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  • MIG or TIG

    I am going to be going to a Tech School to learn to weld, but the next course isn't until August. I am considering buying a welder in advance to get some extra practice in. My question is, would it be better to get something like the Millermatic 135, or the more expensive Dynasty 200. Praxair told me that TIG can be cheaper if you are starting from nothing, as the accessories and such for the 135 would put it in the TIG class (they were refering to the Syncrowave 180 SD, but its not exactly portable)
    It's not the voltage that gets you, it's the amps.

  • #2
    iso50
    as far as I can see the answer to your question is dependant on what you intend to do as far as training... and then what you will do with that knowledge once gained... we need more info... but either way you are talking about a rather sizeable investment... you might consider finding a job as a helper in a welding and fab shop... this would give you a chance to see multiple processes in a real world setting... plus probably pick up some experience and possible mentors on the way...
    Hope this helps..
    Heiti
    .

    *******************************************
    The more you know, The better you know, How little you know

    “The bitterness of poor quality remains long after the sweetness of low price is forgotten”

    Buy the best tools you can afford.. Learn to use them to the best of your ability.. and take care of them...

    My Blue Stuff:
    Dynasty 350DX Tigrunner
    Dynasty 200DX
    Millermatic 350P w/25ft Alumapro & 30A
    Millermatic 200

    TONS of Non-Blue Equip, plus CNC Mill, Lathes & a Plasmacam w/ PowerMax-1000

    Comment


    • #3
      The training is: http://www.fvtc.edu/tp2.asp?ID=Techn...plomas&pix=021

      Sure its a sizable investment, but I dont want to end up buying something that I regret later on.

      I hope to get a job as a fabricator/welder, but I'd like to do some at home as well.
      It's not the voltage that gets you, it's the amps.

      Comment


      • #4
        iso50
        this is just one mans opinion... in my estimation TIG skills would be of the most value to you in the long run..even though those skills take longer to aquire... a good tig welder can get a decent paying job just about anywhere.. and a quality AC/DC tig machine can weld just about any metal with the proper technique.. one additional thought.. with the advent of inexpensive MIG machines.. there are no end to the number of people who play with them for a short while and then declare themselves weldors.. ready to take on the world... I see the results often and sometimes am called upon to clean up after.....
        If it were my nickel... I would go with the Dynasty... no regrets..
        hope this helps
        Heiti

        BTW.. that looks like a good program ... should be able to get your foot into the door of a quality shop with the skills learned there..
        .

        *******************************************
        The more you know, The better you know, How little you know

        “The bitterness of poor quality remains long after the sweetness of low price is forgotten”

        Buy the best tools you can afford.. Learn to use them to the best of your ability.. and take care of them...

        My Blue Stuff:
        Dynasty 350DX Tigrunner
        Dynasty 200DX
        Millermatic 350P w/25ft Alumapro & 30A
        Millermatic 200

        TONS of Non-Blue Equip, plus CNC Mill, Lathes & a Plasmacam w/ PowerMax-1000

        Comment


        • #5
          Iso
          I think you answered your own question about not regretting buying your equipment. Its hard to forcast exactly what equipment you will need in the future, but a good quality machine will hold its value v/s a piece of crap no one will cross the street to haul away. It is your decision to plan for the future. Plan a way to add in some flexability into your purchace

          Mike
          Regency 200 w/30A
          Dynasty 200 dx
          Esab 875 plasma
          MM350-P w/30A

          Comment


          • #6
            I am of the other school of thought Mig is the easier to learn and with practice you can do many things that are also done in tig and on production work mig is more prevalent. Also you can build skills faster then move into tig later. I started with a lincoln weldpak 110 and about a year ago I went to a millermatic 210 with spoolgun and I can do Stainless, mild steel and Aluminum It all just takes practice. The skilles you would learn in mig will give you a boost when you jump to tig {a more advanced and more difficult process}. To each his own and the bottom line is its your money, I do however highly recomend the blue miller machines. Weld well and practice is the magic key to it all.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by H80N
              iso50
              If it were my nickel... I would go with the Dynasty... no regrets..
              hope this helps
              Heiti

              BTW.. that looks like a good program ... should be able to get your foot into the door of a quality shop with the skills learned there..
              I'll have to see what the prices are like when I am ready to buy (have to sell my car first, but not selling it just to get a welder).

