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Subscribed so I can come back and do some research. Good stuff!
 

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Anyone have any input on the ThermalArc Fabricator 181i? Its a multi-process machine, so it comes with MIG and Stick, and if later down the road I feel so inclined, I can buy a TIG setup for ~$125. I am no newbie to welding, I work in a welding shop, but need to upgrade. I do not need GTAW at all, but it's nice to have the option.

EDIT: Link ---> http://store.cyberweld.com/tharcfa18miw.html
 

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Anyone have any input on the ThermalArc Fabricator 181i? Its a multi-process machine, so it comes with MIG and Stick, and if later down the road I feel so inclined, I can buy a TIG setup for ~$125. I am no newbie to welding, I work in a welding shop, but need to upgrade. I do not need GTAW at all, but it's nice to have the option.

EDIT: Link ---> http://store.cyberweld.com/tharcfa18miw.html
That is an interesting looking unit. I'd like to see some real life reviews of it.
The duty cycle looks horrible IMHO though.
 

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Hello,
Has anyone used one of these? I'm buying a mig after the holidays. This is what I want to buy. Right now I have a 8 x 10 shed to work out of. Of course I'll be welding outside the shed. And I rent so I can't get 220v out there. Unless I want to piss off the landlord (LOL). I can run a 12/3 cord out there though. So I'll use the 120V for now. After we buy a house I'll have 220V to use. I want to buy 1 mig in my lifetime and this looks like the one to get. Just wondering if anyone used one of these and if they like it?
Thanks, Dan

POWER MIG® 180 DUAL MIG WELDER
K3018-2

http://www.lincolnelectric.com/en-us/Equipment/Pages/product.aspx?product=K3018-2
Found out I should have 10/3 SO cord for it. And only $230.00 away from it. And I'm working this weekend for extra $$ so I'll be even closer. Can't wait. :2thumbsup::2thumbsup:
 

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Anyone have any input on the ThermalArc Fabricator 181i? Its a multi-process machine, so it comes with MIG and Stick, and if later down the road I feel so inclined, I can buy a TIG setup for ~$125. I am no newbie to welding, I work in a welding shop, but need to upgrade. I do not need GTAW at all, but it's nice to have the option.

EDIT: Link ---> http://store.cyberweld.com/tharcfa18miw.html
Great idea but I don't think it is the answer.

I looked at one since my local NAPA store sells 'em. I'm friends with the owner and he offered to sell me the one he had in his shop… he replaced it after 6 months with a regular 220V MIG.
 

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Hello,
Has anyone used one of these? I'm buying a mig after the holidays. This is what I want to buy. Right now I have a 8 x 10 shed to work out of. Of course I'll be welding outside the shed. And I rent so I can't get 220v out there. Unless I want to piss off the landlord (LOL). I can run a 12/3 cord out there though. So I'll use the 120V for now. After we buy a house I'll have 220V to use. I want to buy 1 mig in my lifetime and this looks like the one to get. Just wondering if anyone used one of these and if they like it?
Thanks, Dan

POWER MIG® 180 DUAL MIG WELDER
K3018-2

http://www.lincolnelectric.com/en-us/Equipment/Pages/product.aspx?product=K3018-2
I have the Lincoln 180 but its not the dual voltage..its just the 220v..

I bought it back when the new 180's were replacing the 175's

I've ran the crap out of mine since then and have not one little complaint on it..smooth running and even though i think it should of at times i've abused it,,it has never once hit the duty cycle..great little machine for the price

I have a 90' 10/3 extension cord i got from a job someone smashed the end on it and they was throwing it away,so i took it home and put the right 220 plug ends on it...it runs well with it even with a 90' long cord.

I did run a 12/3 50' i had laying around for a while before i got the 10/3 90' cord and can honestly tell no difference in the power,plus i kept a close look at the 12/3 cord and ends to make sure it wasn't gettin hot..never even the slightest warmth..

So if you have a 12/3 cord laying around to use and only use it for the 110v you should be more than fine for now..but if you are buying a permanant cord spend the lil extra for the 10/3 600v
 

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I have the Lincoln 180 but its not the dual voltage..its just the 220v..

I bought it back when the new 180's were replacing the 175's

I've ran the crap out of mine since then and have not one little complaint on it..smooth running and even though i think it should of at times i've abused it,,it has never once hit the duty cycle..great little machine for the price

I have a 90' 10/3 extension cord i got from a job someone smashed the end on it and they was throwing it away,so i took it home and put the right 220 plug ends on it...it runs well with it even with a 90' long cord.

