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Looking for a good cutting/welding torch setup...suggestions?

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Nerd of Nerds, Feb 9, 2009.

  1. Nerd of Nerds
    Joined: Sep 6, 2008
    Posts: 54

    Nerd of Nerds
    Member
    from Nebraska

    Hey guys! In working on my 53 F250 I have started wanting to pick up welding again. The only experience I have was a high school class doing mig and arc welding. I hated mig welding but loved arc...

    It looks like the best way to learn to make good, strong, clean welds is starting out with an oxy acetate setup and going from there.

    Is there anything out there that you guys could recommend as far as some sort of kit? Dad always says "Don't buy cheap tools." and I now live by that motto...that being said, something affordable would be nice.
     
  2. Spedley
    Joined: Mar 5, 2004
    Posts: 392

    Spedley
    Member

  3. choppintops
    Joined: Dec 9, 2008
    Posts: 1,460

    choppintops
    BANNED

    Harris (Lincoln) makes some cheaper, but good sets.
     
  4. okiedokie
    Joined: Jul 5, 2005
    Posts: 4,235

    okiedokie
    Member
    from Ok

    Stole this off of RRT.

    <TABLE class=forumline cellSpacing=1 cellPadding=3 width="100%" border=0><TBODY><TR><TD class=row1 vAlign=top align=left width=150>enjenjo
    Site Admin
    [​IMG]


    Gender: [​IMG]
    Joined: 21 Jan 2004
    User's Age: (61)
    Posts: 6697
    Location: Swanton, Ohio
    </TD><TD class=row1 vAlign=top width="100%" height=28><TABLE cellSpacing=0 cellPadding=0 width="100%" border=0><TBODY><TR><TD width="100%">[​IMG]Posted: Mon Dec 04, 2006 12:58 pm Post subject: Tool Review</TD><TD vAlign=top noWrap>[​IMG] </TD></TR><TR><TD colSpan=2><HR></TD></TR><TR><TD colSpan=2>Here a while back, I needed a rose bud torch on a sunday, and the only place I could find one was Harbor Freight. It was part of a complete kit, a combo welding/cutting/heating, with hoses a gauges. After using it for several months, it is working as well as any torch I have owned. At $119, less on sale, I can recommend it.
    _________________
    "Walk it off Snack Fairy"
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  5. Chris Casny
    Joined: Mar 13, 2006
    Posts: 4,870

    Chris Casny
    Member

    Get a Victor set-up, not the cheapest but the best, plus you'll support an American company, as opposed to sending money to China.
     
  6. 50dodge4x4
    Joined: Aug 7, 2004
    Posts: 3,535

    50dodge4x4
    Member

    Did you notice that thumbs up was dated in 2006? Lots of China stuff has gone down hill since 2006. Buy the Victor and be done with it. Gene
     
  7. choppintops
    Joined: Dec 9, 2008
    Posts: 1,460

    choppintops
    BANNED

    I've had good luck with HF torches, but their regulators ,well,,,,, I can hear that zzzzzzzzPOP in my head just talking about them.
     
  8. jmschristiansen
    Joined: Oct 22, 2008
    Posts: 15

    jmschristiansen
    Member

    You can get a Victor setup for about $250 at: https://weldingsupply.securesites.com/cgi-bin/einstein.pl

    I am not a welder, but have used a number of different machines, and for flexability and ease of use, I really like Miller's MIG set-ups. If you don't want to spend too much, you can get the smallest 220V MIG machine. I had one for years, and with patience & good prep, you can weld up to 3/8" or 1/2".
     
  9. Nerd of Nerds
    Joined: Sep 6, 2008
    Posts: 54

    Nerd of Nerds
    Member
    from Nebraska

    I am going to hold off on a MIG setup. I want to learn the true old school way of doing things before moving up to MIG...

    Part of me actually really didn't like MIG welding. I always felt like my welds were much stronger and looked a lot nicer when I was doing stick welding.
     
  10. choppintops
    Joined: Dec 9, 2008
    Posts: 1,460

    choppintops
    BANNED

    There is a reason most go mig.
     
  11. dodgedifferent2
    Joined: Mar 8, 2006
    Posts: 116

    dodgedifferent2
    Member

    Propane and oxygen ...

    propane is usually a hell of alot cheaper ... and if you have a steady hand ... cuts like a plasma ..
    i am still trying to figure out how my father cut a perfect circle with this setup .. and clean as hell.

    pay the price .. and you will be happy for years on end. his torch is older then i am .... and has yet to have anything fixed on it. I cant remember the name .. and too lazy to run out to the shop to look at this moment.
     
  12. I've got a Victor as well and I've never been sorry.
     
  13. hoggyrubber
    Joined: Aug 30, 2008
    Posts: 572

    hoggyrubber
    Member

    get a good used set. one reason to buy victor it lots of choice in tips. i have 2 victor torches. one for propane, one for acc. there are tons of old units around but if you by something else than victor you may have to hunt a lot harder for accesories. also most welding shops can send out a victor reg to get rebuilt if need be.
     
  14. Kenneth S
    Joined: Dec 15, 2007
    Posts: 1,527

    Kenneth S
    Member

    A Victor torch set is the way to go, when it comes to welders it's Miller hands down.
     
