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    1. #1
      Join Date
      Jun 2018
      Location
      Alamo, CA USA
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      219
      Country Flag: United States

      Welders and welding tools...

      There's a couple pieces of body work needing to be done. One is closing holes in the firewall. Another is installing an access panel for my fuel pump. A couple other misc things here and there. Some of these things I anticipated at the beginning of the project and, therefore, didn't have done when the car was at the body shop for body and paint. I could always just send it back, but I think this is a good opportunity for me to learn how to do some basic welding. I've watched countless YT videos in the last week and feel like I have enough of an understanding to point me in the right direction. Now I need to start acquiring some tools and add the skillset.

      MIG welding seems like the right place to start due to the application I'm looking at (mostly sheet metal) and ease of use. I'm guessing a decent MIG welder that's capable of also doing aluminum is going to get me pretty far. Should I go for one of those multi-process welders that will let me play with all different types of welding or is it better to get a dedicated MIG welder? I like the idea of playing with it all. I'm also looking for recommendations on all the tools and accessories needed as well. Protective gear, tanks, etc...



      My quote for my next round of body work was around $1800, so if I can take that money and put it into reliable equipment that I can learn and has room for me to grow into, I'll consider that a win. My garage is currently running on 110. I will be putting in 220, but it's not happening until my garage organization project starts after this car is done, so it would be nice to find a welder that capable of 110 and 220.

      Any feedback is very much welcomed. Thanks!
      1973 Camaro: LS427/570, T56, Speedtech ExtReme subframe/torque arm


    2. #2
      Join Date
      Nov 2006
      Location
      Mountain Springs, Texas
      Posts
      3,759
      Country Flag: United States
      A dedicated MIG is what I recommend. Miller 211 is a great welder and it’s dual 110/220 volt capable.

      A Miller 141 is another option for sheet metal.

      You can shop for price on eBay.

      Don
      1969 Camaro - LSA 6L90E AME sub/IRS
      1957 Buick Estate Wagon
      1959 El Camino - Ironworks frame
      1956 Cameo - full C5 suspension/drivetrain

    3. #3
      Join Date
      Oct 2011
      Posts
      474
      I first got the harbor freight flux core welder to learn how to weld and weld up some holes and patch panels etc. it then broke after about a year of VERY light use. I recently purchased the Hobart 500559, it’s 5 times the price of the harbor freight lol, but it’s 100 times better. My welds are way more consistent, it also has much more adjustability so I can weld thin metal and thick metal. By the way, I only use the flux core wire with no gas and it runs on 110v. I bought a harbor freight face shield, good mig gloves online and I also bought the large 10lb harbor freight flux core wire/spool. That’s ALL you need to start welding.

      The great thing about this welder is that you can use regular wire (not flux core) with gas and weld like a pro. You can also weld aluminum with this welder. It’s really a great welder and very versatile. The only thing it lacks is really the 220v, but I think you need that power if your welding really thick metal. I think this on 110v welds up to 1/4”, which is much thicker than anything your going to weld on a car.

      Hobart 500559 Handler 140 MIG Welder 115V https://www.amazon.com/dp/B009X43F38...ing=UTF8&psc=1

    4. #4
      Join Date
      Jun 2018
      Location
      Alamo, CA USA
      Posts
      219
      Country Flag: United States
      Quote Originally Posted by dhutton View Post
      A dedicated MIG is what I recommend. Miller 211 is a great welder and it’s dual 110/220 volt capable.

      A Miller 141 is another option for sheet metal.

      You can shop for price on eBay.

      Don
      The 211 was the one I was eyeballing. For my own information, why a dedicated unit over a multi-process one? The dedicated units are so much more expensive than a multi-process unit. There's gotta be a compromise you're making with them then.
      1973 Camaro: LS427/570, T56, Speedtech ExtReme subframe/torque arm

    5. #5
      Join Date
      Jun 2018
      Location
      Alamo, CA USA
      Posts
      219
      Country Flag: United States
      Quote Originally Posted by joeko23 View Post
      I first got the harbor freight flux core welder to learn how to weld and weld up some holes and patch panels etc. it then broke after about a year of VERY light use. I recently purchased the Hobart 500559, it’s 5 times the price of the harbor freight lol, but it’s 100 times better. My welds are way more consistent, it also has much more adjustability so I can weld thin metal and thick metal. By the way, I only use the flux core wire with no gas and it runs on 110v. I bought a harbor freight face shield, good mig gloves online and I also bought the large 10lb harbor freight flux core wire/spool. That’s ALL you need to start welding.

