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Mig or Tig for auto stuff

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  • Mig or Tig for auto stuff

    I am a total car guy but a complete welder newbie.

    I am ready to buy a welder and my wifes uncle (pro welder by trade) says get a tig but he is not a car guy.

    I always see guys using mig for most car stuff like body panels unless its trick stuff like intakes.

    The Tig I was looking at is the dyn 200dx. I want something that is not gonna hold me back for the garage mech in me.

    Mig would be a 250 or something that size.


    Can I do anything auto related with tig? I dont mind if its gonna take a little longer if I can do it and it be as strong.

    Also could you just use the stick for body panels or is that totally different from mig as an end result.

    Thanks

  • #2
    Anything that will be seen by a scrupulous I should be TIG welded on a vehicle. Mig is much faster. It is up to you. Both are a must for a car nut to own. I have both.

    James

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    • #3
      Originally posted by superdave99gt View Post
      ...I dont mind if its gonna take a little longer...
      Define a "little" longer.

      How thin do you expect to be the thinnest you will have to weld and what kind of joint will that be?

      Comment


      • #4
        James, could you please tell me why I would need both. that is the problem I am having now is where I really need both if I do.

        I cant spend the 3k + for a dyn and then get a mig too and I dont want a machine that im gonna say in 2 yrs I wish I would have got the bigger one.


        Mac, I would say 1/4 would probably be the thickest I would ever weld and it wouldnt be anything structural if that thick.

        Thinnest would be a body panel probably so 1/8".... maybe a 1/16" when I get better.

        Like I said, im a newb welder so a little longer is just what ive heard it adds to tig opposed to mig.

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        • #5
          Also can you weld suspension stuff with a tig or do I need a mig.

          Comment


          • #6
            I'm a TIG fan. If you can afford the Dynasty 200DX, you'll be set for a long time. It will not hold you back. And it will do thin alum, a MIG will NOT. MIG is faster on mild steel and works very well for panel replacement (LOTS of tack welds). There's no way in Hades that you're going to do body panels with stick. The Dynasty will do anything that needs to be done with stick electrodes, but you can't; because it's really, really hard.

            One thing that you have NO clue. Welding is VERY difficult. You don't just buy ANY welder and start welding. I'm in my third welding class, basic MIG sheet metal, O/A and TIG this time; and I embarrass myself EVERY night ; I started O/A welding in 1977. Welding is a VERY difficult art form, learned over years of experience.

            You need both, a TIG and a high quality MIG. I'd start with the TIG.

            Edit: TIG will do very well on suspension stuff, IF YOU HIRE SOMEONE ELSE TO DO IT.

            Good luck Rookie, maintain your sense of humor; because you're going to need it.

            Welcome to the incredibly complex world of Welding.
            Last edited by Craig in Denver; 09-12-2008, 09:57 PM.

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            • #7
              Thanks Craig, luckily I got the uncle who is an awesome welder. He actually just bought a 350 sync with all the goodies so he will be doing my hardcore stuff.

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              • #8
                People who own both MIG and TIG that I've known have said that for the home craftsman a good TIG is all that's needed. If I had to to choose, I'd agree. I use TIG 90% of the time, probably because of its versatility and the ease of controlling the process, the appearance and strength of the product. It's just that learning MIG is easier, so most people start with it. If I were starting over and wanted to economize, I'd buy a Miller Dynasty and if I couldn't afford that, a Syncrowave.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Tradionaly, I mean 20 years ago, an O/A torch wasused for brazing panels in place, but with todays hss body panels that process is no longer recomended due to essesive work hardening. Then came the mig welder and every thing changed, paels could be welded much faster and much stronger, and that was the standard in all shops for years. Then came the tig welder and thinner panels could be welded easily along with aluminum(migs could do aluminum but it was un- common). For the hobby welder get a mig and you can weld all the bodypanels you need. If you are a pro get both.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    1/16" steel is no problem for either process, but 1/4" is going to be a lot easier with a MIG unless you have a serious serious machine. Even then, MIG will be a lot easier.

                    And I agree that "easier" doesn't mean "easy"

                    But 1/16" seems thick for body panels on cars. But I don't work on them. I have welded 24-gauge at the lower limits of my MIG machines with the right wire and gas.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by superdave99gt View Post
                      I am a total car guy but a complete welder newbie.

                      I am ready to buy a welder and my wifes uncle (pro welder by trade) says get a tig but he is not a car guy.

                      I always see guys using mig for most car stuff like body panels unless its trick stuff like intakes.

                      The Tig I was looking at is the dyn 200dx. I want something that is not gonna hold me back for the garage mech in me.

                      Mig would be a 250 or something that size.


                      Can I do anything auto related with tig? I dont mind if its gonna take a little longer if I can do it and it be as strong.

                      Also could you just use the stick for body panels or is that totally different from mig as an end result.

                      Thanks

                      You can weld ANYTHING with tig. Mig will be faster but not as versatile.

                      Griff

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        A solid Tig welder requires some skill to make a strong weld. A monkey can make a decent weld with a Mig unit. While your learning to be a good tig welder you will need a mig unit to patch stuff up until you get the skills to not need the mig unit. When that day comes and you are welding anything and everything with your tig unit the mig unit becomes a very good shelf for all the tig consumeables.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          One of the most respected car guy welders in these parts uses only tig, and an old Miller one at that. When asked why he doesnít get a more up to date welder he just shrugs and says his old company who he worked for is on their 3rd tig machine and his welder (who he bought from them when he went out on his own) just keeps plugging along.
                          He builds a lot of sports car headers. He says he can do everything in his shop he needs to do with this one machine. When called to go on location he will use a portable tig machine and a tent if he has to.
                          Tig does have a steeper learning curve but if your wifeís uncle can give you a little help Iíd definitely go tig.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            thanks for the help guys. Im gonna go with the tig but am keeping my eyes open for a deal on a good mig on craigslist. I stopped looking and someone in my city just sole a mm 200 for 600 dollars.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Welding history 101

                              Originally posted by metalmeltr View Post
                              Tradionaly, I mean 20 years ago, an O/A torch wasused for brazing panels in place, but with todays hss body panels that process is no longer recomended due to essesive work hardening. Then came the mig welder and every thing changed, paels could be welded much faster and much stronger, and that was the standard in all shops for years. Then came the tig welder and thinner panels could be welded easily along with aluminum(migs could do aluminum but it was un- common).
                              That's not a correct portrayal of the state of the industry as a whole. Sure some of the muffler and body shops with less money never stepped up beyond O/A, but that's the exception rather than the rule. I remember when I was a young punk (wow over 20 years ago) and it seemed like every auto business had a MIG welder. And they were generally 10 year old units!

                              MIG has been around in body shops since the 1960's, about 20 years after it was invented, which means it's been common for over 40 years.

                              TIG has been around even longer, first commonly used to weld aluminum and magnesium airframes during World War II when it was called "heliarc," and becoming widespread in industry by about 1950 - almost 60 years ago. Not every body shop had them (or even has them now), but they certainly didn't just come around!

                              Anyway, for the newbie - get a MIG and master it before stepping up to TIG. It's about like riding a bike vs. riding a unicycle. It's not as fast as a bicycle, it's much harder to ride, has a steep learning curve, but man can you do things with it that a bicycle just can't! And you'll impress your friends, too!

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