Duramax Diesels Forum Truck of the Week
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Old 01-04-2009, 12:56 PM
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Default Tig welders

Ok, what's the machine of choice? I'm looking at getting a Miller Synchrowave 250.
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Old 01-04-2009, 04:14 PM
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That depends on what you want to do with the machine. Lots of alum? thick or thin? stainless, thick steel, really thin stuff? do you need pulse etc... I use a syncro 350 at my shop and I love it. Lincoln also makes a very nice unit. a precision TIG 275 and 375 I think. Make sure you get a water cooled torch and always overbuy. It's eaiser to have more than you need and not use it then less power than you need and wish you would have bought bigger.

I have also used the syncro 250 and it welds very nice. If your using it just for personal stuff and truck uses it should be an awsome machine for you. Enjoy!
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Old 01-04-2009, 04:31 PM
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Miller Dynasty 200 DX Hands down the machine of choice. There is nothing you need to do that this machine can't.

And I disagree, get an air cooled rig. You wont weld enough for it to get that hot. If it does you need a bigger rig. I've tigged 4 hours NONSTOP and could still hold the rig. Water cooling them just makes them bulky
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Old 01-04-2009, 05:46 PM
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I just got my 200DX last week & it currently can do more than I can. I had just decided on one & then Turbo Buick 6 gave me a recommendation so I knew I was on the right track. I did not get water cooled (even though I had originally planned to) as I was talked out of it by a few people (including the salesman)since I will not likely weld continuously for more than 20min. at a given stretch. 1/4" steel & 1/8" aluminum is probably the thickest metal I'll typically weld. The extra $1000 looks better in my pocket anyway.

Thumb control is neat, but I keep turning it the wrong way..... clockwise has always been off to me.

With all the bells & whistles, I'm still trying to see what works best. So far I have not got the hang of high frequency welding, as I seem to weld better at 60-70 hz.... but I plan to experiment a lot more.

Practiced with the pulse function & my welds seem to have a coarser appearance, but it really helps penetration.

As for the AC balance adjustment on aluminum, that works really nice. I started out with standard AC & as soon as I moved it towards the higher numbers, I could immediately see where I will use this. Welded at 80/20 for a while & got some realy nice looking welds.

Tried some very thin metal (around 20ga) & was welding it together with about 3 amps. Only problem was, I did not have the helmet sensitivity up enough & suddenly I was staring at an unfiltered arc. After I quit seeing blue spots, I adjusted the helmet & tried again.

I'm slowly welding every scrap piece together into one big Frankenstein creation, by trying to weld different thicknesses & at multiple angles. Then I try to break it to check the penetration/stength & then I'll attach another piece. Welding 18ga to 1/4" at a 90deg joint for example took me a little while to make it look nice.

I can see my MIG will get a lot less use now.
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Old 01-04-2009, 05:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lonnie View Post
I just got my 200DX last week & it currently can do more than I can. I had just decided on one & then Turbo Buick 6 gave me a recommendation so I knew I was on the right track.

With all the bells & whistles, I'm still trying to see what works best. So far I have not got the hang of high frequency welding, as I seem to weld better at 60-70 hz.... but I plan to experiment a lot more.

Practiced with the pulse function & my welds seem to have a coarser appearance, but it really helps penetration.

As for the AC balance adjustment on aluminum, that works really nice. I started out with standard AC & as soon as I moved it towards the higher numbers, I could immediately see where I will use this. Welded at 80/20 for a while & got some realy nice looking welds.

Tried some very thin metal (around 20ga) & was welding it together with about 3 amps. Only problem was, I did not have the helmet sensitivity up enough & suddenly I was staring at an unfiltered arc. After I quit seeing blue spots, I adjusted the helmet & tried again.

I'm slowly welding every scrap piece together into one big Frankenstein creation, by trying to weld different thicknesses & at multiple angles. Then I try to break it to check the penetration/stength & then I'll attach another piece. Welding 18ga to 1/4" at a 90deg joint for example took me a little while to make it look nice.

I can see my MIG will get a lot less use now.

