Author Topic: Advice on buying a welder.  (Read 1256 times)

PhoenixHeat

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Advice on buying a welder.
« on: January 21, 2017, 01:32:40 PM »
Daydreaming of a day when I could weld steel and other metals to make my own stuff rather than buy them. (Mmm idea of making own rear car cargo rack cones to mind)

Any advice or considerations someone experienced with welding could suggest?

Thanks

JLee

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Re: Advice on buying a welder.
« Reply #1 on: January 21, 2017, 01:46:40 PM »
Does your local community college offer welding classes? That'd be a great place to start.

MrsPB

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Re: Advice on buying a welder.
« Reply #2 on: January 21, 2017, 01:54:07 PM »
My husband welds at home. He said go to www.weldingtipsandtricks.com

kendallf

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Re: Advice on buying a welder.
« Reply #3 on: January 21, 2017, 02:27:49 PM »
Does your local community college offer welding classes? That'd be a great place to start.

+1 to classes; no better way to learn than burning through somebody else's consumables, gas, and having equipment to quickly cut practice pieces.

MIG is quite easy to learn, it's fine for general utility projects like steel racks, and a decent mid range Lincoln or Miller welder can often be found used.  I advise sticking to brand name welders for easy availability of consumables like tips and collets.

If you want to weld metals other than steel, or fine detail or structural work, TIG is much more versatile but the skill required and equipment cost are correspondingly higher.

Spork

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Re: Advice on buying a welder.
« Reply #4 on: January 21, 2017, 02:39:19 PM »
Does your local community college offer welding classes? That'd be a great place to start.

+1

I did this.  We have a vocational branch school of a local junior college that also offers various community "Fun" classes.  They offer real in-depth welding courses for getting various welding certifications... but they also offer "Welding for Farm and Ranch".  It was lots of fun and you get to play with stick, TIG, MIG, cutting torches, plasma cutters, etc. 

They also had a couple of welding manufacturers come in and give demos (where you could play with their machines).

Another idea:  If you have a farm supply store nearby (Atwoods, Tractor Supply, etc), they usually have welder manufacturers come out and demo products a couple times a year.