MeltTools Welding Cameras Made in America AI Welding Tools

Welding Education

The key skill that is taught in practical welding education is visual analysis of puddle behavior. However, the small scale, dynamic movement and hazards of welding make it difficult for more than a handful of students to observe details in the melt zone (e.g. arc shape, weld puddle behavior, wire placement) during demonstrations.

Camera advantage

Manual welding skills are learned through demonstration and practice. Typically an instructor will demonstrate correct welding technique for a particular process, and then the students will practice the same task. A camera system that is suitable for practical welding education conveniently provides magnified views of puddle behavior during both instructor’s demonstration (to teach a greater number of students to more effectively read the arc and weld puddles), and during student practice (to highlight and drive home the instructor’s observations and feedback). Ideally such a system would be simple to set-up and focus, unobtrusive and flexible so that the variety of viewpoints that a welder takes during different welding tasks could be easily mimicked with the camera.

Two drawings depicting how torch mounts can be used at different angles

MeltView Solution

The MeltView APEX3 is our welding education camera system that provides clear, in-focus, magnified views of the weld zone during both demonstration and student practice. Because the small APEX3 camera mounts flexibly to the MIG or TIG welding torch, it’s possible to show and record circumferential welds, 3G welds, long welds, and more, from an angle that most closely resembles the manual welder’s point of view.

Why use a welding camera?

  • 90% of welding skill is visually based. Virtual reality trainers can’t teach this critical skill.
  • Instructors can engage students and demonstrate welding to more students, more effectively.
  • Student understanding is greatly enhanced by a magnified image of the weld, both of the instructor’s welds and their own welds.
  • Create video libraries for e-learning resources that attract and aid students.
  • Document student progress and results in a unique way that enables students to advance and enter employment faster.
  • Increase qualification testing success.

MeltView APEX3 advantage

  • Our unique torch-mounted camera system can mimic the welder’s viewpoint.
  • Once the camera is mounted to the torch in the desired position, the image stays in focus as long as you weld.
  • The APEX3 can be mounted to different torches at different angles, or bench-mounted if desired.
  • The APEX3 provides a clear, HD image of welding at 1920x1080p with a bright background and minimal need to adjust camera parameters.
  • The APEX3 does not require a computer or software. No software image manipulation means a clearer, crisper welding image without fuss.
  • The APEX3 can be used with the included frame grabber to record and/or stream video from a user-provided laptop.

MeltView APEX3 camera FAQs

Is the camera to heavy to mount to the torch?

No, it’s not. Our customers report that it takes getting used to having a camera mounted to the torch, but that it's worth it for the quality of the images that they can capture. The APEX3 plus lightweight torch mount weigh 10oz, while the APEX3 plus C-clamp torch mount weigh just over 1lb. Both mounts are included in the kit and are workable given the weight and drag of a typical welding torch and cables.

Why is a welding camera so expensive?

While cameras are everywhere nowadays, they are not designed for imaging the very bright welding arc. In fact, there are only a few cameras that can do this, and MeltTools offers the most well-designed camera for welding education on the market. Every MeltView welding camera is designed and built and supported from our facility in Michigan.

How do I use the camera?

Mount the camera to the torch and use the camera cable to connect the camera to the controller. To see the image, connect a large format monitor (i.e. HDMI monitor) or a laptop to the controller. Check that the camera is in focus and start welding!

If you are using the zoom lens and LED, mount this assembly to the bench and power up the LED. The LED provides a bright image when welding is off.

The torch mount allows for a close-up image at almost any viewing angle. This is the principal advantage of the MeltView APEX3 camera over other welding cameras. The torch mount is not suitable for imaging SMAW, since the stick is consumed during welding, so the bench mount with zoom lens is used to capture video of SMAW.

What can I expect to show with the camera?

Our customers have visualized all of the following: Melt-in at the leading edge of the puddle; melt-in on the sides of the puddle; solidification of the rear of the weld puddle; effect of parameter changes, electrode position and traverse speed on weld puddle behavior and dimensions; generation of various weld defects; torch manipulation techniques.



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