Followup on Welder from Iggy

Well... I had a setback in trying to fire up the Syncrowave 300 I bought from Ig.
My shop is in a 1968 hay barn (no hay now), and some of the wiring is
mine; some is original. My welding station works out of one of the original distribution boxes around the structure.
I went to hook it up to test. I knew it could draw about 130 amps, so I checked stuff. The main in the distro was 200A, but when I looked at the wiring feeding that main, it was #8 (damn!). Well... it had worked for years at 40 and 50 amps for my little Mig and buzz-box, so I thought I'd hook up anyway, and try a low amperage setting.
Guys, except for my MIG, I've never done any DC welding, never owned a TIG, and never had any high-frequency in any machines. This thing is like a paradigm shift for me.
It welds so smoothly at 125A in stick mode that I can almost weld blindfolded, just by listening to the arc. In TIG mode, it's so near impossible not to strike a proper arc on the first try that you'd have to work at it to fail.
This thing was built in the late '80s or early '90s, but it's more welder I think I'll ever need. All copper, too!
Ig doesn't know it, but he's looking for some other shop tools for me. <G>
LLoyd
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"Lloyd E. Sponenburgh" wrote:

The Syncrowaves are great machines. The machine is so good it enables an occasional hobby welder to make good welds. I'll never part with my Syncrowave 250.
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somecomments.
thanks for being a great customer
150a is all you need for steel, al may require more.
this is truly a gentleman's welder.
i love buying and selling welders and welding rod.
On 2012-08-17, Lloyd E. Sponenburgh <lloydspinsidemindspring.com> wrote:

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On Fri, 17 Aug 2012 11:40:51 -0500, "Lloyd E. Sponenburgh" <lloydspinsidemindspring.com> wrote:>Well... I had a setback in trying to fire up the Syncrowave 300 I bought

It's not only the size of the wire, it's the length. What size is the Main Panel, and how far does the #8 have to go from the Main to the Barn? Aerial or Underground?
It's real easy to run a larger wire and then swing the Barn service over at your leisure.
It's not as easy but a lot more useful (especially if it's several hundred feet to the House) if the Utility will give you a separate service to the barn. Might even get 120/240V Open Delta or Full Delta 3-phase, and that's VERY useful if you want to get a real big welder, compressor, lathe or mill...
The Power Utility gets to cheat the hell out of the Ampacity ratings on their wires on the other side of the meter, and there's not a lot you can do other than complain of excessive voltage drop measured at the meter - They'll put in #1 AL for a 200A service drop from the pole to the house, then you connect 3/0 Copper to it for in the riser.

But remember, the weld bead can be as beautiful as a Renoir Painting - but if you don't get proper penetration on both sides of the bead (and let it cool slowly so it doesn't crack, etc.) you aren't welding, just spackling. And spackle fails real fast...
You have to make practice welds then put those sample coupons in the bench vise and beat them to heck, and make sure the parent metal fails first.

Does your Syncrowave have a sister? Preferably Engine Driven?
--<< Bruce >>--
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"Bruce L. Bergman (munged human readable)"

Bruce, the barn is a commercial/agricultural building on its own service. I'm completely compentent to size and run the correct wiring from the meter can to the distribution box.

I've been stick, MIG, and O/A brazing/cutting for decades (actually just started O/A fusion welding about a year ago), Bruce. I can make and recognize a good stick weld, even with a Craftsman buzz-box. I just never realized how _easy_ it was until I got this nice welder.
And I never owned a TIG. That will be where the learning curve is for me. I've already figured out that the puddle looks a lot different with TIG than it does with OA welding. I've also figured out that with this small #200 torch, #12 shade helmet lens is too dark, even when working on aluminum. Probably it would be right for a bigger electrode, but not for an .040" tungsten at low amperage.
Lloyd
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"Lloyd E. Sponenburgh" wrote:

A good machine certainly makes a difference. The arc control setting on the Syncrowave certainly helps when stick welding, particularly if you rarely do stick.

