Do All Machine ........ almost

I will be buying a new welding machine soon. I want an AC/DC machine with TIG, HF start, and stick. I want it to burn 7018 1/8" rods, but have a
capacity for a slightly larger rod. TIG would probably be mostly for steel, maybe evolving into some stainless and aluminum. I really don't want to TIG anything too heavy, so not sure if I want a water cooler, or if I do, want to set something up by building it, as there will be freezing conditions, and the TIG just won't be used that much and not for thick metal. Probably have to get it out each time I use it.
I'm thinking around $3,000 new and won't consider anything but Blue or Red. It would be a stationary unit for work brought to my garage shop.
Suggestions?
What about just a straight AC/DC used older welding machine? Any suggestions on an old model that would qualify as "bulletproof"?
I have a 220v. MIG I like, so don't need that on the machine.
Thanks
Steve
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The new SD200 is awesome! The pulser and timers, and meters are a HUGE jump from the 180 (I'll sell ya mine, just like new! The 180 that is). 2k with the running gear is a very high guestimate for a NIB 200. The tag on the one in the shop was $1,800.00 I don't recall if it was on the running gear as it was still boxed up.
Hope that helps. I won't buy it myself unless it's blue but the red ones are there too. I'm just not versed in Lincoln-speak.
Rob
Fraser Competition Engines Chicago, IL.

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On Sat, 15 Apr 2006 22:46:35 -0700, "Steve B"

Lincoln Tig 250/250 or Tig 300/300. Ya can pick em up for about $400 and up. $600 with cooler etc on ebay all the time.
I gave $300 for mine, resold it for $900 fully loaded cause I needed quick cash. Buyer called me the other day and thanked me for it. Loves it.
Gunner
"I think this is because of your belief in biological Marxism. As a genetic communist you feel that noticing behavioural patterns relating to race would cause a conflict with your belief in biological Marxism." Big Pete, famous Usenet Racist
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wrote:
?

Thats practically the price of a T'bolt, I realize that the deals on ebay involve risk, but what would the downside be of that particular welder be bought used on ebay?

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wrote:

Thunderbolts are AC/DC HF/Stick/TIG machines?
The above are.
The downside..is shipping costs. They are heavy. 300-500 lbs or more.
Also try Craigslist.
Read the descriptions CAREFULLY!! Some are 3 phase machines..and may be 460/480 volts. If not stated...contact the seller.
http://cgi.ebay.com/Lincoln-Idealarc-Tig-250-250-250-Amper-AC-DC-Welder_W0QQitemZ7609105635QQcategoryZ113743QQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem http://cgi.ebay.com/Miller-TIG-ARC-Welder-Works-Perfect-w-cooling-unit_W0QQitemZ7610259546QQcategoryZ113743QQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem
Or you can stick a HF kit on a buzz box
http://cgi.ebay.com/Lincoln-Hi-Freq-Tig-Welder-K799-1_W0QQitemZ7609511380QQcategoryZ113743QQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem
This is nearly identical to what I sold..plus had a Lincoln Magnum cooler, yada yada http://cgi.ebay.com/Lincoln-Idealarc-Tig-250-250-250-Amper-AC-DC-Welder_W0QQitemZ7609105635QQcategoryZ113743QQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem
Im NOT a welder. Im at best..a dauber. So I dont make my living welding. Im a machine tool mechanic and something of an advanced hobbyist. Shrug
http://home.lightspeed.net/~gunner/myshop
But transformer based machines ..at least here in California, are pretty easy to find. I passed up a Miller Dialarc 250 HF a couple months ago, cause I didnt have $150 in my pocket. I alerted a friend, who bought it..and Ive sorta kinda taught him to tig with it. (asshole is better than me after only a couple months..sigh <G>)
He did have to add a pedal for $130. Shrug
Ebay for example..is not always a good place to find stuff..because so many people are bidding on a single item.
Network. Visit all your local welding shops, pass the word around that you are looking for an older, operating tig machine for your home shop. Its damned surprising what crawls out of the woodwork after a couple weeks/months.
And there are some surprising spin offs occasionally. Within 2 weeks of passing the word around, I was ass deep in welding machines. I kept what I wanted, sold the rest..made some money for goodies. 2 weeks ago, a guy called and asked if I was the guy who buys welders? I brokered his SA-200 to another guy and pocketed 10% finders fee, and the seller got $600 more than he was asking. And he tossed in a very elderly Hobart Bro. gas welder that apparently came off a Liberty Ship in WW2. Has spoke wheels on the trailer its mounted on. What Im going to do with this..not a clue...chuckle..but it runs and burns rod sweet.

