Dissimilar Thickness Butt Welds with FSW
Dissimilar Thickness Butt Welds and Tailor Welded Blanks using Friction Stir Welding
Saving Cost and Eliminating Waste
When you consider the possible material and labor cost savings from FSW of dissimilar thickness butt welds, the opportunities are enormous. Using dissimilar thickness metals can empower ship designers to put the exact thickness a plate or structure needs, with nothing wasted.
This technique is well established in automotive parts where doors and panels are often made from several different material thicknesses. Tailor welded blanks have become mainstream in many metal manufacturing industries. Bayou Manufacturing serves the aluminum shipbuilding industry using FSW to make tailor welded blanks and large panels of multiple thicknesses for modular construction in the shipyard. This provides major cost savings in raw materials, reduces displacement, and lowers overall ship hull construction costs.
Advantages of Tailor Welded Blanks
- Reduces offal and eliminates reinforcements and brackets
- Saves weight
- Reduces cost by putting the material where it is needed
- Eliminates offal/scrap
- Places thicker material in high stress areas and eliminates reinforcements and brackets
- Allows thinner material in low stress areas
Advanced Welding Techniques Making a Difference
Tailor welded blanks were until recently almost exclusively made using laser welding. With advances (and Bayou expertise) in friction stir welding, FSW has emerged as a viable alternative to laser welding of dissimilar metals, particularly in aluminum shipbuilding. Bayou’s ability to apply the many advantages of FSW to our modular shipbuilding assemblies has potential to make huge cost savings, given the large amount of material and increasing complexity of the Navy, USCG, and commercial aluminum ships.
These welds, panels, and modules are not simple to manufacture. Years of experience and the capital investment in our “longest in the USA” FSW manufacturing facility make Bayou a leader in the more advanced welding techniques for dissimilar metals, tailor welded blanks, and other more advanced aluminum shipbuilding improvements.