After discussing the issue of needing a small portable welder in my
truck and doing some welding with an elderly Marquette 110vt
transformer buzzbox, Ernie Ls suggestion of finding a small 110vt
inverter welder makes a lot of sense. My Lincoln Weldpak 100 is not
suitable for a lot of the field welding I need to do, is just not big
Anyone got a 110vt inverter stick welder they want to swap for
"Deep in her heart, every moslem woman yearns to show us her tits"
Gunner, do some math and you will see that the 15A breaker will trip
way below any usable welding parameters are reached. My calculations
suggest that at 36 volts welding voltage, and 50 amps of welding
current, your power consumption at the electrode tip reaches what a
15A breaker can supply. And that's before taking conversion losses
On Tue, 30 Jan 2007 08:15:35 -0600, Ignoramus23017
So you are saying that my 110vt Lincoln Weldpac 100 dosnt work?
and the Marquette Little Joe buzzbox always trips my 15 amp breaker at
Odd...must be something we are both missing here....cause they both
work, and both are transformer based.
"Deep in her heart, every moslem woman yearns to show us her tits"
Unusual for the arc voltage to be much above 20v when actually
welding. So 20 volt x 100 amps = 2 KW. Now that is an easy load for
a normal domestic socket here in the UK where we can draw up to 3 KW,
but I don't know the idiosyncrasies of the US electrical system to
comment if that's ok on your side of the pond.
I have done some engineering jobs that involve operating equipment off the
power systems of several countries and the British system, as best I
understand it, is unique. In the U.S., and in virtually all other
countries, a circuit is fed from a fuse or breaker with the line going from
one outlet to the next to, finally, one at the end of the string. In the
British system, the line is a loop from fuse to outlet to outlet, etc., and
then back to the fuse. In other words, the circuit is fed from both ends.
Hence, a common house circuit using AWG 14 wire is, in the U.S., fused at 15
amps, but in Britain, fused at 30 amps. Each outlet is, in effect, fed by
two AWG 14 wires in parallel. And, to protect the device plugged into it,
the plugs contain fuses appropriate to the device being plugged in. So, you
can take 3 KW off of a British outlet, but only half that off one on this
side of the pond. And, before someone else feels the need to point it out,
in the U.S., kitchens and most shops are wired with AWG 12 and fused at 20
Also of course not only is our current capacity doubled, but so is the
voltage as our sockets are all 230v, so 4 times the capacity of
American 110v ones. I reckon that it is a good well engineered
It makes things a lot easier for higher power applications like welding or
high power tools. That's for sure. I envy what the UK and AUS folks have
by default. We have to run special 220 circuits for all these high power
Move over, Ernie, for Ig hath writ re welding!
Now to electrical matters: inverter welders can do more with the same
supply current than transformer CC (stick or TIG) welders can because
they can run at much closer to unity power factor. They need not
rely on inductance (loosely-coupled xfmr) to produce acceptable
open-circuit voltage for arc start followed by current limiting to the
arc because they use electronics to accomplish the required control.
Arc voltage at 100+ amps with appropriately-sized rod is nowhere near
36 volts, more like less than 24. Use a 20-amp breaker and
substantial line cord. 20-amp breakers can handle more than 20 amps
for short periods. The little boxes have limited dutycycle at 100+
amps, but they'll do the job if you're not in a hurry and can live
with a minute or so of continuous arc time followed by 8 to 10 minute
Transformer-based small wirefeed boxes e.g. Linc SP135+ (135 amps max)
can deliver 100+ amps because they don't need high open-circuit
voltage for arc start. They are constant-voltage machines. They
still have limited dutycycle. They're easily capable of soundly
welding 3/16" steel with fluxcore, well over 1/4" in the hands of a
skilled weldor though it's very slow going.
Iggy - you've got something wrong here - you have said what you have
said about Gunner without realising you have made the mistake by
getting the voltage way wrong - the one you use in your power
The voltage you are quoting is probably "Open Circuit Voltage". And
Constant Current welding machines go to much OCV's than this - I know
that many give you a good tingly buzz and OCV's around 90V are
reported for some welding machines.
The "arc running" voltage is lower. Here are some of my own actual
readings, working with a friend who is a welding technician /
instructor at a technical college:
"All 2.5mm diameter:
|7018 |Bohler EV50 |22V |72A|
|6013 "R" |straight rutile |25V |62A|
|6013 "RC"|Zodian Universal rutile-cellulose|21V |76A|
|6010 |Foxcel |30V |62A|
|6010 |Foxcel - wet |28V |64A|
|6011 |Arcos Nu5 |20V-25V|62A|
|6011 |Arcos Nu5 - wet |30V-35V|63A|
Welding machine was Murex Transtig AC/DC 250HF
on polarity DCEP
set to 20% on the 20A-320A range."
