New MIG welder on the way!

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Well-Known Member
Jan 25, 2004
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Just ordered a Hobart Handler 135 MIG setup, first project is going to be a good sturdy HPR pad. Now believe it or not even with a background in metalworking as a machinist I have little to no experience with welding, so if anyone that does know a MIG from an Arc from a TIG feels like chiming in and telling me if I made a good choice or not, please DO! :D
Are MIG's the kind that use the wire feed for the welding rod... if so.. I never had luck with them. I used a Arc welder to melt together my Super Pad. I find that under 125 (amps?), it is hard to strike a arch. The rods just want to stick.
I have ALWAYS wanted to learn how to weld...something I really wanted to try. It would have come in handy back when I was working on my muscle car, or for some of these new projects, like building a L3 HPR pad. I have nearly all the materials, just no experience in welding...does that suck or what?

On top of it, I drool every Monday nite at 10pm when "Amreican Chopper" comes on TV...I love the show and like watching them weld it together!

The MIG is great for thin metal/tubes as it does not blow holes in the work so easily, but if you have thicker ( over 1/16" 0 you will need to arc weld it.With the Mig the idea is to have a steady feed into the job, the welding will sound like frying bacon when you get it right.
You dont say if this is the No-Gas MIG or if it is the CO2 welder, if the latter get a spare gas cartridge as you are bound to run out at about 7/8 of the job ( Murphy's law ) and practise first on scrap metal.

Thanks guys, the Handler 135 can be used gassless with flux cored wire or with gas, it includes all the regulators and valves for the gas but you have to supply the gas bottle yourself. Dave, the problem with ARC is that in order to gain it's benifits you have to buy a large industrial unit that will cost over $2000 and will require a 3 phase circuit to run on, the hobby class ARCs that are better suited for home use wont weld any deeper than a MIG, in any case for thicker materials I can always run several passes cant I?

Carl I think before I get too serious about welding I'm going to set myself up for a welding class at Sinclaire community college, Dayton being sortof a center of the metal working industry leaves me with alot of experience to draw on, when in doubt I can always ask someone! :D
I own a heating and A/C company and have two welders a mig and an arc welder 200 amp gas powered. I can't weld a lick but my guys can. I know that for bigger stuff you can't just make more passes, its the dept of the penatration that holds it together. Give me more power Scotty :D
The Hobart Handler 135 is a great machine! I use one to weld race car roll cages. Very easy to use, just practice a little. Might want to put a 20 amp circuit in you garage. Have fun!...loojack
Wow...a subject that I can actually say I'm experienced at. :rolleyes:
I use a MIG (220 amp), a TIG (440 amp) and a plasma torch for cutting. I'm FAA certified for aircraft production. My weapon of choice is the TIG as it can weld something as light as a soda can and as heavy as you can pile on the bench, as it has a cooler which keeps the stinger from turning to liquid. Would love to have one of these down my basement but, around $5k is a tad much for tinkering at home. ;)
Larry, the MIG welder you've purchased will work fine for light gauge metal. Frodo is correct in saying that you can't just make more passes to compenasate for thicker material. Stop at a local metal shop or scrap yard and find all sizes of scrap material to...practice...practice...practice on. You'll learn what can and can't be welded in short order. Good luck to ya.