Since the trend appears to be inverter machines...the old transformer machines are pretty common, and pretty inexpensive. And easier to fix if something ever goes bad. And if the transformer toasts..you arent out real money.
Gunner..not a welder, nor plays one on TV
"I think this is because of your belief in biological Marxism. As a genetic communist you feel that noticing behavioural patterns relating to race would cause a conflict with your belief in biological Marxism." Big Pete, famous Usenet Racist
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No, they are buzz-boxes made by Hobart (or some third-party that makes it for both of them). They make a 300Amp A/C only job, and the AC/DC model. They are terrific machines, and can take any abuse that you can give them. The multi-turn sliding armature current control is very smooth, and if you get the A/C only one cheap (scratch/dent, etc) then you convert it to DC in a number of ways: but the components from Miller (case has all the cutouts for the rectifiers etc), or make an external full-wave bridge from big diodes obtainable on Ebay (pics of my eternal recitifer available by request).

http://cgi.ebay.com/Lincoln-Idealarc-Tig-250-250-250-Amper-AC-DC-Welder_W0QQitemZ7609105635QQcategoryZ113743QQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem
http://cgi.ebay.com/Miller-TIG-ARC-Welder-Works-Perfect-w-cooling-unit_W0QQitemZ7610259546QQcategoryZ113743QQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem
http://cgi.ebay.com/Lincoln-Hi-Freq-Tig-Welder-K799-1_W0QQitemZ7609511380QQcategoryZ113743QQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem
http://cgi.ebay.com/Lincoln-Idealarc-Tig-250-250-250-Amper-AC-DC-Welder_W0QQitemZ7609105635QQcategoryZ113743QQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem
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wrote:

Gunner , Thanks for the information, your contributation of knowledge appreciated. I seldom see much in the way of good used shop equipment for sale in my parts. Will keep checkin ebay.
ED
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wrote:

Ed..ebay in their advanced search allows you to search for anything on their site, within a certain distance of your zip code and will email you the results IRRC.
I have several searches running all the time automatically, particuarly on machine tools of interest as they tend to be very expensive to ship from outside of my area(s).
Ive found some very nice machines that were cheap enough by virtue of only costing me the gas to go over and get them...no shipping expenses.
My current minty minty Airco Squarewave 300 came out of a machine tool dealer who bought out a factory and didnt have a clue as to what to do with the welder. Same with my rough but working well Miller Dialarc 250. I got the Airco for $500, turnkey with cooler, yada yada yada and the Dialarc cost me $25. It had no leads so they didnt know what to do with it either.
The Airco PhaseArc 350 mig was 3 phase..no one wanted it..so I got it for a box of donuts and $50. Minty with a brand new Tweeco gun on it. I had to make a 3ph converter..but I could have simply turned it around to a commerical shop for the price of a decent used but smaller single phase machine..or even a new one. A local welder offered me $1000 for it. Shrug. I probably should have done it..but Id already made the rotary phase converter. He wanted a Big horsepower machine to do aluminum with.
The Dan-Mig I got for the equivelent of $100..I fixed a guys lathe...less than an hours work and he gave me $50 and tossed in the welder.
Ive got hummmm...(8) 135cf tanks..some filled with C25, some tri-mix from a machine tool dealer who didnt want to futz with the possiblity they were rented. $20 each..every one filled to at least 1800 psi and each turned out to be owner bottles <G>. Even if they were rentals and I had to turn em in when they were empty..it would have been a win win just in the cost of the gas. All still have 3-5 yrs left before needing a hydro <VBG> and they will be exchanged..so Im golden.
Im going to swap one out for another argon bottle soon as I finish one up.
GUnner
"I think this is because of your belief in biological Marxism. As a genetic communist you feel that noticing behavioural patterns relating to race would cause a conflict with your belief in biological Marxism." Big Pete, famous Usenet Racist
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Between Lincoln and Miller there is no option. Miller has the better machine hands down. The Miller Dynasty 200DX is the top of the US market for small inverter AC/DC TIG Stick welders.
Plus it has something no other brand of inverters has...Autoline.
Autoline is a Miller exclusive that allows the Miller Dynasty 200 and Maxstar 200 inverts to run from any voltage from 110 volt to 460 volt 3 phase.
I have had my Maxstar 200DX for 5 years and love it dearly.
--
Welding Instructor - South Seattle Comm. Coll.
- Divers Institute of Technology
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Ernie, If the welder is for home / garage use then you need to look at the amperage draw and voltage required.
For what you are welding a Lincoln Squarewave 175 or a Miller Econotig will work fine. They can weld 5/32" rod, they can weld tig Aluminum (AC output) and DC- for everything else. They come complete except for a gas bottle. I expect that they are under $1500.
I would never buy an old model Tig machine, they don't weld aluminum well, they draw huge amperage, they are big and heavy and ugly and their high frequency starting is scary.
I am a welding engineer and have worked extensively with both Lincoln and Miller and know that both of their lines of machines are very good. To say that one is "hands down" better than the other is biased and an exageration. Lincoln has a good 200 amp inverter that has something similar to "Autoline" The Lincoln system is arguably more reliable. But I don't know why "autoline" (autolink) would be important to you anyway for home use. Also the 200 amp inverters cost more because of their small size and high performance.
If you go to your local Praxair or Airgas or local gas distributor they should have machines on the floor to look at or even try out.
Ernie Leimkuhler wrote:

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I really wish people would look closer at the headers on articles. I was not the original poster.

