Welder and Welding Operator Difference


Welder: A welder is one who performs a manual or semiautomatic welding operation.This includes welding with torch,gun or electrode holder held and manipulated by hand. Part motion devices and manually controlled filler metal feeders may be used. Semi automatic welding is manual welding with equipment that automatically controls one or more of the welding conditions, usually filler wire feed. A welder would commonly perform shielded metal arc,gas metal arc,and flux cored arc welding.

Welding Operator: A welding operator is one who operates adaptive control, automatic,mechanized, or robotic welding equipment. Automatic welding is with equipment that reqires occasional or no observation of the welding and no manual adjustments of the welding controls. Mechanized welding is with equipment that requires manual adjustment of the equipment controls in response to visual observation of the welding, with torch, gun or electrode holder held by a mechanical device. Most submerged arc welding setups would fit in to this category.

ASME Section IX

Welding operator: one who operates machine or automatic welding equipment.
Welder: one who performs manual or semiautomatic welding.

BS 499-1

Welder: operator who performs or controls the welding process
Welding operator: person who controls fully mechanized or automatic fusion welding processes.


Test coupon - ASME IX

Mechanical test are required in Table QW-452.1 (a) for groove weld test.

How many test specimens subject to mechanical test?

Positions Number of test specimen Remarks
5G or 6G 4 specimens As noted 1 & 3 in Table QW-452.1 (a) and QW-302.3
2G and 5G 6 specimens As noted 1 & 3 in Table QW-452.1 (a) and QW-302.3
other 2 specimens -

A combined 2G and 5G position purposes to cover all position, as required in Table QW-461.9 (Pipe - groove)

Alternative mechanical test.
Mechanical test may be alternative by volumetric NDE (RT or UT)

Welding process limitations for SAW, SMAW, GTA, PAW and GMAW; other processes shall be subject to mechanical test such FCAW.

Minimum of length of coupon are 150 mm (6 inch) and full length for pipe or maximum 4 test coupon for smaller pipe (see Qw-302.2).
In case of test on the production weld, minimum length of production weld are:

  • Welder: 150 mm length or full length for pipe not exceed 4 production weld (smaller size)
  • Welding operator: 1000 mm length or full length for pipe.

What are the different beween test coupon, test specimence?

The definitions are given in QW-109.2:

  • Test coupon: a weld or braze assembly for procedure or performance qualification testing. The coupon may be any product from plate, pipe, tube, etc., and may be a fillet weld, overlay, deposited weld metal, etc.
  • Test specimen: a sample of a test coupon for specific test. The specimen may be a bend test, tension test, toughness test, chemical analysis, macrotest, etc. A specimen may be a complete test coupon, for example, in radiographic testing or small diameter pipe tension testing.

How many RT film reported in welder or welder operator’s certificates?

  • Minimum 1 film for plate / 150 mm length.
  • Minimum 9 films for pipe DN15; 3 films or more films for pipe DN50, and 4 films for pipe DN150; other size bases on RT methods.