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  • Welding cable sizes

    Whats the differance between #2 cable #1 cable and the ones that are like 2/0 3/0 4/0 cable types?, have been checking out ebay for some reasonable prices, does anyone out there have a good source? thanks for any help!!
    TB302
    Dynasty 200dx
    Hobart beta-mig 250
    Hobart Handler 140

  • #2
    Hey Walleye,
    the difference in the numbers is the amunt of current they will handle.

    I have a code book around and if you can wait a bit I'll dig out the ampacity chart and post it here for you.
    Will it weld? I loooove electricity!

    Miller 251/30A spool
    Syncro200
    Spectrum 625
    O/A
    Precix 5x10 CNC Router12"Z
    Standard modern lathe
    Cheap Chinese mill that does the trick... sort of...
    horizontal 7x12 bandsaw
    Roland XC540 PRO III
    54" laminator
    hammer and screwdriver (most used)
    little dog
    pooper scooper (2nd most used...)

    Comment


    • #3
      See page 14 of http://www.millerwelds.com/pdf/safet...eng_200704.pdf

      Comment


      • #4
        There is a chart here http://www.aiwc.com/catalogsection/c...ding_Cable.pdf that shows the physical size differences. 1/0 is said "one ought" 2/0 "two ought" etc. 4 cable is bigger than eight, 2 bigger than 4, two ought bigger than one ought.

        Comment


        • #5
          It's the gauge of the cable. Similar to the gauge measurement of other metals. The best place to find decent prices on anything copper is about five years ago There's a reason it looks similar to gold.

          SSS
          Bobcat 250, MM 210, Syncrowave 180, Spectrum 375
          Cat 242B Skid Steer, Challenger (Cat/Agco) MT275
          1 Thessalonians 4:11-12

          Comment


          • #6
            Hey ya Walleye,
            Okay. heres a rough guide to the allowable ampacities for conductors of a given size.

            The information is based on figures supplied by the Canadian Electrical Code.
            The information is also based on nylon jacketed or cross linked insulation ( a mix of HDPE and Nylon) and no more than 3 conductors to make up a wire.
            If the cable you are looking for is say for making ground clamps, or electrode leads, the figures may change , but im sure the difference is negligible. So here goes:
            #18 awg (lamp cord)= 10amps
            #14 awg (typical house wire) = 15amps
            #12 20amps
            #10 30amps
            # 8 (stove cable size) = 40amps
            # 6 (feed to your 251 or syncro 200) = 65 amps
            # 4 70amps (conservative)
            # 3 80 amps
            # 2 100amps
            # 1 110amps
            0 (one ought) = 125amps
            00 (two ought) = 145amps
            000 = 165amps
            0000 = 195amps
            250 Kcmil* = 215amps
            300 Kcmil* = 240amps
            350 Kcmil* = 260amps
            400 Kcmil* = 320amps
            anything bigger than this and you'll need a hydraulic bender and a forklift to drag it around...

            *Kcmil stand for "thousnads of circular mils" ie 250Kcmil=250,000.00Mils or thousanths of an inch..
            The calculations for Kcmils are beyond what needs to be discussed here.All the figures if put here are based on an insulation type called "TW"and copper wire. if you're thinking in aluminum, shif the numbers down so the amps go to the next largest wire size.. (thats ball park , but very close). TW is a standard type wire that gets used in most applications. If I assume correctly, you're thinking of wire to make up ground clamps that such. Perhaps a flexible extension cord??? These are made from a silicon/rubber mix and in Canada they are known as S.O.W.J or S.O.W (sow((female pig)) cord)or S.O.J. The lettering stands for: Silicon jacketed, water and oil resistant. if it doesnt say "W" it is not recommended for wet locations.. very important or you could get a good belt or worse.. I hope this info helps. And yeah Skidsteer is right.. the best price for wire is about 5 years ago.. those greedy bastar.....s

            and todays useless information challenge: all metals conduct electricity, but some conduct better than others. So in loose order: they rank from best to worse...
            Silver #1 (1.00)
            Copper#2 (1.08)
            Gold #3 (1.4)
            Aluminum#4 (1.8)
            Platinum #5 (7.0)
            Lead #6 (13.5) the numbers in brackets signify the amount of resistance in ohms when a given amount of current is passed through a wire of given diameter and given length.
            If I remember right and dont quote me, I thinks its one volt through one foot of wire that is one thousandth of a inch in dia.

            hope this helps ya out.

            Regards, Rich
            Will it weld? I loooove electricity!

            Miller 251/30A spool
            Syncro200
            Spectrum 625
            O/A
            Precix 5x10 CNC Router12"Z
            Standard modern lathe
            Cheap Chinese mill that does the trick... sort of...
            horizontal 7x12 bandsaw
            Roland XC540 PRO III
            54" laminator
            hammer and screwdriver (most used)
            little dog
            pooper scooper (2nd most used...)

            Comment


            • #7
              I'm with you on the copper prices OUTRAGEOUS, seen on the news 2 guys stole about $20,000 worth of wire and got caught with it when they tried to sell it for scrap. They also cut LIVE transmission lines to get it. Thanks for the info guys I always wondered about those ampacities in relation to wire sizes

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              • #8
                I work for an electric utillity and we've had them cut down a chain link fence into a substation to steal reels of wire. We had pics of some goof b all that actually cut into a live piece and blew his arm off. Big dumby
                Scott
                HMW [Heavy Metal welding]

                Comment


                • #9
                  The numbers are significantly different than NEC numbers, this question should include the machine they are intended to run on.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    PLEASE NOTE:

                    The numbers that I provided to you in this thread are based on insulation type
                    TW and not more that three conductors making up a "wire"
                    TW is considered a low grade "everyday" type of insulation that would most likely be used to wire up lighting in a high rise or other commercial type application where the wire(s) are run through conduit that is encased in concrete. (ie rigid pipe or EMT- electrical metalic tubing)

                    Should you want to find a wire for a different application- such as a rubberjacketed extension cord, the figures in my post above could be applied safely to that cable.
                    Will it weld? I loooove electricity!

