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Technical Contactor in welder went out. Is that due to lots of tack welding?

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by evintho, May 10, 2015.

  1. evintho
    Joined: May 28, 2007
    Posts: 1,218


    My Hobart Ironman 210 took a dump! Needs a new contactor and range switch. 3 hrs labor + parts = $660! Ouch! I've had it for 3 years and have done quite a bit of welding with it.

    My question:
    Is it possible the contactor went out because of all the stitch welding I've done? I've welded a lot of sheetmetal panels using tack welds and have probably done a thousand or so tack welds. Isn't that hard on a welder?

    I've been thinking about paying the $660 and just use the Hobart for heavy work. Then purchasing one of these for light work. That way I wouldn't blow out the contactor again on my big welder.
    Ideas, thoughts, opinions??
  2. install contactor yourself they just bolt in! some of them can be rebuilt.
  3. eBay item number:
    161693629451 Hobart 210 Contactor $99.00 part number 87713-40-2
  4. Simple fix. Just get the part. I doubt that what you were doing caused the problem. If that were the case I would have a lot of dead machines.
    prewarcars4me likes this.
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  5. 50pontiacguy
    Joined: Aug 3, 2014
    Posts: 162


    The contactor doesn't even have to be the same, just make sure it is right voltage and will handle the amperage, its an easy fix either way certainly not worth paying 600+ dollars! What a rip off!!
  6. Rootie Kazoootie
    Joined: Nov 27, 2006
    Posts: 7,738

    Rootie Kazoootie
    from Colorado

    Try Grainger's. When I was a leadman at a large mfg. co. I changed out a lot of contactors on our large Miller welders and would get them through Grainger's a lot cheaper than the dealer wanted.
  7. evintho
    Joined: May 28, 2007
    Posts: 1,218


    Yep, the contactor looks like an easy fix! They also said the range switch needed replacing. I'm looking at the parts list in the manual and there's nothing that refers to that. Anyone know another name for it and what's its function? All help is appreciated! I only paid $700 for the machine 3 years ago. It was a demo model the leaving store manager had gotten as severance. He listed it on CL. That's where I came in. Only a couple of hours on the machine when I bought it.
  8. Contactors usually go out because of metal dust getting inside then they arc out. I had one go out years ago, the guy at the welding supply store said if you keep your machine blown out they will last longer. Been blowing air through mine every now and then to get the dust out and haven't had any problems since.
  9. mrconcdid
    Joined: Aug 31, 2010
    Posts: 1,157

    from Florida

    I would try and fix it yourself, looks like a hundred bucks might do it.
    I would rather be out one hundred for trying, than six hundred for not.
  10. page 21 of the owners manual shows three switches.
    page 47 item #6 as a selector switch part number 226-603
  11. cavman
    Joined: Mar 23, 2005
    Posts: 626


    That happened on my old Miller 135 years ago. I used a common points file to clean them up. It has worked well since. If you can, give that a try before you spend the $$.
  12. Model T1
    Joined: May 11, 2012
    Posts: 3,310

    Model T1

    I bought a Sears stick welder back in 1964. Me and my son are still using it in ways it wasn't made for. Sometimes it pops the garage circut breaker but that's all.
  13. 325w
    Joined: Feb 18, 2008
    Posts: 5,178

    from texas

    I'm wondering if your feeding it enough electricity. Like a long extension cord are a low amp breaker.
  14. evintho
    Joined: May 28, 2007
    Posts: 1,218


    I do use a 25' homemade extension cord. 10/3 wire. Breaker is 50a.

  15. Engine man
    Joined: Jan 30, 2011
    Posts: 3,476

    Engine man
    from Wisconsin

    I agree with the metallic dust theory. I don't know why they don't seal the contactors from dust. I have ground the contacts to clean them. Many get a pretty hard surface from steel dust melting into the contacts.
  16. the contactors are not sealed because they generate lots of heat! Anytime i have machine with sealed contactors because of wet enviroment they don't last!
  17. great thread guys......
  18. paleot
    Joined: Aug 29, 2011
    Posts: 217

    from louisiana

    I have a Hobart beta Mig 400, I use a 98.00 Harbor Freight mig machine to tack and stitch weld because it is so light to carry around. Believe it or not it will weld as good as the Hobart on thin metals!

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