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  1. #1
    bradw Guest

    Question Miller 135 or 175

    New to the board and looking on advice on my first purchase. I have 110 and 220 at the house so power is not a factor except for portability. Cost is not a factor as I would rather spend more now than wish I had later.

    I will be doing projects around the house for fun. I dont even know how to weld but when I went to have a gokart frame made for my daughter everyone was charging around $65 an hour and said it would take 6-8 hours. Did not take me long to figure out I would be better off buying a welder and learning to mig weld.

    Am I better off with a 175 vs a 135 for hobby and home use. Would a 135 even be able to weld a kart frame. Im looking at 1x.083 square tubing for most of the frame. Of course this is just my first project other than alot of practice before I start the frame. What about making a trailer. I know alot has to do with the steel thickness and cost is not an issue so wich one would I be better off with?

    Anyone ever bought the 135 and which they had the 175? Why???

    Any opinions are greatly appreciated



  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2006


    Search on the Hobart Weldtalk board,

    Just do a search on something like: which welder mig

    I have read dozens of the posts there and they go on forever with good advice, and the overall consensus if you have 220v and the cash is to buy the tapped (versus an infinte control) mig like the Lincoln SP175T (sold under various badges at Lowes (ProMig 175), Home Depot) or other similar Miller, Hobart, HTP machine, the exception would be if you need to put the welder in the vehicle and often take it to a buddy's house who only has 110v . I am sure someone will offer an alternate point of view, but that is start.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Bulverde, Tx


    Do the search...and have some snacks nearby. It will take a while.

    I wish I had started out with the 175. I got a 135 to start with in the MIG dept. Portability for sure, but very sensitive to power input. If you don't need the portability, go 175. If you have the budget, and portability IS a major concern, maybe a Passport would be better. It has the best of both worlds as does the DVI. The DVI is less portable, but would offer a better duty cycle than the 175 and Passport. Some have done it, but I would never build a trailer with a 135 class machine. That is just pushing them too hard. They can handle the tube easily. For a 135, 1/8 for MIG and 3/16 for flux core are about the maximums. An experienced weldor can squeeze a little more out of them, but not that much.

    '06 Trailblazer 302
    '06 12RC feeder
    Super S-32P feeder

    HH210 & DP3035 spool gun
    Esab Multimaster 260
    Esab Heliarc 252 AC/DC

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2006



    I started out just as you are and not so long ago. I bought a 135(red brand) the play at projects. Then I got the gas bottle to do shielded work for the better quality. Then I sold the whole thing to my brother and bought a MM210. I don't expect to outgrow this one right away. The 135 didn't have the power to penetrate on some of my little projects. I also picked up a small stick welder (Craftsman) that comes in real handy some times. It's 110 volts and very portable.

    You are allowed to have more then one welder. You will also need an oxy/acet torch set and maybe later a plasma cutter, 3/8" minimum, and auto darkening welding shield... There's no end to the list. Start saving.

    Then I fell into blacksmithing...

    Have a good time!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2002
    Clark County, NV


    You would probably find that the 135 would do most everything you've told us so far. It's those mid-size things you aren't thinking about right now that'll make you wish you'd gotten the 240V model. It doesn't cost much more and is WAY more welder.

    Portability = borrowability, too.

    Check this one out:

    They come in and out of stock all the time, so give them a call.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2006



    I have a MM135 and with .023 wire and C25 it does quite a good job and I'm not sorry I bought it. It exceeded my expectations for a 110 volt machine with a 20% duty cycle. If cost and portability is not an issue, then get yourself a MM210 and don't look back. You will be able to complete your first project which will lead to more challenging future projects and you will not be limited by equipment capacity. I can stick whatever my MM135 can't handle, but a MM210 is in my budget for next month.

  7. #7


    I found myself in a similar situation a few years back, I needed some repair work done on my RV - stress cracks on the bumper where the tool box mounted, and my spare tire support. I've always wanted to learn to weld and the cost of buying a welder versus having it done was close enough to make it a DIY project. After much reading (cost & power not really a factor) and sole searching (what additional home projects was I likely to do) the 135 became the logical choice. I took a couple of classes at the local welding supply store, bought scrap from the local metal supply store and had fun "arcing and sparking" practicing welds.

    As I'm sure you have gathered from reading the various posts here, the first welder purchase starts you down the slippery slope of "Tim the Tool Man Taylor". As a home/hobbyist welder - I work more with the thinner metals, and I wanted to do some Aluminium projects. My second welder was a Dynasty 200DX, now I could do stick for thicker stock if needed, TIG for my sheet metal projects, and aluminum. Now that I had multiprocess capability, an adjustable Auto-Darkening helment was needed. You are now building stuff - you need to be able to drill fairly precise holes - throw in a drill press. If you are doing TIG welding you need a grinding wheel dedicated to tungsten, and you don't want to be changing grinding wheels - add a second grinder. The chop saw and angle cutoff grinder worked fine when chopping small stock with straight cuts. The next addition to the tool chest was a Spectrum 375 plasma cutter, which required an upgrade to a 25 gal compressor that could maintain CFM requirements.

    My point being - you need to decide if it is a one shot deal or the start of something bigger. The latest addition to my shop is a CNC X-Y plasma cutting table, with plans to buy the Z-axis upgrade in the near future.


  8. #8
    Join Date
    Dec 2005


    If you have access to 220, I'd definatly go that route, or a 110/220 capable machine. I have a Passport that runs on 110 or 220 and does all I need and then some. It's also very easy on my electrical system, stores easily in my VERY packed and cramped 1 car garage, and is easily transported in my VW car. If portability isn't an issue a DVI would be great and give the option of eventually adding a spool gun if wanted. I wish I could talk the boss into getting one for work, it'd be ideal for use in our shop which has 20amp 110 circuits throughout, but only a few 220's.

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