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Yet another cheap noob welder thread

Discussion in 'Truck & Equipment Repair' started by theholycow, Feb 12, 2012.

  1. theholycow

    theholycow PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,180

    I would have posted this in the "Hat kind of welder should I buy???!" thread, but that thread has disappeared.

    I'm not looking for luxury equipment. I'm looking for minimal equipment to get the job done. I like to pretend I'll fab my own Fisher 7160 push plates and save $300 but that doesn't seem likely. I do have a trailer to repair and expect similar automotive/tool repairs.

    How is a Miller model 88?

    Looks like a turd, but can it get work done?
  2. Morrissey snow removal

    Morrissey snow removal PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,798

    how much are they asking??
  3. Oshkosh

    Oshkosh PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,655

    I guess it depends on what type of fab work you foresee yourself doing down the road...120 or 220V is another question....
    A Mig can do anything from delicate body panels all the way up to heavy steel if it is a larger unit..I had a 250amp mig and welded 3/8" plate never having a weld fail...Migs really enjoy clean metal.....
    Arc welders seem to be preferred for deep penetration, frame work,thicker plate ,seem more forgiving on dirty metal,windy conditions etc.....Not as forgiving on body work/finesse work...
    I am not familiar with your particular model..
  4. theholycow

    theholycow PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,180

    I forgot to mention...I'll probably never work with nice clean metal, I deal with lots of severe rust. I'm glad you mentioned that, Oshkosh. I'm not worried about finesse work, I'd farm that out even if I had the right equipment.

    That one is $50.
  5. BossPlow2010

    BossPlow2010 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,069

    You should invest in a wire wheel or grinder, or wire brush, but since your metal will be "dirty" you'll be using 6010 most of the time and anywhere from about 68- 100 amps. Miller is my favorite brand but I've had tons of expirence with just Lincoln and Miller so if I were you, I'd get a second opinion.

    You should buy two welders so you can air arc :D
  6. Oshkosh

    Oshkosh PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,655

    Heck for $50 and if it works you have nothing to loose.
    Buy it ,if you find you dont like it you wont have any trouble getting your money back...
    Miller always made a great product..
    MODEL: 88
    AMPS: 20 TO 250
    VOLTS: 230
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2012
  7. theholycow

    theholycow PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,180

    I have an electric angle grinder, a couple air sanders, and a large collection of wire wheels for a few drills...still, I expect I've got plenty of stuff that would require too much time or too much material removal to clean up due to pitting. :(

    Sounds like a light show! :cool:
  8. BossPlow2010

    BossPlow2010 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,069

    Yes it is quite bright and expensive. But, it's pretty cool!
  9. A.M.Canfora

    A.M.Canfora Member
    Messages: 50

    That welder will never let you down, old inverter welders have served many shops for decades. get yourself some 7018 and 6010 wire and start practicing. just today I had to weld on a dump body and it was easier to just drag two leads outside and get it done then to wheel the MIG welder outside and have to clean and grind the metal
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2012
  10. Antlerart06

    Antlerart06 PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,437

    Looks like a deal but trash the helmet Buy a good one
    Them old helmets is a pain you have to flip it up all time
  11. theholycow

    theholycow PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,180

    Got way too busy at work on Monday and forgot all aboot it, wife was sick today, ad is gone now. Drat. I should at least have emailed.
  12. MickiRig1

    MickiRig1 PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,617

    Buy a good variable setting arc welder. You can bump up the amp rating and stick size and strike an arc easily. An air cut off or angle grinder can be used to get a good bevel on work. Many people sell the used stuff cheap, because they don't know what they have."It's Dad's welder and he died last month." You can buy cheap 110V welders at Walmart that will do light duty stuff. That's what I started with.
  13. 03sd

    03sd Member
    Messages: 79

    I prefer Millers over anything they seem too have better arc stability but the Lincoln ac arc welders are nice machines also, there are usauly some floating around on craigs list fairly cheap.
  14. theholycow

    theholycow PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,180

    Necrothread! This thread is back from the dead! Has anybody been wondering what ever happened with this? No? Well here's the update anyway!

    I finally pulled the trigger. I got a Craftsman 113.201372 dual range 30-230 amp machine with the standard obsolete face shield, a bunch of (probably exposed to humidity) 6011 rods, and a variety of power cords to fit various outlets (one of which definitely will fit my dryer outlet, and hopefully one will fit my generator).

    Everything appears to be in great shape. It's probably pretty lame but I paid next to nothing for it and I suspect that it will do the sort of work I'm interested in well enough. I can be patient and I don't care if my welds are ugly.

    Some practice projects I'm considering...
    • Repair a lightweight trailer tongue (photo of it).
    • Modify a trailer hitch receiver to fit my 1980 Buick.
    • Build a junkyard cart.
    • Build a hitch-haul out of some parts I have that almost assemble into one the way they are (might combine this with the junkyard cart, with some kind of quick-release system for the wheels maybe)...I've been figuring to do this project by bolting stuff together but welding would work much better.
    • Scab a piece of sheet metal onto a rusted out snowblower front-end.
    • Depending on how well my Snowbear behaves with my stone/gravel driveway, might make some sort of gravel guard.
    • Hinged backdrag edge for the Snowbear? Maybe not.
    • Upper frame to mount some lights for the Snowbear.

    Of course, before I even practice on that stuff, I'll be practicing on scrap that won't get used for anything at all first.

    Looks like I've got a lot of reading, video watching, and supplies purchasing to do!




    Last edited: Nov 3, 2012
  15. A.M.Canfora

    A.M.Canfora Member
    Messages: 50

    Alright! now there is a classic machine that won't let you down. Goodluck with it
  16. MickiRig1

    MickiRig1 PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,617

    Great welder!
    I have used one many times. Bump the amps up a bit and you get good at sparking an arc.
  17. basher

    basher PlowSite Fanatic
    from 19707
    Messages: 8,993

    Good choice. Watch it running of a generator, sometimes they don't have enough power to provide good arc characteristics.

    All the videos and reading won't help with your actual welding ability. I will not argue that understanding technical theory is needed, developing a "hand" requires practice. I suggest you find a evening class at the local Tech school and sign up. The cost is low considering the cost of rods, metal and electricity, plus you have an instructor there to help you over the rough spots.