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Buying a mig welder....which one for me?

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  • Buying a mig welder....which one for me?

    Hello, I am a autobody guy and I need to buy a mig welder that I can use to fix my car, along with that, I'd like for it to handle projects I'd like to tackle like building a frame for a go-kart, a rotisserie (if that's how you spell it), etc. I have been mig welding for almost three years, as the job presents itself at work, not continously. I found a combination welder that I might fork out the money for, it says its ...http://store.schumachermart.com/93300.html<<< i found one for about a grand. What I'm confused about is that it says,

    "The 93300 is an inverter based DC stick, MIG, and TIG welder. Itís capable of using welding electrodes up to 5/32-inch for stick welding, and welding wires from .024-inch through .045-inch for MIG welding. It is also is capable of TIG welding on DC for stainless, and mild steel - 3 welders in one."

    What does 'inverter based' mean? This is a $3700 welder and its brand new in box for a grand, should i spend the money or just get a good mig welder for now and maybe invest in another tig welder later? It doesnt come with the tig torch or pedal, and I dont think it comes with the stick welder gun either. I dont think I'd be using a stick welder, I'm just facinated with tig welding and I'd like to try it. Other than this welder, I'm looking at the miller 180s, and the hobart handler 187, for some reason, I'm just interested in Lincoln welders, but Im open to suggestions. Any help would be greatly appreciated, thanks in advance.
    Jimmy

  • #2
    Hi Jim. Youre asking about mig welders.I'm in the autobody field ,doing auto restoration and customizing work. At work I use a Miller autoarc 135..it covers a wide range of welding from sheetmetal to 1/8 inch plate no problem. at home I have a 155 amp miller and a Millermatic 250dx . The 250 will weld anything automotive related that I think you would want to do,I've got the spoolgun so itll even do aluminum. A 200 amp machine should cover most automotive type welding from sheetmetal to doing some frame fab work in my opinion.....Good compromise between all out heavy duty and lightweight.Just my opinion. Hope it helps a little Jim uhohjim1@aol.com
    Welding in Crete
    Syncrowave 350 LX
    Millermatic 252
    Millermatic 180 w Spoolgun
    Miller Gold Seal 155
    Miller Elite welding helmet
    JD2 Tubing bender with Hydraulic conversion
    Evolution Raptor15" SteelDry Cut Saw
    Hypertherm Powermax 30
    Some really cool hammers BIG and small

    Comment


    • #3
      Schumacher welders are made at Schumacher owned/operated plants in Mexico or China. Don Schumacher, the drag racing legend, is the CEO of the company. From what I've heard (take with a grain of salt) Schumacher welders are among the better of those made offshore.

      The model you're looking at is a 250A multiprocess welder that produces DC current only. "Multiprocess" implies that it can selectively produce constant current (CC) for GTAW/SMAW or constant voltage (CV) for GMAW. It should be ok for GTAW of mild steel or stainless with the appropriate shielding gas, but it will not GTAW aluminum since it does not produce AC.

      Unlike older transformer based welders, it depends on inverter technology that uses silicon rectifiers to convert 230v AC to high amperage DC current capable of melting metal. An inverter based power supply is inherently more efficient than one based on a transformer when it comes to using electricity (lower utility bills). See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Welding_power_supply for more info on this.

      I have a Miller multiprocess welder and am excessively happy with it. $1000 sounds like a killer price on the one you're looking at compared to new, but that's all I can say. Hope this was of some use to you.
      Miller XMT-350 CC/CV
      Miller S-22A wirefeeder
      Bernard 400A "Q" gun
      Miller 30-A Spoolmatic w/WC-24
      CK 210 & WP-18 GTAW torches
      Hypertherm Powermax 30
      O/A Rig, Enco 4x6 bandsaw, etc.

      Comment


      • #4
        ....

