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An Introduction to Tungsten Inert Gas (TIG) Welding

Date: 01-03-2022

Tungsten Inert Gas (TIG) Welding banner

When it first emerged in the 1940s, Tungsten Inert Gas (TIG) welding, sometimes also known as Gas Tungsten Arc (GTAW) welding, quickly became one of the most widely practised welding processes. While the underlying principles have remained largely unchanged since that time, welders and technicians have continued to perfect the tools, materials, and techniques involved to achieve stronger, cleaner, more consistent joins. If you’re a beginner looking for guidance check out this blog.

In this blog, we take a close look at the elements of TIG welding and present some of Alphaweld’s related products.


What is TIG Welding?

TIG welding is a welding process in which the welding arc is formed between a non-consumable tungsten electrode and the workpiece. Other welding processes used slag to shield the weld pool from hydrogen, oxygen, nitrogen, and other atmospheric elements that could affect the quality of the join. In place of slag, TIG welding uses an inert gas as its shield.
The process was invented by an aircraft technician in 1940s California, as the existing methods were unsuitable for welding magnesium and aluminium alloys. It quickly became popular in the production of ships and aeroplanes, and was important in giving the US the upper hand in its military and industrial endeavours.


What is TIG Welding Used for?

TIG welding remains popular in aviation and aerospace engineering due to its ability to create strong joins between unusual materials, such as titanium, and on very thin metals. Today it is also commonly used for welding on pipelines and in the automotive industry.


What are the Benefits of TIG Welding?

One of the outstanding benefits of TIG welding is that it can be used to join a greater variety of metals than any other welding process. It can be used on aluminium, magnesium, titanium, copper, nickel, and gold, among other materials. 
The fact that it uses a non-consumable electrode helps to create flawless joins, as the operator does not need to stop to change the consumable mid-weld. This also results in less down time and lower operating costs.


What Equipment Do I Need for TIG Welding?

TIG welding requires a few essential items, which are different to those used for MIG or stick welding. Check Out Our Range of TIG Welders.

Welding machine

While all these components are necessary to achieve high-quality TIG welding, your welding machine is the most important element in this equation. TIG welders are made specifically for this type of welding. The Invertec 220TPX Welder from Lincoln is built to stand up to daily use in rugged industrial conditions. It offers excellent arc control to help you achieve seamless joins on a wide variety of metals.

Tungsten electrode

There are a few varieties of tungsten electrodes available: thoriated, zirconated, lanthanated, and ceriated. Ceriated electrodes have excellent current carrying ability and contamination resistance, making them a good all-purpose electrode.

Tungsten grinder

You will need a tungsten grinder wheel to keep your electrodes sharp and clean to ensure the quality of your welds. The Ultima TIG Benchtop Tungsten Grinder includes a variable angle setting for improved flexibility and high grinding speed for clean, smooth, grinds, among other features.

Personal Safety Equipment

Along with a welding mask for eye and face protection, you will need a pair of high-quality TIG welding gloves to protect your hands and arms.


The TIG torch is what holds your tungsten electrode. This is what you will manipulate in order to create your weld pool.

Contact Us

You can view Alphaweld’s full range of TIG welding equipment and accessories online. If you’d like more information on any of our products, get in touch with us today.