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  • New to welding, and need LOTs of advice...

    Hey Guys,

    So here is the deal... I am building a homebrewery system, and I will need to do some welding. I should mention now that I know very little of welding, but I am a quick learn.

    So, the basic welding needs e for the stand and the brew kettles/fittings. All will be stainless steel, of relatively small gauge.

    The stand will be built of out of 2"x2" 0.120 stainless sqaure tubing. Follow this link for an immage of something similar to my goal:

    http://www.alenuts.com/brutus.htm

    The kettles will also require welding of stainless couplers as seen in the above link.

    So, from what I have read, TIG is the way to go. That said, what do you pro's think is a good entry level TIG setup? Any ideas on whether to buy new or used, and if used, where is a good place to look.

    WRT my wleding ability, I will probably trade some beers with a few local guys to get some instruction, and/or take a class at my local comunity college. I don't mind investing in the equipmant, as tools are always good to have, but I also don't want anything that is overkill...

    Ok guys, share you thoughts!

    Thanks,

    Bryan

  • #2
    i would say a used tig would be the best way to go but more expensive and a longer lerning curve. as its SS you only need a DC unit so e-bay would likely net you what you want.i would stick to a small inverter type welder as it will alow you to use standerd houshold power where the transformers will require 60+ amp 220V circuits, with the exception of stove you are not likely to have that kind of power in your house.
    a small MIG would also work with a try-mix gas also and would be easyer to lern but not as nice looking welds. eather way you will need to be able to back gass it be it with a 2nd tank or a T and 2 gages.
    good luck and have fun.
    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

    Comment


    • #3
      Thanks for the information....

      Would it be possible for you to suggest some models to keep an eye out for on ebay and elsewhere?

      Thanks,

      Bryan

      Comment


      • #4
        where you at? i got a Lincoln(i know i know i dont want to hear it i got it at a discount lol!) v160-T a nice portable tig machine, i went to lincoln welding school, im 19 and i know what im doing, if you dont live to far from me im willing to travel, i got a nice back purge set up going with it too, which is very key when it comes to stainless. so yeah just post the state and town and like i said, if not to far im willing to travel

        edit: this is an inverter just like fun4now was saying so it runs off a normal 110v outlet or whatever voltage they are(mental block right now lol)
        Last edited by TIGWelder06; 01-12-2007, 10:50 PM.

        Comment


        • #5
          Hey good to know you are not afraid to jump in and give it a shot! You might find some good advice from a weld shop that does work for food prep /services co's. They usualy do alot of repair and fabrication work on stainless and could probably point you in the right direction. By the way toss one down for all of us when you get her up and running. Pics greatly appreciated as well.

          Comment


          • #6
            the maxstar 150 would be the miller choice but i have seen some others out there, just dont fallow them. just about any of the little inverters should do fine. if you want to keep it and get into more welding i would get a good brand name even if it means saving up for a wile.
            it took me about 3 years to save up to get my TIG but i wanted AC/DC so they run a bit more and i have a realy low income so that didnt help. if its a one time thing renting might be the answer, look into a weeks rental with gas and see what you are looking at. no point buying if its a seldome used thing, it can add up fast.
            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

            Comment


            • #7
              this would do what you need nicely.
              http://www.millerwelds.com/education...read.php?t=745
              plug it in and weld at the kitchen table if ya wanted.
              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

              Comment


              • #8
                I agree with Fun that the little Maxster 150 is a good choice, as long as you don't do to thick of material or aluminum.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Thanks Guys,

                  I really appreciate all the help and advice...

                  So, I currently live in NYC, but will be doing most of the fabrication at my fathers home in CT. Anyone in the hood? I've got beer!!!

                  The smaller units do look appealing, and the price seems tollerable. I will keep my eyes open n ebay and around to see what crosses my radar screen.

                  My most important question is, do the smaller inverter type rigs have the power to weld the 11 gauge stainless, along with couplings and pipe?

                  I thought about renting, but I like tools, and I don't mind investing in good equipment. I also plan on putting together a good smoker someday in the future, and I'm sure there will be other projects that will come up. Also, I like to be able to work for others should they need the help...

