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Any welders out there?
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tom    Posted 12-15-2004 at 16:11:30       [Reply]  [No Email]
Hi, I am normally just a lurker here as I usually hang at the Ford 8N board (Tom 8N396936). I am in the process of buying a welder and I have some questions. I plan on going with a MIG- not a stick-right? Some of the lower cost unit say they can only weld up to 1/8 inch so what happens if I break an implement with 1/4 inch steel? Can I still weld it- perhaps from both sides? As you can tell this will be mainly for use around the farm- now and then welding.
Any advice would be great,any special brand names, best values, average cost etc
thanks in advance

Scott S.    Posted 12-16-2004 at 11:42:53       [Reply]  [Send Email]
Trying to pay a buddy back for all the work he does for me, I bought a Clarke 180 amp (220v) wire feed welder. He's only used the flux core wire, although the unit converts to gas. He's built trailers, welded steps on to his 1655, heck, this weekend we even built a coal forge out of truck rims and angle iron. It does a beautiful job in his hands. He said 1/4" was no trouble, even without gas. He did mention more cleanup of slag without gas. I bought the unit at Farm and Fleet for about $360 on sale. With the luck he's had with it, it seems to be a good economical unit for the person with odd jobs to do.

TimV    Posted 12-15-2004 at 19:55:26       [Reply]  [No Email]
Tom: Lots of good advice and varied opinions already, but I'll add a few notes as well. In general, wire welding is easier to learn, but stick welding is more versatile. It is also more tolerant of dirty, painted, or contaminated metal than a wire welder--at least providing you use the correct type of rod. For my personal welders, I've got both--I have a Hobart Handler 135 (110-volt) MIG that will do both gas and flux-core welding. I also have a Lincoln AC225 stick welder. This is probably the most popular welder ever made--there are literally millions of them out there. You can often find them used for around $100. Granted that there are certainly better welders out there, but it's a good start if you're just getting into welding. While you can weld a battleship together with a 110 MIG, you'll be there awhile using the "v-grind and fill" method that you'll need to use for anything over (roughly) 1/8". If a MIG is your first choice, buy a 220-V one--it will be much more useful around a farm. Stay away from the cheap "flux-core only" welders--most are imported junk, with poor parts availibility and low duty cycles. In fact, whether you get a MIG or a stick, you'll be much happer sticking with one of 3 major brands--Lincoln, Miller, or Hobart.

Spence    Posted 12-15-2004 at 19:47:53       [Reply]  [No Email]
Goin on 30 years with my Lincoln Buzz Box. Bilt
8 trailers, 3 tandems, a patio frame system, 2 truss beams for a living room 22' long with 16in webbing.

And too many more to mention. I use 6011/13 usually on mild, 7018 on mixed carbon, and 7014 for verticals and overhead. It's a 40-240 and never complains sitting in -20, but the cooling fan is lazy in that temperature, probly dont need it anyway).

Can't go wrong with Lincoln AC/DC for reliability, and handles 1/4in stuff with no problems, in fact I just repaired a leaf spring that thick using (300,000 lb psi,rod) and the weld's stronger than the spring.


deadcarp    Posted 12-15-2004 at 18:47:15       [Reply]  [No Email]
yep, when it comes to thivkness they should say "per pass" (don't ignore duty cycle though - let that thing cool off and it'll outlast you). on high pressure steam pipes for example you might have a 1 inch hole thru a 3 foot diameter pipe. to join a seam, they grind huge cones on each pipe, swing them in with the desired gap, one certified welder sits down on each side, and they start laying bead - each one welds halfway around and the bead's continued by the other welder like wrapping a string. usualy there's
a couple chipping hammers busy at the same time. if any flaws or voids show up in the xray, grind it off and start again. pays good but taxing work.
when you get the plant ready, every pipe looks out of plumb and level. once steam is up and everything's warm, it straightens right up. super-heated steam can be pumped - it's a liquid
again. if there was a pinhole leak, it'd cut you right in half. :)

Willy-N    Posted 12-15-2004 at 18:46:10       [Reply]  [No Email]
I just bought a Miller 210 Mig Wire Feed and it can use Flux Core or Argon. Big investment but it is nice for $1250.00 if you want to do some nice heavy welds or light ones. I was welding 1/2 inch steel today no problem at all. I made a scraper to level the drive way with out of scrap steel. I was not happy with a 110 Volt flux core small one and sent it back. I allways wanted one and just findly bought it! Spent way more than that paying people to weld things for me, now I can do it when I want it done. Mark H.

cachon    Posted 12-15-2004 at 16:46:11       [Reply]  [Send Email]
I've used my flux core welder/35mm wire to weld,with no problem,1/4" plate..jst have to make sure it is clean....on teh highest setting it flows like butter....

Fawteen    Posted 12-15-2004 at 16:16:44       [Reply]  [No Email]
I have a Lincoln SP135 MIG unit. I'm very happy with it, and by "V"ing out the joint, I have welded 1/4" plate routinely, and have managed repairs on up to 3/8" stuff.

MIG is quite easy to use, and very versatile. I have no experience with the gasless flux-cored wire, but can highly recommend the Argon or CO/Argon mix (Stargon).

I also recommend getting a 220V rig rather than a 110. Much more useful unless all you're doing is bodywork.

Rowdy Yates    Posted 12-15-2004 at 18:16:50       [Reply]  [No Email]
I have the same as Fawteen describes. It works very well for a smaller welder. I would never ever buy a "gasless"/flux-cored welder, I've used them and you'll wish that you never seen it after running one that uses argon gas. Granted, the gas is an additional expense, but one tank full has lasted me for years, of course that depends on how often you weld. I use mine for most of my welding, but I also keep a good ole stick arc welder for the big stuff, plus you can soak the rods in water on a stick welder and crank it all the way up and cut steel with it too.
I recomend the argon gas mig welder. The 220v would be better and use less electric, but the 110v gives you more options as to where you can use it, that is if you needed to transport it.
One final note......always turn the gas tank off every time that you're done welding, if not you'll find yourself with an empty tank just when you need it the most!! :)

Clod    Posted 12-15-2004 at 16:38:04       [Reply]  [No Email]
I work at a welding shop. I know nothing of that.My boss knows all there is to know on that subject.He just drove away.Lucky for us.He would have wrote you book here.If you have questions by tomarrow.I will grill him.But the other guy here seems to have your answer. If you plan to be an expert welder . You must.Bum cigs and coffee,Food and tools. ( never bring money to the job) Be sure to break the tools and toss them on the floor.Stay away from gavanized metal and anti sieze compound.Blow up coke cans when the boss drives away.

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