Welding issues

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  #1  
Old 12-15-04, 01:23 PM
dm_gsxr
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Welding issues

Here, let me get this started right rather than hijacking another thread.

I bought a Sears Craftsman MIG welder a month or so ago from a pawn shop. I bought the manual from http://www3.sears.com and picked up a regulator and 20 pounds of Argon. I need to figure out what to get that'll connect the gas inlet on the welder to the regulator or perhaps a more appropriate regulator. The regulator I have has a pretty large connection on the end (3/4" or so) but the inlet looks like it uses a 1/4" diameter hose. I'm having a problem just figuring out what to search on or ask for when hunting. The place I bought the regulator and gas from knows about the connector but doesn't sell them.

I get the feeling I bought a home hobbiest MIG welder and am trying to use a professionals regulator but I just don't know where to hunt next. BTW, there's nothing missing as far as the welder goes. I have the manual. There's what looks like a small hose crimper or clamp that goes on the end of the inlet hose, sort of a simple compression device.

Pics: http://www.schelin.org/stuff/gallary/welder/index.html

Any ideas?

Thanks,

Carl
 
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Old 12-15-04, 02:19 PM
dm_gsxr
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It almost looks like I need this:

http://store.weldingdepot.com/cgi/we...epot/101A.html

instead and then just getting a hose to connect the tank to the machine.

Carl
 
  #3  
Old 12-15-04, 05:31 PM
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Carl,

I can't tell for sure what size the fittings are on the hose but the ends are the same style as on my MM 150.
You are right that the fittings on the hose and regulator are a commercial grade and the fittings on the welder are hobby grade.
Your welder probably is fine for what you want to do with it but this hose thing is one reason most people who have been welding for awhile will try to steer people to a bit higher end equipment.

You have two choices.
You could return the hose and regulator and seek out one from Sears or some other maker that uses that fitting or try to find the female end that fits on the end of your hose and adapt that to the poly hose in the welder.

I personally would adapt it but I have a lot of stuff around here to do that.
You may be better of to try to get a regulator and hose from Sears.
 
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Old 12-15-04, 06:48 PM
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Need to know if the regulator will work before getting the fittings

Is there a knob or key that you can turn to adjust the output pressure on the regulator.
Or is it a fixed output regulator ?

What gas does the instructions list, that can be used with the regulator ?
CO2 ?
Argon ?

Will the black hose screw into the regulator ?
Will the regulator screw into bottle ?
 
  #5  
Old 12-15-04, 09:14 PM
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Wait a minute,

I see now that you are missing the flow guage on the regulator you have.
I would suggest you return that reg and hose and first find out what it will take to connect to the welder.
It seems to have the odd fitting.
 
  #6  
Old 12-15-04, 09:54 PM
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Hold on.
When the cheep welders came out. A new set of regulators came out.
They removed the Flow meters and just use a regulator.
Others have a preset regulator no adjustments no pressure gauges.
Yes no gauge to know if your tank if empty.

I'm trying to find out what regulator he has. before changing the fittings.
 
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Old 12-15-04, 10:56 PM
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It could be that there is a fixed regulator for his unit.

If this is so then he would have to get the one specifically for his Sears unit because different units would have differing restrictions in the valving and liner.
This would make it impossible to have "one setting fits all".
 
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Old 12-16-04, 02:37 AM
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Your right.
I would think the valving would be in a fixed regulator type that screws onto the bottle. the cheap ones no gauges.

That's what I cant see in his picture if he purchased a fixed regulator, I don't see the adjusting knob.

The only restriction would be the liner.
If his regulator is calibrated in SCFH it should work like a flow meter.
and If his regulator can adjust the output flow from 0 to 40 SCFH it should be OK.
The one gauge needs two sets of markings one for CO2 and ARGON.
They sell these regulators as universal for mig welders.

I was surprised when I first seen the regulators without the flow meters.

I have several regulators
The one without a flow meter (HARRIS) has one gauge for tank pressure, the other gauge is calibrated 0 - 40 SCFH.( not pressure but SCFH)
I would think that the regulators may have something inside to keep a constant flow rate without a flow meter.
 
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Old 12-16-04, 07:58 AM
dm_gsxr
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GregH,

Sears doesn't make this unit any more so I don't know if they have the "proper" regulator for it. I'll check though.

GWIZ,

The instructions indicate an Argon/CO2 mix. I don't have the manual with me so I don't know the percentage.

The regulator will screw in to the bottle and the hose will screw in to the regulator. The other end of the hose won't fit in to the welder. When I picked up the gas, I also picked up the regulator which was the only one the shop sold. I had the manual with me so I asked the guy up front whether the regulator would work with my unit. He said that it would work but that I'd need a special fitting and that he didn't sell such a fitting. The place is a professional type shop so they don't seem to sell hobby type gear (or so it appears).

There is an adjusting key that screws in to the nose of the regulator.


So it looks like either I need to get the correct regulator for the unit or find a fitting that'll let me plug the hose in on one end and the smaller hose on the other side.

Thanks for the advise. I'll update when I find out.

Carl
 
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Old 12-16-04, 11:28 AM
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You are going to need to get a regulator that has an attached, ball type flow guage.
Regulators that have an adjustable pressure dial are better suited for units that have a known in restriction in the liner.
You will need to exchange what you have.

I might suggest that you carefully figure out what the right regulator and hose set up will cost.

These units are not very expensive to begin with and the pawn shop bargain may not be a bargain after all.
I know, I drop into our local one at least weekly, and depending on the mood or knowlege of the owner, pricing is sometimes near retail.

