Air Arc with a Ranger 8?

I'm wondering if a Lincoln Ranger 8 can do Air Arc? I asked at the local
welding shop, but they said I'd need to buy the new Ranger 10000. I'm
worried they might just be trying to make a sale, or that they haven't dealt
with the Ranger 8 in so long that they don't know its capabilities.
The Lincoln Ranger 8 pumps out 8000 watts, single phase. Link to PDF of
specs here:
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(857 KB)
I've also got an air compressor that I can tote around with the welding
It seems like I could pressure up the tanks on the air compressor using the
welder's AC outlet, then unplug it so that the air compressor doesn't try to
kick back on while I'm welding. Then, I would crank the welder up to 150
Amps or so, and air-arc away!
Anyone have any thoughts on why I could or could not do this? (before I
spend the money for air arc cables)
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IMHE the two things that are required for ArcAir are duty cycle and LOTS of air.
The welder is rated at 210-225 amps @ 100% duty cycle but I suspect that is pushing things to their maximum limit and is likely to lead to problems due to excessive heat build up. You will be limited to small carbon sizes which will mean you will be removing less material with each pass and will need to make more passes which will increase both the time needed and the heat buildup in the generator and the total air required and will also increase the likelihood you will touch the carbon to the work. The small groove will also be harder for the air to blow clean and will increase slag problems. This machine would not be my choice if any real production is required.
ArcAir requires a LOT of air, IIRC 25 cfm will barely keep up and a large reservoir really helps. The good thing is that you will be spending so much time waiting for air that your welder will have lots of cool down time and will be operating at a very low duty cycle.
I note that at the high current settings and required for ArcAir that the electric power generator is NOT approved for simultaneous use.
This setup will work for very small jobs IF you have a very big air reservoir, but you will be doing a lot of waiting and is suitable for hobby use only. I would never hire a rig this small by the hour.
Good luck, YMMV
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My personal rig is set up for after hours jobs only. After getting my own welding setup, everyone started wanting me to do jobs for them. Most are for dump trucks. Beds gets damaged, bumpers smashed, etc. Cutting old welds out of the way before I start can be a hassle, and I had been considering using Air Arc to blow the old weld out of the way so that I could do my thing.
Thanks for the experience! ~Joe
"Private" wrote:
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I like to use ArcAir as un-welding process. It works very well to remove cracked fillet welds or to gouge cracks in plate, especially if the crack is not straight. It requires very little further cleanup grinding before rewelding and this can usually be accomplished with a mini angle grinder or a small carbide in a simple air die grinder. It is also great for edge prep on thick plate and is a lot cheaper than OA. It is also good for cutting/gouging cast iron or stainless or aluminum. It would be very good in your application of repairing dump boxes.
I use a 300amp 100% duty cycle welder equipped with a water cooled engine driven air compressor that is theoretically??? capable of 25cfm. If I need to do a lot of work I use a large auxiliary reservoir to reduce waiting time but without it the smaller reservoirs on the rig will not supply all the air I would like. However with a bit of planning I can do other prep work while I am waiting for the air to catch up. TOTTIKO that takes more air than ArcAir are air sanders and grinders.
A good air supply will also allow the use of an air powered needle scaler which really saves a lot of work both for cleaning slag after ArcAir and also for chipping flux after welding, it really beats a chipping hammer.
Good luck, YMMV
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I personally wouldn't do it. While I know first hand it is possible, you are stretching the limits of the machine.
If you have oxy fuel cutting equipment, consider getting a gouging tip. Works about half the speed of air carbon arc gouging, but with similar results, and a lot less noise and sparks.
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I don't work for harris, I've not used that particular cutting tip, but I do find the process extremely useful, when air carbon arc gouging is not an option.
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