Say 22V for non-cellulosic rod
(15A x 110V)/22V = 15 x 110/22 = 15 x 5 = 75A
That 75A can only be the welding current if the welding machine is
100% efficient - which cannot be the case.
Now this is the stuff you will know, Iggy...
Reputedly, copper-and-iron tranformer weldign machines are about 50%
effient - which squares with how often you blow the fuse when welding
away with a buzz-box.
(that's because 50Hz to 60Hz would need an infeasibly massive
transformer to be efficient(?))
A inverter "silicon" welding machine is reckoned to be over 90%
efficient - which squares with the fact that here in the UK you can
lay down loads of heat in your welds without blowing the fuse ever.
(and this is because "chopped" at around 20000Hz even a tiny
transformer is very effcient for weldign currents)
So Gunner with an inverter welding machine is surely going to be
happily welding away with 2.5mm (3/32nd-inch) rods off this weedy
Isn't that right?
It's very true that there's not a lot of power available for a standard
115V 15 Amp circuit. But standard circuit breakers all have a time deal
feature that allows you to pull extra current for a short period of time
before they trip. I tried to find some real trip curve graphs of typical
home circuit breakers but the sqaured ecatalog site seemed to be down and
the GE site seemed to only have them in autocad format.
But I think it's typical to be able to run a breaker at about 50% over
rating for up to about 60 seconds. Or something like 2 minutes at 25% over
rating. And maybe 30 seconds at 2x the rating. It needs something like 8x
the current to blow instantly. But these times could be high. These
numbers might only fit special long delay breakers and the periods might be
shorter for typical home breakers.
Arc welders that run off 110 volts are pushing these numbers to the limits
to get as much short term welding current out of these small boxes as
possible. They already have low duty cycles at their highest ratings.
The Miller Maxstar 150 S for example is an inverter that runs on 115 or
230V. On the spec sheet, you can see the max voltage/current output curve
for 115 volt operation has a peek that looks to be around 160 amps at 15
volts. That's 2400 watts. The spec sheet also lists a 35% duty cycle for
115 V use at 100 amps and 24 V, which is also 2400 watts of output. And it
lists a 26 amp input.
115 volts at 15 amps is only 1725 watts. Even 115 at 20 amps is only 2300
watts. So the welder is clearly trying to suck higher wattage (amps) out
of the wall for short terms by taking advantage of the trip delay that
exists in the circuit breakers (or just trusting the welder will not try to
operate the box on the higher current settings if they are using a 15A
I don't know if these type of welders force the limits on you when you run
them at 115 instead of 230, but I assume some don't. The duty cycle chart
limits it to 100 amps. but the grab shows it able to do 160 amps at 115
volts. So if you crank the think all the way up, you can probably get more
out of them for very short periods without blowing fuses. But you will
probably be faced with very small duty cycles because of the limits of the
breaker. (weld for 10 seconds, wait a few minutes).
Of course, if you can run them off of 20 amp or 30 amp circuits at 115 volt
then things will be better and you will be faced only with the duty cycle
of the welder and not the duty cycle of the circuit breaker.
I have no welding experience with any of this, but just wanted to share my
knowledge about how circuit breakers work. Since you can push them way
over their rated limit for short periods, you can get more welding power of
a 115V 15A circuit than you might expect for short periods.
Before posting the above, I just ran upstairs and did a test using two hair
dryers pulling over 12 amps each on a 15 amp home circuit. They ran for
over a minute and then the breaker on the power strip I was using tripped
(I didn't even realize the strip had a breaker on it when I started the
test). I reset the power strip breaker and it ran for another 45 seconds
and tripped again. Still hadn't tripped the 15 amp house breaker. I felt
that was enough testing. :) So there's a test running 25 amps on a 15 amp
circuit for a couple of minutes without having the house breaker trip.
That was about 3000 watts or the same power as 83 amps at 36 volts or 200
amps at 15 volts.
The HF stick/TIG unit is out there, less than a couple of hundred on
sale with coupons. Downside is that you have to use really, REALLY
small rod and duty cycle is pretty low. It IS light, though. OK for
sheet metal patching, just don't plan on building cars with it. I
think you'll find that most of the 115-only inverter boxes are going
to have the same limitations, you just can't pull enough juice out of
a household 115v circuit to do heavy work.
