Looking for recommendations for an inexpensive, but non garbage, 110 volt mig (or multi-process) welder primarily for gunsmithing tasks like pin/weld muzzle devices and welding sheet steel (I’m guessing 12, maybe 10 gauge) receivers
I borrow my neighbor’s cheapo $150 harbor freight 110v “wire feed” for small odds and ends around the house/truck. It works great up to 1/8", but it did manage to do an ok job welding a 1/2x13 nut to 1/4" wall tubing, so i have some faith in it. However, i despise flux core welding, so the gas version is on my wish list, and would recommend that instead. They used to be around $200 ish, but i havent priced them in a few yrs.
The cheapest is not always the best buy. Go with a name brand like this LIncoln. Model #K2185-1. You won’t regret it. About 300 bucks and comes with lots of goodies! Home Depot carries them.
I had a century brand 110 mig and it was a pos. I’d recommend the smaller lincolns. Home Depot sells them and they weld pretty good. I’d recommend a 220v if you have access to the power. It will give you more capability. Also get one with gas for sure.
Unfortunately I don’t have a 220 outlet in my garage and don’t feel like adding one at the moment, so I’m stuck with 110 but that should be sufficient for what I intend to do with it (gunsmithing and maybe some very light automotive fabrication, like welding up an exhaust)
110v will do a lot. I’ve built a lot of stuff with a 110v mig machine. Look at duty cycles on the machines as well. Sucks having to wait 10 minutes for the machine to cool off.
If you have a clothes dryer make your own 220v extension cord. I have one I made to plug in my generator during outages.
Unfortunately, the laundry room is upstairs and would require a few hundred feet of cable to get to the garage.
Is your stove close by? That’s another option.
Not close enough to be practical
@Chris19d … is your breaker panel in the garage? Does it have a double breaker position open? If yes and yes, a 220 outlet is a breeze to install.
I have a 110 gas unit that works fine. I’ll dig to it in the shed to find out who made it.
For some reason the 110 breakers are in the garage and the 220 outside the house.
Main and sub panels is a common install, the 220 loads are typically separated to help prevent lights dimming when the a/c, dryer and other 220v loads start.
Don’t get so fixated on 220! Yeah it’s better maybe but I have been welding with a 110 Lincoln wire welder for years. And it will plug in just about anyplace you might need to use it. I have built lots of stuff including 12 foot bridges to go over koi ponds. Just about anyone can wire weld and it does a nice job.
Thats pretty much what the research i did was suggesting, 220 is better, but 110 will do everything that has me looking for a welder well enough.
Most smithing I’ve seen requires tig. I have my eye on the Weldpro 200… Mig, tig and stick… $700
For pinning and welding muzzle devices and welding together reciever stampings mig will work just fine, but I agree being able to do tig is attractive.
I own a Welding Supply. If you’re looking for an inverter machine that will stick or tig on 110 or 220 volts look at the Profax PX200. Its is capable of running on either voltage.
I have been using a Clutch brand from Northern tool for a couple years now. 110v and it works very well for me for around $300, the bottle will cost almost as much as the welder.