What welder brand(s) are you using?

What brand welder do you have/use for DIY?

  • Hobart

  • Miller

  • Lincoln

  • ESAB

  • Vulcan

  • Titanium

  • Chicago Electric

  • [OTHER] Comment


Results are only viewable after voting.

Kartorbust

Well-known member
Messages
3,526
Reaction score
36
Location
Lincoln, NE
Shielding gas is inert, it doesn't explode...long as something doesn't damage the bottle valve off and it becomes a 4 foot tall mini missile.
 

jamyers

Well-known member
Messages
1,415
Reaction score
28
Location
Buffalo Gap, TX
Nothing at all bad about a flux core, just take your time. For example, watch this guy weld sheet metal - one bit at a time - with a Harbor Freight.

 

Kartorbust

Well-known member
Messages
3,526
Reaction score
36
Location
Lincoln, NE
The only flux cored welding I did in college was dual shielded. Mainly because very few shops use self shielded flux cored. Its seen as a hobbyist or farmer's only type process. Or at least that's the vibe I was getting.

On the subject, I'd suggest people watch Weld.com videos on YouTube. Quite knowledgeable group of welders on there. Video I watched from them today from several years ago was Flux cored self shielded stainless steel wire. Such a thing exists.
 

itsid

Moderator
Staff member
Messages
11,523
Reaction score
68
Location
Ruhrpott [Germany]
I just got a cheap flux core welder from an italian company you unlikely ever heard of (tigmig)
layed down no more than maybe a meter or two of beads in the four(five?) years I have that thing..
so yeah cheap was the way to go ;) (the mask was almost more expensive than the welder ;))
a 130 amp (220V) since I got it for a specific task that required me welding 5mm at least
it came with a gas hose in the gun and I was toying with the idea to actually convert it to MIG one day..
but frankly after those years and the lack of use it got.... I doubt that'll ever happen.

Currently re-thinking about that project it was bought for
(a bike lift)
but material costs are 'considerable' and it'll likely take a few more meters of layed down bird ****
for me to actually trust my welds enough to hang 200+ kg on one of it...
sooo yeah a bit hesitant to try tbh.
So I was dragging my feet to find a scrap yard where I can source square tube-sections for cheap
to maybe give it a try.

'sid
 

Snaker

Member
Messages
83
Reaction score
4
The only flux cored welding I did in college was dual shielded. Mainly because very few shops use self shielded flux cored. Its seen as a hobbyist or farmer's only type process. Or at least that's the vibe I was getting.

On the subject, I'd suggest people watch Weld.com videos on YouTube. Quite knowledgeable group of welders on there. Video I watched from them today from several years ago was Flux cored self shielded stainless steel wire. Such a thing exists.
Mig is considered the better wire feed choice over flux. Cleaner, less mess, prettier. But that does require greater efforts to prep, setup a good weld station, cleaner materials, etc. Tig is even more sensitive to conditions than mig.
Flux is the windy wire. Wind becomes a problem with mig, and not gale forces, but a regular breeze.
Flux is not picky about clean materials, probably where the farmer label comes from. Just scrape off the cow crap and hit it.

On my wire feed I had the flux setup most of the time for my situation and would change over to mig somewhat infrequently.

And yeah, if your dealing with scrapyard and scrounger metals, a little rust, a little paint residue, dissimilar thickness and even different alloys, then flux is for you.
 
Last edited:

Kartorbust

Well-known member
Messages
3,526
Reaction score
36
Location
Lincoln, NE
You do end up paying a bit more for flux cored over solid wire. Another thing to consider too is, the larger the spool, the cheaper it is over all. Sure a 40 or 50lb spool will cost $120 or so, but a 10lb spool is around $35-$80 depending on what you are getting. The smaller the diameter the more you pay as well.
 

JTSpeedDemon

2019 Build Off Winner!
Messages
3,888
Reaction score
75
Location
Texas
Don't get me wrong, I know that shielding gas is very safe and stable, but it is kinda bulky to hang around our incredibly messy garage, and I'm not keen on getting it refilled every once in awhile.
 