I did run a 12/3 50' i had laying around for a while before i got the 10/3 90' cord and can honestly tell no difference in the power,plus i kept a close look at the 12/3 cord and ends to make sure it wasn't gettin hot..never even the slightest warmth..

So if you have a 12/3 cord laying around to use and only use it for the 110v you should be more than fine for now..but if you are buying a permanant cord spend the lil extra for the 10/3 600v
I asked couple electricians from work and they recommended 10/3. They said 12/3 would work but 10/3 is better. Mine is only going to be 40'. I'm going to put a 20 amp GFCI in a bell box for one end. And put a male on the other. I'll make couple ends for 220v. Where I work I can get really good deals on electrical items. 10/3 SO cord for $1.23/ft.
Really glad someone else has used 10/3 and it was fine.
About $230.00 away from the 180 Duel. Can't wait!! lol

Thank you for posting this. :thumbsup:
Dan
 

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I was going to buy the Lincoln 140C back about 7 years ago. When they first came out with "C". I just had spinal fusion done on my back and we had a boat. My wife talked me into buying a CMC TiltTrim for the motor. She was worried about me picking the motor up when we came into shore. Year later I sold the boat. Knew I should of bought the mig. lol
I was going to buy the 140C but saw the 180 Duel. Figured buy 1 and don't have to worry about upgrading down the road. And I WILL NOT LISTEN TO HER AGAIN!! :laugh: :rofl:
 

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Has anyone used the northern tools st80i 115 arc welder? http://www.northerntool.com/shop/tools/product_200512862_200512862 I'm getting into welding and I have arc welded a few times before and I want something for my house that I can use on various things such as my tractors, my jeep, etc. but I don't have a 220v outlet, so I need something for 115. Does anyone know if this seems to be a good deal?
 

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Has anyone used the northern tools st80i 115 arc welder? http://www.northerntool.com/shop/tools/product_200512862_200512862 I'm getting into welding and I have arc welded a few times before and I want something for my house that I can use on various things such as my tractors, my jeep, etc. but I don't have a 220v outlet, so I need something for 115. Does anyone know if this seems to be a good deal?
It's a good deal at the price, but not much you can do with it. The 20% duty cycle will drive you crazy. And they even say in the video "up to 1/8". If it's impossible to get a 220 volt 30-50 amp circuit put in I'd look at a good brand name 110 volt Mig. But even those have a terrible duty cycle. I have a 110 volt Lincoln and a Hobart 220 volt AC/DC stick. I use the Mig for sheet metal and 1/8" and below metal. The stick comes out for everything else. The bottom line is, if you want to weld a lot and good without frustration you need 220 volts. A 180 amp and above 220 volt brand name Mig is what you really want. Not cheap but what you need. I intend to get rid of both my welders and get a Hobart 220 volt 190 amp mig one day.
 

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Bigbob said:
It's a good deal at the price, but not much you can do with it. The 20% duty cycle will drive you crazy. And they even say in the video "up to 1/8". If it's impossible to get a 220 volt 30-50 amp circuit put in I'd look at a good brand name 110 volt Mig. But even those have a terrible duty cycle. I have a 110 volt Lincoln and a Hobart 220 volt AC/DC stick. I use the Mig for sheet metal and 1/8" and below metal. The stick comes out for everything else. The bottom line is, if you want to weld a lot and good without frustration you need 220 volts. A 180 amp and above 220 volt brand name Mig is what you really want. Not cheap but what you need. I intend to get rid of both my welders and get a Hobart 220 volt 190 amp mig one day.
So if I was going to be welding here and there for mostly fabrication stuff but maybe also sheet metal, all while on a high school students budget, what would you recommend? I could probably convince my parents to let me put in a 220v outlet if need be. Also I'll be doing all my welding outside as I don't have a garage
 

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So if I was going to be welding here and there for mostly fabrication stuff but maybe also sheet metal, all while on a high school students budget, what would you recommend? I could probably convince my parents to let me put in a 220v outlet if need be
Get a brand name 110 volt Mig. I have a Lincoln 140 but also check out Miller and Hobart. Sometimes the Hobart's (basically the same as Miller) can be on a great sale at Tractor Supply Company. Many say the Lincolns they sell at Home Depot and Lowes are junk, but I got mine at Home depot and it has been very dependable. 140 amp is as big as 110 volt Migs come so get that. You can start out just using .30 flux core until you come up with the $$$ to buy a gas setup to do .25 mig. On anything over 1/8" you want to do flux core anyway. I have welded 3/16" and even 1/4" metal flux core multi pass with my little Lincoln. The duty cycle can drive you nutz! On 3/16" and 1/4" stuff I can weld a lot better and extremely fast with my big stick welder.

