Advice needed on welder.....harbor freight brand "chicago electric"

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  #1  
Old 08-23-08, 08:54 AM
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Advice needed on welder.....harbor freight brand "chicago electric"

Hey guys, hope this is in the right forum.

I do alot of work on my cars and want to start welding. Want to try and fab up an exhuast

What do you all think for a beginner welder? EDIT** Type in item # 94164

http://www.harborfreight.com/cpi/cta...unction=Search

thanks!
 
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Old 08-23-08, 06:16 PM
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That's not one that I have used, but the price and its features are in the range of others. I would say for a beginner welder, it should be OK.

It would certainly handle automotive type welding.
 
  #3  
Old 08-23-08, 06:36 PM
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Man what a welder. 110 amps is alot of current to weld exhaust tubing. I have a 50 amp 110 volt Hobart from Tractor Supply Co that I have welded 1/4 inch plate with, granted it will take multiple passes and 1/4 is beyond the listed capicity of my machine but it can be done. As for your welder it should weld exhaust tubing just fine.
 
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Old 08-23-08, 08:30 PM
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You might find that using flux core wire you will have a problem welding thin tubing.
You would do well to get a machine that comes already set up to use gas as it is less prone to burn through.
 
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Old 08-23-08, 08:31 PM
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Thanks guys for the advice:

The problem is that welder runs off of 220 volts, correct?

I only have 110 volts where the welder will be.

Can you guys direct me if a decent, quality, welder in the neighborhood of $200?

Thanks!
 
  #6  
Old 08-24-08, 04:28 AM
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$200.00 will not buy you a welder that is decent and good for what you want to do.
You can try to find a flux core welder in your price range and practice like crazy on thin metal but you may become frustrated.

You need to keep in mind that most welders that are 120 volts require a 20 amp circuit which would require you to upgrade your wiring anyway.

This 120 volt flux core welder requires 24 amps at 120 volts requiring at least a 30 amp 120 volt circuit!
 
  #7  
Old 08-24-08, 05:43 AM
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Look again Greg it says right there in the ad 115 volt 15 amp, or did the wrong macine come up?
 
  #8  
Old 08-24-08, 08:13 AM
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Ok, item 94164 is a 220 volt machine.

You may be referring to item 44567-4VGA
Although the ad page says 15 amps the manual says it requires a minimum 20 amp dedicated circuit.
Must be an honest mistake on their part.
It may operate on 15 amps at the lowest setting but because of the size of the machine I suspect you will have it turned up most of the time.
The sad part would be if you bought it thinking it would work on 15 amps and had to rewire anyway.

If you think you might be interested in welding as a bit of a hobby then now is the time to consider this carefully.
 
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Old 08-24-08, 02:01 PM
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for what it's worth

About 30 yrs ago I bought my first stick welder from Harbor Frieght and Salvage. It was british made and it came with instructions to change the plug. It was rated for 20 amp [110] but if you did any continuous welding it would kick the breaker. I installed a 30 amp circuit in my old shop [where I used to live] so I could use the welder with no big problems.

I rarely use it now but keep it just for those times where I can't use my 220 welder [like away from my shop] I don't know how their current supply of welders stack up but I always figured the $75 I paid was well spent.
 
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Old 08-25-08, 02:27 PM
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Cool

If you are interested in welding, then get the best one you can afford. I have used the flux wire welder and it is more trouble than it is worth. I have a Lincoln SP 100(older unit). Newer ones are SP 170/150. I got a deal on it. If I were to buy a new one, it would be a Miller gas welder. Unless you are going to do a lot of heavy welding, a 110 volt welder will do just fine-from sheet metal to 1/4 inch(3/16 recommended). Multiple passes for thicker metal. Hobart has a welding hot line (forum type like here) if you would like to check it out.

"wait 'till it cools!!!"
 
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