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So I got this MIG welder for free...

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Ben DeBumper, Sep 24, 2011.

  1. Ben DeBumper
    Joined: May 27, 2010
    Posts: 58

    Ben DeBumper
    Member

    I got a free MIG welder today! The problem is, it's an oddball make (FRO) and it didn't come with a manual. The previous owner never used it so he couldn't help me. I haven't tried it yet because I am puzzled by the front panel controls. See the picture; besides the on-off switch there are three knobs. The upper right one is obviously wire speed; I think the center left one is voltage. The one that has me puzzled is the bottom one. It clicks off at the "0" setting and moves smoothly between 1 and 10. Anyone have a clue what it does?
     

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  2. Mr48chev
    Joined: Dec 28, 2007
    Posts: 28,801

    Mr48chev
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    A little more info and better photo might help guys identify it and give you some leads.
    Did you Google the machine brand/model to see what is out there?
     
  3. DadsDodge
    Joined: Sep 13, 2008
    Posts: 25

    DadsDodge
    Member

    Fine adjustment between steps on main switch ?
     
  4. Ben DeBumper
    Joined: May 27, 2010
    Posts: 58

    Ben DeBumper
    Member

    It's called a Baby MIG 131. When I googled it I found that the maker is now called SAF-FRO and it's mainly sold in Europe. The machines they make now do not have these controls and I could not find any info on it.
     

  5. eddiebroadway
    Joined: Feb 3, 2007
    Posts: 25

    eddiebroadway
    Member

    My ESAB Migmaster 250 has three knobs, so does the DipPack at work so its pretty common, coarse voltage setting, fine voltage setting, and wire speed. I had a Snap-On Mig with only two knobs and hated it, either too hot or cold. If there is a chart inside the door where the wire spool is that would be handy, if not just play with it starting with middle settings, Good Luck!
     
  6. Engine man
    Joined: Jan 30, 2011
    Posts: 3,476

    Engine man
    Member
    from Wisconsin

    Judging by the dots below it, it might be a timer for spot welding and the circle is for normal welding. It will be easy to tell when you try it. It will weld for a short time and shut down. If you set it to the circle it should weld as long as you hold the trigger.
     
  7. 23reotim
    Joined: Feb 5, 2008
    Posts: 139

    23reotim
    Member
    from arizona

    i think its like a timer for doing spot welds.
     
  8. Mr48chev
    Joined: Dec 28, 2007
    Posts: 28,801

    Mr48chev
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

  9. Ratroddude
    Joined: May 15, 2009
    Posts: 1,027

    Ratroddude
    BANNED

    It wouldn't be a "stitch" function , would it? :confused:
     
  10. I wonder if the knob on the left is for heat settings and the bottom right would fine tune the heat within that setting. I have an old Forney (Clarke) that works this way but with switches.
     
  11. Stu D Baker
    Joined: Mar 4, 2005
    Posts: 2,649

    Stu D Baker
    Member
    from Illinois

    The bottom dial (0-10) dials in the percentage of the amp setting, i.e., if you set the amps at number 3, the bottom dial will "fine tune" the amperage setting. Usually, if you need to have it set on 10, it's better to go to next higher amp setting and fine tune it down to where your machine can weld good. Very similar to Miller and others. Looks like a good machine. Stu
     
  12. Ben DeBumper
    Joined: May 27, 2010
    Posts: 58

    Ben DeBumper
    Member

    That's what I got! It even came with a gas bottle, I guess it has argon in it.

    Cool! I'll try it out.
     
  13. leon renaud
    Joined: Nov 12, 2005
    Posts: 1,935

    leon renaud
    Member
    from N.E. Ct.

    check with "Daytona Mig" that machine is most likely made by the same Italian company that makes Astro and several other cheaper 115V machines. I have a Mac Tools branded one I believe Astro is the manufacturers name in fact.Daytona Mig got me manuals and parts when I was told Mac Tools no longer offered this machine and could not get me anything for it!My mac tools unit works fine for light jobs like sheet metal and with proper prep I have welded up to 1/4 inch with it with good results but that's pushing it and I was in a bind when I did the 1/4 inch.Both myself and my son were certified weldors and I like it for sheetmetal and he hates it! If you have experience with a good shop grade mig it will take some adjusting to get used to this machine it's not going to run a bead as easy as a Miller or Lincoln but you can get nice light guage welds with them.If anyone needs parts or service for what you think is an oddball welder give Daytona Mig a call I had everything I need in just a couple days,OH my machine is set up for gas not flux core.
     
