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  • VS suitcases

    I have been "volunteered" by a friend of mine to help put up his new shop building. In the past I've always used the bobcat and sticks, but was thinking about moving up to a suitcase feeder. I have a basic understanding of how they work and that I have to use the VS instead of the RC because of my power source. Just looking for some real world opinions on the 8 and 12VS units. Keep in mind, I don't do a lot of this kind of work, but I'm always looking for a reason to justify the purchase of new toys. SSS
    Bobcat 250, MM 210, Syncrowave 180, Spectrum 375
    Cat 242B Skid Steer, Challenger (Cat/Agco) MT275
    1 Thessalonians 4:11-12

  • #2
    Steve, I ran a VS off my Bobus for awhile. It worked very well. I still use it on buildings even though I have an RC for the TB. I mostly use it for large FC. I have two VS units. An 8VS and a Super S-32P. The 8VS is fine, but it will only hold an 8" spool, which will severely limit you in wire selection. That is why I went up to the S-32. It will handle 12"/40# rolls no prob. It was new old stock and was at a great price. 600 bucks for a new, never used unit ain't bad, IMO.

    If I still had the Bobus, and wanted a VS unit, I'd get the xtreme 12VS and never look back. It will handle all you will want to do. If the 8" spool size isn't a problem, then the 8VS would do, but I would think the 12VS would make you happier. They aren't very far apart in price. FWIW, my .045 FC wire was running 45-50 bucks for a 10# roll. The 25# rolls of the same stuff are around 90 bucks and the 30# rolls are about 110 bucks. The wire will be cheaper in the big rolls. You also can't really get the bigger wires in the small rolls. I run 1/16 Fabshield 21B in the S-32. A 25# spool lasts a lot longer as well.

    FWIW, I only use the feeder for ground work and maybe a little heavy stuff up top. For the most part, I am only using stick above ground level on my metal buildings.
    Don


    '06 Trailblazer 302
    '06 12RC feeder
    Super S-32P feeder

    HH210 & DP3035 spool gun
    Esab Multimaster 260
    Esab Heliarc 252 AC/DC

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    • #3
      For a VS feeder, I use a Lincoln LN-25 that was given to me, so I've never tried the Miller units. All I can say is that wire is the way to go for productivity. You will want to use it on every job you possibly can.

      On observation many have made is that there is less of a wire selection for the 8" model. But if all you're going to do is basic E71-T11 self-shielded flux-cored, you shouldn't have much of a problem there.

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      • #4
        ive got old pow-con suitcase, and run off big 40 or trailblazer 302 or 251. that 1/16 fc will blaze in nice and hot and fast! i wont touch a stick unless specs call for it or decking.

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        • #5
          As long as I am going to be welding for more than a few minutes Ill set get out the LN-25 Can't beat it for production. And the Miller 12VS is just as good I just got the deal on a ln25

          TJ
          TJ______________________________________

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          • #6
            I'm confused

            Can somebody explain the difference and the advantage/disadvantage of the 12RC as opposed to the 12VC?

            I intend to run it off a TB 302.

            I build trailers, install railings, and some maintenance work on equipment buckets. I very seldom work very far away from my machine, so adjustments can be made easily.

            Thanks Gentlemen

            Comment


            • #7
              cooperdog,

              Keep in mind, I don't own either, but this is what I've come to about the suitcases. I have to run the VS models because that's all my bobcat will support. The RCs have the advantage of being able to control all of your functions right there at the work piece. Just like you had your MM210, MM251 right there by you in the shop. That way you can work up on railings, or back inside buildings and not have to run outside to the truck if you need to tweak your settings. On the other hand, you do have to mess with (and tear up / replace) another cord when using the RC because the suitcase has to "talk" back to the power source to tell it what to set the voltage at. Also, the RC have more of a limited range of distance from the power source than the VS models. According to Miller's product guide the RC have to be within 150 electrical feet of the power source (75 linear feet). The VS are limited by the weld cables and work being done, but can go significantly farther than the RCs. Of course, from my view point, if you are needing to do critical code welding, you would want the RCs so that you could make absolute sure you know what your settings are.