I suspect you would want something like the Miller Maxstar
Pricey (Base model $818). A friend of mines shop got a
couple of the Lincoln welders that compete with this and he
thought they were great. They work best when fed by 230 vac
You could make up a special extension cord for your own use.
You need two heavy 110 volt cords, a junction box and a 220
volt plug to fit your welder. You can put the 220 volt plug
in the junction box or on a pigtail coming from it. Wire it
up so the hot leg from each 110 volt cord go to the 220 volt
plugs hots. Now when you go to use it you have to find two
110 volt circuits that are on opposite legs. This will give
you 220 volt to the welder for TEMPORARY use. The
electrician jockeys will wince, but I think you are smart
enough to understand what is going on here and the
consequences that could come from misusing it :)
What brought this whole thing on was from a week or so ago, when I had
to weld some bits back on a "wrought iron" gate at a clients house. All
I had was the Weldpak 100,..with .035 flux core, a long skinny extension
cord and some wind. If Id had my normal 50' 10 ga extension cord, Id
have been in much better shape, but while the welds were better than
"putty welds" and were enough to hold the bits back on...cosmetically
they sucked the big weinie. First mistake was welding vertical down
hand...and running out of power, even cranked up balls to the wall in
amps. The bits were 3/16"-1/4" that needed welding to 3" square tubing.
Standard fence materials for the artzyfartzy clone tract housing.
The original welder was a good burger flipper. Poor welds, even poorer
engineering..putting welds in the wrong orientation for the stress
directions, only welding one side ..etc.
Nice family from Sri Lanka, the poppa owns half a machine shop where Id
just torn down, repaired and put back together a 6' radial arm drill.
So I was obligated to give it my best shot. I normally use the lil MIG
for repairing guarding, the odd bench and shelf repair..minor welding
stuff in the course of my duties as a machine tool repair
tech...somebody let the guard on a belt sander get loose, vibrate then
crack in half..so Id drag in the Weldpack, fix em up and add it to the
bill. Works great for this sort of thing. Anything bigger, Id drag home,
and weld it with "real" welding gear..and charge appropriately.
I simply could not get enough power at the wire to get a good looking
fillet. The welder would run a nice bead for 20 seconds...then start
bogging down, arc would sputter..etc. Felt like a bad liner feels.
Never did trip the breaker in the house..so I knew I was losing
something in the skinny extension cord, etc
Ernie suggested a inverter stick welder, for several very good reasons,
the least being that stick tends to be "hotter" and give me a better
weld, both cosmetically and in penetration. 1/16 and 3/32, of which Ive
got probably 100lbs of 6011 and 6013 in those sizes..more 3/32. Good
stuff, both Lincoln and Certainium.
Ive a very elderly Marguette 3 tap buzz box. 110vt, ac only, transformer
with no chokes, inductors etc. Just a transformer inside sheetmetal with
a ground clamp and a stinger. So I fired it up, and made some welds in
the same sorts of materials that I was having fits with at the clients
place. IRRC..30vts open circuit. Had some arc starting issues because of
the low voltage, and had to work really short arc..but too short would
snuff the arc, then turn the rod red hot instantly. So low voltage
indeed. But it would dig pretty deep, particularly with 6011, did some
welds, cut them and checked for penetration, etc. Then duplicated them
with the Weldpack 100. Much prettier welds, but not as deep by a
significant amount. I even ran a couple sticks of 7018, which did
pretty good as long as I kept the rod in the puddle..but not too deep or
it would also instantly snuff the arc. Could barely run it vertically
though, either up or down..and restarting the arc was a stone bitch.
But it showed me that I could weld thicker stuff than I could with the
MIG. Not as pretty, not as handy and no where as convient as wire..but
it worked well enough to try to find one, for these odd jobs.
Im not going to be welding very much with it, nor very often..but like
particular tools..they save the day on occasions. The lil buzz box had
three taps, low, medium and high..and the data plate on the box claims
90 amps maximum, with 30volts open circuit. And on High..I was running
a full rod+ before it would pop a 20 amp breaker
If I had the room, Id have a small engine driven welder mounted in the
truck..but I dont..shrug..compact and light is a requirement.
Im not..I repeat NOT a weldor. Im at best..a gifted dauber, at worst..a
good burger flipper. Shrug. But stuff generally passes the BFH test.