For the 20g try starting at around 25 amps. About 6 hrz on the pulse (6x per sec) and about 30% background amperage. Try that and go from there. But with 20g you will prob only need to run about 15amps, but you need the extra heat for the first few secs untill the part gets hot. And use .030 filler wire. A spool of mig wire is easier to get and you can just cut pieces off and straighten them by hand

Pusle lets you run higher heat on thin material and higher heat has a more stable arc. I'm sure at 3 amps you were having a prob with the arc "wandering"
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Old 01-04-2009, 06:09 PM
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It has been fun so far. I have a lot of .023 mild steel mig wire, so I tried some of it. Seems to work well, but thicker would work much better. I only have 1/16" & 3/32" rod so they are too thick for sheetmetal. (for me anyway)

On the 20ga, I had the welder set on 25, but I kept turning it down & it ended up at 3a. (what I saw on the machine at the end on my weld)

Tried the thicker rods on some fillet welds & it seemed to deliberately try to jump onto the electrode. Got real good at resharpening the tip the first day.... belt sander came in handy.
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Old 01-04-2009, 06:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lonnie View Post
It has been fun so far. I have a lot of .023 mild steel mig wire, so I tried some of it. Seems to work well, but thicker would work much better. I only have 1/16" & 3/32" rod so they are too thick for sheetmetal. (for me anyway)

On the 20ga, I had the welder set on 25, but I kept turning it down & it ended up at 3a. (what I saw on the machine at the end on my weld)

Tried the thicker rods on some fillet welds & it seemed to deliberately try to jump onto the electrode. Got real good at resharpening the tip the first day.... belt sander came in handy.
.023 will work for 20g You don't want to use think wire because it sucks the ehat away from the weld and you wont get fulll pen, plus its super tough to make a nice looking weld thats not bumpy.

On the fillet welds, if one piece is thicker you may need more heat and focus the heat on the thick part, and then stick the wire in the puddle, not the arc. I make most of my tube to flange welds with 3/32. One of these days I take a trip over
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Old 01-04-2009, 06:39 PM
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I've been thinking about the Dynasty also. I used one a few years ago at school and really liked it. My plans don't include heavy production, just typical auto fab work.
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Old 01-04-2009, 06:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DuramaxPowered View Post
I've been thinking about the Dynasty also. I used one a few years ago at school and really liked it. My plans don't include heavy production, just typical auto fab work.
You can actually adjust just about everything so that you can keep your tungsten pointy while welding aluminum
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Old 01-04-2009, 07:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Turbo Buick 6 View Post
You can actually adjust just about everything so that you can keep your tungsten pointy while welding aluminum
Wow! thats nutz!

Once i go out and do some alum. practicing, im gonna hafta pick ur brain for help/info , as my AL welding experiance is jack sh!t So far, ive handled all other ferrous metal projects pretty damn sucsessfully! I'll see how I do!
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Old 01-04-2009, 08:08 PM
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This is a great thread as I just learned how to tig weld and have been looking to get one for the shop.
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Old 01-05-2009, 12:19 AM
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Miller!

Man I am glad my Dad does not read this site.

Guess what color the welders are in Dads weld shop?

Hint he does teaching and consulting for some little welder company out of Cleveland.

Dynastys are very nice. Way over kill for most of us. But overkill is good.

Man if Dad reads that he is likely to flog me with the water cooled leads of his TIG.
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Old 01-05-2009, 03:21 AM
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Miller!

Man I am glad my Dad does not read this site.

Guess what color the welders are in Dads weld shop?

Hint he does teaching and consulting for some little welder company out of Cleveland.

Dynastys are very nice. Way over kill for most of us. But overkill is good.

Man if Dad reads that he is likely to flog me with the water cooled leads of his TIG.

I used to be Lincoln all the way. I've used them all at work, even machines over 50 years old.

The conclusion I have come to is that they are both very good and far better than %99.9999 of the people that use them
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Old 01-05-2009, 03:59 AM
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Quote:
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The conclusion I have come to is that they are both very good and far better than %99.9999 of the people that use them
Preach brother!!
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Old 01-05-2009, 04:02 AM
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Preach brother!!
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