Pulse arc and fusion welding

Charles,

Excellant rendition of what I was and am trying to
convey. Fornow on inorder to avoid confusion for everyone and avoid a
dispute or a play on words I am simply going to call this new
technology Fusion Welding and share only the facts about what we are
capable of doing with this technology by being a resource person from
this area of the Jewelry Industry. I will notget into which is
better, a Chevy or a Ford, Orion or Puk, you make that call. I only
encourage people to check out this technology because it works and
to go one step further, if you don’ want to then don’t, but at least
don’t discourage others because they may find it facinating like I
do. I am totally amazed with this technology everyday that I go to
work because we are not even close to doing things that this is
capable of. I believe we are utalizing just 25 to 30 percent of its
ability now and our success rate for job competion is 99%. As you can
see I like challenges and am willing to help anyone, directly or
indirectly to showcase Fusion Welding. I am so willing to help you
can contact me on an individual bases and I will give you my best try
and no I will not try to sell you anything.

Terry R. Reichert

Thanks Bill, my thoughts pretty much on this post, that needs to
come to anend. its become tit for tat, nothing about actual welding
pulse or fusion. There are those in this group, you know who you
are, that just looove the argument, and the nit picking on every
point there is. Very tiresome for the rest of us, and I hit delete
with these posts a lot.

I am very glad this discussion came up when it did. I looked at both
PUK and Orion machines at MJSA NY last month and was trying to decide
between them.

On the show floor I was inclined to go with the Orion 150s. A friend
who was also shopping chose the Orion 150s and now has his. The
biggest reservation was the learning curve, which my friend has had a
lot of trouble with.

I continued to do my homework, which included reading all the Orchid
posts in this thread. Eventually I called technical support at Rio
Grande and talked to Sessin Durgham. He uses the Orion 150s in his
person work and couldn’t be happier with it. To be fair I have to
mention that Sessin has been a friend since 1980, so I am very much
inclined to trust him for personal reasons. He promised to walk me
through any problems and also has called my friend to help him sort
it out.

Now I am not going to be able to contribute to this discussion by
comparing actual experience on the PUK because I don’t anticipate
having that opportunity. It is all a work in progress at this point.
After I have some time on the machine I will report back.

I have been using a laser for almost 10 years. Very happy with that
but it has shortcomings. The biggest problem in my shop is that only
one person can use it at a time and there are 4 craftsmen. Much of
the time at least one of us is waiting for a turn at the laser. The
Pulse arc machines do somethings better than a laser and cost only
about 25% as much. Silver welds tend to be brittle with the laser but
my limited experience with my friend’s Orion show that they are much
stronger. At this point, it looks as if the Orion will be the default
welder for silver so nobody is going to have to wait to weld gold
while someone is closing a pile of silver bails.

Very grateful for this opportunity to choose based on a robust
discussion by many intelligent and informed craftsmen.

Steve Walker

My Question would you like to see another one of those events? Held
at Stuller…

Andy “The Tool Guy” Kroungold

We are also learning at Stuller from Terry and all of you.
Information is agood thing. I believe you are never too old to learn
and try new things…

Andy “The Tool Guy” Kroungold

At the recent SNAG conference, I was able to work on this cool piece
of equipment. The maker studio I work from, is building a metal
casting area and wants to include some sort of arc welding system,
either PUK, laser or this new one I saw from Orion. It has its pros
and cons, mostly how do I keep it clean and in working condition due
to the overwhelming number of people that use the facilities here at
Artisan’s Asylum.

So, what is the difference between the three? Educate me please. I
want to know how to make the best and most informed decision for the
right system. The hardest for me was managing the microscope. My
eyes are set very narrow (my vision, not my world view) and I did
not find any accommodation for this.

How does the Orion stack up with all precious metals? Reading
engineering specs is a bit difficult for me and ultimately I am
responsible for making the right choice.

I’m especially interested to hear from USERS and not necessarily
SALES PEOPLE. I appreciate the sales angle and but
jewelers understand my needs better.

