Anyone know anything about this dinosaur? (TIG)

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  1. Cope

    Cope Fusing with fire

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    One thing out shop has been lacking is an AC TIG. A friend of a friend came buy whit this in his truck and dropped it off for free.

    It's missing a power cord (was hard wired), a ground clamp and a vessel for the water. (No tank but I can use the tank off our DC TIG.)

    He says it works and hell it was free so if it dont work the scrapper will gladly load it up.

    If anyone has experience with this machine I'd like to hear it. I've never used an AC TIG so welding aluminum is always something I've wanted to get into and I hope this will be good for thin .040 gauge?

    20181016_101215_zps57k8jorx.jpg


    20181016_101254_zpsqkasdhgn.jpg

    I got no idea what these settings are for? It says spot gun.. ? Anyone know about this?

    20181016_101231_zpsmrz51gmy.jpg


    Thanks for the help and advice.
     
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    • toplscuda

      toplscuda Well-Known Member

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      Looks to be a rebranded Miller/Airco machine. Should be a good solid machine. Take the covers off of it and make sure it isn’t full of crud. May be old enough to have an Oiler hole on the fan motor. Lube it if it does. You should see the high frequency points in the lower right. You can fold a piece of 220 grit and slide them together enough to smooth them off if need be. Just going off of memory I believe the point gap should be set about ten thousandths when you are done.
       
    • 67Dart273

      67Dart273 Well-Known Member

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      Found this site, which really does not provide much. I don't think they were "rebranded" they seemed to be an actual manufacturer.............

      An Antique Birdsell Welder | Stickweld.com – welders, welding, metalworking

      A partial quote..........

      "When I graduated from High School in 1957 I got a job winding coils and stacking transformer cores making the transformers that were in the Birdsell welders being built at Birdsell on 750 San Antonio Rd, Palo Alto CA. Mr Birdsell also sold transformers under the name Thor Tran sformers, later on the company was sold and relocated under a different name to near El Monte Ca."

      A phacephlant post from Miller says "no connection"



      "
      Miller Welders Hi, Matt. Thanks for reaching out! There is no connection between Miller and Birdsell. Let us know if you have any further questions. Thank you!
       
    • pishta

      pishta I know I'm right....

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      spot gun may be just that, a spot welder.
       
    • 72bluNblu

      72bluNblu FABO Gold Member FABO Gold Member

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      I can't say I've ever heard of Birdsell, but I do run an old Miller 320 AB/P and I can definitely see similarities between the two. Getting the settings right on the older machines can be a little tricky, but it's not like there's a lot of settings and everything is analog. On that note, everything is analog, so while there may be some differences there's only so many ways to accomplish the same thing with those old parts. Miller has all of their manuals online, you may find some of them handy. I'll attach the one for my 320 AB/P, maybe it will help with identifying some of what you're looking at.
      miller4.jpg
      miller7.jpg
       

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      • AUSA66

        AUSA66 FABO Gold Member FABO Gold Member

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        Looks like a Miller rebadged
        Down the bottom arc intensity would probably be high frequency intensity
        the phase control may be penetration one way cleaning effect the other
        It is set up for a water cooled tig torch normally when used over 150 Amps for head repair & such
        Bottom plug would be for tig trigger
        The knob at the top looks to be arc force softer & harsher
        The 2 solinoids at the bottom would be 1 for water the other for argon or whatever tig gas you use
        I would say it is definetly tig as the bottom conductors would not be big enough to support spot welding
        Maybe get an electrician to run a megger test on it otherwise you could find it has moisture in the windings the hard way
         
      • Cope

        Cope Fusing with fire

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        What's the benefit of running the water? Is it needed?

        Thanks again.
         
      • toplscuda

        toplscuda Well-Known Member

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        You can have two types of tig gun. Air cooled for 150 amps or less which uses the shielding gas to cool the copper in the gun and water cooled for higher amps which uses water to cool the torch. You do not want to use a water cooled gun without water as it will burn up.
         
      • 72bluNblu

        72bluNblu FABO Gold Member FABO Gold Member

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        The water is used to cool the TIG torch. Water cooled torches are smaller, have higher amperage ratings for a given size, and use less shielding gas. Even the lower amperage air cooled torches can get pretty hot pretty fast so they're not great for long operations. And as topiscuda pointed out if you have a water cooled torch you can't use it without water, air cooled torches are a different design. There's a decent discussion over at the miller welds forum Water Cooled Torch VS. Air cooled - Miller Welding Discussion Forums

        Also, that forum has some pretty experienced folks, some with pretty good knowledge of the vintage machines. Might be helpful to check it out.

        I have a water cooled torch on mine. On the old rigs like the 320 AB/P and that Birdsell the water coolers were a separate part, basically just a box with a pump and reservoir that was routed through a couple of solenoids attached to the welder for flow control. Keep in mind these welders had multiple functions, they can also be used as stick and arc welders. Both of those operations take less equipment than TIG. To use that machine to TIG you'd want a water cooled torch, the water cooler set up, and a remote foot pedal. That stuff has to be matched to the welder too, the old foot pedal leads and plugs are different from the modern ones. Same with the torches. It can all be adapted, but it's a lot easier to get a machine that has all of its accessories with it.
         
        Last edited: Oct 17, 2018
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        • Cope

          Cope Fusing with fire

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          Ok thanks for the heads up on not running with out the water.

          I have the foot pedal, it's just not in the pic.

          Maybe this weekend I'll hook it all up and burn some rod.
           
        • toolmanmike

          toolmanmike FABO Staff Staff Member FABO Gold Member

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          That's an oldie. In 30 years in the tool business I have never seen one that old.
           
        • Cope

          Cope Fusing with fire

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          Granted I'd rather have a 5,000$ digital but hey, you know what they say. "They dont make stuff like they used to!"
           
        • pomonamissel

          pomonamissel Well-Known Member

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          here' s my points model

          DSC00890.JPG

          DSC00891.JPG
           
        • pomonamissel

          pomonamissel Well-Known Member

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          here's my dinosaur , thats a flathead six chrysler power portable welder , lol . 69690006.jpg 69690007.jpg 69690008.jpg 69690009.jpg
           
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          • Cope

            Cope Fusing with fire

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            It's funny, they all look very similar. Guess there's only so many ways to put one together.
             
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            • pomonamissel

              pomonamissel Well-Known Member

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              its all about the space it takes up in the shop .
               
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