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So I finally bought a welder...

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Austinbelair, Nov 9, 2013.

  1. Austinbelair
    Joined: Mar 9, 2008
    Posts: 11


    All these years of working on and building cars, I always had to take part to someone to weld them. I finally scored a ridiculous deal on a new Lincoln MIG/Wire Feed welder. What do I need to know to start learning how to weld?

    This is the welder I got. It's not super fancy but for a beginner I think it will be fine
  2. 2racer
    Joined: Sep 1, 2011
    Posts: 960


    go to youtube and type in "how to mig weld"
  3. Use the flux core to get the hang of it then pick up a bottle for gas. Looks that unit will do both.
  4. KoolKat-57
    Joined: Feb 22, 2010
    Posts: 3,030

    from Dublin, OH

    I would see if your local trade school or community college offers welding classes.
    If you know someone who is a good welder, see if they will help you get started.
    Knowledge is power, you can never have enough!

  5. Chiefpontiac77
    Joined: Dec 4, 2012
    Posts: 34


    Hey, good welder, but really, get some scrap and dial 'er in. You will figure out the heat settings you need that way. I actually took a class for about 200 bucks at a weld school, helped a lot. would recommend it! Good luck, it's alotta fun!
  6. tfeverfred
    Joined: Nov 11, 2006
    Posts: 15,792


    ...and take some classes at your local community college, so you learn the basics and safety.
  7. Engine man
    Joined: Jan 30, 2011
    Posts: 3,476

    Engine man
    from Wisconsin

    Do you have a tech school you can take a night welding class at? It looks like the welder came with a video disc, watch it and practice.
  8. Don's Hot Rods
    Joined: Oct 7, 2005
    Posts: 8,319

    Don's Hot Rods
    from florida

    You are going to get 100 different opinions on how to proceed because everyone who welds has their own feelings about the right way to do things, but here are mine:

    1) Get a gas bottle for that welder, your welds will be much cleaner with less splatter.

    2) Make sure the parts you are welding are ABSOLUTELY shiny clean. I see so many people posting pictures of the welds they have done and they barely prepped the steel, sometimes even welding over rust. :eek: It drives me nuts when I see that because clean metal is so very important to getting a good weld.

    3) If doing thicker pieces of steel (1/8 on up) bevel both mating surfaces so you lay the weld down in the V. It will lay down nicer and penetrate better.

    4) Practice, practice, practice. The only way to get good at welding is to do it and do it often. You will look back a year from now at the welds you do today and realize how much you have learned and improved.

  9. Austinbelair
    Joined: Mar 9, 2008
    Posts: 11


    Thanks guys. I'm gonna check on the Community College thing but from what I've read or heard they make you take other classes as well.

    I'm going to watch the DVD and some youtube videos and start practicing after I buy a helmet tomorrow hopefully.

    So I'm guessing this welder would be good for sheet metal repairs? I'm building 2 cars slowly so I need to learn and get good quickly haha.

    I will make sure my metal is clean. I'm pretty anal about small details.
  10. gimpyshotrods
    Joined: May 20, 2009
    Posts: 18,008


  11. I starting watching a fellow rodder gas weld. I then began to teach myself on an old 1967 F-100 in my garage. I must say after some time is was repairing all the rot areas of the truck. Towards the end I could fill pin holes gas welding. A few years later I purchased a Lincoln 110 MIG welder. I had a buddy start me on my 1963 Impala. It was easier to graduate to the MIG.
    In my opinion the plug weld is the easiest type to joint 2 pieces of sheet metal for the beginner. However,the most difficult weld joint for a beginner is a thin gauge butt weld.
    I did watch "how to" videos and talk with friends that could MIG weld. A good after hours course at a local high school evening class would not hurt.
  12. I did the community college nite (ROP) classes years ago with a stick welder and after we mastered arc welding the Sensei-master turned use loose on the mig .... Some of the heavier welding in fabbing still requires the penetration that you get with a stick welder ... but the mig is super great in its own applications.

    That is a good welder and since the guage is there already all you need is to lease the argon-mix bottle at your welder's supply place .... have fun.
  13. Butch Clay
    Joined: Sep 27, 2011
    Posts: 221

    Butch Clay

    I first learned to Oxy weld, still my personal favorite.

    I took a full course in welding and it took a year, it was great learning from the folks who do it everyday. I highly recommend this.

    Have fun, like anything else in life it takes time and practice.