-k

Karen Christians

Karen and others looking a pulse arc welding - I’ve owned both Orion
(150i) and PUK. The learning curve for the PUK is far shorter, almost
non-existant. Yet it has very similar capability to the Orion. The
maintenance required for the PUK appears to be less and for sure, it
uses less argon. I find the PUK to be less picky about having the
electrode always clean and sharp with the PUK. It works better if it
is, but does just fine with less fussing. The PUK supplied microscope
seems to be able to accommodate variable eye positions.

They are both good machines. The high end Orion has capability to
upgrade software, but neither can upgrade hardware readily - or at
all. Orion is a US made machine from a company that makes giant pulse
arc welders, the PUK line comes from a German tradition of high
quality engineering for jewelers.

I’m probably biased to the PUK, I owned an early one and learned on
it. I was anxious to try the US version done by Orion, but had some
very real problems with learning the system. If you take the classes
offered by Orion, I think you would be equally happy. The problem is

  • are all of your users (students) going to take the classes too?
    Look hard at how much training you need to use either one. I have the
    disadvantage of being in a remote area with out local support for
    these techniques. I have the PUK4 and couldn’t be happier. I figured
    it out with the aid of the easy to use bulletins from PUK - they are
    free and you use them on your own time.

Please Orchidians, don’t throw stones because I have an opinion. I
have absolutely NO relationship with either company. I spent my own
money to buy both machines, they don’t sell my stuff either.

Judy Hoch

I think Andy Cooperman is the guy to contact. If I remember correctly
he bought one last year.

Linda Savineau

I think Andy Cooperman is the guy to contact. If I remember
correctly he bought one last year. 

Think I’ll stay out of this…

As we all noticed in the past several weeks that there is a growing
awareness of a new technology in our industry called fusion welding.
Some jewelers have been using this technology for a little while now
and are getting quite good with it while others are testing the
waters and other find it a little more difficult but I believe we
are just touching the surface of its capabilities. So I am here to
offer some user tips on how to get started. When doing a weld make
sure your tip is cleaned and shaped properly. The most important
thing when weldingis to touch the item with the tip of the welder at
the proper angle so that you get a plasma flow. A plasma flow only
last a micro second and after some practice you will be able to
control this flowand actually shape it as you weld. This is the
basic step of thistechnology. At first you may get pirosity but
practice will cure that. The next step once you get the plasma flow
workingfor you properly than you can use filler which usually means
laser wire or the appropriate sized wire to complete your task. For
example if you are sizing a 14kt yellow gold ring than use yellow
gold laser wire and if its a silver ring use a small silver wire.
What happens when you introduce this media into your weld it mixes
into the metals and becomes a part of the existingmetal. The great
thingabout this is you can stack metal and shape it as you weld with
no pirosity so this means very minimal clean up and less polishing
time. When you get this processdown you will be able to do amazing
things with it. The fusion welding is like orthiscopic surgery to
the medical industry as the old methods are to the jewelry industry.
Another nice tip is when welding eye glasses and you have
unrecognizable metal or a weird compound you can try Stullers eye
glass wire or if it looks more like stainless steel you cango toHome
Depot and buy a stainless steel brush for 2 dollars and pluck the
wires from the brush and use them as filler. Also, on other glasses,
depending on what they are made from you may have to usegold laser
wire or evensmall silver wire. Through time, experience, and
training you will beable to master this advanced technology. The key
revolves around controling your plasma flow.

Terry

My new Orion 150s arrived Friday. We set it up and fooled with it a
little bit on Saturday. Today, Monday, it went to work. All four of
the craftsmen in my shop have used it. Nobody has had any real
trouble getting it to do just what we expected it should do. It has
even been used for jobs that are paid for and out the door on the
first full work day in the shop.

I can’t compare it to the PUK, but I can compare it to my laser that
I have used for almost 10 years. On silver it makes faster and
stronger welds than the laser. For bails, jump rings and fabrication
it is definitely and improvement for silver work over the laser. The
weld diameter for each pulse is much larger and deeper than you can
expect from the laser.

