September 15, 2019, 03:56:30 PM

Author Topic: Good starter welder  (Read 2020 times)

Offline freeskier7791

Good starter welder
« on: April 30, 2017, 09:31:53 PM »
After I missed out on a welder for $30 at a garage sale this weekend, the wife suggested she get one for me for fathers day/birthday.  I am looking for a 110v mig that can handle doing exhaust and other simple fab projects.  I saw that eastwood makes one, is it any good?  Id really like to spend under 400 bucks so likely getting a chinese made or well used lincoln/miller

Any ideas?

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Offline digitalsolo

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Re: Good starter welder
« Reply #1 on: April 30, 2017, 10:19:09 PM »
I bought a used Millermatic 135 for about 425 bucks with a cart and it's a beast, no complaints after 5-6 years with it.   :)    Personally I'd look for a used blue/red machine (or a Hobart).
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Offline Exidous

Re: Good starter welder
« Reply #2 on: May 01, 2017, 03:37:35 AM »
Just make sure it's gas shielded. Flux core is crap at best.

The everlast and longevity welders are pretty good too.
94 BB SBE LS1 Full Mamo top, MS3ProU with TC, RONIN 8.8 and another custom dual 2.5" stainless exhaust. Too loud, need bigger muffler....

Offline freeskier7791

Re: Good starter welder
« Reply #3 on: May 01, 2017, 08:05:16 AM »
Just make sure it's gas shielded. Flux core is crap at best.

The everlast and longevity welders are pretty good too.

Yes!  I have used a flux core and I hate it.  Thanks for the pointers and brands

Offline frijolee

Re: Good starter welder
« Reply #4 on: May 01, 2017, 11:38:58 AM »
I'm running a Millermatic 135 as well.  Got mine pretty much brand new with a cart and all the gas bits (including bottle) for $700 about 8 years ago.  +1 to what Blake said, it's been rock solid and it'll weld 3/16 if you're careful.  I even burned back in a shock mount onto my XJ's axle that was more lie 1/4", albeit I did pre-heat that one a bunch to be sure it got penetration.

I don't like the Chinese machines.  65imp had an Everlast combo TIG, arc, plasma cutter.  It failed in short order, then took six months (might have been eight) to come back from warranty service.   When it works, it's works ok.  When it doesn't....  you might as well throw it away.  If your budget forces you do go there, get the cheapest damn machine you can from Harbor Freight (anything which will still allow you to run gas shielded).  At least that way you can buy a second one if needed and have some spare parts from the first.

But really, a used big brand machine is probably the way to go.  The only exception you might consider would be HTP but I don't know enough about their MIGs to specifically vouch for those.  My Invertig has been perfect though.  Good luck!
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Offline freeskier7791

Re: Good starter welder
« Reply #5 on: May 01, 2017, 11:56:42 AM »
Joel,

Those are all good points, I did find a Lincoln 135 near me for $250, I think I will hold out for something similar and keep borrowing welders until I find something I want

Offline gc3

Re: Good starter welder
« Reply #6 on: May 01, 2017, 11:59:00 AM »
+1 vote for the invertig.
save your pennies and skip all presents for a while and skip the starter welder and get a big bo welder from the beginning!

Offline freeskier7791

Re: Good starter welder
« Reply #7 on: May 01, 2017, 12:08:45 PM »
+1 vote for the invertig.
save your pennies and skip all presents for a while and skip the starter welder and get a big bo welder from the beginning!

Lol, we'll see, maybe if I get a bonus this year I'll buy one.

HTP mig looks pretty nice for the price

Offline 65imp

Re: Good starter welder
« Reply #8 on: May 02, 2017, 12:36:18 PM »
Joel,

Those are all good points, I did find a Lincoln 135 near me for $250, I think I will hold out for something similar and keep borrowing welders until I find something I want

That is exactly what I would do.  In fact that is what I did.  Get a household voltage MIG from miller, lincoln, hobart in good shape locally.  Make sure it has gas shielded capability, and hopefully they have the accessories as well.  Really consider the value of consumables, accessories, bottles, etc.  Try and pick up a used setup where the guy is offloading a bunch of that stuff and you can save hundreds. 
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Offline freeskier7791

Re: Good starter welder
« Reply #9 on: May 02, 2017, 02:31:06 PM »
That is exactly what I would do.  In fact that is what I did.  Get a household voltage MIG from miller, lincoln, hobart in good shape locally.  Make sure it has gas shielded capability, and hopefully they have the accessories as well.  Really consider the value of consumables, accessories, bottles, etc.  Try and pick up a used setup where the guy is offloading a bunch of that stuff and you can save hundreds.

Let the craiglist trolling begin!!  down here there are a lot of stick machines and fluxcore, not too many nice gas shielded welders

Offline freeskier7791

Re: Good starter welder
« Reply #10 on: May 04, 2017, 01:43:22 PM »
The everlast and longevity welders are pretty good too.

Do you have firsthand experience with either of these brands?

Offline Exidous

Re: Good starter welder
« Reply #11 on: May 04, 2017, 01:56:13 PM »
I do though mine is a little older now.

I've used the everlast a little bit. Couple hours maybe but the Longevity I've had for 8 years now. I don't weld a whole lot but it's served me quite well. With it being inverter they are usually dual voltage. You can plug mine into 120 single, 220 single(europe) and 208 split. They all work just fine.
94 BB SBE LS1 Full Mamo top, MS3ProU with TC, RONIN 8.8 and another custom dual 2.5" stainless exhaust. Too loud, need bigger muffler....

Offline freeskier7791

Re: Good starter welder
« Reply #12 on: May 04, 2017, 03:46:34 PM »
I do though mine is a little older now.

I've used the everlast a little bit. Couple hours maybe but the Longevity I've had for 8 years now. I don't weld a whole lot but it's served me quite well. With it being inverter they are usually dual voltage. You can plug mine into 120 single, 220 single(europe) and 208 split. They all work just fine.

Thanks for the feedback, I am looking at maybe getting a lift start tig capable machine

Offline Exidous

Re: Good starter welder
« Reply #13 on: May 04, 2017, 03:49:13 PM »
Aside from learning how any reason for the lift start? Most if not all modern TIG's have high frequency start. It makes it SUPER easy to have the arc start.
94 BB SBE LS1 Full Mamo top, MS3ProU with TC, RONIN 8.8 and another custom dual 2.5" stainless exhaust. Too loud, need bigger muffler....

Offline freeskier7791

Re: Good starter welder
« Reply #14 on: May 04, 2017, 04:26:57 PM »
Aside from learning how any reason for the lift start? Most if not all modern TIG's have high frequency start. It makes it SUPER easy to have the arc start.

The sub $300 everlast tig/stick machine only has lift start.  After some more browsing I think I may spring for the $450 tig/stick machine with HF start, gas solenoid, and foot pedal