wire feed welders

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Old 07-27-03, 07:17 AM
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wire feed welders

Hi all. I've been looking at buying a wire feed welder for as little money as possible. They have some 115 volt welders at Walmart for about $200.00, some at Sears for the same amount. I would weld mostly as a hobby, doing some body panel work and mainly thin metals. I have done a fair amount of welding with a stick welder, but would rather go the wire feed route. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance, John
 
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Old 07-29-03, 05:43 PM
scrapiron
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I would spend the extra money a get a name brand. You'll be better off in the long run when replacing parts or getting service. Make sure you get a true mig setup and not just a flux core outfit. You want to use gas for most sheet metal work. While I prefer a 220 volt machine, a 110 powered mig welder will handle most hobby and automobile work. I would also recommend reading a book that explains the most common welding procedures before buying your equiptment. Good luck and have fun!
 
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Old 08-02-03, 02:42 PM
Portable Welder
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I would take scrapirons advice,the $ 200.00 you save with the cheaper one is not worth it, over the years I've had several disappointed people stopping in my shop trying to sell me the cheap generac ones, but am yet to have someone ask me to buy a hobart, lincoln, or miller.
 
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Old 08-08-03, 10:16 PM
alumtuna
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hello gohammergo,

The other gentlemen said it best. Dont buy the cheapest wire welder out there for you will be disappointed. Know of several examples of this happening. Maybe u should consider a gas )oxy/acetylene) outfit to start off with. You could do alot with it including welding the largest ranges and you could use it as you move along in your hobbies/career.

IMHO
 
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Old 08-14-03, 06:30 AM
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Many years ago I bought a used generic wire feed, that had been used with gas. I used flux core, and made the ugliest bubblegum welds you've ever seen, with splatter and dingleberries spread over half the county.Went through a couple pounds of wire before someone asked if I had changed the polarity. Polarity? Guess I should have read the book I didn't have.

The thing I hated most about it was the duty cycle. On thin steel (about 10 ga) I could weld about 6 to 8 inches before it timed out. On thicker stuff (1/4") I'd be lucky to get an inch. I finally wore it out and had an excuse to buy a new one.

After looking at several, I chose a Hobart 175 (220V). They also make a model 135 (120V). It's a whole new world. Hasn't timed out yet! Makes beautiful welds! Sounds like bacon! The dealer told me that Miller now owns Hobart. The only differences I could see, looking at Miller and Hobart side by side, were the paint color and price tag. Lots of places (like Harbor Freight and Northern) have sales on the Hobart models. As you can probably tell, it's my recommendation. The difference in price will be more than offset by longevity, parts and service availability, weld quality and consistency, and reduced aggravation (while waiting for the machine to cool down, to fnish a weld).
 
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Old 08-14-03, 10:07 PM
alumtuna
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one addition

If you have additional moneys i would look up what size you need for welding currently and then up one size. This is the best advice i followed. Along with buying a name brand.

Good luck
 
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Old 08-26-03, 01:44 AM
william h
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i have had really good luck with a clark welder bought it ten yrs ago at a tractor supply store for 250.00 i added a fan to the side to extend the duty cycle. used it 4 yrs ago to build a stock car frame.
 
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Old 08-28-03, 10:21 AM
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Just curious, does this frame include a roll cage?
 
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Old 08-28-03, 10:39 AM
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- - -added a fan to the side to extend the duty cycle- - -

I've got a brother-in-law who took his welder apart and found a 20 amp circuit breaker that was the "culprit" causing his welder to shut off. He changed it out for a 30 amp breaker, and it hasn't shut down since.

The fan is a much better idea. (The breaker-change-out method is like putting a penny in a fuse socket.)
 
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