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Welders

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I don’t know how to weld. I’d like to buy a welder. Mig.
Anyone here have some good background in this? Miller’s are stupid expensive. This is for home use. 220 power. Is harbor freight horrible?
 

P7id10T

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Find someone to learn from first, whether a CC class or someone you know who is skilled, and has the patience and time.
Then research. Lots of it.
Can't comment on HF quality since I've never used one. I've only used Hobarts and Millers, plus a Craftsman stick buzz box.
Since you don't specify *what* you want to weld, after you learn how, get one that will do the max thickness you expect to work with. If you're doing 3/8" tube & bar, don't expect it to also do 20ga sheet & tube.
The feed rolls (design & quality) will make a huge difference in how much you like your welder.
I would also get one that uses gas.
Although there are some other Excellent brands, I stuck with Hobart when I picked up a 230V 190 last year.
 

Ura-Ki

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  • Air Force
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Ether a Miller or a Lincoln of at least 140 amp is the minimum you would want, if you shop around, there are sales all the time, Air Gas is a good source and if your in the Trades, Union, or both, they offer a pretty decent discount!
I'm no expert in all things welding but I do have certs and lots of experience in MIG/TIG and HeliArc!
Ether brand will serve you well, BUT, if you are looking to really push the power or get into doing a LOT of welding, the Miller are the more robust for industrial grade performance!
I have used Hobart welders and they do work, but getting any warranty repairs or parts is likely to leave you wishing you had stepped up!
Don't shy away from a good used rig ether, many great deals can be found, usually after Christmas and leading up to tax season!
 

xlsbob

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If you want quality go either Miller or Lincoln. Harbor Freight can be a bad gamble along with the other off brands. You'll pay more initially, but if there is a problem it will be fixable. I'm not much of a welder but I bought more Miller than I'll ever need and I have no doubts it will out live me.
 

AirResq

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I’d go with a name brand but used welder. There is a Milliermatic 200 listed a day ago on eastern Oregon CL for $650. Depending on condition, it looks like a good price. Something breaks, you can get it fixed instead of throwing it away. I highly recommend getting some professional training if you have access to it. You will learn a lot, most what not to do. Probably one of the funnest courses I’ve ever taken.
 

jbett98

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My first mig welder was an older MillerMatic 35s that a friend help me set up with a new liner and a custom built cart.
That Miller was a great beginners machine and I recently sold it to a member here after I upgraded to a newer Miller machine that came with a spool gun.
 

P7id10T

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I’d go with a name brand but used welder. There is a Milliermatic 200 listed a day ago on eastern Oregon CL for $650. Depending on condition, it looks like a good price. Something breaks, you can get it fixed instead of throwing it away. I highly recommend getting some professional training if you have access to it. You will learn a lot, most what not to do. Probably one of the funnest courses I’ve ever taken.
And the ad says "Lincoln welder". Seems spam/sketchy to me.... I guess it's OK if your car warranty is expiring or you need health insurance.
 
OP
Oregonhunter5
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I’ve heard buying used can be touch and go. I’ve heard that circuit boards can go bad in these. And by all means I will buy used on most items.
 

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