Idealarc 300/300 Need Help - Triping Breaker

The issue I need help with is that when i am in tig mode and press on
the foot current controller the circuit breaker trips out. This happen
usually 1 out of 2 or 3 times. Sometimes it will trip out at first
time, sometimes it will not happen until the third time. it will happen
most of the time when I press the controller, disengage and press it
again with in a few seconds.
When in the stick mode it will trip out at about the same frequency
(1/2 - 1/3 times) when first turn on. But once it is on, it will stay
running over the full range of current setting using rod sizes up to
5/32 on plate steel up to 1/2 inch. Controller works in both Stick and
Tig modes.
Welder Data: Build 1984 to Code 8888 pre lincoln electric co per s/n on
Installation data:
-circuit breaker (new) = 100 amp
- AWG #2 15 feet
-House feed is 200 amp.
Trouble shooting done so far:
Cleaned breaker contacts and buss bar.
retighten wire connections at breaker and welder
Contactor 'contact' appear clean and not burnt or corroded but have not
cleaned yet.
IMHO the issue appears to be related to the contactor engagement
Any additional ideas would be GREATLY appericated.
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If I understand your problem, it is similar to one I had with my 355 a few years ago. All of your problems involves the foot pedal? You're using the pedal while stick welding?
My problem was damage to internal wires in the foot pedal cable from being squashed one time too many. It took a while to figure out because I did not expect that it could shut off the welder.
I put a continuity meter on both ends of each wire and wiggled the cable and found the locations of the shorts. Opened it up those spots, wrapped tape around the problem wires and has worked ever since.
Reply to
Polymer Man
FWIW, I have your exact welder. Ideal arc 300/300. I also had to redo the foot pedal wires right at the base of the foot pedal.. IIRC, it didn't trip the 100 amp fuse at the panel. tripped somethig inside. If you're tripping a 100 amp breaker, something will be hot and have carbon marks. You can download the manual, it has a great trouble shooting section and the electrical prints.
Reply to
Karl Townsend
It is likely coil saturation that is causing trip out, overfuse with time delay fusing. Very common on old transformer based equipment with saturable reactors that control the welding current. Your foot control could have a poor connection on the wiper that allows it to surge the reactor by providing a DC pulse to the core. You should clean the wiper and make sure there is sufficient spring pressure to hold the wiper contact against the resistance winding through the full sweep of the potentiometer.
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If the problem has been around ever since you got it, it is possible it has a power factor corrector installed that is causing a large inrush current when first turned on. The power factor correcting caps are usually sized for the mid range output current of the machine. This can cause an inrush current which exceeds even the recommended breaker current for the machine. The size of the inrush depends on where you are on the AC main waveform when you turn on the power switch. The symptom you describe for the stick mode (first turning on the machine) fits this. The Tig pedal mode sounds like something else. The cure for the inrush is to remove one of the power factor correcting caps. They usually use more than one to get the job done. If not, then remove the one they used. I had a similar problem with my synchrowave 250. It came with the power factor correcting kit installed but I had to remove one of the 4 caps to stop the nuisance breaker trips when first turning on power.
Reply to
Terry Mayhugh
Thanks everyone for you help. i got it going. I did learn that there is a difference between the 208v and the 230v. I was wired for the 208. i change to the 230 and all is well. I found this when i was checking for the capacitors and after i cleaned and checked the amptrol foot controller. Sinerely, Noble
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