    Posted using the Full Custom H.A.M.B. App!
  14. greaseyknight
    Joined: Sep 27, 2010
    Posts: 225

    from Burley WA

  15. You chose a good welder, after using other brands I like the Lincolns best!
    Don's Hot Rods gave you good advise! A few more tips, I wouldn't expect to weld 16ga or thinner with fluxcore, in fact I don't use fluxcore at all with my 110v welder. I almost always use .023 wire with straight CO2. I've used other gases and they aren't worth the extra hassle and expence on steel. (stainless or aluminum are a different ballgame) I would get 1/8" steel to practice on, it is heavy enough so a beginner won't blow holes too easy, but thin enough so your welder can blow holes in it. This will force you to learn to control your amperage and welding speed.
    After you get so you can weld good on the flat, explore welding out of position. (some say it can't be done) Lets face it, if your car is pretty much done, are you going to tear it all apart so you can stand the frame against the wall to weld on a muffler hanger?
    A couple more pieces of advise. Is your vision up to snuff? you have to be able to see very well to see that little wire with a ball of fire on the end of it. I now have tri-focal lenses in my glasses and also use a magnifier lens in my helmet. Helmets!!!! don't buy a cheap auto-dark helmet, I bought one and after welding had a pretty green dot in my vision afterwards and I've heard others say the same thing. The cheap ones don't get as dark as they are supposed to. I went back to my old fashioned big window regular helmet with a gold coated lens.
    Good luck
  16. trollst
    Joined: Jan 27, 2012
    Posts: 1,998


    First buy a helmet, second, wear the helmet, looking at the arc makes your eyes sore and its hard to see what you're welding. Without the helmet its hard to follow your line and easier to not see your woman for a few days, do that a few times and you won't see anybody anymore, buy a decent helmet, it'll save your eyes, flashes are painful.
    Get busy welding scrap together, you'll get the hang of it, enjoy and good luck, you'll wonder how you ever did without it.
  17. snaptwo
    Joined: Apr 25, 2011
    Posts: 696


    Buy a cart for it , HF usually has them but don't buy their helmet if you value your eyesight .You should have a 20 amp plug and use a heavy duty extension cord (mine is 10 ga.) . Take good care of the whip and keep it as straight as possible . I use .025 and straight CO2 on body work and .030 on heavier stuff. No you won't build bridges with it but it is a handy tool for the money. Miller and Hobart also build great machines for home/farm/shop use.
  18. dinokruzordinance
    Joined: May 21, 2008
    Posts: 301


    The local welding supplier is a good place to start asking questions and get direction. Ours puts on classes and 2 day a year seminar where the show the latest equipment. Buy a good welding helmet. Vocational college or tradeschool. Our local welding supplier also has a guy that teachs on his time at $65 a class.
  19. XERB
    Joined: Aug 8, 2012
    Posts: 123


    Excellent, a welder, grinder, oldies radio up loud...we were put here to keep the neighbors awake and let them enjoy the pleasurable audio only a shed can dish out...then they get to see the creation shed rubber on their street...we are too good to our neighbors...
  20. gwarren007
    Joined: Apr 3, 2010
    Posts: 381


  21. gimpyshotrods
    Joined: May 20, 2009
    Posts: 18,008


  22. Don,those are my thoughts verbatim. HRP
  23. fomocojoe
    Joined: Aug 14, 2013
    Posts: 24


    I have this exact same welder and I can tell you it's very user friendly and forgiving for the newbie. What's nice is it will easily do sheet metal and exhaust, but also do much thicker metal. I even did some leaf spring mounts with mine turned up all the way and some .035 flux core wire. Read the literature that came with it thoroughly; it's quite helpful. You'll be happy with it!
  24. Fire it up and make sparks!
  25. oldsman41
    Joined: Jun 25, 2010
    Posts: 1,289


    yes most comm colleges make you take other classes. if you have a local volcational school they may have a night course I know in my area they do have courses.
  26. whtbaron
    Joined: Sep 12, 2012
    Posts: 571

    from manitoba

    x3 on avoiding cheapy auto helmets. I used one from Princess Auto (same crap as HF in the states) and tossed it in the corner after 3 minutes. Got a Hobart for xmas one year, and I love it.... it's great. I have the 220volt Lincoln and also recommend you get the bottle. Have fun!
  27. famdoc3
    Joined: May 14, 2010
    Posts: 51


    I have this welder and have used it for almost 11 years. If you are going to use it on it's highest setting it wants a 30 amp service. I used it for almost everything. Good luck with it.
  28. rustyangels
    Joined: Sep 28, 2010
    Posts: 178


    Think of it this way... wire feed welding is somewhat similar to running a bead of caulking. Now on the the thinner material it takes some adjustment to not hurry and overheat your work.
  29. 61 chevy
    Joined: Apr 11, 2007
    Posts: 891

    61 chevy

    I run my dog out of the garage when welding, I don't want him looking at arc :eek:

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