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5 Different Types of Welding Positions [Pictures & PDF]

In this article, you’ll learn what is welding position? And different types of welding positions in groove and fillet welds of pipe are explained with pictures.

And also, you can download the PDF file of this article at the end of it.

What is Welding Position?

A welding position is a technique that a welder uses to join metals in the position in which they are found or in which a specific component would be used. Simply put, welding positions are different angles of joining metals.

The welding process can be classified based on the position of the workpiece or the position of the welded joint on the plate. Some types of welding processes can be done with all positions, while others may use only one or two positions. – The Engineer’s Post

This means not every weld can be performed in a horizontal and flat position. Sometimes other welding positions may be required to design or manufacture assemblies. It is because the workpiece cannot be held in an exact position due to its various shape or size.

Generally, there are four types of welding positions i.e., horizontal, flat, vertical, and overhead. The common types of welds are groove and fillet welds. Welders can perform both of these welds in all four positions.

There are unique letters to select fillet and groove welds.

  • Fillet weld (F): It is a weld of approximately a triangular cross-section used to join two pieces, especially vertically.
  • Grove weld (G): It is a weld made in the groove on the workpiece surface between the workpiece edges. It requires full penetration to lay strong welds.

Related: 16 Types of Welding Defects: Their Causes & Remedies [Checkout Now]

Types of Welding Positions

Following are the four main types of welding positions:

  1. Flat Position (1G and 1F)
  2. Horizontal Position (2G and 2F)
  3. Vertical Position (3F and 3G)
  4. Overhead Position (4G and 4F)
  5. Inclined Position

#1 Flat Position

The most apparent type of welding position is the flat position/ it is sometimes called the down-hand position. A flat position involves welding the top of the joint. In this situation, the molten metal is drawn downward at the joint, resulting in a quicker and easier weld.

In 1G and 1F, number 1 relates to the flat position, while the letter G is for a groove weld and the letter F is for a fillet weld.

#2 Horizontal Position (2G and 2F)

The horizontal welding position is a more difficult position than the flat position and requires more skill from the welding operator. 2G is for groove weld position, which involves keeping the weld axis in a horizontal plane or nearly horizontal. For the face of the weld, it must lie in a perpendicular plane.

2F is a fillet weld position in which welding is performed on the upper side of surfaces that are nearly horizontal against a nearly vertical surface. In this position, the torch is generally kept at an angle of 45 degrees.

#3 Vertical Position (3F and 3G)

In this welding position, both the piece and the weld are perpendicular or nearly perpendicular. 3F and 3G are mainly for vertical fillet and vertical groove position.

When welding is done vertically, the force of gravity pushes the molten metal downward and therefore tends to stack. To counteract this, the welder can use an upward or downward vertical position.

To test it in the vertical position, point the flame upward, holding it at a 45-degree angle to the piece. In this way, the welder will apply the force of gravity to the metal from the lower parts of the workpiece towards the weld.

#4 Overhead Position (4G and 4F)

In this type of welding position, welding is performed from the bottom of the joint. It has the most complex and challenging position to work with. The 4G and 4F welding positions are suitable for groove and fillet welds.

In the overhead position, the metal deposited in the joint leads to a hole on the piece, occurring in a bead with a higher crown. To avoid this, keep the molten puddle small. If the weld puddle becomes too long, eliminate the flame for a moment to allow the molten metal to cool.

#5 Inclined Position

In this type of welding position, the slope and rotation can vary from 10 to 40 degrees or 0 to 90 degrees. The workpiece is placed in an inclined plane. In this situation, the force of gravity causes the molten metal to flow downward in a flat position. A small arc should be used to produce proper beads in the inclined position.

Read Also: Different Types of Welding Machines and Their Uses

Groove and Fillet Welding Positions

Following are the numbers and letters used for the groove and fillet welding:

For groove welding:

  1. 1G – flat welding position
  2. 2G – horizontal welding position
  3. 3G – vertical welding position
  4. 4G – welding position overhead or overhead)
  5. 5G – uphill and downhill vertical welding position
  6. 6G – overhead vertical welding position

For fillet welding:

  1. 1F – flat welding position
  2. 2F – horizontal welding position
  3. 3F – vertical welding position
  4. 4F – welding position overhead or overhead

Checkout: Different Types of Welding Rods & Their Uses [Explained]

Pipe and Plate Welding Positions

Pipe welding is the welding process of joining two similar or dissimilar pipes together. Welding techniques for pipes include arc welding, TIG, and MIG welding. In the construction of a project in the oil and gas industry, we often find welding activities on pipes or tanks.

To achieve a more excellent welding quality, professional organizations (ASME, AWS, ISO, JWES) make rules and classifications of welding positions. Generally, the pipe welding position is divided into two types: the welding position at the groove joint and the welding position at the fillet joint.

