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Full Steam Ahead. Experience with Lincoln POWER MIG 210MP?

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JohnnyTK

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I after having bought my Sherline's and letting them sit to collect dust; to setting up a new shop in my new residence, I noticed how many people made their own cabinets etc to save space. With so many colleges cancelling continuing education trade classes, I lucked out and have registered in a basic welding course that will cover O/A, Arc & MIG. The budget chief has granted approval as she believes this will cost less then buying a lathe or mill in US$ and converting to Canadian pesos.
I have been looking at multi process machines to be able to grow with as my experience grows and currently have settled on the Power MIG 210MP because you can add DC TIG to it at a later date if required. Does anyone have any experience with this model? Or should I go with a straight MIG welder(same budget amount as 210) and a TIG AC/DC down the line? I always appreciate everyone's input as I always gain knowledge and also the other questions that I should be asking.

JohnnyTK
 

Ken from ontario

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Downwindtracker2

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I went with straight MIG, and recently ordered a AC/DC stick welder. While I could get a used Lincoln tombstone AC stick welder off CL for around a $100, I went with a TIG machine . For aluminum TIG you need AC, with more features the better. These new inverter welders are amazing. I get DC stick as well. Never liked AC stick. With a MIG, welding aluminum you are limited to thicker than .100 or so . You may need a spoolgun as well.

TIG ing steel is a why bother, MIG is much easier and likely stronger.
 
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f350ca

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I was recently looking at MIG welders, thought mine was causing the problems Im getting but doesn't look like it.
Anyway, Im old school and prefer transformer technology on high current devices. The Power Mig 216 uses a transformer. It will last for decades. My SP250 is 25 years old and still going strong.
BUT they're not portable compared to the inverters. The chap at the welding supply said the inverters are capable of 120 operation BUT are pretty limited. Scratch start TIG on the unit your looking at would get old real fast and no high frequency means no aluminum welding.
Im not familiar with inverter technology but if they're limiting the stick capability to 5/32 rod it can't be a true 210 amp machine.
I was considering the Power Mig 216 for a replacement but have Tig and stick machines as well.

Greg
 

Ray C

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This might not go over so well but, why don't you take/finish the welding class first before purchasing a welder? If you still like welding after a few hours of hood time, ask the instructor for recommendations.

FWIW, I have an Everlast Multiprocess AC/DC TIG, Stick, Plasma unit that can do 250 Amps. I've only used it up to 190 Amps once or twice. I also have a Vulcan PowerMig 210 as well as a Lincoln buzz box that I've had for a long time. I started with the Lincoln buzzbox and got a whole lot of mileage out of it but, the need to do TIG (DC/Steel and AC/Aluminum) came along. Finally, I had some jobs that needed heavy gauge sheet metal welding (11ga approx 1/8") so, a MIG unit was needed.

The point is, until you know what kind of welding you will mainly be doing, you might consider holding off on making a purchase.

As it stands now for me, the Everlast multi-process and the Vulcan MIG are invaluable. I only use the gas torches for propane heating. The buzzbox is collecting dust.

Ray
 

JohnnyTK

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This might not go over so well but, why don't you take/finish the welding class first before purchasing a welder? If you still like welding after a few hours of hood time, ask the instructor for recommendations.

FWIW, I have an Everlast Multiprocess AC/DC TIG, Stick, Plasma unit that can do 250 Amps. I've only used it up to 190 Amps once or twice. I also have a Vulcan PowerMig 210 as well as a Lincoln buzz box that I've had for a long time. I started with the Lincoln buzzbox and got a whole lot of mileage out of it but, the need to do TIG (DC/Steel and AC/Aluminum) came along. Finally, I had some jobs that needed heavy gauge sheet metal welding (11ga approx 1/8") so, a MIG unit was needed.

The point is, until you know what kind of welding you will mainly be doing, you might consider holding off on making a purchase.

As it stands now for me, the Everlast multi-process and the Vulcan MIG are invaluable. I only use the gas torches for propane heating. The buzzbox is collecting dust.

Ray
Ray
I was holding of on any purchase, but started the research process on equipment as from when I started in the shop technology has come a long way. I was talking with the chief budget officer here tonight and laid out a plan. If I just plan to make racks and shelves for the shop it will be an entry level MIG or Stick, if I decide that this is something that I really enjoy, then will look at a more significant investment. Being in the refrigeration industry almost always O/A to run line sets. As always I appreciate everyone's input.
 

Ray C

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Ray
I was holding of on any purchase, but started the research process on equipment as from when I started in the shop technology has come a long way. I was talking with the chief budget officer here tonight and laid out a plan. If I just plan to make racks and shelves for the shop it will be an entry level MIG or Stick, if I decide that this is something that I really enjoy, then will look at a more significant investment. Being in the refrigeration industry almost always O/A to run line sets. As always I appreciate everyone's input.
If you're doing lots of welds that are under 1.5 inches, TIG is the way to go. With TIG, you have complete control over heat input and filler deposition. With stick or MIG, the wire begins to deposit immediately and it takes about 1/2 inch of travel before the metal warms-up sufficiently to get penetration and bonding. Some of the more advanced MIG and Stick machines will have an adjustable "hot-start" feature whereby the initial power is increased considerably for up to a few seconds to avoid cold-weld starts. When I encounter that situation yet still feel MIG or stick is the right process, I'll heat the area to near red-hot to avoid a cold start.

In general, if I have just a few short welds of a few inches or so (which is 90% of the welding I do) I fire-up the TIG machine. I use stick for welding thick angle iron (1/4" thick or more) where there are lots of corner joints and lap welds. MIG for heavy steet metal that has many welds at least 1.5" long.

You might want to investigate the Mig/TIG/Stick combo-units: https://www.everlastgenerators.com/catalog-multiprocess-migtigstick
 

JohnnyTK

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Ray after getting some time under the hood, I'm learning that each has it's place as you mentioned. Now it is just more time under the hood to get better.
 
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