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Author Topic: Are cheap MIG welders any good?  (Read 8797 times)
DavidInWilmNC
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« Reply #15 on: June 06, 2006, 11:57:01 AM »

Ace,

Isn't the Maxstar a stick/ TIG welder?  For somebody who's not welded before, I don't know that that would be a good recommendation. It also costs almost twice as much as a my Millermatic 175.  As far as I know, stick and TIG is a whole different game than MIG welding. That's not to say I wouldn't like one, though!

David
« Last Edit: June 06, 2006, 01:40:43 PM by DavidInWilmNC » Logged
FloridaCliff
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« Reply #16 on: June 06, 2006, 12:48:54 PM »

Ace,

No problem!

I was talking about the 200.00 110v vs say 400.00-600.00 220v.

A small expense for alot more welder.  In my opinion. Wink

I have just never used a 110 model that I felt was as good.

Maybe when you get into the 1000+ range there is a difference. Grin

Cliff
« Last Edit: June 06, 2006, 01:44:47 PM by Floridacracker » Logged

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Barn Owl
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« Reply #17 on: June 06, 2006, 08:44:23 PM »

We use Millers of all types and sizes where I work and they are all great machines. We do have one lone cheap little Lincoln weldpac 100. It is an 110v welder that we run flux core wire in. It actually does a great job and I wouldn’t hesitate owning one for around the house. 95% of successful welding is in the prep work. Clean off the paint, rust, grease, oil etc. and you will have a much easier time in getting a good weld no matter what type of welder you have. With that being said, I am a lazy welder and hate the prep work. If you are not going to clean your work, or you weld mostly old rusty farm equipment, you will need to use either stick or flux core wire. Also, if you are welding outside using gas, the slightest breeze will blow your shielding gas away and you will get a worthless weld.  Find some old scrap and practice, it’s a skill that comes in handy.
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Ace
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« Reply #18 on: June 07, 2006, 05:23:01 AM »

David the maxstar is indeed a stick or tig and you question if it's for someone that has never welded before? I would think it would be, since the operation itself is pretty easy. Plug it into a wall, switch the control knob to 110, ground the clamp, insert welding rod and weld away. Now as for tig? Yes, that's a whole new ball game! The maxstar is no bigger than a lunch box and light weight so to carry it in the bus makes it easy to store as well! If you ever learn to tig, you'll find that it is a lot cleaner as in very little to no sparks and no slag to chip away! It is a lot slower to do over migging! If your in a hurry, stay away from Tig. It calls for patience! Smiley

Ace
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Sojourner
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« Reply #19 on: June 07, 2006, 05:51:55 AM »

WARNING!
To save trouble welding with Miller 135...beaware this model come with gun & core cable with NO SET SCREW to make a good FULL TIME connection to carry current to your weld. Another word NO TENSION on cable while welding...or you will have internal connection problem.
 I love Miller but that model 135 come with troubling holder set-up....cheap...sorry to say but any dealer will sell you a Teco or equivalent professional build holder upgrade.

ALL Miller 220v usage SET-SCREW connection

However. I think (old memory) Lincoln V has better cable???

I brought $250.00 upgrade to keep from stopping while welding due to poor internal core to holder connection.

All pro model cable have SET-SCREW type connection

Hobart is made by Miller.....so check dealer if it has SET-SCREW connection.

FWIW

Sojourn for Christ, Jerry
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Gary LaBombard
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« Reply #20 on: June 07, 2006, 06:49:29 PM »

I have a "Hobart Handler Model #140).  I have been using it for 2 1/2 years, it is 110v, I use fluxless wire (#.035), I use (.045 tips), and (.045 lead).  The machine comes set up with (.035) lead and this is too tight when the wire heats up.  I have been using this machine for every aspect on my bus.  This includes the Engine cradle which is the thickest metal on the Eagle I own. The reason for the (.035) wire for my entire job is that this wire is also used to weld 18 ga. sheet metal when needed also but the .035 wire lays a nice flat bead and can be used on very thing material also.  You get less wire but have to run less weld to accomplish our project.  I started out using a stick welder but the Eagle, (Rusted) framing burnt through all over the lot, even on metal not rusted.  I welded over 200 lbs. of 1/8 - #6011 stick rod and that is a lot of welding also.  Everyone knows I have replaced about 90% of my undercarriage frame now and have the rest to do.  I have used up 11 (10 Lb. rolls) of wire to date and have not had one problem at this time yet  with my Handler #140 and I run the heck out of this machine. 

I have never used the gas with my welder even though I can.  I am welding outside a lot and there is a lot of breeze and I want it that way for safety under the Eagle for good air.  I am sure my Hobart #140 will run better even using gas in a controlled enviroment.  I will be able to bring my Hobart with me on my bus road venture if and when I ever get to go.  But right now I can pack her up, put her in the trunk and go to a friends house to help out if needed or another busnut project. 

