Welded or seamless steel pipes? Which are the best?

Welded or seamless steel pipes? Which are the best?

When it comes to tubes, the first macro-classification that is performed is between welded and seamless tubes. Seamless pipes are distinguished from welded tubes essentially for the production process and sectors of use.

Welded tubes

The welded tube is generally obtained by forming a flat rolled product (strip or sheet), which is folded with the aid of roller cages and subsequently welded on the adjacent edges. The weld can be longitudinal or helical. To eliminate the weld bead, appropriate scorders are used that allow the mechanical removal of the same.

The main welding methods used for the industrial production of stainless steel welded tubes are as follows:

- TIG (Tungsten Inert Gas)
- HF (High Frequency)
- Laser

The welding method depends solely and exclusively on the field of use which determines the type of technology most suitable.

TIG welding is the most widely used method for producing quality welded tubes.

The high frequency method, characterized by very high welding speed (20/30 times higher than TIG welding), is used for decorative, structural and mechanical applications, with the total exclusion of thermal, food, pharmaceutical, chemical and petrochemical systems.

Seamless tubes

Considered to be a qualitatively superior product compared to welded pipe, seamless tube, as the name suggests, is a pipe without a bend (seam) or weld joint. It can be obtained from a billet or bloom by hot rolling or extrusion, but also from a seamless hot-drawn tube that has undergone cold drawing or rolling.

Seamless stainless steel pipes are used in systems or in applications where it is necessary to withstand high pressures, this type of pipe in fact has ASME operating pressures 20% higher than welded pipes of the same material and size. Compared to welded pipes, another advantage of seamless pipes is greater resistance to corrosion, since they have less potential for impurities associated with the welded area. Seamless stainless steel pipes are used in oil and gas plants, petrochemical treatment, power generation and other critical industrial applications.

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