Guys, The welding machine that was given to me by my Grandfather not long before he passed on has burned out. I learned to weld on that machine and it is a shame to see it thrown out. It is down to Earth on the Secondary side of the transformer and it will cost more to have the thing rewound, than buy a new one. So, the question is, where to from here?. I can use Stick welders, MIG and TIG. The thing is I would like to be able to mainly do stick welding for things like Mild Steel to a thickness of half an inch like my old welder did. Also, if it were in fact possible, I'd like to be able to weld a bit of Aluminium if the need arised, say to 3/16". What are my options?. I was thinking about just using my oxy-acetylene set, but like most gas, it's gone through the roof in price here. Your thoughts please.
If you are planning on Aluminium work I would suggest a MIG. They are fairly easy to weld with as well as rather affordable anymore. They are very versatile. Shielding gas is an additional cost, but if you are working on mild steel, you can get away with flux core. I know the welds aren't as pretty as using shield gas, but they are passable.
I have heard of a special rod to weld aliminium with a stick welder, but I have never seen it. I am still rather skeptical of that one anyway.
A TIG would be real nice, but they are a considerable amount of money and, unless you just want the ultimate, I don't feel they are worth it for home use.
[This message has been edited by IanR (edited 08-07-2006).]
#145914 - 08/07/0606:50 PMRe: A new welding machine?
Thanks for your comments guys, Ian, I was sort of in the MIG frame of mind, I do a wee bit of aluminium work every now and then. Yet I have never seen a rod that works well with an AC welder, Weldwell bought out one in the late 80's here, it disappeared from sales after the flux caused serious burns to a weldor that couldn't get the thing to melt consistently, with the stated current, so he bumped it up above the rated current. Aussie, I've since meggered the transformer and it is down on both sides to the core. I'm not plugging that in again. I don't want the embarrasment of having a Faultsman here replacing my pillar box fuse. And boy would they rub that in!!. Kiwi, This is the painful part mate, my Grandad told me on his death-bed that he was giving me that welder, I've had 8 years use out of it, intermittently, but it is hard to let go of it. Reality would tell me to grow up and move on. Copper prices being what they are, it might make sense.
#145917 - 08/10/0602:51 AMRe: A new welding machine?
One other thing, are there any hobbyist auto-fabricators here?. As Ian mentioned about the TIG welder, TIG is usually only used for thin sheet metal?. The likes of stainless or aluminium?. Your thoughts?.
#145918 - 08/10/0603:26 AMRe: A new welding machine?
Hey Trumpy, in a former life i was a welder/fabricator working all over this here world. We used TIG for root welds on VERY high pressure steam pipes then stick caps, Tig for Ali, Stainless steel exhaust systems in the UK also MIG for the same, TIG is very versatile, but in those days was more expensive to run and set up. Also it was a little harder to get set just right. But a little practice will have anyone away in no time. MIG was quicker and easier out in the field but still got wind affected, thou not as bad as TIG. Outdoors Stick ruled really. Probably changed now i'm talking 20 years ago Cheers OA
#145919 - 08/10/0604:02 AMRe: A new welding machine?
1)Purchase a cheap welder. Make sure the internals fit yur welders' case. 2)Remove the transformer & fit it to the old/original case 3)Make the adjustments needed to the controls for their operation to be the same as or close to original.
#145920 - 08/10/0604:04 AMRe: A new welding machine?
In that case Trumpy, its an HEIRLOOM, and should not be scrapped. If you can find out where it is leaking and fix it without a rewind, then I think Grandad would be well pleased ! Sounds like its going to need a rewind though if the primary is leaking too. Bummer !
#145921 - 08/10/0605:35 PMRe: A new welding machine?