        Thanks for the replies both jim and dmaxer, the welder i listed is actually still new in box never used, I understand what you said jim, thats what Im shooting for, something in between all out and a basic welder. Jim, what do you think about this welding machine? Or should i just look for maybe even a used miller? Thanks alot for the response guys.
        jim

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        • #5
          I don't see how you could go wrong as long as the freight is not too high and they get it to you undamaged.
          Is there any warranty with it?
          Sounds good...does it have the feeder and gun etc?

          www.facebook.com/outbackaluminumwelding
          Miller Dynasty 700...OH YEA BABY!!
          MM 350P...PULSE SPRAYIN' MONSTER
          Miller Dynasty 280 with AC independent expansion card
          Miller Dynasty 200 DX "Blue Lightning"

          Miller Bobcat 225 NT (what I began my present Biz with!)
          Miller 30-A Spoolgun
          Miller WC-115-A
          Miller Spectrum 300
          Miller 225 Thunderbolt (my first machine bought new 1980)
          Miller Digital Elite Titanium 9400

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          • #6
            freight is going to be 140, and it comes with the mig gun etc, look at the link i wrote, it says everything it comes with, notice how they want 3700 for it at the schumacker site.

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            • #7
              You should be able to connect a spool gun to the Schumacher for welding aluminum, though I don't know which spool gun model, adapters, weld controls, etc. If I were you I'd inquire what sort/brand of foot pedal voltage control (GTAW) and spool gun (GMAW) will attach to the Schumacher welder and price them (OEM or after market) before I bought the welder. Also, would a spool gun require a weld control module? If so what type/price? Compare the prices to Miller, etc. It's good to know the answers before taking the leap.

              Along these lines, what kind of GMAW (MIG) gun comes with the Schumacher welder? Where can you buy consumables (tips, nozzles, liners, etc.) and how much do they cost compared to Miller or others?
              Miller XMT-350 CC/CV
              Miller S-22A wirefeeder
              Bernard 400A "Q" gun
              Miller 30-A Spoolmatic w/WC-24
              CK 210 & WP-18 GTAW torches
              Hypertherm Powermax 30
              O/A Rig, Enco 4x6 bandsaw, etc.

              Comment


              • #8
                i would first make shore its a legit listing. some times too good to be true is just that.
                after that look to see it uses standard consumables with the MIG gun. the TIG torch should be no problem as they have different types of connectors to let you hook up what you need. foot control might be an issue ?? check with SSC, they make after market and may well be able to make one for you if they don't cary one.. then get to welding.
                if i was looking for a Miller MIG for auto work i would look for a MM210 or 212 . it will cover every thing you need even frame work and will do all the home projects you listed. my next choice would be the HH210.
                let us know how it all comes out and what you end up with. looking forward to seeing your projects.
                thanks for the help
                ......or..........
                hope i helped
                sigpic
                feel free to shoot me an e-mail direct i have time to chat. james@newyorkmetalart.com
                summer is here, plant a tree. if you don't have space or time to plant one sponsor some one else to plant one for you. a tree is an investment in our planet, help it out.
                JAMES

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                • #9
                  Ditto

                  I have a schumacher battery charger from WW@,Well close,Still works great,,
                  As Fun said,,when its to good to be true,it IS!!!!!!!!!!!!!,Have you talked to the guy on the phone,,gives ya a hint if hes for real,and what type of guy,make up the old battery charger,to get him talking,,I do have one that old,and allways work!!!!!!!!!!!!!!Good Luck,Jack

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Dmaxer, the multipurpose welder you have that you're referring to, is that the mxt you have listed in your post? I've seen several of these used which seem to be in great condition for sale anywhere from 450-900, I would rather spend 900 on a used miller than on a new "X-brand". Thanks for all the responses, also, I emailed the schumaker site and still have no reply, i wrote them friday afternoon so I may not get one untill monday, but it makes me kind of nervous. Thanks again guys.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by blackhawkgtr View Post
                      Dmaxer, the multipurpose welder you have that you're referring to, is that the mxt you have listed in your post? I've seen several of these used which seem to be in great condition for sale anywhere from 450-900, I would rather spend 900 on a used miller than on a new "X-brand"....