The laser definitely has the advantage for reach. If you can see it
through the scope, you can hit with with the laser. Not so with the
tungsten electrode of the Orion. One of my main ring series that I
fabricate with the laser in gold will be very difficult, if not
impossible to reach with the electrode. Some things seem sort of
awkward, but that is likely to change with practice. Over the next
few weeks we will be able to make a lot of comparisons.

My greatest reservation was the “learning curve” mentioned by
several Orchadians and experienced by my friends that also bought an
Orion 150s last month. I have had promises of phone support from both
the Sunstone Engineering people who make the Orion and from the tech
support at Rio Grande where I bought it. I did call with some very
minor questions and got right through. Learning to use the Orion has
been easier than I was anticipating.

So far, I am happy with it.

Steve Walker
Walker Metalsmiths

I am glad the Sunstone and Rio are answering all the questions you
been having… With the new Orion Welder…

If you like to see Terry’s work… go to
Bench Jeweler [Edit] Registration required [/Edit]
under projects…

Andy “The Tool Guy” Kroungold

Steven Walker,

Very honest and unbiased observation of the Orion for having it for
just one day. I also agree with practice you will do amazing things
like we do atPro Ice and then you can be as excited as we are about
this new technology. Would you please also give your thoughts about
the effiency and time savings for your brief use of this equipment.
When you get where you can control your plama flow and stack your
metals with no priosity your clean up with be very minimal and this
will even save more time. Like I said before we donot use a torch at
all and can repair almost any thing from classic, vintage, costume
jewelry, native american jewelry, eye glasses, some auto parts, boat
part, surgical tools, and the list goes on and on. Thanks again so
that other can understand what message I was and am trying to convey
to the Jewelry Industry. Terry

Thank you Steven for your review. It helps to have input from
someone with experience in laser and pulse arc.

I have been intrigued by the capabilities of these welders but may
not have the space or the funds to justify a purchase in the near
future. There is one question I have been unable to get answered by
Lampert, Orion, or Rio: can they be safely used by someone with an
implanted defibrillator?

Ray
Ray’s Rocks and Gifts

Re. Using a welder with implanted defibrillator. I am sure the
companies that sell these units do not want to give any kind of
answer to this medical question but I am a nurse and work in the OR
and have to 'turn off’implanted defibrillators with a magnet during
surgery. I have operated on several TIG welders with implanted
defibrillators and they use huge TIG welding units that are really
no different than this micro ones just much larger and more
powerful. The person that really knows is your cardiologist as they
know exactly how your unit functions but TIG welding makes a closed
current circuit. The electricity is not flowing through you so I do
not see how it can affect your defibrillator. You come in contact
with other electrical currents daily, like a microwave, stray
voltage, etc. I am not an expert by any means but thinking of how
the electricity is focusedin a closed circuit I don’t see how it can
affect your device unless something awful went wrong but that can
happen anywhere with anything - like being struck by lighting. Just
my thoughts :slight_smile:

joy kruse

Orion is coming today to demo at Artisan’s Asylum. Yay. Will update
you on crowd response. I like that the arm is articulated and can
take larger items.

Karen Christians

Hi Raymond,

My name is Patrick and I am the product manager for the equipment
line at Rio Grande. Concerning the safety of any of these units for
someone with an implanted defibrillator, I am not surprised that you
have not been able to obtain a firm answer. Neither Lampert, Orion
nor Rio would want to take that liability. There are so many types
of implants that we cannot just say that if one customer was ok, all
of them will be. There is a way to get a real answer though, and we
have done this in the past. We have all types of welders here at
Rio, Pulse arc as well as laser. I’m not sure where you are located,
but we are more than happy to have you come here with a doctor and
your doctor can monitor and make the decision. We had a local
customer do this in the past with one of our products, and I’d be
more than happy to do this with you. If you are not local, I’m
willing to work with you to figureout how we can arrange a way to
have you and your doctor test this out. Just give our tech support
associates a call and they will work with me to arrange this.

Best regards,
Patrick Sage
Rio Grande Product Manager

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