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  1. #1

    Default 211 and/or a Thunderbolt 225

    First time poster and newb to welding. Just interested in hobby welding around the shop. I want to make a welding cart and some rolling stands for machinery. No cars.

    I bought a Thunderbolt 225 at an auction a couple of years ago but have not used it yet. I have recently run 220 to my garage. I also recently bought a Millermatic 211.

    Now, I have a small garage and need all the extra room I can get. My question is: will the 211 do everything that the Thunderbolt will do? Can I get rid of the Thunderbolt?

    I have heard "If its thick, use stick" but I don't know if my little Thunderbolt is big enough to make a difference.
    Last edited by Frank R; 10-09-2012 at 12:00 PM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Los Angeles
    Posts
    2,861

    Default

    The MM211 will do 99.9% of everything a Hobby welder will need done.

    I've built quite a few things w/o having a Stick welder- before we even purchased the MM252 I used a 120v machine, then a Passport. Don't really need the 252, probably should have just purchased a MM212.

    I'm really a hobby welder that has been able to build stuff for my work/business but welding is not any part of the business.

    For me:
    Wire feeder like the MM211 or equivalent is a workhorse. Fast & Clean, sheet metal to 1/4", some 3/8".

    I would sell the Thunderbolt and buy more hand tools: Port-a-band, Chop saw, Hand grinders, Clamps.

    I put off the Port-a-band for way too long.

    I highly recommend one. Quiet, no mess like with an abrasive chop saw. I can get pretty good 45˚ with one.

    2- grinders; One with a cut off wheel and one for Flap Discs.

    C- Clamps: can't have too many clamps.
    Ed Conley
    http://www.screamingbroccoli.net/
    MM252
    MM211
    Passport Plus w/Spool Gun
    TA185
    Miller 125c Plasma 120v
    O/A set
    SO 2020 Bender
    You can call me Bacchus

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Posts
    271

    Default

    Save up and get a dinky inverter stick/TIG welder to complement the 211.

  4. #4

    Default

    Thanks Ed.

  5. #5

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by USMCPOP View Post
    Save up and get a dinky inverter stick/TIG welder to complement the 211.
    Any particular ones in mind? I don't know a thing about inverter welders. But I did get the 100 spool gun for my 211. Will I need/want more?

    I thought the 211 and spool gun will keep by busy for a long time.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Los Angeles
    Posts
    2,861

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Frank R View Post
    Any particular ones in mind? I don't know a thing about inverter welders. But I did get the 100 spool gun for my 211. Will I need/want more?

    I thought the 211 and spool gun will keep by busy for a long time.
    Are you a man? Of course you'll want more, need... well that's up to you and the Mrs.


    I'll mention it again.. hand tools, more hand tools.

    You'll need something to cut the steel
    something to grind with
    Clamp with, more clamping

    Ed Conley
    http://www.screamingbroccoli.net/
    MM252
    MM211
    Passport Plus w/Spool Gun
    TA185
    Miller 125c Plasma 120v
    O/A set
    SO 2020 Bender
    You can call me Bacchus

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Los Angeles
    Posts
    2,861

    Default

    here is a current thread on Grinders, save you some time since it is pretty well covered on brand, cost etc etc

    http://www.hobartwelders.com/weldtal...45371-grinders
    Ed Conley
    http://www.screamingbroccoli.net/
    MM252
    MM211
    Passport Plus w/Spool Gun
    TA185
    Miller 125c Plasma 120v
    O/A set
    SO 2020 Bender
    You can call me Bacchus

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Illinois
    Posts
    600

    Default

    Is the thunderbolt AC/DC ? you could always keep it and get a tig set up for
    it.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    greenfield new hampshire
    Posts
    876

    Default

    what is so wrong with keeping the thunderbolt, you will not get too much for it and really, how much space does it take up, learning to stick weld will be a great asset in your welding ventures, right now you have the perfect set up for just starting out, keep the buzz box, it will come in handy some time

  10. #10

    Default

    Thanks for the replies.

    This one is AC only. It is an older, horizontal unit. Not like the ones shown in the owner's manuals here.

    I was thinking the same thing Kevin. Is there anything a stick can do that a mig cannot? Like welding cast iron or some other specialty metals? I would hate to get rid of it only to find I could use it later with just some new rods.
    Last edited by Frank R; 10-10-2012 at 05:52 AM.

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