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  1. #1
    Elite Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
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    3,984
    Location
    Ohio
    Tractor
    Branson 3510H, Simplicity SunStar

    Default Help choosing a welder

    My girlfriend and I recently purchased a beautiful home on 33 acres about 18 miles east of Canton, Ohio. Since then I have bought my first tractor and have been scouring the pages of TBN for useful advice to help me on my way. Now I need a little help with a purchase.
    I have a feeling I will be in need of a welder at some point. Whether to weld chain hooks on the FEL, repair implements, or for fabrication of needed items. I have never welded so I plan on keeping it simple. I've narrowed my choice down to either a 225 or 235 volt AC stick welder. Here's my question. Which brand? Does it matter as long as they are well known brands?


    Thanks for any help you can give me

    Mark

  2. #2
    Silver Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Posts
    102
    Location
    Hays County, TX
    Tractor
    Case IH JX95 4x4

    Default Re: Help choosing a welder

    go with one of the big three in this order
    miller
    hobart
    lincoln

    good luck with your welding projects!

  3. #3
    Super Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2000
    Posts
    6,553

    Default Re: Help choosing a welder

    Welders are long term ownership tools. Don't scrimp as you will go broke taking yoga classes to get limber enough to kick your own behind. Buy once and buy for the long term. It winds up costing less overall.

    (at least that's how I rationalize it!)

    jb

  4. #4
    Platinum Member
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Posts
    638

    Default Re: Help choosing a welder

    Quote Originally Posted by john_bud
    Welders are long term ownership tools. Don't scrimp as you will go broke taking yoga classes to get limber enough to kick your own behind. Buy once and buy for the long term. It winds up costing less overall.

    (at least that's how I rationalize it!)

    jb
    "JB" I have heard from others, including my son, that one can lay a better bead with a DC welder.....is that a true statement? If not, why is one better than the other??
    LEE

  5. #5
    Elite Member wushaw's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Posts
    3,075
    Location
    Bristol Texas
    Tractor
    Kubota L2800, 15 hp 372 Mitsubishi

    Default Re: Help choosing a welder

    You might as well just get the AC/DC stick to be able to.

    1. weld easier on DC
    2. have more choices for whatever your welding.

  6. #6
    Elite Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Posts
    2,992
    Location
    Meridian Idaho
    Tractor
    Kubota B7100D

    Default Re: Help choosing a welder

    I'd stick with the brands listed and watch Craigslist, around here an old Lincoln 'tombstone' will show up for $100-150 every now and then. You can always sell it for what you paid for it if something better comes along.

    Charles

  7. #7
    Platinum Member
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Posts
    928
    Location
    Eastern WA
    Tractor
    Jinma JM354

    Default Re: Help choosing a welder

    Yep, listen to these guys. I've a old Lincoln Idealiarc 250 AC-DC stick machine. I keep all my junk implents moving with it. I like 6011 fast freeze rod for most everything I do. Get a little 4-1/2 grinder (get two if you buy Harbor Freight stuff one for a 3" knotted wire cup wheel) and a pnuematic needle scaler really helps to clean things up. A decent size air compressor will be needed also (you sure you wanna do this, I mean the dollar bills are just gonna fly by). Your probably gonna need a Oxy/acetlene outfit also and frequent trips to the scrap metal/recyclers for material and trip to the TSC store. A cheap Harbor Freight HVLP paint gun to pretty things up. Soon you'll enjoy seein' what you can make move again. A shed or shop to keep all the tools in and, I almost forgot, your gonna need a bunch of time (get this in the 55 gallon drum size 'cause you'll always be runnin' out.) bjr

  8. #8
    Gold Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Posts
    325
    Location
    Washington State
    Tractor
    Kubota B7800

    Default Re: Help choosing a welder

    I am just learning to weld myself. I have a Lincoln Electric 225AC that I bought cheap from another TBNer. I have been taking a class at the local comm. college (Highly Recommended). There, I use a Lincoln Electric Inverter 275S - a DC machine that also does TIG (I think). The DC welder is nicer.

    Bear in mind that most of those $100 tombstones are AC only. Look for one that is AC/DC. The 7018 electrode (commonly used for many welds) is difficult to use on AC. There is a 7018 made just for AC welding, though, so there are alternatives if you end up with an AC machine.

    Oh, here are a couple of welding forums you might be interested in:

    WeldingWeb™ - Professional Welding Forum - Powered by vBulletin

    Weld Talk Message Boards - Powered by vBulletin

  9. #9
    Epic Contributor Soundguy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Posts
    48,791
    Location
    Central florida
    Tractor
    ym1700, NH7610S, Ford 8N, 2N, NAA, 660, 850 x2, 541, 950, 941D, 951, 2000, 3000, 4000, 4600, 5000, 740, IH 'C' 'H', CUB, John Deere 'B', allis 'G', case VAC

    Default Re: Help choosing a welder

    I have a hobart stickmate XL235AC

    It's a nice unit... can weld at 90-100A and 100% duty cycle. You can turn it up and use a larger electrode and weld 1/2" in a single pass.. or chamfer with it if needed.

    For working with thick materials.. it's hard to beat a 200-400$ stick welder... Migs work thick metals fine.. but the machines that do the same thickness can be 5x the price. For that $$ I can chip a little slag off my work piece.

    DO get a good set of long gloves, and a welding jacket or at least an apron.. I reccomend a long sleave weld jacket, and shoe chaps unless you wear boots.

    Get a helmet you are comfortable with.. Some like the flip down.. some like auto darkening.. if you get flip down.. do for the full face visor.

    Get a 4" angle grinder, a chipping hammer, a wire brush. and a tube to hold your rods nice and dry. A couple different vice grips made for welding and fab work.. a metal marking crayon or soapstone/holder.. and choose the rod type for your machine and work piece.

    For instance.. 6011 is good deep penetration, fine on AC, makes an ugle weld... 6013 onthe other hand makes a very nice looking weld.. almost that of a mig.. but doesn't bite near as deep as the 6011.

    In situations where you can't prep the metal adequately... like an emergency repar to a thick piece of rusty/painted metal.. lots of amps and an 6011 rod on an old cracker box will get-er done. Even in wind or rain where a mig might not stand up as well.

    soundguy

    Quote Originally Posted by polo1665
    My girlfriend and I recently purchased a beautiful home on 33 acres about 18 miles east of Canton, Ohio. Since then I have bought my first tractor and have been scouring the pages of TBN for useful advice to help me on my way. Now I need a little help with a purchase.
    I have a feeling I will be in need of a welder at some point. Whether to weld chain hooks on the FEL, repair implements, or for fabrication of needed items. I have never welded so I plan on keeping it simple. I've narrowed my choice down to either a 225 or 235 volt AC stick welder. Here's my question. Which brand? Does it matter as long as they are well known brands?


    Thanks for any help you can give me

    Mark

  10. #10
    Epic Contributor Soundguy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Posts
    48,791
    Location
    Central florida
    Tractor
    ym1700, NH7610S, Ford 8N, 2N, NAA, 660, 850 x2, 541, 950, 941D, 951, 2000, 3000, 4000, 4600, 5000, 740, IH 'C' 'H', CUB, John Deere 'B', allis 'G', case VAC

    Default Re: Help choosing a welder

    Forgot to add.. a good chop saw or bandsaw makes fabrication MUCH easier... torches.. even cheap mapp or propane torches also help when forming metal.

    soundguy

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