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11/22/2017 10:05:29 PM
Posted: 9/10/2004 2:20:03 PM EST
I have a bunch of mild steel, stainless, angle iron and aluminum and would like to get a MIG for some projects. I also have a JEEP CJ-7 that needs some light welding work...

Are the Lincoln Electric units from Lowes any good? Will a 135 amp model be sufficient?

I'm handy with a torch, just looking to have a new toy and to expand my Heinlein skill set.
Link Posted: 9/10/2004 2:59:40 PM EST
The cheap Lincolns are made overseas, and they are indeed cheap in every sense of the word. Lincoln makes some good MIG welders, but their entry- and mid-level models use a smallish drive motor with plastic gears.

Hobart makes a good welder - uses quality parts. Miller, their sister company, is a tad better yet, but pricier. Century (also sold under the Craftsman brand) is just so-so.

IMO, 135 amps is adequate for what you're planning on using it for. Switching to flux-core wire will allow you to weld thicker metal than gas-shielded, although it's much messier.
Link Posted: 9/10/2004 3:01:20 PM EST
Do a search please! This comes up at least every other month.

MILLER.
Link Posted: 9/10/2004 3:15:14 PM EST

Originally Posted By Pangea:
Do a search please! This comes up at least every other month.

MILLER.




I did a search here- nothing in the last three months.

I've searched google and yahoo, but get little advice on which to get, why and why not.

I have a half dozen books on welding but no information on if the 400-500 dollar units from Lowes are any good or if they are adequate for my needs.

I usually get great advice by asking here

Sorry to waste anyone's time,

Andy. out.
Link Posted: 9/10/2004 3:22:57 PM EST

Originally Posted By Pangea:
Do a search please! This comes up at least every other month.

MILLER.



Ok, just don't read welding posts, if it over loads you. I to would like some info on home/shop welding equipment.
Link Posted: 9/10/2004 3:22:58 PM EST
get a miller 200 millermatic, muffler shops use them & sometimes sell used ones, it will do all you need.
Link Posted: 9/10/2004 3:25:09 PM EST
If you are planning on welding anything under .90" I would definately stay away from the Flux core only welders. I had a cheap Lincoln approx. $300 unit and is worked ok. I sold it to a friend of my Dads that wanted a 120V welder and bought a Miller 185. I would not consider any thing less. In fact, I am sorry I didn't hold out another week or two and buy the Miller 250. I have the spool gun as well and if you are thinking of welding aluminum or stainless just save up for a small tig unit from miller or hobart , you won't be sorry. They arn't as fast or easy but they are more versatile. I am looking at adding the Miller Maxstar300DX to my shop before winter.
Link Posted: 9/10/2004 3:31:23 PM EST
Has it been that long? Go with 220 vac powered units. Look for a duty cycle compatable with your needs. Buy as much welding machine as you can afford. It wont spoil and you will always be glad you have more than you need. If you want less cleanup time use C25% A 75% or one of the mixes that use 1% oxygen to keep spatter down. If your not worried about spatter go with Fluxcore. The wind doesn't bother it like MIG. Hobart is owned by Miller and is a bit lower in quality. You will need a different gass and wire for each metal that you posted about and if your lead is over 10' you will need a spoolgun or push/pull gun for the aluminun wire.

Go ahead and ask away. I was thinking you could find the answers in search but it's been too long.
Link Posted: 9/10/2004 3:47:13 PM EST
www.aws.org/cgi-bin/mwf/forum_show.pl This is a welding forum with a lot of good info. They are good at answering newbie questions, so give them a try.. fullclip
Link Posted: 9/10/2004 3:51:29 PM EST
www.weldingmart.com/Qstore/p000029.htm




MILLERMATIC 175 230V W/REG HOSE, Stock # - 907-020
Perfect for light fabrication!
Regular Price: $777.00
Sale Price: $699.00
Free Shipping!