              Here's a question for anybody that has a RC version....can it be reconfigured to run like a VS if you want to do more remote welding and not worry about direct control of the power source and then switch back to RC when you need it?? Just a thought. If not, maybe that will be an option in the future for miller (can I get design credit for it ). If that were true, I'd go ahead and get the RC and have the best of both worlds if I ever move up to a TB.

              SSS
              Last edited by SkidSteerSteve; 03-27-2007, 08:51 AM.
              Bobcat 250, MM 210, Syncrowave 180, Spectrum 375
              Cat 242B Skid Steer, Challenger (Cat/Agco) MT275
              1 Thessalonians 4:11-12

              Comment


              • #8
                Cooperdog, Steve hit the high spots pretty good. The RC cables are a pain, and very expensive. I paid nearly 200 bucks for mine. Get it run over several times and that won't be good. However, the ability to switch the voltage right there can be priceless. The other day, I was welding column heads about 16 feet off the deck. I was changing the voltage back and forth for vert up with wide gap and plain old overhead. Had I been using the VS, I would have had to climb down the scaffold four times per column more than normal. That kind of time will add up. With the VS, you can change the wire speed at the feeder, and I have been able to do this kind of job before like that, but changing the voltage one volt sure made it easier. Those gaps were a pain. I also like the arc on the RC with solid wire better than the VS. Just seems smoother to me. The RC will also go way lower in voltage. The VS won't operate below 15 vdc on the 8VS and older 12VS and 14vdc on the new Extreme. No really light stuff like that. The RC will go as low as the TB will.

                For the work you described, I would go for the RC. It will be smoother and more versatile than the VS...even though the VS would work. To me, it seem like you get more out of the TB with the RC feeder. I ran my VS with a Bobcat for a couple of years. The TB/VS setup is much better and the TB/RC is even better. Either will work for you. You just have to decide what is more important. Flexibility or ability to work long distances from the machine. That is how I decide which feeder to bring along in my case.


                Steve, I severely doubt they could have a combo RC/VS with the present setups. The VS feeders are heavier and have different guts than the RC. That just means more money to add VS components to the RC...and weight. I had to lug mine up a cement silo a couple of weeks ago. I was very glad I didn't have a heavier feeder that day.
                Don


                '06 Trailblazer 302
                '06 12RC feeder
                Super S-32P feeder

                HH210 & DP3035 spool gun
                Esab Multimaster 260
                Esab Heliarc 252 AC/DC

                Comment


                • #9
                  an 8VS will fit through most man holes and into tanks (confined spaces) where the 12 is just to big from the spool size. It is also a bit lighter (obviously) from the amount of wire.

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                  • #10
                    If I remember correctly the Lincoln LN-25 has a remote contactor option and can be switched between RC and VS. Now I could be wrong about that. I also believe this option is available on some Miller feeders. If you have a service center handy I am sure they can tell you anything you want to know about them. I know the remote contactor is not an option on the Hefty CV/CC as far as in the box goes, but I use a remote with mine. I just picked it up this morning in fact and it is well worth what I gave for it. It gives a lot more control over what you are doing with the thing.

                    I use wire for everything I can because of the lower cost and increased speed, but there are some things best left to sticks.
                    Lincoln: Eagle 10,000, Weld-Pak HD, Weld-Pak 155, AC-225, LN-25 wirefeeder
                    Miller: Syncrowave 250DX Tigrunner
                    Westinghouse: 400+ amp AC
                    ThermalArc Handy wirefeeder
                    1 Harris, 3 Victor O/A rigs
                    Arcair gouger
                    Too many other power toys to list.

                    Do it right, do it once. And in all things ya get what ya pay for.

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