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Thread: How many amps

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    I live in Cheraw, South Carolina
    Posts
    112

    Default How many amps

    This is for my own personal edification. Now I have seen several posters on some of the welding message boards that had a few snide remarks about these little 120 volt mig welders. Now I know these little welders have their limitations but at the same time have some things to offer such as their light weight and portability, as well as their ability to use a 120 volt power source that is almost always available where one of these little welders may be needed for a quick and dirty repair job. This makes them a serious consideration for a maintenance person, as well as the hobby type guy.

    What I want to know from you that have a lot of experience with these mig welders is where the little jokes stop due to some serious amperage. I want to know how many amps you need in a mig welder before it can compete with a good hot stick welder running reverse polarity with enough cranked up to cause some serious spatter with just a hint the heat is so hot it is about ready to cause some undercut. I want to know this before I go out and buy a mig welder, because if it can’t compete with the stick welder, I probably won’t use it much. I know you can turn them all down; I just don’t want to run out of knob to the right.

    So don’t tell me to buy the biggest I can afford. Tell me how much amperage it will take to do the same job as the stick welder, because what ever that is I will get out my credit card if that is what it is going to take. So what is it, - 180 , 210, 250, 300 ?? Oh yea, Christmas is right around the corner.
    6010
    If I had know I was going to live this long, I would have taken better care of myself.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Posts
    356

    Default

    so cranked up it creats spatter ? what rod size, you can run a 1/4 rod up in the 200+ amp range (7018)

    your question is pretty open
    mm210
    maxstar 150

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Nacogdoches Texas
    Posts
    25

    Default

    We have a miller 250 and a shopmate 300 with an overhead wire feeder, and some others not worth mentioning. I am currently welding together a BBQ pit that is 3/8" walled and the 250 welds it with no problems. There are plenty of people on here with lots more experience than me but thats my opinion. So it depends on what you want to weld, but the 250 does just about anything we need it to do, and if it wont we chamfer it and weld it on both sides. Oh yeah we use .035 wire in all of our machines

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Abilene, Texas
    Posts
    639

    Default

    How big is your stick welder 6010? About a year ago I was looking at MIG welders. (my 1st) I was thinking 110v but changed to the MM 210 based on what I had read on the Miller Motorsports board about the 210. I am very pleased and glad that I didn't go 110 for MY needs. I seldom use my old DialArc 250 anymore. I seldom weld over 1/4" material.
    Jim

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Vancouver, Washington
    Posts
    51

    Default

    I have a small Miller 110v MM 130XP. I use it on steel up to about ¼” and it works great. It is perfect for 22to 12Ga. The best thing is not needing 220v power. When I purchased it I was doing a lot of maintenance type stuff and the ability to carry it up ladders and plug it in anywhere was the selling point. I now use it to join .065 and .095” sq tube for furniture and other projects. I have run probably 20 large spools through it without any problems. That said if you don’t need portability buy the biggest you can afford…you can always turn it down but it is no fun to not have the heat you need. My wish list has a MM210 second and the Miller Dynasty 200 at the top. oops it told you to buy the biggest you could afford

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Queens NY
    Posts
    1,547

    Default

    You want to know how many amps a MIG will need to compete with a fictional stick welder?? about elevendyfour?????

    I suggest you state your needs and the very experienced and helpful people here will give you a good reccomendation.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Vancouver BC Canada
    Posts
    605

    Default

    [QUOTE=Laiky;20101]You want to know how many amps a MIG will need to compete with a fictional stick welder?? about elevendyfour?????

    QUOTE]

    Funny! Hahahahaha!! I havent heard that one B4!
    Sorry I t jsut struck me as funny! had to step up and say so!
    Will it weld? I loooove electricity!

    Miller 251/30A spool
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  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Noth Dakota
    Posts
    505

    Cool

    All right I'll bite. FISH ON and running! Consider if all you use is 1/8 rod, for instance 7018. I'm thinking you might need at least 130 amps plus 20% at 60% duty cycle and let that be the requirement for the 1/8 in rod. Looking at the Miller product line on their site, A Millermatic 180 spits out 135 amps @ 30%, which doesn't meet the criteria set forth so no buy. The next one in line is the 212 with 160 amps @ 60% which covers our set requirements so we buy it. But then I like our Miller MP 65E. 650 amps of 460 3 phase monster sucking up 4 amps with just the fan running without any circuit boards at all inside. Ya I keep up with that one. Or consider this: It's 90 degrees in the shop, I need to stick weld with the 1/8 rod (7018 of course) using a Lincoln Square wave tig 175 or Martha. The Linc will temp out about 15 straight rods later. Or should I use Martha with 600 amps available at 60%. Martha won't even know you got her turned on and you could weld a 50 lb can of rods one after the other. Dag nabit, he spit the hook got away!.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Noth Dakota
    Posts
    505

    Cool

    OH did I mention with the MP 65E you also get 100% duty cycle? You turn the wire feeder all the way up , then adjust the heat to get a huge puddle that will melt thru a 3/4 plate? She eats 60 lb spools all day long looks at you and says "That all you got big boy? OOOh wee. I need shade 14, asbestos or something.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Vancouver, Washington
    Posts
    51

    Default

    Ok we get it Steve. You have access to the biggest baddest equipment available, that is not what he asked. Amps needed to stick weld don’t equate to MIG performance. For those of us on a limited budget or needing portable MIG capabilities 110v MIG machines make since. I have no need to MIG ¾” steel, if I do need to weld thick stuff will fire up the old red tombstone and stick it. MIG is“necessary” on thin material. You can stick thicker stuff. (Don’t attack, I know some people can weld real thin material with a stick, but not efficiently.) So…. If you cannot afford to hook up a 220v line or the expense of a Monster power source and wire feeder buy the biggest MIG you can afford, or pack around and burn wire. Oops there it is again "Buy the biggest you can afford".

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