MILLERMATIC 175 230V W/REG HOSE
The Millermatic® 175 is perfect for light fabrication, garage/body shops, auto body, and at home. It welds material 24 gauge to ¼ inch. This all-in-one MIG machine has infinite voltage control with wire feed speed tracking for easy operator control. Runs on 230 Volt input power, and adapts for aluminum with the optional Spoolmate 3035 and SGA adapter.


MILLERMATIC 175
Input Power Requires 1-Phase Power
230 V, 19.5 A, 60 Hz
Rated Output 130 A at 20 VDC, 30% Duty Cycle
Output Power Range 40 - 175 Amps
Weight 81 lb (36.4 kg)


APPLICATIONS PROCESSES
Light Industrial Applications
• Light Fabrication
• Maintenance and Repair
• Auto Body
• Farm and Ranch
• Home

• Flux Cored (FCAW)
• MIG (GMAW)
Link Posted: 9/10/2004 4:06:29 PM EST
I have 6 millermatic 250's and one Lincoln running in the shop right now. I would say go with a miller. Look around and find one used. Check with the auction places that liquidate businesses. Get one in 240 vac. Like the guy said earlier, get as much amps as you can afford. It won't spoil, and you will get around to using it. Mig is great, but it ain't worth shit on thick metal. For that you will have to go with flux core. If you are going to be working on aluminum, or light sheet metal, buy another unit and get a tig torch for it. In my opinion, tig works much better than mig on aluminum. It is not as fast, but the weld you get is superior. Any more questions, ask away. I got lots of experience with them.
Link Posted: 9/10/2004 4:07:54 PM EST
I have 2 Lincoln Migs,Haven'y had a bit of trouble in 5 years.Don't use flux unless last resort .It will give you some ugly results. I have the 110 and 220 volt models. If you use 023 solid wire in either model you will love it .Get the Gas kit and use unimix.h.gif
Link Posted: 9/10/2004 4:14:56 PM EST
[Last Edit: 9/10/2004 4:17:10 PM EST by kindstranger]
Lots of great advice here, thanks.

No site or book has the marbles to recommend against a mfgr ( low priced Lincolns)

If the Miller is what will make me happy in the long run, then It's a Miller I will save for.

Since I don't know how far this will take me, I think I will save for the Millermatic 250.
Link Posted: 9/10/2004 5:06:58 PM EST
In all honesty, you'll be just as happy with a Hobart (and save a lot of money in the process). Both divisions use the same designs and parts in their respective products, except that Miller generally uses a continuously-variable amperage control, while Hobart uses a selector switch – hardly enough to justify the price difference, IMO.
Link Posted: 9/10/2004 5:11:49 PM EST
Check Ebay. You can find a decent deal there sometimes. I agree with the advice of buying as much amps as possible. I started looking at welders in the 2-400 dollar range. In the end I bought a Lincoln Precision Tig 275 with water cooler from Sears of all places. They had a misprint in the catalog, and I ended up getting the welder for $2,200 shipped to my house. It was like a $3,700 package. Keep you eye out for deals!!!!

John
Link Posted: 9/10/2004 5:12:27 PM EST
[Last Edit: 9/10/2004 5:15:36 PM EST by Pangea]
Hobart uses Deralyn or Nylon drive gears. Miller uses metal. Your call.

The Millermatic can be changed from MIG to FCAW in about one minute. The duty cycle will do good in a backyard shop. For thick metal you will definitly have to multi pass.

Good luck.

Edited to add that the cheap wirefeed welders in Harbor Freight and places like that have no controll over the arc at the trigger. The wire is hot all the time and the trigger controlls on/off of the wire feed only. If you lay it down and make a closed circuit it will arc. If you lean against the table while you clean the tip or trim the wire it WILL light you up.
Link Posted: 9/10/2004 5:14:45 PM EST
if it runs on anything less than 220vac run away very fast.
Link Posted: 9/10/2004 5:20:22 PM EST
[Last Edit: 9/10/2004 5:23:47 PM EST by 76Mark]
Here are 2 good welding boards. I had a 135a mig and just upgraded to a 175a Miller. I would recommend getting a 175 at the least, but would get the 250 if I had to do it again. The 175 is a huge improvement over the 135.