                      Yes, the XMT 350 CC/CV is the multiprocess welder I was referring to. For your own purposes be aware that the XMT is only a power source and you'd need to buy a wire feeder to have a MIG welder, unlike the Schumacher model you're looking at which apparently has a wire feeder incorporated into its design.

                      Miller makes a smaller XMT 304 CC/CV version too. If you look for an XMT, just make sure it is a CC/CV and not the VS model. The CC/CV comes equipped with a Miller 14-pin connector for a GTAW foot pedal/wire feeder/spoolgun controller, etc. whereas the VS does not. The VS requires a voltage sensing wire feeder in order to GMAW and it GTAW abilities are limited by its lack of ability to connect a remote voltage control (foot pedal).
                      Miller XMT-350 CC/CV
                      Miller S-22A wirefeeder
                      Bernard 400A "Q" gun
                      Miller 30-A Spoolmatic w/WC-24
                      CK 210 & WP-18 GTAW torches
                      Hypertherm Powermax 30
                      O/A Rig, Enco 4x6 bandsaw, etc.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Hey Jim, The schumacher welders I am not familiar with.........I do have one of thier battery chargers and it works great. If it was my choice i would stick with a Miller or Lincoln 200 amp range machine......I've not had any problems with mine.....the MM 250 can burn some steel man lemma tell yuh.It seems like youre doing the same basic stuff I do so I'm thinking the MM202 I think they call it now would be a good welder for you.My first tig i had was a Lincoln 300/300 I bought for 300 dollars used with a water cooler....You could weld a bridge together with that thing......I just bought a used Syncrowave 350 Lx with the bells and whistles.....So step up when you can But buy something with a solid rep Miller/Lincoln/Esab. Just my 2 Cents worth.
                        Hope It helps, Jim uhohjim1@aol.com
                        Welding in Crete
                        Syncrowave 350 LX
                        Millermatic 252
                        Millermatic 180 w Spoolgun
                        Miller Gold Seal 155
                        Miller Elite welding helmet
                        JD2 Tubing bender with Hydraulic conversion
                        Evolution Raptor15" SteelDry Cut Saw
                        Hypertherm Powermax 30
                        Some really cool hammers BIG and small

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Brain fart Millermatic 212 belongs up there^^^^
                          Welding in Crete
                          Syncrowave 350 LX
                          Millermatic 252
                          Millermatic 180 w Spoolgun
                          Miller Gold Seal 155
                          Miller Elite welding helmet
                          JD2 Tubing bender with Hydraulic conversion
                          Evolution Raptor15" SteelDry Cut Saw
                          Hypertherm Powermax 30
                          Some really cool hammers BIG and small

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by blackhawkgtr View Post
                            .....I need to buy a mig welder..... I'm just facinated with tig welding and I'd like to try it.....
                            Blackhawkgtr, the two main objectives I've isolated from your original post are that you need a mig welder but that you also want to tig weld. There are many pros who like to have a dedicated machine for each purpose and there are others who are just as interested in saving space and money by buying a multiprocess welder. I'm among the latter, but I am doing this for my own purposes and enjoyment only. You need to decide which approach suits you and then buy the best welder you can afford as a starting point. Millermatics are great mig machines, but they cannot tig weld.
                            Miller XMT-350 CC/CV
                            Miller S-22A wirefeeder
                            Bernard 400A "Q" gun
                            Miller 30-A Spoolmatic w/WC-24
                            CK 210 & WP-18 GTAW torches
                            Hypertherm Powermax 30
                            O/A Rig, Enco 4x6 bandsaw, etc.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              I recently bought the MM180 and could not be happier. This is an awesome Mig welder, very smooth and easy to operate. So far so good, if you are considering the MM180 I'd say go for it, I paid just under $1k for it, a running gear and I am very pleased. Good luck.

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