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tig welder add on unit- welder gurus needed

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by handmedown40limited, Nov 6, 2011.

  1. handmedown40limited
    Joined: Mar 28, 2011
    Posts: 204

    handmedown40limited
    Member
    from tracy ca

    A buddy offered me a miller stick welder a couple weeks ago for free. Pretty new. Was his dads and my buddy doesn't know how to weld.
    I don't really want a stick welded I have been looking for a nice mig. Wishing I could afford a tig.

    Now today I stumbled on to a miller tig add-on unit for a miller stick welder. What is it and how well does this work. If it is at least descent I can have a tig welded for under 200. Have any of you guys every used one of these??

    Thanks
    Ken
     
    Last edited: Nov 6, 2011
  2. Mr48chev
    Joined: Dec 28, 2007
    Posts: 26,278

    Mr48chev
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    A good stick welder trumps no welder and sometimes I wish I still had mine hooked up in the garage. The add on tig should be fine for a guy in his own shop at home if the welder has the power to run it right.
     
  3. BillWallace
    Joined: May 6, 2011
    Posts: 132

    BillWallace
    Member

    First is the welder you are being offered is a dc/ac machine or just a a/c machine because if its ac only you will not be able to weld steel after adding the TIG set up. Just some advice here but if you want a mig welder then buy a mig welder & spend your money where you really want too.
     
  4. handmedown40limited
    Joined: Mar 28, 2011
    Posts: 204

    handmedown40limited
    Member
    from tracy ca

    The stick is an AC/DC. And I want a tig and a MIG. Building a stainless sheetmetal intake for my straight 8 and plan on headers next. I am just usig the welders at my work right now but havin any capabilities of the tig would be great. I will still get a MIG
     
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  5. gimpyshotrods
    Joined: May 20, 2009
    Posts: 16,609

    gimpyshotrods
    Member

    I have used all manner of stick machines, with attachments to make them both TIG and MIG. Most of them were Miller, at that. I spent a long time working on a 400 CC CV, with both MIG and TIG attachments. Aside from settings being done on separate "boxes", it was no different from any other machine. The stick unit just acts at the power supply. This is not entirely different from having them all in the same box. You may even be able to find a MIG unit for this rig, and have it all together, potentially saving some coin. Check with your local welding supplier/repair facility for used units, as well as your local classifieds. The MIG units look like this (an older unit should be just fine): [​IMG]
     
  6. handmedown40limited
    Joined: Mar 28, 2011
    Posts: 204

    handmedown40limited
    Member
    from tracy ca

    I am liking this idea. I am goin to try to get my hands on both these units and then talk to the weld shop we use at work to see if they can get/ find me a used MIG unit. I bet the system would work good for my home shop stuff. Do I have to worry about duty cycle or anything like that.?
     
  7. gimpyshotrods
    Joined: May 20, 2009
    Posts: 16,609

    gimpyshotrods
    Member

    Duty cycle is set by the unit acting as the power supply. In your case, the stick unit. The MIG and TIG units should have a 100% duty cycle, at any amperage, with the only limit I can think of being the longevity of an air-cooled torch, in the case of the TIG unit (unless it is a water-cooled one).

    If the stick unit is 200 Amps, or over, you should be well able to weld everything you might find on a car, and then some, at 100% duty-cycle. In any case, check with Miller for a manual. That will tell for sure.
     
  8. tig master
    Joined: Apr 9, 2009
    Posts: 416

    tig master
    Member
    from up north

    Yes it can be done but scratch start only.200 amps with a tig torch air cooled won't stay cool for long.Why not buy a used maxstar for under a grand and have a tig you will learn with easily.Will come with torch and all the fixins. Yes you can use a dc box but will cost a few bucks to get up and running.Scratch start and no pedal is not as easy as it seems steep learning curve,been there done that.Not easy for beginner on lite gauge metal.

    Tig.
     
  9. Mark Hinds
    Joined: Feb 20, 2009
    Posts: 544

    Mark Hinds
    Member
    from pomona ca

    Gimpy, this is where most novices have trouble. They don't know the difference between Constant Currant and Constant Voltage, Alternating currant, direct currant straight polarity or direct currant reverse polarity. If they don't use the proper setting with the many different types of welding processes and filler material they make mistakes without knowing why and just keep fighting that up hill battle. Novice people please find someone that can show you what you are doing wrong from the start and you will become a good welder in no time. I have taught beginners to lays good bead in all position in less than an hour by being there even holding the electrode to start and show them to feed and travel at the same time. Anyone in my area is more than welcome to pick my brain.
     
  10. dan6628
    Joined: Dec 2, 2005
    Posts: 2

    dan6628
    Member

  11. stimpy
    Joined: Apr 16, 2006
    Posts: 3,547

    stimpy

    I have a old add on tig unit for my welder ( miller ) and for a hobby to small production shop its pefect , and once you start getting the welds down right you will never go back to a mig , the only reason you would use a mig is for large welding projects where you want to lay long beads . and you can get some nice weld stick welding with the small rods to do that . I migged a rollcage together , and tiged one together and tiging was easier and cleaner than the Mig , and doing sheetmetal a tig is the only way to go , as you can control the heat better and control warping . ( plus you can hammer the welds down and not have cracking , mig welds are hard )
     
  12. handmedown40limited
    Joined: Mar 28, 2011
    Posts: 204

    handmedown40limited
    Member
    from tracy ca

    I amthe lead machinist in a precision sheetmetal shop. i have tig welded but not enough to know all the setups. I have a couple good welder friends that are willing to teach me anythingi need to know. That's one reason I want the tig
     
  13. thats an expensive piece of equipment, it would have to be a really nice stick welder for me to want to spend that kind of money to improve it.
     
  14. Mark Leigh
    Joined: Oct 2, 2007
    Posts: 8

    Mark Leigh
    Member

    You can take the stick welder for for free, buy a torch, the leads, gas hose, flow meter, rent a bottle , and start welding right away, there's nothing wrong with a air cooled torch. I have welded miles of SS with a aircooled torch and they will go for longer than you will want to hold on to them for , temp wise.


    Forget about all the add on extra stuff, etc. There's been plenty of quality welding done the same way for the last 40 years. You don't need the AC unless you are ready to go to Aluminum welding. Same with the High Frequency units.

    When you decide you have a need for a nice Tig welder, then go out and buy one.

    The fact is you can practice and learn good skills on the stick welder/tig setup for low dough.Unless your are bucks up , but I read the post and think you are on a budget.
     
    Last edited: Nov 7, 2011
  15. handmedown40limited
    Joined: Mar 28, 2011
    Posts: 204

    handmedown40limited
    Member
    from tracy ca

    Always on a budget. I checked out the stick welder last night but it was pushed into the corner of my buddies garage and it is a miller thunderbolt 225/115
     
    Last edited: Nov 7, 2011
  16. handmedown40limited
    Joined: Mar 28, 2011
    Posts: 204

    handmedown40limited
    Member
    from tracy ca

    Now that I think of it I wish i would have gotten a picture. Not sure if I saw the name right
     

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