www.hobartwelders.com/mboard/
www.weldingweb.com/

Here's a link to the seller I purchased my MM175 from on Ebay. I had it within 3 days of the auction close & he has them for $635 with free shipping.
cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?viewItem&category=45032&item=3838623568&rd=1
Link Posted: 9/10/2004 5:51:22 PM EST
Some good welding discussion sites:

Hobart Welding Projects, processes and products, all welders and weldors welcome: www.hobartwelders.com/mboard/

Pirate 4x4: 4x4 newbie and general discussion areas, several welding topics and projects: www.pirate4x4.com/forum/

Pavement Sucks, fab area especially: www.pavementsucks.com/forums/

I hope this helps.

Merlin
Link Posted: 9/10/2004 7:01:24 PM EST
Russian fighters as welders?
Link Posted: 9/10/2004 7:07:54 PM EST

Originally Posted By Malpaso:
Russian fighters as welders?



No, silly! It's a welder for working on Russian Fighter Jets. We all have one, don't you?
Link Posted: 9/10/2004 7:31:48 PM EST
[Last Edit: 9/10/2004 7:32:31 PM EST by G-Rated]
I'll keep my answers to the "what mig should I get" question short and sweet.

1. 135A 110V MIGs are only good for 1/8" max (if you care about strength)

2. Miller probably makes the best MIGs. This is what I've heard from multiple sources. I don't have much Lincoln MIG experience, but I can say all my Miller experience has been EXCELLENT.

3. The Miller Millermatic 175 is (IMO as well as others on here) what you want for your garage. It is 220V and has enough power to do up to 1/4".


Also, if you plan to do aluminum you will need a bunch of extra expensive crap, so I'd forget about it.
Link Posted: 9/10/2004 7:45:02 PM EST
one more vote for getting a MILLER
Link Posted: 9/10/2004 7:58:15 PM EST
Friend of mine has the Lincoln 135 -- since he's in a situation where 220 is not an option, the Lincoln was the best choice. So far, its done everything he needs (and, for that matter, that I've needed to do). I'm actually thinking about one as well, since I'm limited to 120v as well (unless I rewire part of my parents house to get 220 out to the garage, or run a bigassed extension cord and unplug the dryer -- absolutely no room in my apt to do any welding, so it'd have to stay at my parents place until I move).

Everyone I've talked to recommends Miller welders if you can afford 'em.
Link Posted: 9/10/2004 8:01:02 PM EST

Originally Posted By FanoftheBlackRifle:
Friend of mine has the Lincoln 135 -- since he's in a situation where 220 is not an option, the Lincoln was the best choice. So far, its done everything he needs (and, for that matter, that I've needed to do). I'm actually thinking about one as well, since I'm limited to 120v as well (unless I rewire part of my parents house to get 220 out to the garage, or run a bigassed extension cord and unplug the dryer -- absolutely no room in my apt to do any welding, so it'd have to stay at my parents place until I move).

Everyone I've talked to recommends Miller welders if you can afford 'em.



I have a bigass extention cord;50', that I run to my dryer plug. Works fine.
Link Posted: 9/10/2004 8:06:18 PM EST

Originally Posted By Pangea:

Originally Posted By FanoftheBlackRifle:
Friend of mine has the Lincoln 135 -- since he's in a situation where 220 is not an option, the Lincoln was the best choice. So far, its done everything he needs (and, for that matter, that I've needed to do). I'm actually thinking about one as well, since I'm limited to 120v as well (unless I rewire part of my parents house to get 220 out to the garage, or run a bigassed extension cord and unplug the dryer -- absolutely no room in my apt to do any welding, so it'd have to stay at my parents place until I move).

Everyone I've talked to recommends Miller welders if you can afford 'em.



I have a bigass extention cord;50', that I run to my dryer plug. Works fine.



10-4 on the bigass extention cord. Emphasis on the "bigass."
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