Welding Tubes with the Mag-Probe

A customer came to us with a problem stemming from welding together a network of tubes in order to create a system for the delivery of gasses. When welding the tubes, the welder would plug the end, grind the end of the tube to be flat and then weld two sections together. This created two surfaces that could be mated flush.

While the welder would usually remember to remove the plug, the problem arose when they would forget. When trying to charge the system with gas, it would not pressurize because the line was plugged. This complex network of tubing and piping made finding the single plug in a closed system with many weld joints really difficult. By the time we were presented with the problem, the customer had tried many things, including training, discipline, termination, quality audits and procedural changes. They were, however, still finding issues.

As a company driven by the desire to meet customer needs, we created a solution – deploying the Mag-Probe. The Mag-Probe is a device we collaboratively developed with Bartol Research that detects magnetic fields even into the single digit gauss range. When a magnetic field is detected, an LED light illuminates. We recommended and produced plugs made of flexible silicone epoxy that contained magnets. These plugs would be used during the grinding and welding operations. The welded joint could then be checked for magnetism immediately after welding, or if this step was missed and a plug needed to be found inside the complex system, its location could be discovered by sensing the magnetism.

This story is just one of many that shows our passion to drive innovation and help our customers find solutions for their engineering and business success.