No announcement yet.

Bought a new to me Airco Dip/Stick 160 multiprocess welder

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Bought a new to me Airco Dip/Stick 160 multiprocess welder

    I have been stick welding for the past year now and was in the market for a mig welder and didn't have a whole lot of cash and happened to find a older Airco dipstick 160 that can mig tig and stick so I gave the guy $300 bucks untested and took a gamble that it would work and sure enough it did. I haven't been able to use the mig side of the machine yet as the mig gun was old and parts couldn't be found, so weldmart out in Texas is building me a 10ft whip with a new gun using the orginal power pin and it uses tweco consumables. The welder also has a spot and stich function that was optional from the factory which I thought was cool.

    The stick welder side of the machine didn't come with a lead so I picked up a 10ft 2g lenco stinger and had to make a plug to fit into the electrode jack. The tig side of the machine I'll prolly never use as it doesn't have a HF box.

    This machine is about 220lbs and has a 60% duty cycle.

    I was testing it out today and comparing the 7018 welds vs my lincoln ac/dc buzz box. The sound is different it doesn't have the bacon frying sound of the lincoln and creates a lil more splatter. I tried using both DC+ and DC-.

    Only downside to this machine is drive rollers are impossible to find so I'm stuck with 0.030-0.035 and it only except's 12 or possible 10" spools as the wire feeder is offset to the opposite side of the machine..

    I'm hoping in the next week or 2 I'll have the mig gun back and can practice, hopefully it has good arc characteristics like people say. I got my new tank of 75/25 mix and a profax regulator already hooked up.

    Maybe someone with a old machine can tell me if there stick welder sounds different then the newer machines .

  • #2
    I'm having trouble uploading pictures, I clicked on the camera button and took a picture but it just kept saying loading and never uploaded. I also tried uploading from a website and putting in the thing and it said something and wouldn't let me.

    I did figure out why the welder sounded funny using the 7018 rod I had it on dcsp and not dcrp, the funny thing is on my lincoln I always left it on DC + . Unless I'm confused DC+ is Dcsp ( DIRECT current straight polarity) which would be the rod arc going from the rod to the work and dc- or DCRP ( Direct current reverse polarity is from the work to the rod.

    Someone correct me if I'm wrong but I just wonder why the lincoln would weld better ( it always did with 1/8 7018 on DC+

    Only thing I could think of is that the polarity inside the machine is reversed. This machine uses some sort of plates that when you turn the lever they align with other plates. Maybe someone reverse them to do flux core??

    When I got the welder it had a 44lb spool of esab spool arc 0.035 so I would assume they weren't using flux core.


    • #3


      • #4


        • #5


          • #6
            Anyone havery any input on this welder. I did some stick welding with it and it works better then my lincoln now that I got the hang of it.

            It does say on the front not to switch the selector under load which had me thinking do they mean when the machine is on or when your actually welding and you try to adjust it?

            I would assume it would be safe to adjust it when your not welding without having to turn off the entire welder, maybe I'm wrong but I want to make sure I don't damage anything


            • #7
              DC Electrode Positive (DCEP) = DC Reverse Polarity (DCRP) = DC+ on the electrode/gun

              DC Electrode Negative = Straight polarity
              Miller stuff:
              Dialarc 250 (1974)
              Syncrowave 250 (1992)
              Spot welder (Dayton badged)


              • #8
                The "do not switch under load" means while you're welding. Ok to switch with the machine on, just not while welding. USMCPOP clarified the polarity issue well; your original post looks like you may have had it mixed up. Sounds like you're making good progress


                • #9
                  Yeah I did some research online and found it had it backwards. When your on the wrong polarity it leaves a black market on the edge of the weld.

                  Can't wait to get the mig gun back the guy who's building it has been out sick all week. The owner at weldmart told me to put this welder in my will because it's that good. So hopefully it's as good as he says it is. I really like how I could tig weld with it on AC and DC unlike any machine I've seen for under 2000 bucks. Most it's one or the other, I'm trying to hunt down how to wire in a HF box trying to find a older model HF like a craftsmans.

                  Thanks for the info on the selector I figured as much would be odd to have to shut the welder down to adjust


                  • #10
                    Does that machine have remote amperage control? I'm not too awfully familiar with that machine there.


                    • #11
                      I'm not sure what you mean by remote amperage control.

                      You adjust the amps with a handle and set it where you want then you adjust wire speed, adjusting the amps is basically like adjusting the voltage I would assume. On the stick side you use the same handle to adjust the amps for stick and tig it goes down to 30 amps and up to 200 on AC, 160 on DC.

                      There's a selector handle on the front to switch from low dip transfer to high transfer, then 2 for DC and 1 spot for AC


                      • #12
                        A remote amperage control, like a foot pedal. Without one, your HF box will be just on or off. I've gone that route. You'll wire up a switch and attach it to your tig handle and turn the HF on to start and turn it off when the arc is initiated, but may as well scratch start. For aluminum, you'll leave it on continuous, but you won't be able to ramp the power up or down, it'll just be where you set it to start with, and that's a tough way to weld. It's doable, but it ain't fun. You'd be better off to save your money and get the proper machine. That was the advice that was given to me, which I ignored, and it cost me in the long run. So I have a HF box I could sell you if you're bound and determined to do it that way.


                        • #13
                          How much? I'm not really in the market for one as I don't plan to tig weld for a long time, I've only ever needed to weld on aluminum once and I can use aluminum electrodes for the stick. I mostly work with steel as I just build stuff for my projects at home. I'm hoping once my kids are a little older I can go to school to be a welder. I've been practicing stick slot and have gotten pretty good for being self taught. I finally can do 7018 vertical z weave, I found that much more challenging then downhill or overhead welding but I finally can get it.

                          The whole reason I bought a mig welder was so I can practice what more then likely I'll be using one day, like you said it's prolly easier and almost cheaper to buy a used tig welder


                          • #14
                            Here's a picture of the inside of the machine which looks like it has a nice transformer lots of copper wound up. Has 5 capacitors I believe 4 on one side 2 on the other. Some transformer machines I've seen use a metal strap to connect parts of it mine has what I think is 10g solid copper there the red looking wire that goes to that selector I forgot the correct term there called.


                            • #15