I use an extention cord for the welder only on a 30A circut, the extension cord is #12 wire in a 75 ft. lead length.  I do a lot of welding, figure it out how far you can weld with 11 10lb.  rolls of .035 wire!!  That's a lot of welding.  If my machine pukes on me now it doesn't owe me anything for the work it has done.  The cost was about $450.  If you have any problems, any at all they have the best tech people I have met on anything I ask for assistance for.  I did own the Hobart #135 which is outdated now and they tried to make me happy with my purchase with new mother boards etc. and sent everything overnight express, FREE!!  They convinced me to try out the #140 and we just traded machines even steven, and she has been pushing out the wire ever since.

This is only my personal experience about this machine, I know there is probably other better machines, but I  just wanted to let you know of my experience with my Hobart and the great service they have if ever needed.  I have probably used up more wire than the average home owner may use in a lifetime and she is still kicking.  In fact I send reports to Hobart on the infield use ever so often, valuable information to them for their machine testing in the field. 

Well enough for that subject from me!!
Hope it helps,
Gary
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Gary
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« Reply #21 on: June 08, 2006, 05:08:12 AM »

When I was looking for a mig welder a friend who welds for a living said this: Cheap welders have a lot in common with cheap women. Neither will run hot enough, and anything over light duty will send both on their way!!! He advised me to buy the Miller 185. 220v, good duty cycle. Seems like it was about $ 650.00
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gumpy
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« Reply #22 on: June 08, 2006, 06:11:30 AM »

...  I use fluxless wire (#.035), I use (.045 tips), and (.045 lead).  ...

... I have never used the gas with my welder even though I can. 

I don't understand. You said you were using fluxless wire, and not using gas.  What are you using for shielding?

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Craig Shepard
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« Reply #23 on: June 08, 2006, 06:50:33 AM »

just curious, Grumpy are you this same grumpy? http://gumpydog.com/bus/  if so may i just say Well done, i found your blog last week and honestly i cant get enough of it.   I keep checking it alot looking for more entries and pictures, its giving me a good foundation in what i need to do since i am probably going to end up with an mc9.


sorry to hyjack the thread guys,  back on topic Wink
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DrivingMissLazy
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« Reply #24 on: June 08, 2006, 06:54:31 AM »

I have a Miller 185 and love it. I have welded some very heavy duty machinery with it. Have been using it about three years and it has really got a workout. Always use it with gas.
Richard

When I was looking for a mig welder a friend who welds for a living said this: Cheap welders have a lot in common with cheap women. Neither will run hot enough, and anything over light duty will send both on their way!!! He advised me to buy the Miller 185. 220v, good duty cycle. Seems like it was about $ 650.00
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Life should NOT be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in an attractive and well preserved body. But rather to skid in sideways, chocolate in one hand, a good Reisling in the other, body thoroughly used up, totally worn out and screaming:  WOO HOO, what a ride
gumpy
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« Reply #25 on: June 08, 2006, 09:53:59 AM »

just curious, Grumpy are you this same grumpy? http://http://gumpydog.com/bus/  if so may i just say Well done, i found your blog last week and honestly i cant get enough of it.   I keep checking it alot looking for more entries and pictures, its giving me a good foundation in what i need to do since i am probably going to end up with an mc9.


sorry to hyjack the thread guys,  back on topic Wink


Well, sortof....  but to be honest, I'm not really grumpy, except when I have to drive in this freakin traffic, or deal with my family, or when the cat pukes on the carpet, or when I have to go to work, or when.. Ok, so maybe I am a bit grumpy. What about it?

Yeah, one and the same, without the "R".  Updates on the website are few and far in between lately. I lost some of my momentum last year and have been trying to get it back. Maybe eventually I'll get some new stuff on. Haven't really done much on the bus for a year, though, but I have a lot of photos to organize and text to write.

MC9 is still a good choice for a conversion. There's still a bunch of them out there and there's a good base of parts and knowledge.  Take your time and find a good one.


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Craig Shepard
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http://bus.gumpydog.com - "Some Assembly Required"
Ace
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« Reply #26 on: June 08, 2006, 11:14:42 AM »

Hey Craig, I never really noticed there wasn't an "r".   Oh well, live and learn! Smiley

Ace
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gumpy
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« Reply #27 on: June 09, 2006, 05:08:44 AM »

I hear that a lot!  Angry

Suppose there's anything to it?
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Craig Shepard
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Ace
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« Reply #28 on: June 09, 2006, 05:16:05 AM »

Nah, from what I can tell and from what I've been told....you don't need no stinkin "r"!! Smiley

Ace
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DrivingMissLazy
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« Reply #29 on: June 09, 2006, 05:16:15 AM »

Someone told me you just did not know how to spell!  LOL
Richard

I hear that a lot!  Angry

Suppose there's anything to it?
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Life should NOT be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in an attractive and well preserved body. But rather to skid in sideways, chocolate in one hand, a good Reisling in the other, body thoroughly used up, totally worn out and screaming:  WOO HOO, what a ride
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