I personally do not understand why anyone would buy a laser welder
when you can buy an Orion. First of all it is thousands of dollars
less and you can do everything that you can do with a laser.
The advantage of a laser is its precision, consistancy, and line of
sight welding. If you can see it, you can weld it.
I have an Orion PA230 and I cant say enough good things about, It
does have its down falls.
First, electrodes do get dirty, so your either having to buy lots of
electordes and keep a stock sharpened, or constantly resharpening
the ones you do have. Also, buy your electordes from an online
welding supply shop, WAY cheaper than getting them through a jewelry
supplier and they are the same thing. Changing electrodes is quick
and easy, but it does take a little bit of time.
Arc consistancy is not there, you can have a great bead going, then
BLAM it creates a cavity in the work piece, or the arc strays, change
the electrode and get back to work filling that hole or depression.
Line of sight welding is NOT possible. You have to physically touch
the piece with the electrode. If your welding with an arc welder into
a hole, you have to control the arc so it doesnt hit the side walls
of the hole. This is where a laser will stomp the arc welder with the
heel of its boot onto asphalt covered in acid, then shoot it with its
own laser directly in the eyes, setting it on fire, leaving it for
the scavangers to eat.
This is for you silver guys…silver is just plain hard to weld,
dont get me wrong, you can do it, it just takes practice. Since I
dont work in silver, but my brother does, he uses the Orion for
tacking up stuff before soldering, for this it does an excellent job.
Gold welds pretty good, havent used this on plantinium yet, im sure
it does great there.
Lastly, the new line of Orion welders look cool as all can be, but
they are about 1/2 the price of an entry level laser…might as well
save up and buy the laser. Id love to play with one to see how the
new features work out on it.
For the record, I use the Orion for Stainless and Titanium…it has
been a game changing machine for me, but these are easy metals to
weld in all aspects of things.
Hope this helps,