Mig Welder for Garage

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  #1  
Old 04-16-06, 12:24 PM
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Mig Welder for Garage

I want a mig welder for the garage. I'm not sure what I will be getting just yet, but I am doing the wiring now, and I wanted to install big enough conductors to accommodate your average garage welder, by that I mean, one that can weld metal from about 22gauge, up to about 3/8ths of an inch thick.

I was looking at the online Miller site and found one that has adapter plugs that are 15amp/115volt, and, 50amp/230volt.
I'm assuming the 115v for thin metals, and the 230v for thicker metals.

My question: If I run #6 copper conductors to an outlet, would this work for this welder, or would the wire size be a bit of an overkill? I'd rather have a bit oversized conductors than too small of conductors, especially after the drywall goes up. I figure, #6 should be good for most home welders. Thanks!
 
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Old 04-16-06, 01:08 PM
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> If I run #6 copper conductors to an outlet, would this work for this welder?

Yes. But what matters is the plug that the welder has.
It needs a 50A plug on it.
 
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Old 04-16-06, 01:53 PM
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bolide,
I've never installed a 240volt receptacle. Does the 50amp receptacle fit into a box that is recessed in the wall(stick framed garage), or is the box for the receptacle mounted on the outside of the sheetrock somehow, or can it be done either way?

thanks!
 
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Old 04-16-06, 02:28 PM
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Either way. You can get surface mount or box mount. If you use a box mount, use a deep box. Run 4 wires even if your welder has only three.

(Btw, I put the U-shaped ground at the top.)
 
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Old 04-16-06, 02:52 PM
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When I run the 4 wire, should I keep the neutral the same size as the hots, #6, or, should I run the neutral wire one size smaller? How 'bout the size for the ground wire?

I realize that the welder probably won't need the neutral, unless it has some type of 120volt gadget on it.(who knows?!?) I'm just assuming you mean that I should run it "just in case" I might need it down the road sometime, for some unforseeable thing.
 
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Old 04-16-06, 03:19 PM
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> should I keep the neutral the same size as the hots
Yes, given that you want flexibilty for any possible future utilization equipment.

If you are making the circuit for specific equipment, you may omit the neutral altogether.


> How 'bout the size for the ground wire?
NEC 250.122 requires #10 Cu minimum.


> I'm just assuming you mean that I should run it "just in case"
> I might need it down the road sometime,
> for some unforseeable thing.

Yes. I sounds like you don't want to have to open your walls, so bringing all conductors gives you the most options.
 
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Old 04-16-06, 04:06 PM
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If you are considering a different size neutral leads me to think you might be running individual conductors. That needs to be done in conduit. With conduit you can always add more wires later. Don't bother with the neutral until you need it.
 
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Old 04-16-06, 08:14 PM
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I wouldn't run a neutral for a welder receptacle. I'm also a journeyman weldor, active on the welder forums and I can't even think of a 240V welder that needs a neutral, even the ancient ones. A NEMA 6-50R is a standard welder receptacle. Many smaller welders can use smaller ones, even if they come with the standard 50A plug.

If you run #6 wire, you'll be able to power most of the bigger welders found in garages, too. A 175A MIG (like a Millermatic 175 or a Hobart Handler 180) can run off of #10 wire easily.

Make sure to size the breaker to the wire, not the receptacle. For example, if you are powering a MM175, run #10 wire to a NEMA 6-50R. Even though this is a 50A receptacle, you use a 30A breaker.

That said, you can always run bigger wire and be prepared for upgrading the machine. It's sometimes nice to make the wire sized for the receptacle anyway if you ever suspect an idiot will move in and swap the breaker.

If you want help choosing a welder, check out www.hobartwelders.com and click on the "Weld Talk" forums. All brands are discussed there by a huge number of professionals.
 
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Old 04-16-06, 09:09 PM
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Thanks, MAC. Quite informative. I'll check out the forum you mentioned.
 
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