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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm going to be installing a RK X-Factor Long Arm stretch. I have installed lifts on jeeps before and can turn a wrench pretty good, but never did anything welding wise other than a few little stock welds a few years ago.

So I'm looking to purchase a MIG Welder to learn with and burn in this lift, some gussets and truss. I know I will have to have something that can weld 1/4 steel. A 220v welder would be preferred I would assume.

What welder recommendations do you have and why?

Also would it be ok to weld these parts with flux core wire?
 

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Comfortably Numb
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I'm going to be installing a RK X-Factor Long Arm stretch. I have installed lifts on jeeps before and can turn a wrench pretty good, but never did anything welding wise other than a few little stock welds a few years ago.

So I'm looking to purchase a MIG Welder to learn with and burn in this lift, some gussets and truss. I know I will have to have something that can weld 1/4 steel. A 220v welder would be preferred I would assume.

What welder recommendations do you have and why?

Also would it be ok to weld these parts with flux core wire?
Not trying to piss on your cake, but If you don't have a lot of welding experience I think you should reconsider and have someone with a lot of welding experience do that job. Just speaking as a former welding inspector. Are you willing to accept liability for your work? Are you familiar with pre and post heating requirements? The welding of thin to thick metals require an understanding of heating and cooling differentials as well as some basic metallurgy. Go to a 4 X shop and get some advice. It'll save you some headaches on the trail and possibly on the highway. Good luck and post up whichever way you go. And thanks for your service from an old ass grunt.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Welding was the one thing that I wanted to learn and do in the Army but never got a chance too. My company had a welder and a machinist at one of my duty stations.

I have a text book that the local tech school uses to teach welding and a bunch of scrap metal to learn on. I also have a Miller Syncrowave 250 setup with Coolmate that I scored for a steal. One of the torches has the thumb control, the other is peddle. But I didn't think that would be good to use while under the jeep welding.

This is not going to be a one time use for a welder for me. I truely want to learn but the local tech school doesnt offer night classes just a full year+ long program.

I am considering having someone with a mobile welding business come and do the structural welds that I need for this.
 

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Comfortably Numb
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Welding was the one thing that I wanted to learn and do in the Army but never got a chance too. My company had a welder and a machinist at one of my duty stations.

I have a text book that the local tech school uses to teach welding and a bunch of scrap metal to learn on. I also have a Miller Syncrowave 250 setup with Coolmate that I scored for a steal. One of the torches has the thumb control, the other is peddle. But I didn't think that would be good to use while under the jeep welding.

This is not going to be a one time use for a welder for me. I truely want to learn but the local tech school doesnt offer night classes just a full year+ long program.

I am considering having someone with a mobile welding business come and do the structural welds that I need for this.
Well I was going to suggest enrolling in a local voctec school. Another avenue is to do a search for "welding lessons" on YouTube. Google "truss to axle weld procedure". There are some videos that are just under an hour or more than an hour long. You could also drop into a local weld or 4X shop and ask if you could "help" with welding stating your intent. If the your local votech offers welding, try to talk to the instructor(s) about suggestions. Be assertive in your desire to learn to weld and it will help you to succeed. Good luck. Try this link: https://www.youtube.com/user/nielsmiller
 

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I have to agree with the crazy cajun; doing work like suspension upgrades or axle trussing isn't a good time to learn to weld. If the welds fail on a suspension bracket at 70MPH it can result in a very bad day on the highway, and if you don't know what you're doing you can easily warp your axle burning in a truss (I've seen even experienced welders do that).

Go to a metal recylcler and buy a bunch of scrap. Take a class at your local votech or community college. Practice until you're comfortable before tackling the Jeep.

You will need a 230V welder to do the truss, particularly if you're welding to the pumpkin. You might be able to get by with a 120V welder for the suspension brackets but you'll be fighting a battle between going slow enough for proper penetration and the duty cycle of the machine.

You can use flux core (FCAW) to weld your suspension brackets and truss. You will just have more clean-up work to do in removing slag and dealing with spatter. Heck, you can even stick weld it if you want. Provided you have the right technique and enough juice (Amps) to ensure good beads the main differences are speed, appearance and clean-up.

As for beginner machines, I'd suggest the Hobart Handler 210 MVP, Miller Millermatic 211 or Lincoln Power Mig 210 MP. All of these machines are made in the USA, will do gas shielded or flux core processes, and can run off 120 or 230 V/AC.

The Lincoln is a new but interesting machine as it can do stick, mig (gas or flux core) and tig for around $1200 (extra cost components needed for tig).

Hobart and Miller are from the same company. The Hobart 210 MVP is the least expensive at around $900 and is a pretty solid machine and the Miller 211 runs around $1200. The difference is the Miller has continuous-adjustable voltage vs the Hobart's 7-step voltage adjustment, the Miller has an "autoset" feature to help newbs set a good wire speed and voltage, and less plastic is used on the Miller (though newer Hobart 210's do have a metal wire feed drive mechanism).

Which is best is a religious discussion no less contentious than Windows vs Mac. The shops and experienced welders I know all prefer Miller for mig machines. I have an old Lincoln tombstone stick welder (bought used) that I play with and it works fine for what it is. Which leads me to another suggestion: check Criagslist and see what's available used in your area. This way you can start off cheap with a beginner machine and move up without losing a lot of your initial investment.
 