There are generally six welding positions with numbers and letters, i.e., 1G, 2G, 3G, 4G, 5G, and 6G/6GR. All positions are used in different angles and shapes when welding pipes. Welding methods and considerations are similar in different countries. But AWS D1.1 (referring to AWS A3.0), ASME IX, and ISO 15614-1 use different names in their tables.

No. SI.Welding Positions (ISO)Welding Positions (ASME/AWS)
1.PA 1G / 1F
2.PB2F
3.PC2G
4.PD4F
5.PE4G
6.PF3G Uphill
7.PG3G Downhill
8.PH5G Uphill
9.PJ5G Downhill
10.H – L0456G Uphill
11.J – L0456G Downhill

Read Also: How Does Underwater Welding Works? Types & Applications

#1 1G/1F/PA Welding Position (Flat)

1G Welding Position
1F Welding Position

1G/1F/PA welding position is a flat welding position. This is a situation where the pipe is flat, which can be rotated against the horizontal or X-axis. In this weld position, the welder inserts a piece of metal just below the torch, and welding is performed over the pipe. This position is also used for butt, groove, and fillet welds.

#2 2F/PB Welding Position (Horizontal)

2F Welding Position

This is a horizontal welding position used for fillet welds. In the 2F welding position, a welder must hold the torch at a 45° angle with the piece next to him. The exact angle of the torch depends on the angles of the pipe.

In this type of welding position, butt welding is slightly more complex than flat welding. This is caused by the molten metal flowing down the joint and the torch’s heat rising upward the joint. As a result, a uniform deposit cannot be applied to the joints.

#3 2G/PC Welding Position (Horizontal)

2G/PC Welding Position
2G/PC Welding Position

2G/PC welding position is a horizontal position mainly used for butt welding. In this type of welding position, the piece of metal remains parallel to the welder’s body and welds it from the front. This applies where the pipe is in the vertical direction, and the weld axis is in the horizontal direction.

#4 3G Uphill/PF Welding Position (Vertical)

3G Uphill Position

This is a vertical position welding, in which the axis of the weld is almost perpendicular. 3G uphill welding position is used for both butt and fillet welds. The torch angle is 45° while welding, and the welder has used metal from the bottom.

Read Also: 26 Essential Welding Tools and Equipment For Beginners

#5 3G Downhill/PG Welding Position (Vertical)

3G Downhill Position

3G Downhill is a vertical welding position that is used for butt and fillet welding. The welder will use the metal from the test piece’s upper parts and the electric arc’s kinetic force to maintain the weld puddle. This position is considered good from the point of view of productivity.

#6 4G/4F Welding Position (Overhead)

4F Welding Position
4G Welding Position

4G/4F welding position is performed from under the joint and is commonly used for fillet welds. In this welding position, the deposited metal sags or falls on the plate, causing the bead to form an elevated peak. In this, the welder will most of the time be holding the torch at about 45º (depending on the position of the plate or pipe) under the piece.

#7 5G Welding Position

5G Vertical Position

The 5G welding position is used where the pipe is held on a horizontal or x-axis, but the pipe is stationary or cannot be rotated. This welding position is used for groove welds. This position is very similar to the 1G welding position, but only the pipe cannot be rotated. This is also known as PF in ISO/EN standards.

#1 5G Uphill/PH Welding Position (Vertical)

This is the vertical-up position used for butt welds and is a standard manual method of pipe welds. In this situation, welders follow three welding methods in sequence, starting from the overhead position to the horizontal and then to the flat position. Since the pipe is not twisted or rotated, it isn’t easy.

#2 5G Downhill/PJ Welding Position (Vertical)

The 5G downhill position is the vertical-down position used for pipe butt welds and is an excellent method of welding pipe manually. In this position, welders should use proper and specific equipment for welding pipes against molten metal’s dragging force of gravity.

Doing so increases welding productivity and provides the desired welding result. During 5G, welders undergo three welding stages: the flat, the horizontal, and the overhead.

#8 6G Welding Position

6G Overhead Position

Welders consider the 6G welding position to be the most challenging welding position to perform. A skilled or experienced welder can do welding with a 6G position. Sometimes, this position is similar to 5G/PH/PJ, but the pipe stands at 45° from the other.

Since one pipe should be located at an angle of 45° to the other pipe, it becomes the most complex and challenging situation for the welder. It is also known as the overhead weld position or welder certification test position.

Also, while welding, the welder needs to make several body positions, i.e., horizontal (hard), flat (easy), and vertical weld (demand). The 6G uphill/H-L045 and 6G downhill/J-L045 positions are common names for the 6G welding position.


Closing It Up

I hope I have covered everything about “Types of Welding Positions.” If I missed something, or if you have any doubts, let me know in the comments. If you liked this article, please share it with your friends.

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About Saif M

Saif M. is a Mechanical Engineer by profession. He completed his engineering studies in 2014 and is currently working in a large firm as Mechanical Engineer. He is also an author and editor at www.theengineerspost.com

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