I got a complete Lincoln Square Wave TIG 300 (which can go up to 400 A),
with a new regulator/flowmeter, all the hoses and cables, 350 A water cooled
torch and a Miller cooler for $1299 plus shipping. If you are thinking
thicker aluminum pieces, you might look for a higher current machine. 180 A
is a bit marginal, but would do fine for sheet aluminum and fairly thin wall
The 60 A breaker should be fine for the 180, I think.
I'm just about to take the plunge to buy a Miller Syncrowave 180 SD TIG Welder.
This particular welder appeals to me as I'd like to be able to weld just about
any kind of metal, and I'm not concerned about speed as it would be only
for hobby type work. Am I on the right track? Also, the best price I can
find is about $1460 dollars on Ebay, that's doable but almost out of my
reach. Is that really the best price or can I do better? Seems too that
for about $100 you can get a TigRunner kit, but that really only seems to be
a cart for it. I figure my first project should be a cart. So, I'm thinking
I'll build my own. Last question, I have 200 AMP main service in my home.
Am planning to install a 60 AMP 220V breaker to my garage, will this do the
Thanks in advance, I'm sure that these are all "run of the mill" questions that
have been answered before!
Ernie, you made remember something the other day. My wife tried tig welding
the other day (and did a pretty good job) but she was wearing a pair of
sheepskin gloves and quietly asked "is your hand supposed to get hot?" as
she held her 3" long piece of filler rod. I had to laugh.
Good point getting the water cooled torch... it's on my list.
This brings up another question. On American Chopper/Hotrod,
the guys are almost always tig welding barehanded. Is this
a common practice? How about the long term UV exposure and
the short term high frequency "tickle".
That is because they are macho studs who are obviously super-humanly
impervious to the affects of UV.
I am sure they will enjoy their melanomas in their later years.
TIG is the least hazardous arc welding method with very little UV
There is still enough to give you a nasty sunburn.
You don't need a heavy leather jacket, just a long sleeved shirt to
block the light.
Every time you get a sunburn you increase your risk of skin cancer.
Arc welding emits much more hazardous wavelengths of UV than you get
Man, Ernie, you aren't kidding! Before I got my welding jacket, I
got a nasty sunburn through TWO layers of clothes! I couldn't believe
it! I've never had that happen when stick welding. Uncovered skin
could get a burn, but not THROUGH the clothes. With the TIG, it
actually seemed that the skin behind the 2 layers of clothes got a much
more severe burn than that behind one layer. This may have been due
to the part covered by two layers never seeing the sun, while the
part not covered by my regular shirt gets sun when I'm outside, and
was less sensitive. I was kind of freaked out by this burn, which
went from armpit to armpit, and collarbone to navel.
I don't believe this, and wear a stifling welding jacket and cover
anything else with heavy overalls or something similar. I don't want
to repeat that sunburn! At least, you need a heavy cloth material, not
just a lightweight permanent press summer shirt type material. My
welding jacket is not leather (good to prevent thermal burns) but has a
bunch of layers of different fabrics in in, maybe 4 or 5 layers total.
No kidding. There isn't much Ozone layer in the 18" from arc to skin!
When I was in college, I had a part time job that had TIG welders around. I
would spend my supper break learning to TIG. One night I was wearing a
particularly threadbare shirt, and when I took it off, I had a white stripe
down the middle of my chest where the button reinforement was, and darker
sunburn everywhere else. You CAN get burned through clothes, no matter what
the OCC guys do.