  14. Engine man
    Joined: Jan 30, 2011
    Posts: 3,476

    Engine man
    Member
    from Wisconsin

    If the dial with the lightning bolt under it is detented in position 1 through 6 you might have a fine adjust but if it is fully variable, I doubt it.

    The detented O position and the line of spots under the lower right knob lead me to believe it's for spot welding.

    As I said, it will be easy to find out when you try it.
     
  15. My vote for the lower right is " stitch ". The 1-6 is voltage tap settings, and the upper right is wire feed, TR
     
  16. www.fro.it/, if you know anyone who speaks italian, hope that helps, TR
     
  17. Blue One
    Joined: Feb 6, 2010
    Posts: 11,017

    Blue One
    ALLIANCE MEMBER
    from Alberta

    The top dial is for wire feed speed (amperage) . The bottom dial is for voltage.

    You will want to set them roughly the same, for instance if you set the wire feed speed at 5 then you also set the voltage dial at 5.

    The other dial is a range selection dial giving you a selection of 6 different ranges from a low of 1 to a high of 6.

    As the symbol below it indicates it is a series of steps, 1 being lower and 6 being the highest.

    You select the range you want, low for thinner metal and higher for thicker metal.

    You then set the wire speed and voltage to where it gives you the weld you need.
     
  18. Stu D Baker
    Joined: Mar 4, 2005
    Posts: 2,649

    Stu D Baker
    Member
    from Illinois

    This machine does not have a "spot timer". Typically, with a spot welder, there is a toggle switch (Stitch/Spot) which changes the function of the welder. It's a nice welder, but no real bells and whistles. Stu
     
  19. You should have got the one that goes to Eleven!
     
  20. GREASER815
    Joined: Dec 2, 2008
    Posts: 973

    GREASER815
    Member

    Just plug it in and mess around with it. You could already know.
     
  21. Being a European made machine does it even work with our standard 110/220 60 hertz? Is it European made for our market? What does the plug look like?

    Italy as well as much of Europe is 220 50 hertz coming out of the wall sockets.
     
  22. Mike51Merc
    Joined: Dec 5, 2008
    Posts: 3,856

    Mike51Merc
    Member

    The symbols look like a set of spots and a clock, so I go with spot weld timer.
     
  23. Ben DeBumper
    Joined: May 27, 2010
    Posts: 58

    Ben DeBumper
    Member

    It's 110 volts. There's a plate on the back that says Widder Corporation, I guess they were the US distributor. I would fire it up and experiment but I need to get a welding helmet.
     
  24. Stu D Baker
    Joined: Mar 4, 2005
    Posts: 2,649

    Stu D Baker
    Member
    from Illinois

    Perhaps the universal symbol for "On/Off"? Main power switch. Stu
     
  25. Blue One
    Joined: Feb 6, 2010
    Posts: 11,017

    Blue One
    ALLIANCE MEMBER
    from Alberta

    Ignore all the other posts, post 17 has the correct info. :D
     
  26. leon renaud
    Joined: Nov 12, 2005
    Posts: 1,935

    leon renaud
    Member
    from N.E. Ct.

    yes until he needs to find parts or manuals for that machine!:D
     
  27. Ben DeBumper
    Joined: May 27, 2010
    Posts: 58

    Ben DeBumper
    Member

    I plugged it in and it powered up, fed wire, and flowed gas; so far so good. I can't make sparks until I get a helmet. But you're right if it breaks it is probably scrap.
     
  28. RugBlaster
    Joined: Nov 12, 2006
    Posts: 563

    RugBlaster
    Member

    The mainest thing is that it is free. I wouldn't give a shit if it had 15 knobs and a built in kazoo on a beaded chain............IT'S FREE. Weird, but free
     
  29. jay7262
    Joined: Jun 6, 2011
    Posts: 124

    jay7262
    Member

    Translate the Italian instructions on-line with Google translator
     
  30. mysteryman
    Joined: Apr 20, 2011
    Posts: 253

    mysteryman
    Member
    from atlanta

    the other setting is for stitch welding
     

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