Looks like I am going to be purchasing a welder to do some mods for my YJ. Can anyone tell me if I should get a 220 volt over a 110 volt, should I get a mig over a tig and should I get gas over flux core.
It really depends what you are planing on doing with it. They say,' buy the biggest welder you can afford.' I agree to a point. If you plan on fabricating frames from scratch all the time or something along that line of work than yes, buy a welder that requires 220 volts. If you plan on doing light fabrication on occasion then, you could get away with a 120 volt welder with a caveat. Buy the most powerful 110 volt welder you can buy. I've welded 3/16 steel with a 120 volt welder. You just need to let the welder catch up.
As far as flux core. Don't waste your time. You'll want to weld with gas if you plan on making metal stick together that's thicker than 16 gauge metal. That's my opinion. i'm sure others will chime in. I can only tell you what I know from my own experience. Hope that helps. Good Luck!
by asking these questions,I am assuming that you are not a welder..first,you want a mig..I believe it will be easier to learn with a flux core.you may want to switch to gas later on..you can buy a 110 that will weld anything up to about 3/16 fairly easy but a 220 would have the capability to weld thicker stuff
Mig.. easy to learn on for the most part.. lots of good ones to pick from. Hobart, miller/lincoln etc.. 115 is fine for most things on the jeep.. if you think you will be doing heavy welding then perhaps move in the 220 range. I have Hobart 180 that does just about everything I have asked it jeep wise.
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I had welded for a few years before I bought my first welder. I ended up buying a Lincoln. It does both flux core and gas I still have yet to weld flux core though. Mine is a Lincoln pro 100 though it is one love the smaller ones I have welded 1/4" steel with no problems and plenty of penetration (not in one pass mind you) but for a beginner welder it is well worth it. It does great welds from doing thin body work to welding on the frame. You can buy cheaper welders but that's what you get. I bought mine used with a tank, cart and guages, and several spools of wire, for cheaper then I would have bought just the welder new, so check out craigslist you never know what you can come across.
If you're new to welding I'd say get a harbor freight brand mig. They are decent and can tackle anything tub related and mild frame repairs. If I remember correctly the best mig they had sold for $170 and was a 110v. I bought it on a sale day and used a 50% off coupon so it was cheap. It's flux core and great for a new welder. Yes buying the best welder is great only if your going to be using it a lot. Would I weld my axles with the harbor freight one? No, I'll break the snap-on out and the diesel generator for that.
If your going to be learning how to weld and fixing little odds and ends it would be perfect and cheap. I've redone my floor pans and body pieces, exhaust and made my light bar with a $60(sale price) harbor freight mig. I've taught 5 people how to weld with it. It comes on the trails with me since its not huge. It's paid for its self by now.
I recently bought a welding setup for doing Jeep projects. I wanted to be able to do up to 3/8 thick stock - for welding 8.8 tubes, brackets, etc.
I went with a Hobart 210MVP, which will run on either 220V or 110V. With the gas bottle, helmet, gloves, wire, etc, it probably cost $1000 or more. It's a great setup, and has been a great tool. Highly recommended.
It was a lot of money to spend, but I wanted a welder that I wouldn't outgrow. The welder has already done two 8.8 installs, two tummy tucks with crossmembers, and is in the process of making rocker guards. A rear bumper tire carrier is in the plans. If you get a small welder, it will limit your future options. I didn't want to buy a small unit, regret it, sell it and then buy the welder that I really needed.
Get an auto-darkening helmet - it makes things much easier.
The larger 220V welders will require a 50amp circuit, which you will need to install.
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I have a millermatic 212 auto set if your new to welding look into that it's very very easy to set up its a mig I believe you can you flux core wire with it and regular wire you can even get a spool gun for it and it's 220 if your looking for a 110 welder the next step down miller I believe is a millermatic 211 or something it's also an auto set and it'll run off 110 or 220. The duty cycle on a 212 is great
I retired from 40 years of certified welding in 2005 and ,IMO, gas is where it's at. I now do all of my welding with an AC/DC Lincoln "cracker box" stick welder.
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If not, my opinion is get a mig. Its point and shoot. More entry level to welding. Easy easy like been said. The tig is more like a torch welder and a sewing machine. Basically it takes two hands and a foot normally to operate. More finesse is required.
I never met a mig i couldn't get to operate. I started with a Miller 120 years ago. Great machine, welded every thing i asked it to. Thick stuff with multiple passes. I usually do a practice run on like materials and do a "drop test". Basically hold it over head and drop it. If it breaks then i didn't get penetration.
I personally use gas to weld but have a roll of flux core wire in case i run out in middle of night or im welding outside with lots of wind.
Good luck on ur projects. Welding is a great tool to utilize in fabrication.
I like using flux core with 75/25 gas or 100% co2. That's what we use at work on everything we do from 22 gauge to 1/2 inch mild and stainless steel. It makes a better bead than solid wire and you can weld it vertical.
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