Invest in a good adjustable auto helmet like a Jackson EQC. Also invest in a couple of the Harbor Freight $50 auto helmets for assistants. They make life a lot easier, particularly since you can move from one weld position to the next or even rearrange clamps without bothering to lift the helmet.
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Assistants do not need autodarkening helmets, you can get by with old darkened glass helmets.
i
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Ignoramus15734 wrote:

For $50 or less with coupon for the HF autos, who cares?
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ACtually... there is a concern. Some of the cheaper ones turn off unexpectedly. If you don't use one often enough to recognize that it's off, and "re-tap" the glass to turn them back on, you could get a shot of light you don't expect or want.
If the folks kibbitzing aren't experienced with auto-darkening helmets (I have one... I meant "set to #12 shade" earlier), then I'd suggest that a fixed lens is better for safety.
LLoyd
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"Lloyd E. Sponenburgh" wrote:

It has little to do with safety. All the auto darks provide full IR and UV protection on or off. You can only get dazzled by visible light.
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On 2012-08-18, Lloyd E. Sponenburgh <lloydspinsidemindspring.com> wrote:

I had a Harbor Freight one, it was OK while it worked, eventually it brkoe and I have a Miller now.
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On Sat, 18 Aug 2012 15:02:52 -0500, "Lloyd E. Sponenburgh"

The Harbor Freight hoods work just fine. Ive got 2 in the rack and I may grab one of them, or the $450 Openel. Whichever is closest.
Gunner
One bleeding-heart type asked me in a recent interview if I did not agree that "violence begets violence." I told him that it is my earnest endeavor to see that it does. I would like very much to ensure - and in some cases I have - that any man who offers violence to his fellow citizen begets a whole lot more in return than he can enjoy.
- Jeff Cooper
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On 08/18/2012 04:52 PM, Gunner wrote:

My HF (actually Western Safety) still works, but if you look at a fluorescent bulb with it, the shading across the lens is not uniform. There are darker and lighter areas, sort of like a nebula nebula would look in b/w.
I don't know if they are all like this, or maybe I just got a bummer element.
I have no doubts as to the safety provided by the unit, but it has likely added an additional level of difficulty to my welding.
Jon <---- blaming his helmet
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On 8/19/2012 9:08 AM, Jon Danniken wrote: ...

...
...
I can't bring myself to trust HF QC to that point...maybe they are ensuring the glass _always_ meets ANSI Z-spec's but I just am not that sure they care whether their vendors really do what they say they do or not in pursuit of bottom-dollar pricing...but maybe I'm just paranoid :)
--
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On 8/19/2012 3:43 PM, Gunner Asch wrote:

Well "their" w/ HF is all relative. I see today they're saying "Chicago Welding" brand. W(ho)TH is Chicago Welding? Some noname Chinese importing outfit in all likelihood. One can't find a thing out about them other than HF sells stuff w/ the brand.
Who knows what spec's they actually meet and where do you go to find out?
Maybe they're as good as anybody else's but I don't have much confidence that the next one will be the same as somebody else's was.
--
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wrote:

It's HF's store brand, like Kirkland at Costco.

It could come from a different factory in a different province. Your confidence (such as it is) has to come from HF itself.
Best regards, Spehro Pefhany
--
"it's the network..." "The Journey is the reward"
snipped-for-privacy@interlog.com Info for manufacturers: http://www.trexon.com
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On 8/19/2012 5:58 PM, Spehro Pefhany wrote: ...

...
My point exactly. I have _zero_ confidence in HF being anything other than the cheapest they can find...
--
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On 8/19/2012 8:52 PM, Gunner Asch wrote:

...
_WHAT_ spec's does it meet? That's the problem--they don't provide any.
--
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any.
Haven't you read the responses here? Are you selectively blocking some users?
Harbor freight cites the ANSI specification their helmets meet. They cite it in their online catalog. I presume they do so in any written catalogs or sales flyers, as well.
Why do you persist in saying that they do not provide specifications when you've been shown that they do?
(I'm not a great HF fan, but if it's true, it's true)
LLoyd
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On 8/20/2012 6:26 AM, Lloyd E. Sponenburgh wrote:

...
Yes, and yes... :) (but not the ones in this thread; I hadn't seen them all at the time of posting)
I _did_ look -- the ones I saw widely promoted did _NOT_ have any indication of meeting ANSI Std's on any link I saw.
I did finally follow one other path that did show one that did--so perhaps either there's a rendering difference between browsers or there are different products or somesuch but I had been unable to find the indication of performance spec's other than the 90-day warranty stuff which by itself is meaningless.
But, I still don't trust HF unequivocally to ensure their products meet the spec's they print. (And, yes, I _AM_ selective that way... :) )
I do trust the "name-brand" guys to be more careful--maybe it's an ill-placed trust I don't know but that's me and w/ my eyes I'm willing to pay's the extra money for perhaps nothing but that feeling. Thing is, I don't have the way to verify it a priori. So except by bad results if the low-priced spread doesn't match up and that's not made up by money back or a lower cost going in...
--
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