which welder for my needs

Old 11-24-04, 06:10 AM
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which welder for my needs

hello. i have not used a welder before but nowneed to purchase and use one on my project car. i will be needing to weld in steel braces on my car to stiffen the frame prior removing the roof. which welder should i get?

1)mig: lincoln 3200 from my local home depot store comes complete with everything. $430

2)tig: from a local welding store which costs doulble of a mig. uses a argon gas canister. $900

i will be welding a 1/8" to 1/4" brackets and brace on the from and suspension of my vw. don not know which to use and why to use it. please advise.

Old 11-24-04, 11:20 AM
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Having not welded before + welding car frames isn't a good idea for a starter project. You should take classes before tackling this.
Old 11-25-04, 08:28 AM
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recipe for disaster

hire an experience welder for anything that your life will depend on. thats not a beginner project.
Old 11-25-04, 01:31 PM
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I would most definately encourage you to consider purchasing a welder and learning, but you will be frustrated if trying to weld a vehicle frame as a first project.
I agree with the others in suggesting you postpone the car project for a while so you can learn how to weld.

Once you have learned how to run a bead, if you follow a set of plans, a utility trailer is a worthwhile learning project.

By far the most versatile machine to have is a mig welder.
As a suggestion I would recommend you buy something better than the Lincoln you are looking at.
The duty cycle is much too low to be usefull in welding heavier things like a frame.
Old 11-27-04, 06:50 AM
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Project car body, not frame

Excellent counsel already posted. Get a MIG for bodywork on the car.

Sub out the frame welding to a pro. Take the classes.
Old 11-27-04, 09:54 AM
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Take a class, then get a welder. I did the opposite, didn't learn correctly and it wasn't until I learnt the basics that I produced a decent weld and proper penatration.

If its just a hobby you are going for you may not need an intensive course unless you have the time and money. Check your local community schools or colleges to see what they offer. Learning from an qualified instructor you'll get to know how to be safe, learn proper technique, tips, etc.

As for the welder, in my opinion you are in need of something like a Hobart 180 or Miller 175. You can easily weld 1/4" thickness with either one. I bought a Hobart 135 mainly because for use at home I have no need for 'critical' welds (or welds that are going to take on heavy loads). Also, the versatility of pluging into any 115V/15AMP receptical is great, even though I have a deticated 20AMP in the garage. I can (and have) done 1/4" welds but as I mentioned, they are non-critical.

I have been in school now for just under 2 months, 3+ more and I'll have my citation for Metal Fab, WHMIS cert. and Lift Truck license. (already have the latter 2). We have the school's material and use it in-line with the first 12 Gooderham Modules (there are 39 I believe). I can study the Gooderham Mods after the course and challenge the exams to add to my resume.

Every bit helps and adds to your knowledge.

Last edited by metalfab; 11-27-04 at 11:52 AM.

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