How To Join Metals Without Welding

Metal objects are commonly used in our surroundings. Many things at home need to be repaired and are thrown away eventually or added to the stack of pending tasks for the weekend just because you cannot run to a welder every day.

Welding these at home can be extremely dangerous because it’s an art performed by professional people. Furthermore, it can make the metal lose strength and affect it physically. High temperatures can also damage the base metal alternating the actual shape.

Many people, including me, have gone through this problem over the years, but finally, we have alternate solutions. These alternatives are now widely being used as well.

Several methods can be used to join metal without welding. They are now becoming common among people. A few can safely be performed at our homes and almost give the same output as welding. Some methods, along with steps and frequently asked questions, have been mentioned below.

Five Steps to Join Metals Without Welding

The list below mentions five techniques to join metals without welding.

  1. Epoxy Adhesives (Glue)
  2. Bolting ( Mechanical Assembly)
  3. Brazing
  4. Soldering
  5. Riveting

1: Epoxy Adhesives (Glue)

Metal bonding is commonly used in home-based DIY tasks. The simplest way to combine the two pieces of metal is by using glue. This does not have a substantial effect as welding but works decently. This is specially manufactured for homeowners who do not have many skills and need to join metals or other non-porous surfaces.

How to Join Two Metals Using Glue

The following steps can be followed to use glue to join the metals together firmly:

  • Sandpaper or emery paper is used to smooth out and remove corrosion or oxidation from the metal surface.
  • Then it should be washed with tri-sodium phosphate to eliminate the contaminants.
  • Equal amounts of epoxy and hardener should be mixed in a bowl and applied to the clean, dry surface.
  • Firmly press the metal pieces together and leave them until they cure.
  • It is recommended to wear gloves throughout the procedure and remove the excess for a professional appearance after the curing is done.
4 steps to join two metals using glue
Four Steps To Join Two Metals Using Glue(Epoxy Adhesives)

Related: Best Welders To Join Plastic

2: Bolting(Mechanical Assembly)

We can use the bolting method if the epoxy does not work out. Mechanical connections are always more robust and do not snap like glue.

We need to figure out the shape and sizes of the bolts, and then all is good to proceed. If the result is not as expected, we can always take the metals apart as they were before. Hence it is not a permanent option and can be altered afterward.

How to Join Two Metals Using Bolts

It is a straightforward method and can be performed using a hardware kit at our homes.

  • A drilling machine and a drill bit of the same size are required as the carriage bolt.
  • For smooth installation, a fluid is applied to the drill bit.
  • A mark should be made on the spot where the bolt must be inserted to make the process more efficient.
  • Evacuation should be done slowly because the tiny metal objects might cause injuries.
  • After the drilling process, the debris should be removed, and the hole should be cleaned with some acetone if available.
  • The bolt is installed until the thread reaches the other side of the hole. A washer and nut should be installed with the help of a wrench to hold them tightly.
two steps to join metals using bolts
Joining Two Metal Pieces Using Bolts (Drilling & Bolt Insertion)

3: Brazing

It is similar to soldering. It is performed at a higher temperature using an open flame to melt the brazing rod into the weld joint. A brazed joint, if performed properly, looks aesthetically appealing.

However, it is critical because temperature control is essential to achieve the desired results.

How to Join Two Metals with Brazing

For performing a blazing method, one needs to be accurate at measurement.

  • The gap between the two base metals should be precisely measured, ranging from 0.001 to 0.005 inches.
  • The metal fillers joining the base metals shall be cleaned with acidic agents or polishers to eliminate any grease or rust so that the capillary action works appropriately.
  • A coating of flux on the joint protects the metal from oxidation at high temperatures.
  • The joints must be held firmly until they cool down to develop a strong bond.
  • The temperature must be watched throughout, so it does not affect the base metals.
  • The filler wire or rod is sucked into the joint at the right temperature.
  • After the procedure, the whole assembly should be washed with hot water, and a pickling solution can be used to remove the residues.
Brazing copper to aluminum using propane torch
Brazing Copper to Aluminum with Propane Gas Torch

4: Soldering

The soldering method forms an electrical connection between the metals. It is mainly used in circuits and uses a solder that melts when heat is provided. The solder substance comprises 99 percent tin and usually appears as a coiled wire.

This process might look the same as brazing, but it is performed at low temperatures on electronic devices. Soldering enables a reliable connection in electronic systems such as calculators, transistors, LEDs, etc.

How to Join Two Metal with Soldering

The following procedure can be used to solder the metal:

  • In a wave soldering process, the solder is melted initially by heating the tank where it is present.
  • A fluxing process is carried out to clean the components.
  • A printed circuit board with metal clasps is placed on the solder, ensuring firm placement.
  • It should be left for some time, allowing the solder to settle evenly.
  • After the completion, the printed circuit board is cleaned with solvents to get rid of the residues.
3 steps to solder silver without welding
Steps To Join Metal with Soldering

5: Riveting

It’s a process utilized to bond two pieces of sheet material, commonly metals. The snap rivets are placed into drilled holes and pushed together to join. The pop rivets are used with a gun that pulls the middle par through a tube, which alters the shape of the tube, forcing the two materials together.

Joining metal with riveting is more long-lasting than one joined using bolts, as it makes metals flexible to bear temperature changes. It is mostly used in trains, aircraft, buses, and ships.

How To Join Two Metals Using Riveting

You can use the following procedure.

  • Place the holes inside the plates using a drill machine.
  • There should be ridges on the metal once drilled.
  • Set the metal pieces to each other firmly
  • Place the rivet inside a hole, one at a time.
  • Press the rivet using a rivet gun.
  • Allow the join pieces to cool down for an hour to ensure the strong weld joint.
4 steps to join two steel pieces with riveting
Four Steps Two Join Steel Using Riveting

Is Brazing as Strong as Welding?

Yes, brazing is as strong as welding if done correctly. This does not even damage the surface of the base metal but uses a carrier metal to form a joint and melt into the surface. It can sometimes form a mechanical connection stronger than welding.

Wrap Up

Welding is the oldest method to join metals, but it can be dangerous and expensive. It forms a powerful bond and requires proper skills. Many alternate methods have been developed that are less complicated, inexpensive, and even done at home sometimes.

Some of the alternate methods to join the metals other than welding are explained above in the article. This can give you a clear idea and help you choose the one suitable for joining broken metal pipes at your home. These do not require a lot of equipment and are safe to perform.

Read Also: Join Steel Pipes Without Welding

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Dave Walker is a skilled welder and passionate blogger. With years of experience in welding, he has honed his craft and developed a deep understanding of the trade. In his blog, he shares his experiences, insights, and tips on welding, offering a valuable resource for fellow welders and those interested in the field. He is dedicated to promoting the importance of welding and its applications in various industries.