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  1. #1
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    Default hardly ever weld welder

    Currently, I have a 100 amp Century purchased many years ago. Granted I hardly use this machine but that may have something to do with how hard it is to use. (AC only, always sticks) I'm thinking I need something better but I have a couple of problems. First, I only have 10 gauge wire going to the service in the garage (100' run). Secondly, I've been told that I need an inverter or mig type welder as a result of the electrical weakness. I would like to rely on my generator if I could (5000 watt 20 volts) in a pinch. I would have bought the Hobart ac/dc machine and be done with it but people tell me I won't have sufficient power for it either with the generator or the garage wiring. I looked at the Northern 200 Mig/Stick inverter type welder for a bit over $600 but do not know enough about it and how good or miserable it is to use. (no reviews) Any enlightenment would be appreciated.

  2. #2
    Super Member schmism's Avatar
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    Default Re: hardly ever weld welder

    start with some welding classes at the local community college.

    that will give you the skills and knowledge to then best decide what kind of welder will best fit your needs long term. (and what kind of upgrades to the power youll have to do)
    Steve - TC33D 4x4 FEL, dual rear remotes with toys

  3. #3
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    Default Re: hardly ever weld welder

    Can you move the welder closer to the main supply and try a weld there? basically get ride of the 100' run just to see if there is a major difference.

    I have run a Hobart 120 handler (wire welder) for several years with a 5000 watt generator, I never had a lack of power, but again it was a 20 amp wire welder.

    If you get a good result at the supply and you really don't weld very often, I would just weld there on occasion. Best thing would be to power up your shop with the right size supply line.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: hardly ever weld welder

    Quote Originally Posted by Western View Post
    Can you move the welder closer to the main supply and try a weld there? basically get ride of the 100' run just to see if there is a major difference.

    I have run a Hobart 120 handler (wire welder) for several years with a 5000 watt generator, I never had a lack of power, but again it was a 20 amp wire welder.

    If you get a good result at the supply and you really don't weld very often, I would just weld there on occasion. Best thing would be to power up your shop with the right size supply line.
    Well, there's the dryer socket in the cellar in line at about the 70' mark. That would be still a pain to start dragging the welder out to the bulkhead and getting a sufficient extension run to the socket every time I needed to weld (which is not alot but with a good welder, you never know where that would lead). Upgrading the garage would cost about $700 so I'm still looking for info about how much welder would work just the way it is now.. Obviously your 120 would but I'd like to get something a bit larger.

  5. #5
    Super Member buckeyefarmer's Avatar
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    Default Re: hardly ever weld welder

    deja vue ? Just had a big thread on this issue somewhere..
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  6. #6
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    Default Re: hardly ever weld welder

    A lot of very fine farm welding has been done with o/a outfits and no electricity needed.

  7. #7
    Super Member two_bit_score's Avatar
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    Default Re: hardly ever weld welder

    We are getting ready to buy a Miller Bobcat 225 or a Lincoln Ranger 225. Engine driven. We have a trailer to mount it on and the o/a bottles already mounted and a torch. Either one of those welders also has a 9000~ watt generator. If you already know you're going to use it for a long time go ahead and get one. If you need a MIG you can plug something like a Miller 211 into the generator. Some long leads and you don't have to do any wiring in your shop or garage to weld.

  8. #8
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    Default Re: hardly ever weld welder

    Quote Originally Posted by two_bit_score View Post
    We are getting ready to buy a Miller Bobcat 225 or a Lincoln Ranger 225. Engine driven. We have a trailer to mount it on and the o/a bottles already mounted and a torch. Either one of those welders also has a 9000~ watt generator. If you already know you're going to use it for a long time go ahead and get one. If you need a MIG you can plug something like a Miller 211 into the generator. Some long leads and you don't have to do any wiring in your shop or garage to weld.
    That's the direction I was thinking too. I think, (somebody will know for sure), some of the Miller's with gas engine driven generator are actually very fine generators for back up power.

    Maybe find a used unit and refurb it for your occassional use, plus it's a backup to your current generator.
    Dave.

  9. #9
    Super Member two_bit_score's Avatar
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    Default Re: hardly ever weld welder

    Quote Originally Posted by dave1949 View Post
    That's the direction I was thinking too. I think, (somebody will know for sure), some of the Miller's with gas engine driven generator are actually very fine generators for back up power.

    Maybe find a used unit and refurb it for your occassional use, plus it's a backup to your current generator.
    Dave.
    You are thinking the same way we were. We had an old Lincoln SA-200 on this trailer and thought one of these choices will give us room to put a nice compressor on there too. Plus the old Lincoln would only run tools made for DC so that left out almost anything we have now.

    We just think this will work better than being tied to a shop. The generator is definately a big plus on these machines.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: hardly ever weld welder

    The suggestion of getting another generator /welder is getting more complexity into the situation. As usual, I'm not making myself clear. Using the generator out in the garage, would only be a last ditch effort if I could not run a regular line voltage welder of some type..

    Buckeye, give me a clue as to what part of my question was previously discussed. Welder types? generator run? line voltage drops? Perhaps I can continue to search as I did before I posed the question with the correct search phrase. Otherwise, your post is not helpful.

    Now for you electrician types. I am to understand that 10 gauge is 30 amp wire, At 220 volts, would 10awg wire be sufficient to run the Hobart 235/160 ac/dc welder with a dedicated 30 amp breaker or does this machine need a higher rated breaker?
    Last edited by arrow; 01-15-2010 at 11:35 PM.

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