Welding

Although robotic welding is growing more popular, it can not replace the role of manual welding in the welding field in a short time or forever. To reveal the reasons out, we will make a comparison of manual welding and robot welding in this article, and tell you when to use manual welding or robotic welding.


I. What Is Manual Welding?

II. What Is Robotic Welding?

III. Comparison of Manual Welding and Robotic Welding.

V. Megmeet Automated Welding.

I. What Is Manual Welding?

Manual welding, also called hand welding, is performed by humans and not machines. This type of process is time-consuming and laborious but continues to be widely used in certain market sectors, such as large-scale shipbuilding.

II. What Is Robotic Welding?

Robotic welding is an automatic welding method, the welding work is collaboratively completed by the welding cobot and the robot welding power source. Although robot welding is fully automated, there are multiple preparation works to do before the cobot entered into automatic welding processes.

The welder should choose the right welding robot according to the welding materials and process requirements, and then choose the welding power supply whose power interface and current size matched the selected robot brand. After the integration of the robotic welding system and the welding power supply is completed, the welding processes start after debugging the welding parameters.

III. Comparison of Manual Welding and Robotic Welding:

Welding Type



Manual Welding

1) Easier to Learn: Most welding training schools and institutions offer welding classes for manual welding, so manual welders can acquire welding skills by attending training classes. In addition, manual welders have complete control over the welding tools and equipment, and they can easily adjust the welding techniques to achieve the desired welding process at any time. 

1) Less Safety: Safety is of great importance in welding, and novice welders are generally more likely to get injured due to their rusty skills. Manual welding is considered to be less safe than robotic welding as the human welders may get hurt but the welding robot just gets broken when there are accidents.

2) Greater Flexibility: Human welders are well-trained and capable of alternating the best welding techniques and dealing with all kinds of welding accidents during welding. Robotic welding needs take a lot of time to adjust the welding parameters and resume work.

2) Lower Speed: Once the welding parameters are correctly set and the switch is turned on, the welding robot will carry out mechanical work all the time, the welding speed and duration of which can not be compared to the manual welder.

3) Greater Versatility: Over years of evolution, manual welding is relatively mature and can be used in a variety of welding materials and welding sites. For example, manual welders can adjust the heat to ensure the welding quality of thin materials, but automated welding is probably to damage the thin plate.

3) Lower Efficiency: Manual welders are easily affected by various external factors, and are unable to maintain a welding action for a long time, so the consistency of welding quality can not be guaranteed. But robots are capable of doing the same thing for a long time without any interruption, and the welding efficiency is much higher.

4) Lower Cost: the cost of manual welding is lower as welding tools and equipment used by manual welders are not as expensive as automatic welders, and the electricity used is normally less. Moreover, welding machines and equipment can often be rented or borrowed for a low cost. 

4) Limited to Smaller Projects: the welding speed and welding hours of manual welders are lower than that of robotic welding, and it is not smart to be used in large-scale engineering projects that will take a long time to complete.

Robotic Welding

1) Higher Welding Quality: the welding process is conducted by the electronic weld process controllers, and the welding robot can follow the same process exactly all the time after setting the accurate welding parameters, thus the weld integrity of the robotic welding is higher than manual welding. 

1) Higher Initial Cost: the initial investment of robotic welding is much higher as buying a welding robot and the corollary equipment costs a lot, but the cost can get back quickly once the welding cobot is put into use.

2) Increased Output: a welding cobot is essentially a machine, and it will continue to work without interruption once the power is plugged in. Unlike human welders, robots don't have to eat, sleep or spend weekends, so the latter can finish the welding task in a very short time. In addition, the manual welding efficiency decreases throughout the working day, due to operator wear.

2) Lack of Flexibility: Although robotic welding can perform the same tasks efficiently all the time, it takes a lot of time and money to reconfigure the setting up and welding parameters if there are some process changes.

3) Less Waste: due to the higher precision of robotic welding brought by more accurate welding parameters,  there are fewer reworks and the scrap and waste produced is much less.

3) Troublesome to repair: Welding robots or cobots are usually of high price due to the cutting-edge technology used, so it will take a lot of time and money to repair the robotic welders if the machinery breaks down.

4) Lower Labor Cost: semi-automatic welding processes need workers, but the amount is much less than manual welding, thus the labor cost saves a lot.

V. Megmeet Automated Welding.

Manual welding and robotic welding both need to use welding machines to complete the welding process, no matter what kind of welding method you choose, you can choose a desired welding machine from Megmeet Welding, which has capabilities for both automated and manual welding. Megmeet invented a series of Co2/MMA/MIG/MAG/TIG welding machines and robotic welding power sources to meet all kinds of welding requirements. If you need to know more about Megmeet welding machines, you can contact Megmeet Welding Technology today. If you want to learn more welding tips, you can collect Megmeet News Center Page or follow our LinkedIn page.