              They get new Miller gear every 3 years, but I guess thats the advantage of having Miller in your hometown.
              It's not the voltage that gets you, it's the amps.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by pjseaman
                I am of the other school of thought Mig is the easier to learn and with practice you can do many things that are also done in tig and on production work mig is more prevalent. Also you can build skills faster then move into tig later. I started with a lincoln weldpak 110 and about a year ago I went to a millermatic 210 with spoolgun and I can do Stainless, mild steel and Aluminum It all just takes practice. The skilles you would learn in mig will give you a boost when you jump to tig {a more advanced and more difficult process}. To each his own and the bottom line is its your money, I do however highly recomend the blue miller machines. Weld well and practice is the magic key to it all.
                As I am going for "professional" training, I'm sure I'll get a lot of practice.

                Maybe the best thing to do is call (or, lucky me) visit Miller and see what they have to say, after all they should know
                It's not the voltage that gets you, it's the amps.

                Comment


                • #9
                  iso50
                  a visit to the factory would be great since you are so close.. maybe Andy could hook you up with a good contact....
                  some thoughts.... a good welder/fabricator is combination.. engineer, metalurgist, craftsman and artist... plus lots more... it can be a very rewarding and satisfying path to take in life....
                  for what it is worth.. I started out there.. then went back to school and pursued a highly technical and higher profile career for many years.. finally came back to what I enjoy the most.. and could not be happier...
                  whatever path you take.. do what you enjoy and enjoy what you do.. then do the best you are able..... and excellence will follow......
                  take care
                  Heiti
                  .

                  *******************************************
                  The more you know, The better you know, How little you know

                  “The bitterness of poor quality remains long after the sweetness of low price is forgotten”

                  Buy the best tools you can afford.. Learn to use them to the best of your ability.. and take care of them...

                  My Blue Stuff:
                  Dynasty 350DX Tigrunner
                  Dynasty 200DX
                  Millermatic 350P w/25ft Alumapro & 30A
                  Millermatic 200

                  TONS of Non-Blue Equip, plus CNC Mill, Lathes & a Plasmacam w/ PowerMax-1000

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    mig or tig...mig or tig....that is the question

                    Each process has it's place. As Heiti said, there are a bunch of low dollar MIG units around but the need for a TIG to do specialized welding would be great. However, if you are doing this to restore a car or to build benches, repair equipment, there are somethings more suited for MIG. TIG requires the material to be free of contaminants, rust, paint, oil....However a MIG unit will be more versitile in a "not so perfect" welding environment. If you are going to learn to be a welder/fabricator, the need to learn BOTH processes will be a must anyway. I personally am fond to TIG but in a production environment where I need to make some money and be competetive with other job shops around here, MIG is the way to go. I would have to say 70% of my jobs are MIG with the rest precision TIG. I do charge more for TIG work so $ for $ it comes out close. I like your idea of visiting the factory. I'd take you through myself if I was going to be in the area soon but unfortunately I will be traveling with our race teams most of the summer. You may contact me directly at [email protected] and I'll get a contact for you in the training department.
                    Like someone said before, it all comes down to your goals. I'd hate, however, for you do get a TIG and develop some bad habbits before going through your classes. TIG requires a bit more set up knowledge than MIG.

