An orbital welding apparatus comprising a modular weld head unit including a circular rotor carrying a welding electrode for rotation about an axis for welding abutting ends of tubular members positioned in alignment on the axis. A drive assembly for driving the rotor includes a motor unit carried in a separate modular housing for ready manual connection and disconnection from the weld head unit. In the preferred form a transmission module is connected with the motor unit and connects to the weld head unit by a flexible drive shaft assembly to allow the motor unit to have substantially any desired orientation relative to the weld head unit. There is also disclosed a separate clamping assembly for holding the tubular members relative to the weld head unit.
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