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Can I weld aluminum with a Millermatic 130 XP

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    old jupiter
    Senior Member

  • old jupiter
    replied
    The cheap, quick answer to whether your machine will do this is:

    1) to rent a small bottle of 50% Argon/Helium (gives your little machine more of a chance to work than straight Argon). From some suppliers, the bottle rent is free if you return it before the month is up, although you pay for the contents.

    2) Get and install the right size Teflon liner for the cable to your MIG gun. 3) Get the recommended drive-roller for aluminum. 4) use a contact tip marked as one size larger than the wire (so for .030" aluminum wire use an .035" contact tip. And 5) just keep your cable pulled out as nearly straight as you can get it while you weld, possibly drapping it over things as needed to do so. Pushing small diameter aluminum s sort of like pushing a noodle, which is why those who are doing a lot of this work get spoolguns, but for occasional use you can probably make your MIG gun do if you follow these steps. If the power supply will spray .035" aluminum wire, that is less likely to have feeding issues than .030" wire.

    Well, and 6) make sure you have a good clean ground connection, and 7) a spool of wire that isn't very old (and oxidized).

    You want lots of voltage, and back down on the wire speed until you are getting into a spray-arc mode. You're not after the frying sound as with short-arc MIG welding.

    If this works out, maybe you won't have to bother with trying to fit up a spool gun. Others have done it; give it a shot.
    old jupiter
    Senior Member
    Last edited by old jupiter; 06-09-2015, 12:22 PM.

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  • Broccoli1
    Senior Member

  • Broccoli1
    replied
    I'd have to look it up but I know there is no Spoolgun that is a Direct Connect-

    which means you would need a Controller* along with the Spoolgun-if it* even exists for this machine.

    These smaller machines are just not designed for aluminum work- not enough power.

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  • Renderbrandt
    Junior Member

  • Renderbrandt
    replied
    You guys are super helpful, much appreciated.I've picked up a bunch of knowledge already. I also spent an inordinate amount of time on youtube learning about flux core welding, so I think I got that under control.I am not a complete noob to the world of manufacturing, done a whole bunch of metal work, lathes, cnc, mills, and such.
    Originally posted by H80N View Post
    If you have not already done so.. downloading and reading this MIG Guidelines booklet will give you a much better understanding of the process..http://www.millerwelds.com/pdf/mig_handbook.pdfThe MIG resources section also has a lot of info to help you get going..http://www.millerwelds.com/resources...ur-skills/mig/If the owners manual has escaped somewhere along the line... you can download the correct version by plugging in your serial number here..http://www.millerwelds.com/service/ownersmanuals.php

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  • H80N
    Senior Member

  • H80N
    replied
    Originally posted by Renderbrandt View Post
    Thank you, that clears up a couple of things for sure.But this would work up to 1/8" with shielding gas, and/or flux core wire?
    Yup it should... the owners manual will list the capabilities and setup parameters..

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  • H80N
    Senior Member

  • H80N
    replied
    Lots to learn.....

    If you have not already done so.. downloading and reading this MIG Guidelines booklet will give you a much better understanding of the process..

    http://www.millerwelds.com/pdf/mig_handbook.pdf

    The MIG resources section also has a lot of info to help you get going..

    http://www.millerwelds.com/resources...ur-skills/mig/

    If the owners manual has escaped somewhere along the line... you can download the correct version by plugging in your serial number here..

    http://www.millerwelds.com/service/ownersmanuals.php

    Leave a comment:

  • Renderbrandt
    Junior Member

  • Renderbrandt
    replied
    Thank you, that clears up a couple of things for sure.But this would work up to 1/8" with shielding gas, and/or flux core wire?
    Originally posted by H80N View Post
    Sorry to say that Ar/Co2 is for steel and will NOT work for Al as well... that requires either straight Ar or an Ar/He mix...Investing in a spoolgun for that small unit will probably not be satisfactory... as it lacks the horsepower for practical Aluminum work..

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  • H80N
    Senior Member

  • H80N
    replied
    Originally posted by Renderbrandt View Post
    Thanks for you answers.I plan on getting gas anyhow, and was just wondering getting a spool gun would be worth it.I am new too all this, but I assume argon/co2 shielding gas works for both alu and steel.Ps. Here is my first weld on 1/8" steel, without gas.http://i54.photobucket.com/albums/g9...523_121846.jpg
    Sorry to say that Ar/Co2 is for steel and will NOT work for Al as well... that requires either straight Ar or an Ar/He mix...

    Investing in a spoolgun for that small unit will probably not be satisfactory... as it lacks the horsepower for practical Aluminum work..
    H80N
    Senior Member
    Last edited by H80N; 06-08-2015, 05:22 PM.

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  • Renderbrandt
    Junior Member

  • Renderbrandt
    replied
    Thanks for you answers.I plan on getting gas anyhow, and was just wondering getting a spool gun would be worth it.I am new too all this, but I assume argon/co2 shielding gas works for both alu and steel.Ps. Here is my first weld on 1/8" steel, without gas.http://i54.photobucket.com/albums/g9...523_121846.jpg
    Originally posted by Broccoli1 View Post
    As mentioned- not really.Low on the power for Aloominum and no Spoolgun.You could try running the AL wire through the regular gun but it is a PIA.The AL wire is too soft so you have to keep the Gun and whip STRAIGHT.So that and the added cost of a bottle of Argon makes it rather pointless.
    Renderbrandt
    Junior Member
    Last edited by Renderbrandt; 06-08-2015, 05:07 PM.

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  • Broccoli1
    Senior Member

  • Broccoli1
    replied
    As mentioned- not really.

    Low on the power for Aloominum and no Spoolgun.

    You could try running the AL wire through the regular gun but it is a PIA.

    The AL wire is too soft so you have to keep the Gun and whip STRAIGHT.

    So that and the added cost of a bottle of Argon makes it rather pointless.

    Leave a comment:

  • H80N
    Senior Member

  • H80N
    replied
    Welcome Aboard..!!

    Originally posted by Renderbrandt View Post
    Just picked one up the other day.And out of curiosity was $300 reasonable (used)
    a bit underpowered for much aluminum work...

    but it should do fine on light stuff like automotive steel sheetmetal...
    H80N
    Senior Member
    Last edited by H80N; 06-08-2015, 01:42 PM.

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  • Renderbrandt
    Junior Member

  • Renderbrandt
    started a topic Can I weld aluminum with a Millermatic 130 XP

    Can I weld aluminum with a Millermatic 130 XP

    Just picked one up the other day.And out of curiosity was $300 reasonable (used)
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