I have been doing a number of stainless steel welding procedures recently and ran into a bit of confusion so I thought I would touch on the subject. I hope the discussion can save other people the time and hassle of figuring some of this out.

It became apparent that I used a lot of short hands for various codes here is a short list:


Generally when you begin to write a weld procedure you start at CSA W59 which is the Canadian code for Welded steel construction in Canada for the parameters of the weld then cross reference that to CSA 47.1 (Certification of Companies for Fusion Welding of Steel) for qualifications of staff and company. However, for stainless CSA W59 does not touch on the subject at all. It just simply referred people to the AWS D1.6 code based on the American system. I found this interesting since the AWS system is good but not the same as the CSA and to have a cross over raised some questions as to which system had final say and which code covered what. Specifically, I was look at joint B-P1c which is a partial joint penetration prequalified under the AWS system but not prequalified in the CSA W59.

AWS D1.6 offers this procedure as prequalified:

Where as CSA W59 only offers a prequalified weld if its two passes with a ground to sound metal or with a backing strip.

After chasing that solution for a while it came to my attention that CSA 47.1 had recently added Annex K that covered stainless steel welding. This section of the code had recently been adopted by CWB as the approved procedure for qualifying stainless steel welds/personnel etc. Inside Annex K under clause K.8.3.1 I find it states:

“Joints that conform with the details specified in Figures 10.1 to 10.14 of CSA W59 and Figure J.8 of this standard, and meet all other requirements of this Annex, shall be designated as prequalified and do not require procedure qualification testing.”

Which loosely translates into use the prequalified welds in CSA W59 despite it saying in W59 that the code doesn’t apply to stainless steel welding. As I review the material to write this I also question what the process would be to qualify a light gauge stainless weld procedure as Annex K points you to CSA W59 but the prequalified sheet metal procedures are written out in Annex J of CSA W47.1.

The pre-approved procedure SG-2 in the sheet steel annex J in W47.1 would have also worked well for what I was working other than it is for mild steel not stainless.

I work with these codes every day and I found this cross referencing of codes confusing. I cant see someone who casually works with these codes successfully navigating it. On the other hand I feel this expansion of CSA 47.1 is a step in the right direction in that I believe Canada should have a code/standard for welding stainless steel. But the approach of cramming the highlights of AWS D1.6 which is 300+ pages long into annex K is a little strange. It also is weird to refer to CSA 47.1 which is traditionally a qualification code not a design code for design information. I hope as time progresses this step in the right direction turns into a Canadian version of the code but for now the additional clarity is appreciated.

If you found this page trying to find a stainless steel weld procedure. Feel free to email me and lets figure it out. https://basepointengineering.com/contact-simple/

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