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Best Stick Welder For Newbie

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  • #16
    OK I'll bite on this....why don't you get REAL SERIOUS and sell all the old stuff and kill 2 birds (or three or four) and get a Bobcat or even better a Trailblazer...they have 10KW and will weld circles around most buzzboxes. They will run stick ,tig or mig and you can't beat that. The Trailblazer will even do the generatin' whil'a weldin'!!(so will the Bobcat for that matter) All the neighbors will be impressed with it and there is no way in **** that you could talk your way out of ALL the offers throwed at you! (nothing beats that Blue color for drawing attention) Everywhere you go you would have 10KW....few people haul their generator around.
    I took the plunge years ago and it was the best move I ever made in my life!
    You could do maybe 2 or three little side jobs a month and pay more than the payment if you borrowed the money. By the time you sold your old stuff you wouldn't have that much more in the setup than the welders we've been discussing here. IMHO
    Miller Dynasty 700...OH YEA BABY!!
    Miller Dynasty 280 with AC independent expansion card
    Miller Dynasty 200 DX "Blue Lightning"

    Miller Bobcat 225 NT (what I began my present Biz with!)
    Miller 30-A Spoolgun
    Miller WC-115-A
    Miller Spectrum 300
    Miller 225 Thunderbolt (my first machine bought new 1980)
    Miller Digital Elite Titanium 9400


    • #17
      Well, let me say this, if you have old and you like it, it could be like comfortable shoes, maybe worn out, but serviceable.

      I have a contractors 15Kw generator, peaks at 22.5Kw. I got it from the House of Generators, it's the Generac 15 K with idle control. Then I checked out TIG welders and got a Lincoln PT 375 Redy Pak, put I added the Stick cable and the control panel.

      My MIG is a Miller. I gave my Tombstone to my stepson along with about 30 pounds quality electrodes (7018, I think), who really doesn't do anything with it. He is a tractor mechanic for the local ag dealer.

      My plasma cutter is Thermadyne, it's Pakmaster 75 XL, works like a champ. Some of my shop is make do stuff, some is from Harbor Freight and some is from the local hardware stores. I even have a couple of tools boxes from the 70s that came from Sears, other wise I use Kennedy.

      But back to the subject, I like the Tombstone and still see lots of them out there being used, both versions.

      I find it is easier to buy quality stuff up front and than to buy something that will either wear out quickly or not be powerful enough in a year or two. In a couple of weeks, I have to weld the cast iron base for a large old cutting machine, so I have the power with my TIG and I am portable, I have a trailer now. I now have the trial and error experience of using the right kind of nickle electrodes. This took me 10 plus years to get to this point, learned a lot over the years.

      Last edited by jfsmith; 12-28-2006, 06:36 PM.


      • #18
        Thank you all for the replies, It's nice to have more than one Brian thinking things through. (well I would have to have two of me too have One brain)

        TomVeatch, I hope you are right about the amperage. As far as the Trailer & 3pt PTO situation, I would Make the Gen. Stationary In the center of the Trailer maybe in the Tongue if it is Triangle shaped. Leave the PTO shaft hooked to the Gen, Put your draw bar on tow the trailer too where it needs to go, hook up the PTO shaft to the Tractor (takes 5 Seconds) Yup I see a project there

        FusionKing, Yes I could sell the Onan Gen and the small Gen. but that would only bring in about 1/3 of what I'd need and budgets tight. I won't sell the Perkins Diesel, thats the hart of the screen I'm going to build (some day). As far as getting welding jobs, I DON'T KNOW HOW TO Weld (gotta learn) Second, around here welding isn't all that profitable cause their are so many of them.

        jfsmith, I don't think the old Lincoln Welder/Gen is repairable, I may very well be wrong cause I Know Snot about them but the guy that sold it to me was a welder and let it go for $500. You are right about buying quality up front, I usually do but I paid very little for this equipment although older and having it sitting around I'd like to use it if I can. BUT if I could get a good price for it, than buying a good welder/Gen would not be out of the question.

        Again, Thank you all for your input.


        • #19
          Might want to look on e-bay. Bought a miller AEAD-200LE with a gas engine and doubles as a 240 V ac generator. They are out there and this one looked like it was new. Just be sure to check the armature comutator as they are prone to wear. Mine was like new. The onan engine seems to run really good and holds a good arc. With a tig torch added you can also tig weld in the DC mode.
          I have a syncroweld 250 and a 300 that I use in the shop. This I can throw in the back ov my truck and take almost anywhere to fix stuff. (lift it in and out of my truck with a portable engine hoist I got at Ky Motors for $149.00. Just too heavy for an old man to lift by himself)
          Welcome to another new comer, from another new comer.


          • #20

            A friend of mine just bought a working tombstone at some kind of winter garage sale. $35. He plugged it in, thinking maybe a winding had let go, or a diode was bad. He started welding with it that day. They don't go bad very often and there are lots of folks who sell the parts to repair the Tomstones.

            I am going to have to start looking closer at these sales. I would like a tombstone for me.