When it comes to welding, having a sturdy and reliable work surface is crucial. Welding tables are available in various materials, but here at KO | WT, we wanted to ensure we supplied welding tables that offer you the best.
We spent a number of years researching manufacturers and the material qualities of different welding table surfaces.
We acknowledge that there are many welding tables available that use materials different to what we offer. But we’ve come to the conclusion that steel and cast iron are the best options for any welders and fabricators who are serious about using quality tools that last (and can handle some abuse!).
Steel and cast iron have some similarities, but there are some key differences too that are important to know when choosing a KO | WT welding table. This guide is to help you make a decision based on the work that you will be doing.
As always, if you’re still not sure what you should be picking, please contact us and we’ll be happy to help!
- Cast Iron Welding Table Surface
- Steel Welding Table Surface
Cast Iron Welding Table Surface
CAST IRON – T300
HARDNESS: Differs based on surface treatment:
DENSITY: 7.25 g/cm³.
TENSILE STRENGTH: 345 MPa.
Advantages of cast iron welding tableS
Heat Dispersion: Cast iron has a high thermal conductivity, allowing for efficient and uniform heat distribution during welding processes, which can contribute to improved weld quality.
Spatter Resistance: The surface of cast iron tables is resistant to spatter, preventing weld material from adhering to the table and facilitating easier cleanup.
Disadvantages of cast iron welding tableS
Susceptibility to Rust: Cast iron surfaces are prone to rust when exposed to moisture, requiring regular maintenance to prevent corrosion. We always recommend a surface treatment to help with this.
Brittle Nature: Cast iron can be brittle, making it more susceptible to cracking or chipping if subjected to heavy impact or stress. Remember that there are two methods to creating a cast iron welding table. Vacuum casting, and resin sand casting. All of our cast iron tables are manufactured with the resin sand method as it is the superior method. Please read the comparison section below for more details.
Maintenance and care tips for A cast iron welding table surface
Maintenance and care for cast iron welding table surfaces is crucial to ensure their longevity and optimal performance. Regular cleaning to remove welding spatter, debris, and moisture is essential to prevent rust and maintain a smooth working surface. We always recommend our customers invest in a surface treatment for their cast iron tables. This will not only increase the hardness of the table, it will improve corrosion resistance too.
Always keep your table dry and storing it in a controlled environment to minimise exposure to humidity will aid in preventing rust formation. Lastly, using appropriate clamping and welding techniques to minimise impact and stress on the table surface is important for preserving its integrity. We always recommend using our range of welding table accessories.
Casting methods: Vacuum casting vs Resin sand casting
When manufacturing a cast iron welding table, there are two methods that can be used to create the cast; vacuum casting and resin sand casting.
The superior method is resin sand. This is the method that is used to manufacture our cast iron welding tables.
Resin sand is the superior method for these reasons:
The resin sand method is a costlier method and more complicated process, but it results in better welding tables, which is what we want for our customers.
Steel Welding Table Surface
STEEL – S355
HARDNESS: Differs based on surface treatment:
DENSITY: 7.80 g/cm³
TENSILE STRENGTH: 355 MPa.
Advantages of steel welding tableS
Impact Resistance: Steel welding tables offer better impact resistance compared to cast iron, making them less susceptible to cracking or chipping when subjected to heavy impact or stress.
Smoother Surface: Compared to cast iron, steel has a smoother surface which is more resistant to spatter.
Cleaner etching lines: The grid lines and measurements that we can have machined onto your table are much cleaner and defined on a steel surface.
Disadvantages of steel welding tableS
Rust Susceptibility: Steel welding tables are more prone to rust and corrosion compared to cast iron surfaces, requiring regular maintenance and protective measures to prevent deterioration. We highly recommend a surface treatment when purchasing your welding table.
Spatter resistance: Less spatter resistant than a cast iron surface. A nitriding surface treatment will increase spatter resistance so this is something we always recommend to customers choosing a steel welding table.
Maintenance and care tips for A steel welding table surface
Maintenance and care for a steel welding table surface is essential to ensure its longevity and optimal performance. Regular cleaning to remove welding spatter, debris, and moisture is crucial to prevent rust and maintain a smooth working surface. We highly recommend that all customers get a surface treatment for their steel tables to help safeguard the table from corrosion.
Additionally, keeping the table dry and storing it in a controlled environment to minimise exposure to humidity will aid in preventing rust formation. It’s also important to follow our recommendations for maintenance and to avoid exposing the table to harsh chemicals or abrasive cleaning methods that could damage the surface.
Both cast iron and steel welding table surfaces have their advantages and disadvantages. Ultimately, the choice depends on your specific needs and preferences. By considering the factors discussed in this post, you can make an informed decision and choose the best welding table surface for your welding projects.
Although there’s not a massive difference in the performance of these materials, our rule of thumb is:
Both materials are fine for all welding processes. If your work is 50% MIG and 50% TIG we still would recommend Steel, coupled with nitriding treatment (case hardened – spatter resistant treatment) as the Steel has a cleaner and smoother finish (see picture below).
Please note that our cast iron option is exclusively for our K28 table option only.
Born and raised in Ocean Grove, Victoria, I’ve always loved working with my hands. During High School, welding became my passion. For over a decade, I’ve been at the heart of the welding industry, mastering techniques from structural steel to custom fabrication. My expertise led to the creation of “KO Welding Supplies” in 2018, a trusted supplier for welders and fabricators across Australia and New Zealand.
Recognising the need for a superior welding table, in 2021 I innovatively tested and launched the KO Welding table. Its precision and adaptability surpassed anything I’d used before. Drawing from extensive feedback, we realised one-size-fits-all wouldn’t work. Thus, koweldingtables.com.au was born, offering customisable, top-quality welding tables with transparent pricing.
Today, we’re reshaping the fabricator’s experience, one tailored solution at a time. You can read more about my experience here.