      The great thing about this welder is that you can use regular wire (not flux core) with gas and weld like a pro. You can also weld aluminum with this welder. It’s really a great welder and very versatile. The only thing it lacks is really the 220v, but I think you need that power if your welding really thick metal. I think this on 110v welds up to 1/4”, which is much thicker than anything your going to weld on a car.

      Hobart 500559 Handler 140 MIG Welder 115V https://www.amazon.com/dp/B009X43F38...ing=UTF8&psc=1
      This is great. I was looking at the Handler 210MVP as well, which is just a 110/220 version of the 140. It's nice to see I'm looking at the right stuff. Yeah, I'm not interested in a HB unit. Nothing against them at all. I use a ton of stuff from there. I'm just more interested in grabbing a MIG welder that I can keep around for a decade or two. I've been looking for more comparison of the Hobart against the Miller.
      1973 Camaro: LS427/570, T56, Speedtech ExtReme subframe/torque arm

    6. #6
      Join Date
      Feb 2019
      Location
      Kankakee IL
      Posts
      270
      Hobart is a Miller brand.
      Tracey

    7. #7
      Join Date
      Jun 2018
      Location
      Alamo, CA USA
      Posts
      219
      Country Flag: United States
      Quote Originally Posted by Tsaints1115 View Post
      Hobart is a Miller brand.
      I did not know that. I'm guessing the brands are geared towards different levels of the industry or there's a different in features/build quality?
      1973 Camaro: LS427/570, T56, Speedtech ExtReme subframe/torque arm

    8. #8
      Join Date
      Nov 2006
      Location
      Mountain Springs, Texas
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      Quote Originally Posted by roguegeek View Post
      I did not know that. I'm guessing the brands are geared towards different levels of the industry or there's a different in features/build quality?
      Miller is the high end product line. Both are decent products, Miller is just higher quality.

      Don
      1969 Camaro - LSA 6L90E AME sub/IRS
      1957 Buick Estate Wagon
      1959 El Camino - Ironworks frame
      1956 Cameo - full C5 suspension/drivetrain

    9. #9
      Join Date
      Jun 2018
      Location
      Alamo, CA USA
      Posts
      219
      Country Flag: United States
      Quote Originally Posted by dhutton View Post
      Miller is the high end product line. Both are decent products, Miller is just higher quality.

      Don
      How do you feel about going for the Miller Multimatic 215 over the Millermatic 211? They look to be the same specs on what they share with just the added functionality of DC TIG and stick. What do you think of multi-process welders in general?
      1973 Camaro: LS427/570, T56, Speedtech ExtReme subframe/torque arm

    10. #10
      Join Date
      Nov 2006
      Location
      Mountain Springs, Texas
      Posts
      3,759
      Country Flag: United States
      Quote Originally Posted by roguegeek View Post
      How do you feel about going for the Miller Multimatic 215 over the Millermatic 211? They look to be the same specs on what they share with just the added functionality of DC TIG and stick. What do you think of multi-process welders in general?
      Honestly I have no experience with them and have no need for stick and TIG. My eyesight is not good enough for TIG. MIG does everything I need.

      Stick is for welding pipe fence around here which means it needs to be portable...

      Can you weld aluminum with that DC TIG?

      Don
      1969 Camaro - LSA 6L90E AME sub/IRS
      1957 Buick Estate Wagon
      1959 El Camino - Ironworks frame
      1956 Cameo - full C5 suspension/drivetrain

    11. #11
      Join Date
      Jun 2018
      Location
      Alamo, CA USA
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      219
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      Quote Originally Posted by dhutton View Post
      Can you weld aluminum with that DC TIG?

      Don
      You can’t, which would be a huge reason to just get the dedicated MIG and then, later down the line if my interests and needs grow, get a dedicated TIG.
      1973 Camaro: LS427/570, T56, Speedtech ExtReme subframe/torque arm

    12. #12
      Join Date
      Nov 2006
      Location
      Mountain Springs, Texas
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      Quote Originally Posted by roguegeek View Post
      You canít, which would be a huge reason to just get the dedicated MIG and then, later down the line if my interests and needs grow, get a dedicated TIG.
      I just bought a Miller 150 spoolmate to weld aluminum with my Miller 211. Iím thinking it will be just the ticket for what I need to do.