Stick Ive been doing for a few years, here and there..shrug
So thats why Ive been looking for a small compact 110vt stick welder to
stuff in the back of the truck next to the Weldpack 100. Next to my 50'
10ga extension cord. Most cases..I wont have the opportunity to break
into a sub and snag off 220 or 110. If I did..Id pick up a small but
higher amperage 220 MIG. I figure a 135 would be about right. Nor do I
have the room to load up my 5000 watt genset, "just in case"
Lincoln SA-200s and 300s are a dime a dozen where I live..but I cant
pull a trailer around with one of the big bastards on it..just in case.
Thanks for the input.
"Deep in her heart, every moslem woman yearns to show us her tits"
The best solution would've been to put off welding until you came back with
the proper extension cord. An alternative could've been to drill some holes
and drive in some self tapping screws for a temporary repair, until you were
passing by the next time with the correct cord.
Those small parts shouldn't have been difficult to weld with your little
welder. Trying to weld with a line voltage drop at high power was most of
(if not the entire) problem.
Having some .030" FC wire might've worked better.
As Ernie has pointed out numerous times in RCM and SEJW, the highest output
of these little welders is 90A (the better brands, not the elcheapos).
I also read a post regarding Ernie welding 1" steel demonstration workpieces
(although not with FC wire, IIRC), so there is a lot of BS floating around
concerning the limited thickness of steel that can be welded with the small
welders (not that I'd feel comfortable about welding 1" steel with my 120VAC
I'd be more confident in a 90A DC wire welder being the more versatile tool,
compared to the little Marquette 90A AC stick welder.
I would think that 90A of DC and FC wire would perform better than 90A of AC
trying to burn 1/16" rods. The FC wire isn't all filler, since the center is
thing on was from a week or so ago, when I had
Posted via a free Usenet account from http://www.teranews.com
With great and due respect to Ernie re welding, I strongly doubt this
assertion if it was made re 110-volt wirefeed boxes. It may have
been made in context omitted here and it is probably true of 110-volt
transformer stickwelders found at J.C. Whitney et al.
If I hadn't read Ernie's numerous posts about the output of 120VAC wire
welders, I wouldn't have been sure about referencing my comments
specifically to Ernie.
The comments are sensible, when considering that most home/hobby 120VAC wire
welders are connected to 20A circuits.
Transformer characteristics will allow increased current from the secondary
windings, as the input voltage is reduced (approximately 1/5 th) to a
working secondary voltage of about 20V (about 30V open circuit).
I wouldn't expect the output current to be greater than 5x the available
input current, and there would need to be conciderations for efficiency
losses. I'm not an EE, so I just might not understand how output current
could be 6-7x greater than the input current.
Welder manufacturers can use any numbers they want for model numbers, and
Hobart chose to use 135 for the model I purchased.
Another 120VAC unit I have (a Century), clearly states that it's rated
output is 90A when connected to a 20A circuit (but also states that the
maximum output is 110A switched to high range, when connected to a 30A
Posted via a free Usenet account from http://www.teranews.com
What I stated was the true welding output of any 110 volt, transformer
based, wire feeder will be limited to around 90 amps max.
You can get short burst of higher output, but they will likely trip
whatever circuit breaker you are plugged into.
This is why I hate the current trend in equating a machine's model
number to it's welding amperage output.
What is the difference between a Hobart Handler 120 and a Handler 145?
Not much, other than 10 years and more plastic in the newer machine.
And Millermatic 251's should really be called 200's
I wouldn't expect it to be likely if you follow the published duty cycle
(but easy to go over the limit because no ones times how long they weld
Good question. Did they change the windings on the transformer or add
another tap to allow you to actually pull the extra current? Or did the
120 always produce 145 amps but they just didn't feel it was ok to admit it
since it was for such a short duty cycle and risked tripping the breaker if
people didn't follow the duty cycle limits?
Checking the spec sheets for the current Handler 125:
and the Handler 140:
They both have current voltage curves for the 4 tap settings and though the
graphs are drawn differently, they look identical to me. All they did was
cut the graph short at 125 amps for the Handler 125 and extend them out to
the 140 point for the Handler 140. So I would say they are identical
machines. Even the duty cycle is identical. Again, all they did was draw
the lines further on the graph to reach the 140 amp point.
The real difference in these machines seems to be that the 140 comes
configured for mig or flux core where as the 125 is only configured for
flux core. You have to buy the mig conversion kit to turn the 125 into the
140. The welding power looks identical in both of these current machines.
But what machines were they selling 10 years ago and what did the voltage
current curves look on those machines? Have they added a higher amperage
range settings on these new machines, or has the increase in ratings been
totally a marketing game?
Soon, the marketing folks will probably force engineering to produce 400
amp 110V units that can only tack weld for 5 seconds once an hour when the
ambient temp is below -50 deg. :)
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