                    Miller 251/30A spool
                    Syncro200
                    Spectrum 625
                    O/A
                    Precix 5x10 CNC Router12"Z
                    Standard modern lathe
                    Cheap Chinese mill that does the trick... sort of...
                    horizontal 7x12 bandsaw
                    Roland XC540 PRO III
                    54" laminator
                    hammer and screwdriver (most used)
                    little dog
                    pooper scooper (2nd most used...)

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I agree they they are safe numbers, no doubt about it but it would add significantly to the cost.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        You can still cheat a bit. Its heat that will kill any cable.. the insulation is the weak link..
                        A 14guage wire is good for about 90 amps but everything is so derated for safety that its rediculous. Safety first though. I dont think putting 50 amps through a #8 wire is too excessive. If you read the info stamped into the power cable of a 200dx or 251(2) you'll see that its a #8 even though the machines are rated for around 65 amps. 65 amps is about 25A over the rating on most Romex type cables and SOW cord... Im willing to bet that a #8 cable could handle 275 amps easy, but it might be smoking hot..in turn destroying the insulation and shorting or starting a fire...

                        I have a 25ft #8 extension cord that I made to get that extra reach into the drive way for those jobs that just cant come in too far.. Works great, no worries, Im happy.
                        Will it weld? I loooove electricity!

                        Miller 251/30A spool
                        Syncro200
                        Spectrum 625
                        O/A
                        Precix 5x10 CNC Router12"Z
                        Standard modern lathe
                        Cheap Chinese mill that does the trick... sort of...
                        horizontal 7x12 bandsaw
                        Roland XC540 PRO III
                        54" laminator
                        hammer and screwdriver (most used)
                        little dog
                        pooper scooper (2nd most used...)

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Thanks guys for the help, i dont plan on doing alot of stick welding with the new TB302 but want to have some long leads just in case, thats why im wondering what i can get away with for size due to the cost of 2.70 a foot for 1 gauge!! any ideas on where to get a good deal would be great!! thanks again!!
                          TB302
                          Dynasty 200dx
                          Hobart beta-mig 250
                          Hobart Handler 140

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            They do allow 8 for use to 100A on some machines.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by walleye1 View Post
                              Thanks guys for the help, i dont plan on doing alot of stick welding with the new TB302 but want to have some long leads just in case, thats why im wondering what i can get away with for size due to the cost of 2.70 a foot for 1 gauge!! any ideas on where to get a good deal would be great!! thanks again!!

                              TRy your local electrical ditributor(s) look in the phone book under wire and cable.. As Well, once you get a price from the ditributor, check the home depot.. they do have home depot in your neck of the woods right?
                              Aikenheads???
                              http://www.millermotorsports.com/mbo...ead.php?t=8712 check this link out.

                              May I suggest:
                              cost out the price to make and extension cord rather than tryin gto make longer welding leads.. You just might find that you can make a "primary side" cord cheaper than it will be to make "secondary side" cables to the ground clamp and electrode...

                              this make sence for two reasons, first is volatge drop associated to long runs of cable with low voltage and high current and the second is the cost of these same cables. Since a single copper stranded conductor of say #1 awg wieghs Xpounds per foot, you will pay a premium price. Secondly it makes better sence and is more economical as well as practical to run a longer wire at higher voltage.

                              consider it this way, ( i hope im not over expalining here)

                              your welder pretty much just transforms volatege and current. you put in 240 and you get out 12 to 36 volts. input current is low and out put current is high..
                              typpicaly 240v 65 amps in and 30V 50 to 400Amps out.. do you see the connection?

                              anyway, its cheaper to run a high(er) voltage conductor because you dont need so much mass to carry the current and your I2R losses are minimal. if on the other hand you want to run secondary extensions, you will need big fat cables to overcome the voltage drop and resultant power losses . ever tried to jump a car with an extesion cord? its a no go.. same thing here. the longer the secondary run, the less voltage and power at the welding end due to the heat created by the current that is passing through the cable. the more heat, the more resistance and the less power at the welding end. its a downward cycle. I hope this makes sence. I know its all over the place but its really a hard thing to explain. the physics heres is based on I2R losses. ( I squared R where I = current in amperes and R= resistance in ohms therefor current x current x resistance=power (in Watts) in this case it wold be the loss.

                              suffice it to say tha tyou can save yourself a whack of money by making an extension cord and keeping your welding leads short.. I hope i have been able to help.. Ive got verbal diareah tonight...
                              Last edited by SignWave; 10-18-2007, 12:21 AM.
                              Will it weld? I loooove electricity!

                              Miller 251/30A spool
                              Syncro200
                              Spectrum 625
                              O/A
                              Precix 5x10 CNC Router12"Z
                              Standard modern lathe
                              Cheap Chinese mill that does the trick... sort of...
                              horizontal 7x12 bandsaw
                              Roland XC540 PRO III
                              54" laminator
                              hammer and screwdriver (most used)
                              little dog
                              pooper scooper (2nd most used...)

                              Comment

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