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Old 01-30-2008, 10:18 AM   #1
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MIG welding


not sure if this is the right place to ask this question but will anyway.

for quite some time i wanted to include a MIG welder in my toy collection.

i would like to replace the concrete front stairs with custom-made steel ones. would also like to build a back deck out of steel + make my own window bars etc.

which specifications should i be looking for and what would be an overall good welding machine for me ?

thx,

- a -

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Old 01-30-2008, 11:28 AM   #2
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MIG welding


Ayuh,..... Mig is a Great way to get started if your not already a Welder,.....

The Little 120V powered Migs can do a Great job on materials up to maybe 1/4",..... 3/16" is more realistic though.....
I've got a little bitty 120V Sears model I bought used on ebay for nearly Nothing because of a broken switch that I replaced for a bucktwo.98 or so....
It's a pretty handy machine I use alot,... I run the flux-core wire rather than messing with the Gas for the solid wires.....

If you have more specfic questions I'll try to answer them,...
Or,....
Google up "Shopfloortalk",....
It's a Welding Forum with alot of really Good folks, with some Great knowledge between them.....

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Old 01-30-2008, 11:51 AM   #3
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MIG welding


thanks for your insight. this idea of mine is still in a very infant phase. i am not sure what typical thickness of steel railing for this purpose would be.
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Old 01-30-2008, 02:39 PM   #4
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MIG welding


Keep an eye out at lowes and HD both the mig welders, I have two I got there for about 1/2 off each when they changed models. One is gas ready and one can be up graded to gas. Both are 120v not the 220v. I have a arc welder for heavy wight stuff but for what you want the mig will do fine. The starter model would work but I'd try to get the next model up list price about $350 that is gas ready.
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Old 01-30-2008, 04:31 PM   #5
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MIG welding


I run a sears mig with adjustable power, works great for home and car projects. if you want pretty welds with no splatter, gas would be needed, and not all MIGs have a gas hook up.
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Old 01-30-2008, 06:47 PM   #6
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MIG welding


actually, all MIG welders do come gas ready becuae that is why they are MIG welders.

MIG- metal inert gas.

actually, the proper term is GMAW- gas metal arc welding

What you speak of is a wire welder where you would use flux core electrode wire. FCAW-flux cored arc welding

as to spatters; it is dependant upon many things but MIG dies spatter. Lots of variables that can cause spatter, some intentional, some incidental, some accidental.

If you want spatter free, then go for a TIG.
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Old 01-30-2008, 07:55 PM   #7
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MIG welding


Quote:
Originally Posted by nap View Post
, If you want spatter free, then go for a TIG.
He is going to have to have a lot more patience than me, in order to TIG weld a steel deck.

Neither MIG or TIG are particularly good choices if he plans on doing mostly outdoor projects like decks and stairs, because the slightest breeze plays havoc with the gas supply to the arc. You are right about the wire feeders producing a lot of splatter. From his general description of his projects, I think he might be better served with a decent little stick welder.
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Old 01-30-2008, 08:14 PM   #8
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MIG welding


what is a stick welder ?

thx,

- a -
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Old 01-30-2008, 08:34 PM   #9
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MIG welding


Quote:
what is a stick welder ?
A welder that uses welding Rods, rather than wire.......

A 220V Stick welder is Great if welding materials of 1/8" or thicker.......
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Old 01-30-2008, 08:58 PM   #10
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MIG welding


Quote:
Originally Posted by troubleseeker View Post
He is going to have to have a lot more patience than me, in order to TIG weld a steel deck.

Neither MIG or TIG are particularly good choices if he plans on doing mostly outdoor projects like decks and stairs, because the slightest breeze plays havoc with the gas supply to the arc. You are right about the wire feeders producing a lot of splatter. From his general description of his projects, I think he might be better served with a decent little stick welder.
Oh, i wan't meaing he should take on TIG welding, simply stating that it is splatter free while the other welding discussed will splatter to some degree.

stick welding- SMAW- shielded metal arc welding.

a rod of metal about a foot long covered with flux. Depeinding on what rod (different rods contain slightly different mixtures of metal as well as different fluxes, each having its own purpose and qualities), the weld can look as good as MIG welding.

If you are considering welding different types of steel, arc welding is actually one of the most versatile and cost efficient methods. You can buy small quanitities of rod for the different projects where with MIG or wire welding, you have a roll of wire.

as - a - stated, if you are going to be doing any welding outside, anything using gas is problematic as the shield gas is easily blown away causing poor welds.
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Old 01-30-2008, 09:06 PM   #11
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MIG welding


First, go to the library or book store and pick up a book on basic welding processes. A little more information will help you make a decision. In my shop the two Lincoln migs, a 110 and a lightweight 220 are favorites.
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Old 01-30-2008, 09:13 PM   #12
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MIG welding


One more thing, I would consider an auto-darkening helmet as a critical piece of equipment. Cost a little more but well worth it.
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Old 02-01-2008, 10:16 PM   #13
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MIG welding


When I decided to restore old cars, I took a welding course at the local BOCES. You spend 3 hours welding every week for 10 weeks. They teach you oxyacetylene, MIG, TIG and arc welding.
You might have a local school that will give these courses, that way you can decide which welding category suites your need best. The course was taught be a guy whose day job was a welder.
I ended up buying a Hobart 140 mig welder. A little safety tip. Just because the metal isn't red, doesn't mean it won't leave a scar.
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Old 02-05-2008, 06:00 PM   #14
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MIG welding


Go for a MIG. Easiest to learn on, you can do longer welds, really the spattering isn't to bad on them, they're amazing little machines to learn on, you don't really need anyone to teach you. Make sure you do alot of practice welds before you do bigger projects though. A auto darkening helmet is ideal, but I wouldn't say forget about the flip ones.
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Old 02-05-2008, 06:21 PM   #15
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MIG welding


Good information here:

http://www.weldingweb.com/

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