                    Good luck

                    Andy

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by H80N
                      iso50
                      a visit to the factory would be great since you are so close.. maybe Andy could hook you up with a good contact....
                      some thoughts.... a good welder/fabricator is combination.. engineer, metalurgist, craftsman and artist... plus lots more... it can be a very rewarding and satisfying path to take in life....
                      for what it is worth.. I started out there.. then went back to school and pursued a highly technical and higher profile career for many years.. finally came back to what I enjoy the most.. and could not be happier...
                      whatever path you take.. do what you enjoy and enjoy what you do.. then do the best you are able..... and excellence will follow......
                      take care
                      Heiti
                      I tried a job in the computer field, but alas as soon as you are out of school, what you know is obsolete. I tried photogaphy (and will do that on my own), but working at a newspaper..well lets just say they dont pay much more than minimum wage
                      It's not the voltage that gets you, it's the amps.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        The welding field is great. I applaud your choice. The country is at an all time low in skilled welders. According to the Hobart Institute, the number of welding jobs is going up and the quantity of skilled labor is going down. Therefore it's safe to say you should be able to find work. You may have to relocate but it's worth the effort. This is why some of us who own welding businesses can make a go of it. Some of my work is from companies that can't find enough welders for themselves. I'm sure Heiti or HAWK can attest to this. Not sure how much business they do in production type work but it's a nice repeat pay check for awhile.

                        Good luck

                        Andy

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by ASKANDY
                          The welding field is great. I applaud your choice. The country is at an all time low in skilled welders. According to the Hobart Institute, the number of welding jobs is going up and the quantity of skilled labor is going down. Therefore it's safe to say you should be able to find work. You may have to relocate but it's worth the effort. This is why some of us who own welding businesses can make a go of it. Some of my work is from companies that can't find enough welders for themselves. I'm sure Heiti or HAWK can attest to this. Not sure how much business they do in production type work but it's a nice repeat pay check for awhile.

                          Good luck

                          Andy
                          When you live 3 miles from the Miller HQ, it seemed like an oppotunity I wouldn't have thought of otherwise. I guess you can blame Discovery Communications (cable tv) for my interest. Shows like American Chopper, Monster Garage and Junkyard Wars for example.
                          It's not the voltage that gets you, it's the amps.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            iso50,

                            It sounds you have all your answers in front of you. As the owner of a mobile welding repair service I want to add a few things from experience. Learn all the processes: Stick, MIG, TIG in that order. If you will put in the time to learn and hone the necessary skills for all the major welding process, then you will be right at home no matter what you decide to do in the welding field. I utilize all three processes all the time. Stick is an excellent choice for outdoors because it is not sensitive to the wind and other elements. It is still the choice for pipe lining and structural fabrication. There are a number of stick electrodes available to meet the necessary requirements you may face. MIG is a great choice for indoor shop fabrication and production. It is fast and clean. TIG is the choice for highly critical and/or precision welds from nuclear piping to aluminum and stainless fabrication.

                            The Dynasty 200DX is a nice machine by any standard and is a high quality precision TIG/Stick machine. If you are dead set on purchasing a machine prior to your classes, this is a good choice. For stick welding the set up and use is straight forward. The TIG set up is considerably more complicated, but can be done without formal training.

                            Bad habits are hard to break. If you learn bad habits for stick and TIG welding with this or any other machine, you will have to pay the price of correcting these habits once you have leaned the correct techniques. This can be easier said than done. Bad habits can cause weld defects and weld failure.

                            If you decide to purchase the Dynasty Stick/TIG or any other machine, Miller has some very good educational CDs available. There are also online resources, libraries, this forum and other valuable sources for information. Take some time and research your decision. One thing I can tell you is one process builds on another. You can learn any or all the processes in any order you desire, but you are making it hard on yourself by doing so. Remember:SMT: STICK ; MIG ; TIG.

                            One more thought. There are a lot of good MIG welders out there who know no other process. Yes, they are good MIG welders, but are limited to what they can do. You do not sound like someone who will happy learning only one process and being limited to what you can do.

                            Decisions, Decisions.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Ok, now for a simple question:

                              How much do welders make? Esp those just starting out (with tech school training).
                              It's not the voltage that gets you, it's the amps.

                              Comment

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