Welder recommendations

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  1. Pascamp

    Pascamp Well-Known Member

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    C25 will do almost anything steel. Argon is for aluminum. I use tri for stainless. Straight CO2 burns hot and dirty, is cheap, but has it's uses. That's a gross over simplification, but it'll do 99% of the time.
     
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    • MoparMike1974

      MoparMike1974 FABO Gold Member FABO Gold Member

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      I upgraded from an old L-TEC (made by esab I think). It was about 20 years old and I was having trouble getting parts for it.
      Bought a Miller Matic 211 and love it. Its all transistor based so no transformer to add a bunch of weight. Super light and portable and a great performing machine.
      I just bought a spool gun for it to do aluminum. Hope to get some time to test it out soon.
      Plasma cutter is nice to have but you cant replace a torch, its a must have shop tool. Another must is a milwaukee porta-band. The new cordless ones are awesome.
       
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      • Pascamp

        Pascamp Well-Known Member

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        I have the spoolmate 150 and have had zero problems with it. If they sold a hip holster for the portaband, I'd wear it like a cowboy. My Milwaukee impact would be on my other hip. I use those two tools daily and mercilessly.
         
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        • 71GSSDemon

          71GSSDemon Well-Known Member

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          I have a Miller XMT304 MIG/TIG/stick inverter welder at home. Extremely versatile and can weld anything I could ever need, minus aluminum as the AC conversion alone was $1200. Nope, will weld that stuff at work and save the money.
           
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          • MoparMike1974

            MoparMike1974 FABO Gold Member FABO Gold Member

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            I have a dozen or more of the M18 milwaukee tools, they are all great.
            I use the cordless porta band most of the time but also have a corded one on the milwaukee table.
             
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            • red67gts

              red67gts FABO Gold Member FABO Gold Member

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              I have chop saws, port a band, torches but my go to most of the time is Metabo grinder. I can use cutting disc and have it cut before I can get the others out or quick change to grinding disc.
               
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              • nm9stheham

                nm9stheham Well-Known Member

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                I'd encourage you to read and not just take word of mouth... here is a start:
                Common Shielding Gases Used for Arc Welding | Lincoln Electric
                 
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                • Penstarpurist

                  Penstarpurist Well-Known Member

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                  Sounds like I have been denying myself some pretty good tools. I definitely want a cordless handheld porta saw now. And thanks for the link nm9stheham, I'm going to do some reading of it now. I need to check out a metabo grinder. Sounds like a beast.
                   
                • Garry in AZ

                  Garry in AZ Building a 9 second Valiant

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                  For a good all round MIG welder the Miller 211 is hard to beat. Use a 75/25 gas mix for best results.
                  On the plasma cutter issue, I put off buying one for over 15 years. When it came time to back half the Valiant, I finally pulled the trigger on a Hypertherm 45XP. Couldn't be happier with it, and I think it was money well spent. Sure, I could have used a cutoff wheel... but look at the cut the plasma made through a 3/8" thick weld. This cut took maybe 20 seconds. I like having the plasma around for jobs like this where the alternative would be a lot more time and effort.

                  20180702_144745 (Large).jpg
                   
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                  • Penstarpurist

                    Penstarpurist Well-Known Member

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                    That is impressive. Would definitely be a chore with a cut off wheel.
                     
                  • george joseph reid

                    george joseph reid Well-Known Member

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                    One option is the Lincoln Easy Mig 140. Got one last year from Blains Farm supply shipped for under $500. Dose all I need it to do.
                     
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                    • Penstarpurist

                      Penstarpurist Well-Known Member

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                      I'll definitely check out the lincoln easy mig 140. Sounds like a great price .
                       
                    • RustyRatRod

                      RustyRatRod Bla de blizhibliz de blatde blizi bla bla FABO Gold Member

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                      I have a small 115V Craftsman made by Clarke. It's nice. Done everything I have tried to do. It's convenient for me because I don't need a huge one.
                       
                    • justinp61

                      justinp61 Well-Known Member

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                      I have Millers, a Millermatic 210 with a spool gun and a Syncrowave 250DX stick tig. Most of the time the mig welder gets used but I do use the stick and tig too. At some point I will have a plasma cutter, I borrowed my buddies when I mini tubbed my Dart, its a great versatile tool. I also have band saws, a cutting torch, bench grinders, porta band and angle grinders. They all have a purpose.
                       
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                      • Penstarpurist

                        Penstarpurist Well-Known Member

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                        Yeah I have been doing some research and tool shopping on several pieces. I am going to go all in to get my shop up to date and stocked with good quality tools. Not that I wont buy h.f tools, as they have stuff that is good to use. But some stuff like welders, compressors, heavy style usage stuff. It's time to go with the best on those things. I've shorted myself long enough, kids got jobs and are starting to support themselves. The money saved is going into stuff we can all enjoy and make money with in the future.
                         
                      • 383Duster

                        383Duster Well-Known Member

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                        Can’t complain about my Hobart 140 amp 110volt welder....
                         
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                        • gzig5

                          gzig5 Well-Known Member

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                          I got the Hobart 190 MIG welder last year with the aluminum spool gun option from Fleet Farm. It has performed perfectly so far. Haven't tried the spool gun yet but I have a job for it coming up. Nice part was the cheaper price than a comparable Miller, and it still uses the good quality and easily available consumables. I probably could get by with the 140 for all the work needed on the car, but the extra power is nice for thicker structural work.
                           
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