Hobart Handler 190 tension adjustment tips?

W6PUG

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New welder / welds great, but I went to the 8" 10lb spool of MIG wire, and am having trouble adjusting tension. Manual says to set it 1-1/2 to 2. When I put the big spool on it (full), the wire feed was inconsistent, so I loosened the tension on the big spool to the point where I am afraid to go any less (to prevent birds-nesting), and increased the pressure of the tension roller to about 1/2 of the travel of the tension indicator. I am 'assuming" (bad word, I know) that the 1-1/2 to 2 was for the little spools, but no real guidance I can find about using large volume feed spools. Any experience/suggestions out there? Am I on the right track, or am I overlooking the obvious?
Thanks Guys - you have always been a great resource. I think this is simple, and I do not think there is anything wrong with the welder; I think I am just experiencing pilot error. Appreciate your thoughts. Take care and thanks in advance .... Doug with Pugs :thinking:
 

Fabrickator

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Forget the recommendations.

Run just enough tension on the spool so it doesn't unwind by itself, and just enough tension on the feed rollers so it doesn't birds nest. I'd rather it slip than birds nest, you can always increase it a bit. Also, be sure that you have the proper roller groove size for the wire size. There have been a few times that I've forgot to change that when changing wire size. Also watch the polarity with flux core or plain wire.

Other than that, not too much to it except a lot of practice to find your power and feed settings for the material. That's where the guide in the door can help out to get a starting point.
 

W6PUG

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OK, I have done a fair share of welding over the years but have not had this be so persknickery an issue .... you are telling me to do what I had started down the path of doing, so I appreciate the confirmation that my logic is ok. I was not sure I was doing what I thought I was doing. This welder replaces my old HF MIG welder, so I guess I had forgotten what it took to get it going - again: THANK YOU! Trying to figger out how to do the 'thank you' count for you but I am not seeing it in the menu... I will dig for that .... thanks for taking the time to respond. I do a crappy job of posting pictures, but here is a pix of the welding end of my shop ...
DSC02924.JPG Take care / kindest regards and thanks - Doug with Pugs sherlock pug.jpg

Forget the recommendations.

Run just enough tension on the spool so it doesn't unwind by itself, and just enough tension on the feed rollers so it doesn't birds nest. I'd rather it slip than birds nest, you can always increase it a bit. Also, be sure that you have the proper roller groove size for the wire size. There have been a few times that I've forgot to change that when changing wire size. Also watch the polarity with flux core or plain wire.

Other than that, not too much to it except a lot of practice to find your power and feed settings for the material. That's where the guide in the door can help out to get a starting point.
sherlock pug.jpg DSC02924.JPG
 

zmotorsports

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I set the tension on the roll/spool just enough so that it doesn't bird nest as you call it.

The tension on the drive rolls is a little more important. I back the tension off to where the drive rolls will slip on the wire when the trigger is pulled. I then point the gun nozzle, actually rest the nozzle on the concrete and hold the gun there. Do NOT push down on the gun just balance it more or less on the nozzle. Squeeze the trigger and then slowly tighten the tensioner on the drive rolls until the gun just pushes up away from the concrete and stop tightening. That is all the tension needed.

You want enough so that it doesn't slip but too much tension can cause just as many issues with the deformation of the solid wire. This deformed wire can and will destroy a liner in short order as well as cause a higher consumption of the contact tips due to the wire feeding through at a non-uniform shape.

Mike.
 

Fabrickator

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Sweet welding shop and table setup! You need some 4" grinders...one for grinding wheel, one for sanding wheel and one for wire wheel. :high5:

I just want a bigger MIG and new TIG, but I don't have the space. I'm running a Hobart 140 and Hypertherm Powermax 380 and small bottle oxy/acy rig.

I've also used ZMoto's "tension test" and it works good.

PICT0150.JPG Rack1.JPG
 

W6PUG

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Mike - thanks - I will give it a try .... makes a lot of sense! Doug with Pugs
I set the tension on the roll/spool just enough so that it doesn't bird nest as you call it.

The tension on the drive rolls is a little more important. I back the tension off to where the drive rolls will slip on the wire when the trigger is pulled. I then point the gun nozzle, actually rest the nozzle on the concrete and hold the gun there. Do NOT push down on the gun just balance it more or less on the nozzle. Squeeze the trigger and then slowly tighten the tensioner on the drive rolls until the gun just pushes up away from the concrete and stop tightening. That is all the tension needed.

You want enough so that it doesn't slip but too much tension can cause just as many issues with the deformation of the solid wire. This deformed wire can and will destroy a liner in short order as well as cause a higher consumption of the contact tips due to the wire feeding through at a non-uniform shape.

Mike.
- - - Updated - - -

FABRIKATOR: You are right - I do have three 4" grinders: 1 with grinding wheel;1 with coarse wire and 1 with fine(er) wire - just happens to be on the blind side of the table (left side as you face it - you can see it if you really give the pix the evil eye) ... You live pretty close (LA area?) ... if you want my HF180 and the cart, we could meet in the middle someplace and agree on something in trade or whatever ... It works fine except cannot do aluminum. Anyway, I appreciate your comments and your help. You two guys have helped me a lot. I probably won't be able to try ZMoto's trick until weekend, but it sounds like the right thing to do ...
Thanks again, Guys!
sherlock pug_sm.jpg
Sweet welding shop and table setup! You need some 4" grinders...one for grinding wheel, one for sanding wheel and one for wire wheel. :high5:

I just want a bigger MIG and new TIG, but I don't have the space. I'm running a Hobart 140 and Hypertherm Powermax 380 and small bottle oxy/acy rig.

I've also used ZMoto's "tension test" and it works good.
sherlock pug_sm.jpg
 

sniggler

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To set wire feed drive roller tension i adjust is so i can get it to slip if i hold the wire spool back with my hand while using the cold feed. Too much tension will cause ugly birds nesting if you burn back and stick at the tip it also can cause small metal filing to get into the liner (with knurled drive rollers) this is more of a problem with flux core wires. Blow out the liner between spool once in a while.

I have 2 tips for wire feed welding.

Try a dual shield wire (flux and gas) for working out of position the flux is not to protect the puddle from O2 but to freeze and support the weld puddle also it adds element that improve structural properties.

Use a torch tip cleaner to get more life out of contact tips.
 

dan12

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OK, I have done a fair share of welding over the years but have not had this be so persknickery an issue .... you are telling me to do what I had started down the path of doing, so I appreciate the confirmation that my logic is ok. I was not sure I was doing what I thought I was doing. This welder replaces my old HF MIG welder, so I guess I had forgotten what it took to get it going - again: THANK YOU! Trying to figger out how to do the 'thank you' count for you but I am not seeing it in the menu... I will dig for that .... thanks for taking the time to respond. I do a crappy job of posting pictures, but here is a pix of the welding end of my shop ...
View attachment 78970 Take care / kindest regards and thanks - Doug with Pugs View attachment 78969
what are those tool chests under welders?
look nice!
 

TomS

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May 20, 2013
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What size wire are you using? I ask because my Handler 190 came with one feed roller for .030 and .035 wire. Had to buy a roller for .023 wire.

Tom S
 
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