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Old 02-28-2010, 04:58 PM
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Which welder?

Need advice: Which welder to buy?

Thinking MIG, wirefeed. Lincoln? Miller? Hobart?

Essential that I can plug it into a generator, say 8000 watt generator, so I can use it in remote locations on the ranch. Generator has a 20 amp 220 plug.

Should I go straight to a generator/welder combo? Trying to hold costs down, but cheaper isn't always less expensive.

Welding basic steel, pipe, fencing, repairs, etc.

Links to reliable info. is welcome as well.

Thanks for any advice you can give.
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Old 03-04-2010, 07:50 PM
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As far as brand name goes, I prefer Miller, but have used all the namebrands...but DEFINETLTY buy a good brand! If you can afford a combo welder/generator, that is definetly the way to go, but they are pricey $$$

As for MIG, it is the easiest process to learn, once you learn how to set the amperage and wire feed speed...

As for the general usage, if the steel is clean and rust free, MIG is great, but if there is rust / dirty steel, you will have to grind it down to clean steel if you are running true MIG (with a shielding gas versus flux core). If you do buy the combo, some come with a stick welder (arc) as a second alternative...that being said, an arc welder is great for dirty, rusty welding...just wire brush the majority of it off and go to town with a 1/8" E-6010 or E-6011 rod. Both are good at cutting through the rust and dirt and are can be used for all welding positions fairly easy (overhead or vertical up or down, down being MUCH easier).

Buy some scrap steel and burn some wire or rod before you head out to the field...see if a local community college or Vo Tech has a basic welding class. When I went through a Vo Tech back in 86-87, they handed us an "I-beam" about a foot long, 4" wide and 4" tall and said "Fill it up....bring it back to me when your done"....took me 6 days to fill that dang thing up....graduated a year later with my certifications in vertical up and overhead with stick and MIG

As for websites...
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Old 03-09-2010, 09:54 PM
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If i were you I would go straight for the welder generator combo by miller. Cuz the generator power rating of the 220v plug only having 20 amps isnt gunna be enough to run a 220v welder.
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Old 03-09-2010, 10:00 PM
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Can't go wrong with a Miller Bobcat. And get a diesel so that all your equipment runs the same fuel.
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Old 03-10-2010, 04:46 AM
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bob cat or a trail blazer is a good choice. you said you want to do repairs around the farm. stick or ark welding is best for out doors. the shielding gas just gets blown away with the wind. its just a PITA to try and block the wind. down the road for you can get a wire feeder that will hook up to the power unit and you'll have a mig. you will also be able to tig with it also but, you will need to get a hose and a scratch to start tourch. the gas will have an on off vale, and you scratch to start the ark like you would stick welding.

if i was in your shoes id pick up a bobcat or trail blazer and you will have plenty of room to expand.
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Old 03-10-2010, 07:19 AM
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For that kind of welding, you'd be fine with a 120v unit. Wire fed are the easiest to weld with, and faster to learn on. I love my Hobart 140 Handler, I just use the flux core wire because I don't need pretty welds, but the flux core wire does splatter a bit, so you may want to use the gas, since it sounds like you might be out in the fields welding corrals and things
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Old 05-08-2010, 02:39 PM
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My mig is an esab migmaster 210. Great welder. I have used mine for 6+ years now without any problems. It also has the capability to run a spool gun if you ever want to do any mig aluminum welding.
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Old 05-08-2010, 02:44 PM
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Either Lincoln or Miller..
Lincoln Ranger or Miller bobcat. Can't go wrong with either.
We had ~12-14 of them the last time I was at the shop. They both will take a beating
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Old 05-08-2010, 03:57 PM
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esab all the way.
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