      Don
      1969 Camaro - LSA 6L90E AME sub/IRS
      1957 Buick Estate Wagon
      1959 El Camino - Ironworks frame
      1956 Cameo - full C5 suspension/drivetrain

    13. #13
      Join Date
      Feb 2019
      Location
      Kankakee IL
      Posts
      270
      I have the Multimatic 220 and it will do everything but butter your toast. It's not cheap until you add up the price of individual machines that can do all the same jobs and then it's a bargain.
      Tracey

    14. #14
      Join Date
      Jun 2018
      Location
      Alamo, CA USA
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      219
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      Quote Originally Posted by Tsaints1115 View Post
      I have the Multimatic 220 and it will do everything but butter your toast. It's not cheap until you add up the price of individual machines that can do all the same jobs and then it's a bargain.
      Yeah. It seems if I were to do a Miller multi-process welder, the 220 is the one that makes the most sense, but that initial cost is a killer. So I think it's buy once, cry once with the 220 or just go grab a 211 and expand later as I see fit.
      1973 Camaro: LS427/570, T56, Speedtech ExtReme subframe/torque arm

    15. #15
      Join Date
      Dec 2011
      Location
      Planit Oahu, Hawaii if you don't belive me check shipping prices
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      A good welding helmet will make night and day difference. I had an older miller hobby helmet, my son get me a very nice Lincoln helmet with a big window. Spend the $$ for it you will be able to see what you are doing!!!

    16. #16
      Join Date
      Jun 2018
      Location
      Alamo, CA USA
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      219
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      Quote Originally Posted by FlyDoc View Post
      A good welding helmet will make night and day difference. I had an older miller hobby helmet, my son get me a very nice Lincoln helmet with a big window. Spend the $$ for it you will be able to see what you are doing!!!
      Miller is doing a deal where they're giving away their Classic VSi helmet right now with purchase. I was just going to run with that to see how everything felt. Should be good enough, right?
      1973 Camaro: LS427/570, T56, Speedtech ExtReme subframe/torque arm

    17. #17
      Join Date
      Nov 2006
      Location
      Mountain Springs, Texas
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      Quote Originally Posted by roguegeek View Post
      Miller is doing a deal where they're giving away their Classic VSi helmet right now with purchase. I was just going to run with that to see how everything felt. Should be good enough, right?
      It depends on how good your night vision is imho. Mine sucks and I use a bright light to help me see.

      Don
      1969 Camaro - LSA 6L90E AME sub/IRS
      1957 Buick Estate Wagon
      1959 El Camino - Ironworks frame
      1956 Cameo - full C5 suspension/drivetrain

    18. #18
      Join Date
      Dec 2011
      Location
      Planit Oahu, Hawaii if you don't belive me check shipping prices
      Posts
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      It may work for a while.
      Just remember you get what you pay for. It’s free for a reason, its the near the bottom of the line.
      I would suggest start with it, and if you are having troubles seeing the weld then upgrade to a better helmet. I think my son spent about $400. On the one he got me. I’m a cheap blaster also! But they say, its cheaper to Cry once, then to cry twice! Meaning that its cheaper to buy a quality tool once, than to buy a cheep one only to have it brake and have to replace it.

    19. #19
      Join Date
      Feb 2019
      Location
      Kankakee IL
      Posts
      270
      I have the Lincoln 3350 and like it very much. It has the largest viewing screen and lots of adjustability. They've gotten about $75 cheaper than when I bought mine.

      https://www.amazon.com/Lincoln-Elect...8843772&sr=8-2
      Tracey

    20. #20
      Join Date
      Jun 2018
      Location
      Alamo, CA USA
      Posts
      219
      Country Flag: United States
      Couple more questions...

      Some of the professional fabricators I spoke with this weekend said they don't use anything but gloves, a mask, and a long sleeve shirt. In terms of hands and body protection, what do you guys suggest?

      I'm also heading over to Airgas today to pick up my tank. In terms of consumables for MIG welding (and assuming I'm grabbing a Miller 211, 215, or 220), what else should I be grabbing?

      Have I forgotten anything?
      1973 Camaro: LS427/570, T56, Speedtech ExtReme subframe/torque arm

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