Cladding and hardfacing services apply a thick layer of a metal or alloy to the surface of a base alloy to rebuild or repair the surface, or to impart special characteristics. They differ in terms of capabilities and use many different processes. Some cladding and hardfacing services perform diffusion bonding, electron beam cladding, explosive bonding, flux cored arc welding (FCAW), hardfacing, or laser cladding. Other companies perform gas metal arc welding (GMAW) and metal inert gas (MIG) welding, plasma arc welding, pressure welding, radio frequency (RF) or induction heating, rolling or roll bonding, soldering or brazing, spin casting, and shielded metal arc welding (SMAW) Classing and hardfacing services that perform submerged arc welding (SAW), gas tungsten arc welding (GTAW), and tungsten inert gas (TIG) welding are also available.
Selecting cladding and hardfacing services requires an analysis of cladding processes, overlay materials, and imparted characteristics. Hard facing is a surface-treatment process that fuses or sprays on a deposit, coating, or cladding onto a base alloy. Laser welding and arc welding processes are often used to hardface materials. Typically, hardfacing is used to rebuild and repair surfaces or surface damage. The hard-facing alloy is usually harder than the underlying base alloy.
Cladding and hardfacing services use many different overlay materials. Choices include aluminum, brazes and brazing alloys, carbide and hardmetals, composite materials and metal matrices, copper and copper alloys, nickel and nickel alloys, and precious metals such as gold and silver. Cladding and hardfacing services may also apply refractory metals such as tungsten, molybdenum, and tantalum; solders and soldering alloys; and tool steel, high carbon steel, and stainless steel. Overlay materials may include ceramics, cobalt, cupronickel, magnesium, Monel®, superalloys, titanium, zinc or zirconium. Monel is a registered trademark of the International Nickel Company.
Typically, cladding and hardfacing services select overlay materials that enhance the base material’s physical, electrical, and/or thermal properties. Cladding layers and hardfacing layers may impart greater abrasion and erosion resistance, or have anti-fouling properties that prevent the growth of marine life. Cladding and hardfacing services select some metals or alloys because of their anti-slip, blast mitigation, electrically conductive, chemical resistant, corrosion resistant, or friction-reducing features. Heat-resistant cladding, magnetic or magnetic cladding, and impact-resistant cladding are also available. Cladding and hardfacing services apply wear-resistant materials to protect a surface against a sliding action between two or more components.