                  How often do these units show up on the used market, and what accessories are suggested for the initial purchases?

                  Thanks Fellas,

                  Bryan

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    the 150 has all the acesorys with it, or the one in the link dose any way. if you buy it new you need to get the contractors kit to get all the goodies needed.
                    the 150's come up used now and then but the ac/dc type are a bit harder to find. the 150 will do a little over1/8" with no truble so the 11gage is easy.
                    if you are investing in the tool to keep a good namer is recomended not the HF version.
                    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

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I have been real happy with my Maxstar. It has done everything I needed done, until I came on the need to weld aluminum.

                      This board, and Ask Andy, have been very helpful.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        OK guys, I've been doing some homework....

                        WRT the Maxstar, how beneficial is the HF/pulse start on the STH models... Would this be missed on the STH.

                        Secondly, what do you guys think about the econotig, versus the Maxstar. Seems like the econotig has more power, ac/dc for aluminum, and a few more bells and whistles...

                        I guess the way I see it is there are STH and STL's for sale used in the 800-1000 range, new for 1600 with extras. I can buy a econotig for 1500 with shipping and extras.

                        That said, which way would you go?

                        Thanks,

                        Bryan

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I had an Econotig in a previous life (ex-wife stole it). It has HF, but no pulse, uses 220v, and weighs around 175 lbs.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            if you can come up with the power to run the econotig i would save a lil longer and get the syncrowave 200 or a used 180.
                            the econotig is only 10 more amps on DC and starts at 30 amps on the low end,
                            the maxstar will go down to 5 amps as will the syncro200 the syncro also going up to 200amps in AC & DC

                            most of the econotig guys say they are good for lerning then move up to the 180 or 200 now if not larger.
                            the maxstar is going to give you the ability to plug in anywhere. witch is a big + the econotig will require a 55amp 220V circuit same as the syncro200 so if you have that kind of power to offer a welder go with the syncrowavemuch more offerd there. if you dont have a shop wired up with some serious power you will be better off sticking to the inverters like the maxstar. the best i could do in my shop was a 30amp 220V circuit so i was forced to go inverter and even it dimms the lights in the house when i hit the peddel.
                            so take a close look at the power you can provide, also how important portability is. the maxstar you can throw in the back seat and take it over to your frends house to help him build his brewry and you know you will be able to plug it in when you get there. most likely this is not going to be the case with the syncro or econotig.

                            as for how important is the HF and pulse option, verry. you want to go with them especilay if light gage SS is in the picture. many that start with the STL end up selling to move up to the STH. HF alown is werth it. it will make lerning much easyer and is all i use on mine, i just have not gotten the hang of lift arc starts, keep having problems with it so i just stick to HF much easyer starts i think.

                            so lets start over
                            how much power do you have to offer??
                            how important is portability ??
                            do you meed AC ??
                            do you intend to keep the welder or plan on upgrading later if you like TIG welding??
                            how far do you think you can strech your budjet??

                            i still think you should jump on the 150 offerd up for sale here on the forem, but lets see your answers to the above and we can take it from there.
                            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

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by fun4now View Post
                              so lets start over
                              how much power do you have to offer??
                              how important is portability ??
                              do you meed AC ??
                              do you intend to keep the welder or plan on upgrading later if you like TIG welding??
                              how far do you think you can strech your budjet??
                              1. I've got a 220/40 breaker installed for an old hot-tub which is no longer in use.
                              2. Prtability is not essential, but a nice option.
                              3. I don't plan to weld aluminum.
                              4. Keep it for a while, and then upgrade in the future if the power is on the weak side...

                              I am still a little worried about the 11gauge ss... Will the Maxstar run out of muscle?

                              The 150 here is the STL, not the STH. Given I have very little knowledge with TIG, the easier the earning curve the better. This is why I think the 150STH may be a better way to go versus the 150STL abbove...

                              Maybe I should just wait out to find a good used 150STH?

                              Thoughts?

                              BK
                              Last edited by bkloos; 01-14-2007, 11:54 AM.

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