Another option, (that I will get flamed on!), is to get a lincoln 220 volt buzz box 210 amp AC stick welder. They sell them at Home depot and Lowes in the $300 range. With the money you save over the 110 volt mig you can have a 220 volt 50 amp plug installed. The buzz box welds are not near as pretty as Mig welds, but you can weld anything with convenience except thin sheet metal. I have worn out 3 of those buzz boxes in the last 40 years. Great dependable welders.
 

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Bigbob said:
Get a brand name 110 volt Mig. I have a Lincoln 140 but also check out Miller and Hobart. Sometimes the Hobart's (basically the same as Miller) can be on a great sale at Tractor Supply Company. Many say the Lincolns they sell at Home Depot and Lowes are junk, but I got mine at Home depot and it has been very dependable. 140 amp is as big as 110 volt Migs come so get that. You can start out just using .30 flux core until you come up with the $$$ to buy a gas setup to do .25 mig. On anything over 1/8" you want to do flux core anyway. I have welded 3/16" and even 1/4" metal flux core multi pass with my little Lincoln. The duty cycle can drive you nutz! On 3/16" and 1/4" stuff I can weld a lot better and extremely fast with my big stick welder. Another option, (that I will get flamed on!), is to get a lincoln 220 volt buzz box 210 amp AC stick welder. They sell them at Home depot and Lowes in the $300 range. With the money you save over the 110 volt mig you can have a 220 volt 50 amp plug installed. The buzz box welds are not near as pretty as Mig welds, but you can weld anything with convenience except thin sheet metal. I have worn out 3 of those buzz boxes in the last 40 years. Great dependable welders.
Do they sell an extension cord for a 220v outlet? I could run a cord from my dryer's hookup in my basement out the bulkhead to outside (don't wanna weld in the basement) that buzz box sounds like a good deal if I can get better access to 220v. How is the duty cycle for the buzz box?
 

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I have a 25' extension cord for a 220V welder… but I now only have a 110V Hobart.

With your budget and experience I'd buy a good Hobart, Lincoln or Miller 110V MIG unit. I've owned about a dozen machines over the years and I love the newer MIG welders.. both 100v and 220V.

Duty cycle is important to guys in production shops but really has never affected my work in my shop. After all how often are you going to weld 12 minutes in an hour without a break? every time your welder is idling your welder cools allowing more welding time. I have fab'd race cars, trailers, a frame jig and hundreds of other projects with a 20 or 30% duty cycle welder. I have never had an issue… if you find the arc starting to get erratic just take a little break to let it cool down.

I can recommend the Hobart 175 which I now own. The previous unit I had was a Miller 175 (220V)… before that I had three Miller 35's (old technology) and a Lincoln 250 (220V). I also owned a little Lincoln 100… great 90 amp welder. Any of the brand name machines will do fine. Don't buy any Chinese MIG machine… junk with little aftermarket support.
 

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Do they sell an extension cord for a 220v outlet? I could run a cord from my dryer's hookup in my basement out the bulkhead to outside (don't wanna weld in the basement) that buzz box sounds like a good deal if I can get better access to 220v. How is the duty cycle for the buzz box?
Depending on the length of the cord an extension works just fine. You want at least a 10 gauge wire size. The buzz box has virtually a 100% duty range on most all welding you will do. You rarely weld over 120 amps with it. Usually in the 90-110 range with 1/8" rod. The dryer plug is 30 amp and even though the buzz box calls for a 50 amp you should have no problem.

The buzz box (Lincoln 225) runs about $300 right now at most places. The Lincoln 140 amp 110 volt Mig runs about $525 sans gas tank.
 

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Thanks for the help guys, I'll mull it over an let you know what I end up with! Final question tho, will a 110 mig be enough to weld up 3/16" and/or 1/4" steel?
 
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