  15. river1
    Joined: May 12, 2001
    Posts: 855

    river1
    Member

    smith set ups are made by the same company as miller, they are also made in the usa.

    http://www.smithequipment.com/

    later jim
     
  16. Deuce Daddy Don
    Joined: Apr 27, 2008
    Posts: 5,091

    Deuce Daddy Don
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Welder since 1951, stay with Victor----costs more---best results---time proven quality---welder machines, go with Lincoln, Miller, Thermo---Forget Harbor Freight, Go with either, 250 series & co2 gas, .035 coated wire spools.----------Don
     
  17. kustomizingkid
    Joined: Sep 6, 2008
    Posts: 225

    kustomizingkid
    Member

    I too have a DHC 2000... its the best!

    The only thing I don't like using it for is doing heavy cutting when I'm in scrap mode... it's a little bit more delicate.
     
  18. bruce hylton
    Joined: Dec 12, 2008
    Posts: 194

    bruce hylton
    Member
    from toledo wa

    If you are only going to be cutting or welding for a couple hours a year, oxy-acetylane is fine, if you want more for the money, go with propane and use one size larger tip. You need a good torch setup that you can interchange tips on. Used Stick welders are around cheap and are a bargain for most home shop builders.
     
  19. Flea
    Joined: Apr 17, 2008
    Posts: 126

    Flea
    Member

    I went with victor and am happy with the setup. I would have gone with the henrob/dhc but I couldn't afford it, and I was just learning. I figured I would learn on a standard torch and if I wanted to I could get the henrob in a couple years.
     
  20. 39 Ford
    Joined: Jan 22, 2006
    Posts: 1,558

    39 Ford
    Member

    I have Victor Guages and a HF torch the torch works well and seems well made,I understand tips are the same as Victor.
     
  21. lawman
    Joined: Sep 19, 2006
    Posts: 2,665

    lawman
    Member

    I've always liked the "Smith" brand.
     
  22. Nerd of Nerds
    Joined: Sep 6, 2008
    Posts: 54

    Nerd of Nerds
    Member
    from Nebraska

    I was actually somewhat curious about going with propane...

    I am hoping to get more use out of it than a few hours a year. I would like to kick some ass at welding. I am planning on taking some classes through our local community college on the subject.

    Any drawbacks to propane vs oxy? Seems like propane would be more readily available...
     
  23. B-Ray
    Joined: Apr 11, 2008
    Posts: 194

    B-Ray
    Member

    victor set is the way to go and cyberweld.com has awesome prices
     
  24. JeremyJames
    Joined: Aug 11, 2008
    Posts: 432

    JeremyJames
    Member
    from concord NC

    the best and cheapest way to go is to get on www.tinmantech.com and look up the meco midget welding torch.....super small, 6oz, very east to work with, produces a much more concentrated flame and is easier to hold than the late dillion/henrob/ cobra torch. i think you can get the torch with a good bent tip for $120.00. if your going to be doing any gas welding or sheetmetal welding this is the torch to have. it can be fine tuned (as long as you have a good set of regulaters) to weld very similar to a tig machine. that being said, a tig welder runs off electricty and tungston.....acetaline and oxyigan are not going to be as nice and clean and are not going to be able to produce as nice a weld. MECO MIDGET gets my vote for the best CHEAPEST welding set up. it will also hold its own againts a larger body torch in welding thicker metals. just my 2 pennies.
     
  25. JeremyJames
    Joined: Aug 11, 2008
    Posts: 432

    JeremyJames
    Member
    from concord NC

    oh yea with the meco.....the N" Series Tips are for Acetylene - "OX" Series Tips are for Propane......it has no problem welding with either.....though i prefer the acetline and oxygen just always seems to work the way i want it to....propane dosnt stay as constant for me.
     
  26. used to sell Gentec sets at the welding store I worked at. Over the counter warranty and parts interchangeable with victor. Mine works great.
     
  27. hoggyrubber
    Joined: Aug 30, 2008
    Posts: 572

    hoggyrubber
    Member

    the only advantage of propane i know of is price. and the difference is huge. i made the switch about 10 years ago for scrapin' and never looked back. i still have a set of acc for welding but i weld a little with the propane too.
     
  28. BLUECOLLARKUSTOMS
    Joined: Jan 22, 2006
    Posts: 184

    BLUECOLLARKUSTOMS
    Member

    buy the "SMITH" brand, excellent quality and USA owned and USA made. I believe VICTOR is made in Mexico.... SMITH is made in Watertown, S.D.
     
  29. bruce hylton
    Joined: Dec 12, 2008
    Posts: 194

    bruce hylton
    Member
    from toledo wa

    I use Harris for both, cutting and welding, and Victor guages are what I have. Everything I have is mix and match, but I make a good portion of my living with a torch, So propane is my choice. Although there is a gasoline torch I would like to try. For small stuff a plasma cutter is nice.
     
  30. lostforawhile
    Joined: Mar 23, 2008
    Posts: 4,160

    lostforawhile
    Member

    anybody know of one set up for a map gas/oxy torch? hotter then propane and more stable then actylene. they carry a bernzomatic at home depot,the torch with the regulator,but would like to get one that does the same thing of a higher quality.
     

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