Handheld vs Automatic Laser Welding Machines: The Differences Explained

When customers decide to buy laser welding equipment, they usually visit the laser welding machine factory to evaluate the equipment based on their product requirements.

During this process, laser welding machine manufacturers may recommend either handheld or automatic laser welding machines to customers based on the product’s welding requirements.

So, what distinguishes the welding results between a handheld laser welding machine and an automatic one? How should customers make their choice?

Allow me to provide a simple analysis.

What is a handheld laser welder?

handheld laser welder

As the name implies, a handheld laser welding machine requires manual operation. This welding equipment is capable of performing laser welding on large and long-distance workpieces.

During the welding process, the heat-affected area is minimal, avoiding any deformations, discoloration, or marks on the reverse side of the workpiece. The welding depth is substantial, resulting in a strong and well-melted joint with no depression at the connection between the molten material and the matrix.

Laser welding is a cutting-edge welding method, primarily designed for welding thin-walled materials and precision parts. It can perform various welding techniques such as spot welding, butt welding, overlap welding, and seal welding.

This method boasts several advantages, including a high depth-to-width ratio, narrow weld width, minimal heat-affected zone, minimal deformation, fast welding speed, smooth and attractive welds, and minimal or simple post-welding treatment.

Furthermore, laser welding machines offer high-quality welds with no air pockets, precise control, small focusing light spots, high positioning accuracy, and easy automation.

What is an automatic laser welding machine?

automatic laser welding machine

An automatic laser welding machine is an automated welding equipment that utilizes high-energy laser pulses to heat materials in small areas. The laser energy is diffused within the material through heat transfer, causing the material to melt and form a specific molten pool.

This type of welding equipment is mainly used for welding thin-walled materials and precision parts and can perform various welding techniques such as spot welding, butt welding, overlap welding, and seal welding.

It has several characteristics, including narrow weld width, fast welding speed, high-quality welds with no air pockets, precise control, high positioning accuracy, and easy automation.

What is the difference between automatic laser welding machine and handheld laser welding machine?

An automatic laser welding machine performs welding automatically as per the set procedure after being configured through software. On the other hand, a manual laser welding machine, also known as spot welding, involves visually performing spot welding using high magnification on a screen.

It is important to note that the production efficiency of a manual handheld laser welding machine is lower compared to that of a fully automatic one.

However, manual laser welding is advantageous for production workshops that process and weld sporadically or on a small scale. It eliminates the need for setting up and debugging a fully automatic laser welding platform and does not have any floor space environmental requirements.

Furthermore, the products produced in small workshops are often diverse and not firmly solidified in shape. In such cases, manual laser welding is better suited to meet the production requirements.

Features of handheld laser welding machine

Features of handheld laser welding machine

1. High welding precision

A handheld laser welding machine is compatible with a range of laser sources and is suitable for workpieces with varying process requirements.

The welding is completed in one go, reducing thermal deformation in the welding materials and meeting the demands for high-quality products. The weld is bright and does not leave any scars, discoloration, or require subsequent treatment.

The resulting workpiece has a high strength, with the weld strength reaching or even exceeding the strength of the base metal.

2. Convenient movement and flexible welding

The handheld welding device comes equipped with an optical fiber that measures 5m to 10m in length, making it flexible and convenient to use. It can access areas that are difficult for robots to reach for welding.

3. Comprehensive welding process

The handheld optical fiber welding machine is suitable for various welding techniques, including butt welding, overlap welding, internal and external fillet welding, circular arc welding, and welding of irregular shapes.

4. Simple operation and cost saving

The laser welding machine equipment set has robust functionality, ergonomic design, and is suitable for various work environments.

It features a unique laser safety operation protection function to guarantee the safety of operators during work.

The operation is straightforward, easy to learn, quick to get started, requires minimal technical proficiency from operators, and has low labor costs.

5. Widely used

Handheld laser welding machines have a wide range of applications across various industries, including the kitchen and bathroom industry, household appliance industry, advertising industry, mold industry, stainless steel product industry, stainless steel engineering industry, door and window industry, handicraft industry, household goods industry, furniture industry, and auto parts industry.

Advantages of handheld welding laser machine

A traditional laser welding machine can only perform automatic welding when the products are placed in a tooling fixture. On the other hand, a handheld laser welding machine can be used by simply placing it on a flat surface.

For products with large welding areas, additional welding wires can also be added.

The handheld optical fiber transmission laser welding machine addresses the limitations of the traditional fixed laser welding machine, which cannot be used flexibly.

The handheld welding laser machine with energy feedback is convenient for welding small stainless steel doors and windows and large upright products that cannot be removed and need to be welded in-place.

Applications of handheld laser welding machines

Handheld laser welding machines are used for depth and smoothness in a variety of applications, such as gold and silver diamonds, sanitary ware, food packaging, tobacco marking, beer marking, beverage marking, packaging, glasses, clocks, auto parts, plastic and paper materials, and electronic hardware.

For areas requiring high precision, such as clocks and watches, the mold industry, and bitmap marking, the handheld laser welding machine is also widely used.

It is applied in a range of industries, including precision instruments, electronic components, home appliances, mobile communication, watch glasses, jewelry, and others.

It can weld a variety of metals or alloys, including stainless steel, carbon steel, copper, aluminum, gold, silver, chromium, nickel, titanium, tantalum, and more. Additionally, it is suitable for welding between different materials.

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