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What's the best welder to buy?

Many people are starting their restoration process and one of the things they want to buy is a welder for the ole garage. What type is the best to buy for a new restorer which will fit the bill for all types of welding? Gas, Tig, Mig? What's your thoughts on this?

Re: What's the best welder to buy?

If you buy a stick welder, you will find that you will be sorry you never bought a mig. If you are not a welder I would suggest a mig as they are a lot more user freindly to learn,a little practice and you are on your way. If you are still unsure go to a welding supply shop and ask to try out both stick and mig. Most retail stores won't demo. Also I would not concider tig. I hope this helps. I have both and the stick only takes up space as I never seem to use it.

Re: What's the best welder to buy?

I have both stick and mig. stick is never used
Get a good lincoln wire feed and you will do all your welding with it . I can even use it and I am the worlds worst welder .stick is tough to use on sheet metal but mig is good

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Re: What's the best welder to buy?

the boys are correct about the stick or arc welder. it is less easy to use without training and experience. i bought a miller 200 mig welder used from a friend and that is much more desirable for sheet metal and light work like our restorations. i have two stick welders "taking up room in my shop"
as they say. go with the mig.....gary k

Re: What's the best welder to buy?

Hey guys..... I have never tried to apply body lead with a mig or stick welder? But then again, I put away my paddle and bee's wax a few years ago!
Fun aside... I must agree that a wire feed mig is the way to go once you play with it enough to learn the do's and do not's( couldn't spell don'ts) of proper metal repair. Around here, the most popular seems to be the Miller.
Now... for the old restorers like me that still have their acetylene and oxygen sets... heres something new! It's called the HENROB 2000. Distributed by a company called J&S Enterprises. It's a kit you can purchase and attach to your current tanks and regulators that will cut like a plasma cutter and weld like a tig or a mig! I saw a demonstration at the Charlotte N.C swap meet last year and was very impressed.... of coarse I'm sure the person doing the demonstration was very experienced! For anyone more interested, the web address is www.cut-like-plasma.com
I plan on purchasing this unit in the very near future and would be more than happy to express my opinion after some usage. Ain't technology great!!

Re: What's the best welder to buy?

I just finished my third semester of welding at the local JC. The instructor has 35 years experience as a welder and has built several hot rods. For my home shop, he recommended a Miller 135 MIG. It's the largest machine you can get that runs on 110 volts. Anything larger requires a dedicated 220 circuit. The Miller has steel feed gears while the Lincoln's are plastic.

He also noted that the smaller MIGs just don't have the horsepower you'll need.

He also recommended buying from a welding supply store rather than large retailers or the Internet. Apparently, service from the later is not available and direct service from either mfr. is slow and requires transportation of the welder.

FYI: TIG tends to be better for Aluminium than MIG.

Do You own a car built by Durant? 1925 Star

Re: What's the best welder to buy?


Try a welding supply shop for slightly used machines. My MIG is a one-year lease return from a welding school in perfect shape

Do You own a car built by Durant? 1930 614

Re: What's the best welder to buy?

Please don't make the same mistake that I did and buy one of those Flux Core MIGs, I thought it would be handy to grab it and go withought dragging an Argon bottle around but they don't start good, they skipp and splatter...I loaned that thing to my Son with the understanding that he would never bring it back...I need a good MIG and looks like lots of good info here...Bill

Re: What's the best welder to buy?

I bought my first Sears stick welder back in 1964. Along with an oxy/acy rig, I've ruined many a sheet metal project.
Eight years ago I had the use of a foot controlled, water cooled, TIG unit to do metal repair on my '49 Dodge. I had never used this type of welder before but it was super easy to control. Welded up pin holes, ground flush, and prime.
Three years ago I purchased a Lincoln wire machine, built a cart for it and the bottle, and was amazed at how easy fine welding could be! Now, I only use the stick machine,(yes,it's still working!)to repair the bush hog.

TIG and MIG both have their advantages. Both do excellent work, (depending on the operator)but TIG requires two handed operation whereas MIG is used with only one hand.


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