Kartorbust

Well-known member
Messages
3,526
Reaction score
36
Location
Lincoln, NE
Food for thought for those who want to power a welder with a generator. On the FAQ of the 210 Hobart MVP, Hobart recommends a minimum of a 8500 watt running (not surge) generator. So one would need about a 10kw to operate this size effectively. This is taking into consideration a 40amp breaker on 240 volts. A 140 welder which is probably one of the more common sizes for most hobbyists, probably need around a 6500 watt (running). Probably could get away with a bit smaller, or you may need larger.
 

Kristopherjh83

New member
Messages
12
Reaction score
3
I have the Chicago electric harbor freight mig/flux core welder. It’s the 240volt one. I think it pushes max 140 or 190amp. Never used mig on it. Only flux. I use 35 size wire. I can’t say anything bad about it except the feed motor isn’t the best. Sometimes it’ll slow/speed up on its own but I replaced the liner and that pretty much solved it. Also the ground clamp is cheesy so I replaced it before even using it. 1/4” thick is about max but that’s more than enough for my projects. The flux wire hf sells is actually really good. I dare say equal to or better than Lincoln flux for half the price. Make sure the flux spool is the kind made in Italy. That’s all we have at my location but I heard there’s a Chinese flux same name that sucks but I haven’t personally used it.
 

Kartorbust

Well-known member
Messages
3,526
Reaction score
36
Location
Lincoln, NE
I like using name brand stuff that I know, such as Lincoln Electric or Hobart for filler material, since they hold a higher standard than what the stuff from Harbor Freight might be. Granted I do pay more for filler material l, but I know it is closer to an AWS standard.
 

itsid

Moderator
Staff member
Messages
11,523
Reaction score
68
Location
Ruhrpott [Germany]
short side note:

Chicago Electric ones used to be made by that same italian company min'e from...
(if you have a made in italy sticker on it and/or a TM<###> Modelnumber it's likely one of those ;))

'sid
 

Dingocat

Broke
Messages
519
Reaction score
17
Location
NE Ohio
Got another Lincoln stick machine last night, this one's an Idealarc 250 with DC as well as the AC, the thing has a 100% duty cycle at like 140 amps.
 

Dingocat

Broke
Messages
519
Reaction score
17
Location
NE Ohio
Have a model number for it?
I'll get back to you on that, but here's us unloading it. Lifted straight up out of the bed of the truck with the come-along and then just lowered it onto a dolly after moving the truck.
 

Attachments

  • 20201217_195050.jpg
    20201217_195050.jpg
    4.3 MB · Views: 2

ThunderKart79

New member
Messages
24
Reaction score
9
Location
N.C.
I bought a fluxcore welder from Forney this is the first welder I have owned. With that being said I bought one of the handicapped units that is strictly AC. Forney easy weld. It was a great machine to start learning but it is also a machine you grow out of fast. It will do a good job of bounding two peace’s of metal and as a bonus it will hold a 10 lbs spool so you also become a professional with an angle grinder so all the money you saved on the welder goes to the hardware store and wow flap disc’s and grinding wheels and safety glasses ya my next welder which I am shopping for now is going to be 1000 instead of 200 plus wow I have burned up 60 lbs of wire and my wife would slap me if we added up all that was spent cleaning up after a machine that surges in the middle of a bead because that’s what alternating current does
 

chimmike

Member
Messages
82
Reaction score
10
have a harbor freight tig unit....3 years and absolutely no complaints. just the current cost of argon kills me .

So I found with a tig welder using a larger cup (#10) and screen actually cut down on my argon use and made for better welds. I am no pro, but did a ton of reading back when I bought a hobart unit I had years ago. Wishing I didn't sell it.
 

chimmike

Member
Messages
82
Reaction score
10
Don't push aside Flux-cored welding. It tends to have better penetration than solid wire, similar to stick, plus the wire is around 70k psi tensile strength.
Flux core can be perfectly strong with good penetration. I did a live axle conversion on a yota via flux core welder, and it was beefy.
 

chimmike

Member
Messages
82
Reaction score
10
So you went from IFS to a solid axle on a Toyota? Nice. Any pics to share from that project?
I'd have to dig through old hard drives. It was ~15 years ago or so, but it was a conversion on a 94 4runner. cut the IFS out and added leaves with an '85 yota front axle from a junkyard. That thing was fun. The 3vze v6 was a dog, but indestructable.
 
Top