An idea might be to just use flux cored wire and get a feel for this unit.
You may find that welding becomes an obsession and you could quickly outgrow it.
If you got a good deal on this unit and you could demonstrate it for a potential buyer, you might even get more than you paid.
 
  #11  
Old 12-16-04, 12:42 PM
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The regulator you have should work.
It appears that it is a universal type that is sold for all makes of MIG welders.
My friend has a similar one that works fine. I did not try the one I have.
I do agree a flow type is better.

What's the Craftsman's part number of the welder ?
I will see what I can find out.

But its looks like will need to change your white connector to brass fittings.
If the plastic tubing is a standard US inch size their is brass fitting that will adapt.

Let me know the size of the plastic tubing, that is inside the white connector looks like 1/4" or 3/16" OD.
The gray ring is the release for the plastic tubing.
Push in the ring and pull the tube out.

I will get the names of some fittings and post them.
 
  #12  
Old 12-17-04, 11:18 AM
dm_gsxr
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I pulled out the book I bought from Sears (photocopied) and checked out the parts list but it doesn't show any sort of regulator. I went through the instructions (which are pretty simple) and found an illustration for a preset regulator. No part number or anything. I went to the sears site (www3.sears.com), plugged in the part number for the welder and then "regulator" and it came up with a part. When I checked the description, it said it wasn't the part that came with the unit, but that they certified it'd work with it so I ordered it.

Rather than returning the other one, I expect I'll just hold on to it. I bought it in October and am past the 30 day return date :-( If I move beyond this hobby unit, I'll be able to use it with the next one.

I paid about $150 for the welder and about 80 for the regulator. I also paid 20 bucks to Sears for the photocopied manual. It came with a nearly full large spool of wire and the spindles for smaller rolls.

What I'm trying to do is finish up a project. Just a few welds on a motorcycle frame (two forward controls, four fender tabs, four oil tank tabs, seat tab, frame brace, drum brake arm tab and maybe a support for the top of the carbs). I hunted around the area and found a bunch of shops but none that do this kind of work. A cop recommended a local guy who does welding in his garage but he only works on Harleys :-/ So I decided that I'm ever going to get this project done, I'll have to finish it myself and here I am.

I figure I'll do some basic stuff first, welding stuff together to make angles and like that, to get the hang of it and then do a couple of projects from the welding book I bought. After that I should be able to whip up most of the stuff. I'll have to find someone who can check me on the stress tab (brakes) but that should be the only real important one.

Thanks for the help.

Carl
 
  #13  
Old 12-17-04, 11:21 AM
dm_gsxr
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Originally Posted by GWIZ
Let me know the size of the plastic tubing, that is inside the white connector looks like 1/4" or 3/16" OD.
The gray ring is the release for the plastic tubing.
Push in the ring and pull the tube out.

I will get the names of some fittings and post them.
I'll check the size when I get home tonight. Thanks.

Carl
 
  #14  
Old 12-17-04, 11:38 AM
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Use the Regulator you have !
Cancel the order on the other regulator. its not going to be a better one.

Your white connector is missing the gray release ring.
The gray ring is used to release the tubing.
If you push in on the gray ring, on the white connector and pull out the tubing.
It appears that someone did not know how to release the tubing and pulled it out.

McMASTER-CARR catalog has the connector if you want to replace your broken one.
The connector was made to hold the same plastic tubing that is plugged into the back side.

You can replace the connector. But you will need to make an adaptor to screw onto your black gas hose.
Its a good hose, do not cut the end off to make it work.
Make this adaptor.

Go to a welding supply store and get one fitting, the same one that is in your regulator.
The one that your black hose screws into.
Your hose screws into one end. the other end should be a 1/4" NPT Male.

This is the two types of fittings for plastic tubing that I used, your choice.
I have seen these in home depot. and hardware stores. and used them for plastic tubing.

One is called a Brass compression fitting.
It has a brass ring that slides over the tubing and compress to hold the tubing.
Using a brass compression fitting with plastic tubing requires a small brass insert that you push into the tube, the insert prevents the tube from collapsing. may be in a separate package.

The other is the quick disconnect type for plastic tubing that's what you have.

Your choice
Pick one that will fit your tubing say 1/4" tube the other end 1/4" NPT pipe thread.

Get one. Brass Coupling Female at both ends. 1/4" NPT pipe thread.

And Teflon tape.

Screw all three pieces together with Teflon tape.
The tape goes around the threads only.
Don't let the tape get into the line.
 
  #15  
Old 12-17-04, 12:23 PM
dm_gsxr
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Actually I popped out the grey connector that's missing. I was trying to see what it was and was trying to unscrew it when it popped out. It's on my desk at home right now so it's not missing and doesn't seem to be broken.

I went to the sears site and requested the order be canceled. I'm waiting on a confirmation right now. I'll print off your instructions and chase down the parts tonight or tomorrow.

Thanks for the help.

Carl
 
  #16  
Old 12-17-04, 03:37 PM
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You will also need to get about 2 feet of that plastic tubing. (hardware store).
That will go into the back of the white connector

Assuming the white connector is good.
It is best to use it.

* FIRST * Make sure you put that gray ring back into your white connecter FIRST ! !
With out that ring you cant remove the tubing.

You will push the tubing into your connector.
The other end will fit the adapter your making.

You will need to match the size of the brass fittings to the tubing. My guess 1/4" plastic tubing
 
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