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I have to agree with the crazy cajun; doing work like suspension upgrades or axle trussing isn't a good time to learn to weld. If the welds fail on a suspension bracket at 70MPH it can result in a very bad day on the highway, and if you don't know what you're doing you can easily warp your axle burning in a truss (I've seen even experienced welders do that).



Go to a metal recylcler and buy a bunch of scrap. Take a class at your local votech or community college. Practice until you're comfortable before tackling the Jeep.



You will need a 230V welder to do the truss, particularly if you're welding to the pumpkin. You might be able to get by with a 120V welder for the suspension brackets but you'll be fighting a battle between going slow enough for proper penetration and the duty cycle of the machine.



You can use flux core (FCAW) to weld your suspension brackets and truss. You will just have more clean-up work to do in removing slag and dealing with spatter. Heck, you can even stick weld it if you want. Provided you have the right technique and enough juice (Amps) to ensure good beads the main differences are speed, appearance and clean-up.



As for beginner machines, I'd suggest the Hobart Handler 210 MVP, Miller Millermatic 211 or Lincoln Power Mig 210 MP. All of these machines are made in the USA, will do gas shielded or flux core processes, and can run off 120 or 230 V/AC.



The Lincoln is a new but interesting machine as it can do stick, mig (gas or flux core) and tig for around $1200 (extra cost components needed for tig).



Hobart and Miller are from the same company. The Hobart 210 MVP is the least expensive at around $900 and is a pretty solid machine and the Miller 211 runs around $1200. The difference is the Miller has continuous-adjustable voltage vs the Hobart's 7-step voltage adjustment, the Miller has an "autoset" feature to help newbs set a good wire speed and voltage, and less plastic is used on the Miller (though newer Hobart 210's do have a metal wire feed drive mechanism).



Which is best is a religious discussion no less contentious than Windows vs Mac. The shops and experienced welders I know all prefer Miller for mig machines. I have an old Lincoln tombstone stick welder (bought used) that I play with and it works fine for what it is. Which leads me to another suggestion: check Criagslist and see what's available used in your area. This way you can start off cheap with a beginner machine and move up without losing a lot of your initial investment.

The last little bit here is something that you may need to look into. It says to look on Craigslist, I was doing the same. Looking at miller bobcats and while talking to a friend he pulled up Hobart on his phone. The same unit I was looking at for 2500 in the miller was 2250 new in Hobart. One is commercial grade the other industrial. It's just preference. They are both made in the same plants. Just food for thought.
 

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Not trying to piss on your cake, but If you don't have a lot of welding experience I think you should reconsider and have someone with a lot of welding experience do that job. Just speaking as a former welding inspector. Are you willing to accept liability for your work? Are you familiar with pre and post heating requirements? The welding of thin to thick metals require an understanding of heating and cooling differentials as well as some basic metallurgy. Go to a 4 X shop and get some advice. It'll save you some headaches on the trail and possibly on the highway. Good luck and post up whichever way you go. And thanks for your service from an old ass grunt.
A monkey can learn to use a mig welder from a few youtube videos and a little practice. At least enough for what we do. This isnt an aircraft or an oil pipeline. Dont scare the guy!

Use the right equipment, dont be the guy welding to the frame with a hobart 140 and flux core. I loved my 210MVP before it was stolen, but my hobart 175 is doing just fine. The 210MVP is extremely convenient, runs on 220/110 so you can use it for emergency repairs out in the field, fix a metal fence, etc.

There are about a billion youtube videos on the subject. I like this guy
 

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Comfortably Numb
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A monkey can learn to use a mig welder from a few youtube videos and a little practice. At least enough for what we do. This isnt an aircraft or an oil pipeline. Dont scare the guy!

Use the right equipment, dont be the guy welding to the frame with a hobart 140 and flux core. I loved my 210MVP before it was stolen, but my hobart 175 is doing just fine. The 210MVP is extremely convenient, runs on 220/110 so you can use it for emergency repairs out in the field, fix a metal fence, etc.

There are about a billion youtube videos on the subject. I like this guy
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hgGG-ifphkA
see post 4.
 

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If you want new look at cyberweld.com, they have some pretty good prices. I always tell people to get the most machine they can at the time. I have a Miller 251, works great on sheetmetal, but has the power for thicker metal when needed.

MIG welding (short arc, solid wire) is easy and very forgiving. You can run vertical up or down, it doesn't matter and overhead is just as easy as flat. Everything in a suspension lift will be fillets welds and that helps too.

Get a bunch of scrap and practice. Make some 'T' plates 6" long and weld them in different positions.


Kevin
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Seminole State college has a welding program that's 12months. The next class doesn't start till January 12th.

Any other VA approved welding programs in central Florida? Already have Associates in Business from SSC
 

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I always tell people to get the most machine they can at the time.
Yup.

If you're in it for the long haul and have the cash, get something 200 amp or more, with the name to back up the quality.

If you don't have the cash, or not sure what you may end up doing, go with a cheaper maching. Output voltage/amperage is what it is, but the quality and control of the delivery, components, duty cycle, and overall life... well, you get what you pay for.

I started with a shit 180amp machine. Does it work, yes. Did it make me a better welder, probably since when I pick up a high end machine its like buttering bread for me. Do I regret buying it, most days, especially the ones where I actually use it and have to deal with constant feed issues and inability to hold a stable arc at low amperage
 
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