10 Essential Books for Professional Welders [Updated 2020]

May 31, 2019 10:42 am

Dedicating to a career in welding is exciting for many different reasons. Being a welder can look very different from one industry to the next (for example, a construction welder and a navy welder are extremely different experiences). The things that remains consistent, is the technique, knowledge, and appreciation for the trade.

And although anyone can pick up a welding machine and get to work, there is a difference between an improvised welder and a professional welder. Becoming a skilled welder is a process that takes time, work, and dedication. Due to the “manual” nature of the technique, there’s no doubt that the best way to become proficient in welding is through training and practice.

Welding books that deal with the basics of the trade are always useful for beginners as well as more experienced welders who are looking to refresh their memory on a few core welding principles. No matter where you are in your career, welding books should always be in your shop library.

Having a complete and updated reference library is important for expanding your welding knowledge. It can also help you to successfully address special or unique jobs or projects that require specific knowledge, beyond the realm of your current expertise.

To help you get started with building your welding library, we’ve compiled a list of the top 10 books and manuals that you should add to your collection, in no particular order.

Welding: Principles and Applications

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This comprehensive text features valuable information on topics such as welding metallurgy, metal fabrication, weld testing and inspection, joint design, job costing, and environmental and conservation tips. The author opens each section by introducing you to the materials, equipment, setup procedures, and critical safety information you need to execute a specific process successfully. Subsequent chapters focus on individual welding tasks.

Welding Essentials

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This new edition of Welding Essentials makes welding easy for beginners and is a handy reference for professionals. This book is in a question-and-answer format which makes finding what you’re looking for, easier. Welding Essentials addresses topics like safety hazards and required precautions in detail and provides solutions for the most commonplace problems of each process. This valuable reference carefully explains step-by-step setup and shutdown procedures, along with why equipment grounding and GFIs are needed and the way in which they work.

Math for Welders

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Math for Welders is both a textbook and workbook. Learn the basic mathematics skills and practical exercises that you can take straight to the welding field. Each topic is presented in a step-by-step format with examples to make the concepts more clear.

Modern Welding

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Modern Welding provides thorough coverage of common welding and cutting processes. Some of the topics included are: arc welding, oxyfuel gas welding and cutting, plasma arc cutting, and resistance welding of ferrous and non-ferrous metals. The text also includes extensive instruction in welding symbol interpretation, metallurgy and heat treatments, weld testing and inspection, and tips to getting a job in the welding field.

Audel Welding Pocket Reference

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The Audel Welding Pocket Reference features updated charts dealing with the most common situations welding workers face on the job. This comprehensive, pocket-sized reference is based on recommendations from working professionals and covers welding symbols and definitions, types of joints and welds, typical welding station configurations, oxygen cylinders, arc-welding charts, U.S metric measures, and more.

Welding Licensing Exam Study Guide

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Need to pass the Welding Code Book and Fundamentals exams? Here’s your book. This career-building resource includes calculations and troubleshooting tips that will fully equip you to ace these certification tests. This prep book includes over 850 exam-style multiple choice and true/false questions & answers, along with numerous welding calculations and troubleshooting tips, and so much more.

Welding Fundamentals

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Welding Fundamentals is designed to provide students with a strong understanding of the underlying theory and skills required for successful welding, with a strong emphasis on safety. It provides all of the information needed to help students develop proficiency with the most common welding processes (including GTAW, GMAW, FCAW, SMAW, and oxyfuel welding), thermal cutting, basic print reading and weld symbology, and joint design and fit up.

Pocket Welding Guide

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This newly revised edition features almost any welding topic you could think of. In addition to overviews of all welding processes, some topics covered are: examples of good and bad weld beads, causes and cures of common welding problems, welding symbols and guidelines for the identification of metals and much more.

Welding Fabrication and Repair

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This practical guide provides insights, ideas, and tips for solving real-world fabrication problems. This book is special because it focuses on some non-welding knowledge nearly all welders must have to advance in their trade. Welding Fabrication and Repair can shorten the time needed to develop effective problem-solving skills and is created for welders who want to put their skills to better use.

Welder’s Handbook: A Guide to Plasma Cutting, Oxyacetylene, ARC, MIG and TIG Welding, Revised and Updated

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A newly updated, state-of-the-art guide to metal inert gas (MIG) and tungsten inert gas (TIG) arc welding technology. This revised edition of HP’s bestselling automotive book (for over 20 years) is a detailed, instructional manual on the theory, technique, equipment, and proper procedures of MIG and TIG welding.


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  • dougspair says:

    How about ….The Procedure Handbook of Arc Welding….Lincoln electric….

  • Don says:

    I don’t know whether Lincoln has updated the handbook or not. I still use my copy (circa 1971) regularly. But then I am an old fashioned stick man too. I do a lot of onsight structural steel.

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