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SO my birthday is coming up and I was looking at picking up a mig welder for 500.00 bucks

I have a machine shop I have taken all my stuff to to have welded or touched up and I am looking at learning this process for my self.

With anything I know I will have a learning curve but was hoping for some pointers from those that have done more themselves..

What are the things I should avoid?

I know I will have to practice and plan on doing so with some scrap meterials I have about my lab.

Any tips and pointers in getting to the world of welding would be apreciated.
 

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Try to find a class at a community college, or a vocational school. That's how I learned, and it was very helpful. I learned stick, mig, and tig in the class I took. I think the class was only about $200 too.

-Rob
 

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Baby Huey
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just buy the welder go to a local exhaust shop ask to dif thru there scrap bin. Get a bunch of pipe go home and start welding practice practice practice
 

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I have done some welding.....
Biggest thing I can say is....CLEAN THE SURFACE YOU ARE WORKING ON!!!!!
Also...steady, steady, steady
You will need to take a class or find someone to coach you, they can explain how to hold it, and how to move your hands in order to get a steady line of welding.
Practice, Practice, Practice, Practice....

It can look ugly, but can hold.
Also, certain metals can only be welded certain ways......certain composition of steel can be determined via the colors produced....
aluminum is only recommended to be TIG welded (correct me if im wrong)
 

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drag-aholic
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Heres what I have


get the most welder you can with gas. I have used crappy welders and they just don't get hot enough to burn in and they just kind of pop and set the rod on top of the metal. This miller burns great and it does sheet metal better than the smaller ones.

Ex. I used a Hobart 135 with gas on some 16ga metal with weld thru primer on it. the hobart wouldn't burn through the weld thru primer. it acted like paint and just popped and made a mess. i had to grind it off. The millermattic 210 had no problem going through the weld thru primer.





edit - i forgot if you get the 210 you can add a spoolmate to it for aluminum. the 210 has 2 gas inputs and to gun hook ups. the weld know whci one you are using and will swtich the gas but you still have to set the voltage and speed. the wire for the spoolmate is inside the gin itself. neat unit but i don't have one.
 

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Weld

Buy quality welding safety equipment!

Get a good autodark helmet, good gloves and wear long sleeves and boots.

Buy quality rod/wire and practice, practice and practice again.

Try a E6013 contact rod for arc first to get a feel for arc.
 

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If you don't feel like taking a class at your local community college I'd say get a MIG at sears they're not too expensive. I bought a Craftsman a couple years ago and it's the best welder I've ever used. If you're not going to use gas then you need to buy flux core wire for it.

For a welding helmet buy it for comfort because you are going to be wearing it for a good amount of time on a long project. As for protective gloves and jackets Valley and Black Stallion are my favorite brands.
 
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