You need to look at the market closer. The best bargain in the TIG world right now is the Thermal Arc 185TSW. For around the same price as the Lincoln and Miller transformer based machines the Thermal arc 185TSW gives you the same output while drawing half the amps, and giving you a full pulser and sequencer.

Wrong again. I would gladly take any Syncrowave ever made. As long as the high freq unit is good, even a Syncrowave 300 will do a wonderful job on aluminum. The most important criteria is that it be a "Square Wave" machine.

Then maybe you can ask both companies why they insist on selling machines with pulsers, yet completely refuse to give any guidelines as to their use. No books, no manuals, nothing.

Yes in general both companies make good machines. However if you would bother to talk to the guys who fix them, they do not like Lincoln. Parts are hard to get and assembly is inconsistent. Both Miller and Lincoln machines tend to fail at the same rate, but Miller machines are easier to fix and parts distribution is much better.

Unless the person stating that has ACTUALLY USED THEM!

You fail to mention that Lincoln does not actually "make" a 200 amp inverter. They simply buy them from Selco in Italy and repaint them Red. The Lincoln Invertec 205 is actually a Selco Genesis 200.
Miller makes their inverter and does a far better job.

--
Welding Instructor - South Seattle Comm. Coll.
- Divers Institute of Technology
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To add credibility and merit to the older units value. I have a Miller Aerowave with all the bells and whistles. I'll put that box up to the Pepsi challenge ANY day. I think a lot of us who use this gear daily have some strange monogamous relationship to them thus, making the decision to go blue,red, or yellow one of personal choice if possible. I also have a Dynasty that I bought after Ernie and several others sealed the deal for me and I'd rather have that on the end of my bed than my hunting dog. (Well, sorta tough to flush pheasants with a welder) I have never had issues with Miller, as a matter of fact I bottom posted a reply on a different thread and I attached it below. This says a lot in my opinion. I just hope you will leverage some of this before you make a big purchase.
" As a side note unrelated to this boobe who posted this- I had a Miller Diamondback #17 air- cooled torch break the other day. The point where the head and handle make the electrical joint broke... I walked into AirGas in Joliet and they called me a day later and said a NEW torch would be in on Monday at no charge. Miller had no issue at all replacing a five year old torch that was in good condition (Other than the joint breaking). And some wonder why we put about a thousand rounds into the HF welder at the range???? In closing- and I reiterate strongly, You get what you pay for. Made here in the USA and supported all the way. Fuck NAFTA. All my gear is still from Wi. or OH. !!!! "
Respects,
Rob Fraser
Fraser Competition Engines Chicago, IL.
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PS- I still have that cherry condition SD180 for sale:) I just don't use it now that I have the Dynasty and the Aerowave. Bottle(s) cart, a few torches and all the paperwork since I bought it along with service records. Very few hours on it and it looks brand new. Inside and out.
Rob
Fraser Competition Engines Chicago, IL.
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The Econotig is not recommended, even by the Miller rep. I went to a Miller roadshow, where they brought in the 18 wheeler with every piece of equipment they sell. I looked all around for the Econotig, and finally talked to the national rep who told me that he doesn't even carry it on the truck, he wouldn't recommend it, and that I should buy something else...
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    --Huh, coulda fooled me! I learned how to weld with an Econotig and I love it! I've been using it for close to 5 years now and it's done everything I've needed to do. I'm going to be upgrading soon, but only because this machine doesn't have a pulser.
--
"Steamboat Ed" Haas : I'll have the roast duck
Hacking the Trailing Edge! : with the mango salsa...
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Just because you got the sideways shake of a head doesn't mean the machine can't do a job.
I suspect it is getting old and has a short lifetime on the sales group. Or : This new thing on the 18 wheeler has to get a start so xxx the old standby.
Lots of reasons for a No vote.
Martin [ former Field sales, Product development specialist, Technologist and Sr. Scientist.....]
Martin Eastburn @ home at Lions' Lair with our computer lionslair at consolidated dot net NRA LOH & Endowment Member NRA Second Amendment Task Force Charter Founder IHMSA and NRA Metallic Silhouette maker & member
Emmo wrote:

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The only reason they still make the Econotig is that it is a cheap TIG machine that does NOT have a true high frequency unit. According to the engineer I talked to it has the same Capacitor-discharge high frequency that inverters use. This allows it to be used in hospitals, and other locations with sensitive electronics.
I owned an Econotig for several years. Not a terrible unit, but with a very limited range.

--
Welding Instructor - South Seattle Comm. Coll.
- Divers Institute of Technology
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