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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    Indiana
    Posts
    55

    Default Maxstar 150 STH probs: post flow gas stutters instead of smooth flow

    Hope you all can help. I've had my 150STH for at least a couple of years now and never had a problem with it. Just this past week or so it has started doing this funny thing where when I let off the pedal instead of hearing the post flow gas come out all smooth you can hear the welder itself making a little stuttery sort of ticking noise and you can see the affect of the gas pulsing out on the weld instead of coming out in a stead, smooth stream. If I look at the needle on my bottle valve I can see it jittering also. Looks like the affect you'd see if a valve wasn't seating or a contact wasn't opening or closing cleanly. EDITED TO ADD: Just took a real close look/listen, and it sounds like it is actually the bottle valve that is making the noise, so maybe the valve is sticking? It has been rather cold in Indiana the past week or so, but my shop area is fairly well heated in that I am comfortable in a couple of layers of clothing. The cold shouldn't affect it the valve, should it? I don't think it's cold enough for that, but thought I'd throw that in as well.

    Also, tonight just a few minutes ago I was welding and let off the pedal and the welder didn't shut off. The post flow gas kept stuttering power kept coming to the tungsten. I shut it off and restarted it and it was fine again.

    I am using a non-Miller foot pedal and welding using 110 current if that should make any difference.

    I don't know if these two things are related, but figured it was worth mentioning.

    I'd like to get this fixed before it brings me to a halt. I'd rather fix it while I'm prepared to deal with it than when I'm in the middle of needing to get something done and it suddenly becomes a big hassle.

    Thanks in advance!
    Last edited by gearhead69; 01-28-2014 at 07:45 PM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    Indiana
    Posts
    55

    Default

    Still looking for help on this one, thanks.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    Northern Arizona
    Posts
    456

    Default

    Can you try a miller pedal? Is your argon tank valve all the way backseated? Is your power source stable? Have you verified voltage and ac frequency at the receptacle? Are you using an extension cord? Is it suitable gauge wire? Have you made any changes to your work area, machine, power source, argon bottle, regulator recently? And last post your serial number for the machine as it will aid in getting help from the techs like Cruizer.
    MillerMatic 251
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  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Edmonton, Alberta
    Posts
    7,608

    Default

    Sounds like your argon flow meter is a little too high, or like most of the guys who put peflon tape on everything, some of it is wedged in the gas solinid. BRASS SEALS BRASS, no teflon tape please!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    Indiana
    Posts
    55

    Default

    Everything in my work are is the same as it has been for a couple of years now except the argon bottle. I got a refill a week or two ago. I don't remember, unfortunately, if I noticed the problem before the refill or not.

    I don't have a spare pedal, or I'd try that right away. I did notice that the noise is coming from the brass bottle valve itself and not the machine. What does it mean to have the brass valve all the way backseated? I'll check that soon as I know what it is.

    There isn't any teflon tape on any of my bottle connections and never has been, so we can rule that one out.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Posts
    385

    Default

    Did you crack the valve on that new cylinder before you put the flow meter on? Could have been some crud in there that blew into your regulator. Back seated means opened all the way up until you can't open it any more so it (sometimes) seals the valve stem from leaking.---Meltedmetal

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Edmonton, Alberta
    Posts
    7,608

    Default

    Just cause its the same for years means squat. I get called out years after the initial installation for the teflow problem, thats why on many newer machines Miller stuck a screen there

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    Indiana
    Posts
    55

    Default

    No, I didn't crack the bottle valve before putting the regulator on. I didn't know I should be doing that. How can I check my regulator to see if there is something stuck in it? Anything else besides just taking it off and looking down inside?

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Posts
    385

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by gearhead69 View Post
    No, I didn't crack the bottle valve before putting the regulator on. I didn't know I should be doing that. How can I check my regulator to see if there is something stuck in it? Anything else besides just taking it off and looking down inside?
    I don't know what is recommended these days but we always crack them too blow out whatever might be in there. Just make sure no one and nothing you care about is in the line of fire. Take a look not only in the regulator but also in the valve opening(safety glasses please). It is possible on rented tanks that someone else used the teflon tape and a piece was stuck in there or, my favorite, mud wasps seem to like those openings to deposit next year's brood. Maybe take the hose off the regulator and try it not hooked to your machine to see if it flows properly before you try to dismantle your regulator or have it dismantled.---Meltedmetal

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    Indiana
    Posts
    55

    Default

    Thanks for the tips! I unhooked the regulator and just barely cracked the bottle valve, enough to hear a light hiss, then shut it again. I looked in the entry fitting for the regulator, and it does have a bronze filter in there, but it looked good. I unscrewed the regulator valve all the way and took a look at that, which looked okay. Then I screwed it down in all the way until it just stopped turning, then backed it off all the way and tried things again. No issues anymore. Not sure what it was, but I've taken care of it, apparently. If I get anything like this again, at least I know how to do some basic troubleshooting now.

    I appreciate the help!

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