In February of 2012 the Boy Scouts of America introduced the Welding Merit Badge with the help of the American Welding Society. Being that you are interested in welding, you might be asked to assist with this merit badge. I thought that I would relay my experiences so that you would have some idea of what is involved.

Two fellows that I work with are scoutmasters of their respective troops. Eleven boys from one troop and four from the other expressed interested in earning this merit badge. The boys ranged in age from 10 to almost 18.

The merit badge consists of two parts: the hands on welding part and answering some questions in a worksheet. The questions are basic questions about cutting and welding as well as safety and first aid for welding related injuries. They also included a section on careers in welding. All of the information could be found in the Welding Merit badge book. I agreed to help with the with the practical welding part. The scout masters agreed to handle the worksheet questions. One of the scout masters agreed to sign up to be the welding merit badge counselor. The scouts must weld three things:

1. Pad beads on a plate of metal that is 1/4" x 3" x 3".
2. Make a Lap, Tee and Butt joint.
3. Weld their initials on a plate of metal.

They must use one of the following four welding processes:

Oxyacetylene gas welding
Bare wire MIG
Flux core MIG