ESAB welding and cutting equipment is renowned for its quality, reliability and versatility, and these are all characteristics that have been greatly appreciated by Julien Allegre, a French sculptor who uses predominantly recycled metals for his breathtaking sculptures that have been exhibited in galleries throughout Europe, as well as in the USA and South Korea.
To create the various elements of his sculptures, Julien Allegre uses steel ranging from 0.6 to 20mm thickness, mostly recycled from objects that have old paint and/or corrosion on the surface because the aged quality of the metals is a particular feature of his sculptures. The ESAB equipment copes admirably with steel of all thicknesses and conditions, as well as the new material that is used for approximately 10 per cent of the sculptures. In addition to steel, Julien Allegre uses small amounts of bronze.
While the majority of the welding and cutting takes place in Julien Allegre’s studio, there are times when the ESAB equipment has to be transported to a gallery or other location for finishing on site. In such cases the machines’ portability is an additional benefit.
Currently Julien Allegre is welding with an AristoMig 320 with OK AristoRod 0.8mm steel and stainless steel wires, and a Caddy Tig 2200i AC/DC machine. For cutting, he uses a Cutmaster 120 plasma cutter. To complement these machines, he also has an Origo Vac C10 fume extraction unit, Aristo Tech helmet and Aristo Air filter/respirator, plus gloves, jacket and overalls, all from ESAB.
Explaining his strong preference for ESAB products, Julien Allegre says: “I have previously used plasma cutting and Mig welding equipment from other suppliers but, since trying ESAB products in 2010, I have bought only theirs. My local distributor, Rozier, first suggested I should try ESAB machines and I really appreciated the quality of the arc. Since then, distributors Rozier and Quincaillerie Aixoise have provided very good support. I now buy all of my equipment, filler metals and protective equipment from Quincaillerie Aixoise.”
Choosing welding and cutting equipment can be a fraught process, with so many different machines on the market, with widely varying capabilities and qualities, so Julien Allegre sought advice from Rozier regarding the optimum machines for his unique purposes. Furthermore, Sébastien Simond of ESAB demonstrated the Cutmaster 120 prior to Julien Allegre deciding to buy this machine. A few years ago Julien Allegre was also invited by Quincaillerie Aixoise to visit the ESAB Demobus when it was at Aix-en-Provence, and he is now looking forward to this mobile exhibition calling at Aix-en-Provence once again, when he hopes to try the innovative new Sentinel welding helmet.
Reliable and dependable
In the six years Julien Allegre has been using ESAB equipment, it has proved to be very reliable. He comments: “In general it works perfectly. I had some issues with the Powercut 900 that was not powerful enough for my needs, but the service was quick. There have been no issues at all with the MIG and TIG machines.”
Overall Julien Allegre is very pleased with the ESAB equipment, filler metals and accessories that he uses, as well as the support from ESAB and the local distributor, Quincaillerie Aixoise. Looking at the sculptures he creates, it is easy to appreciate the versatility of the equipment and the way it can cut and weld almost any steel, regardless of its condition.