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Tool Talk Discussion Forum

Re: Ox Ac or Mig for welding thin metal

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10-15-2012 19:51:37

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Id recommend MIG welding for you...

O/A is S L O freakin' W. Aganizingly slow. It puts a huge amount of heat into your metal and warps the crap out of thin material, plus the gasses are expensive and above all, its super SLOW. This being said, it is cool to play around with just for the heck of it...

TIG is a great process, but takes huge amounts of practice to learn. Im still not very good at it. Plus, everything must be super clean, absolutely ZERO tolerance for paint, rust, grease/oil, milscale, etc. Plus a good tig machine will set you back $2000-$3000 and up, new. Its also pretty slow, but still 10x faster than O/A.

MIG is like using a hot glue gun for metal. It burns right through millscale (but still cant do paint/rust/grease/oil) and is the easiest process to learn. For general fabrication I dont think it can be beat. A good 110 volt machine can be had for $500-$600, but I would HIGHLY recommend stepping it up to a good 220v machine. A Hobart 140 will top out around 1/8" maximum thickness under real world conditions (and only for short amounts of time), but its big brother, the 187 (like I have) can run 1/8" all day long, and up to 1/4". My 187 was $727 new, but now its called the Handler 190 and is spool gun capable.

Let it be said that ANY of these processes will blow SMAW clean out of the water when it comes to welding thin material.

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10-16-2012 04:19:27

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 Re: Ox Ac or Mig for welding thin metal in reply to Lanse, 10-15-2012 19:51:37  
Oh Lanse, you young guys have it so easy! When I started in body work it was oxy or nothing and I was trained by a guy (my FIL) who'd started int he days of gasoline blow torches, soldering irons (3-5 pounders, not electric) and lead! Oxy brazing was worlds ahead.
In the words of that great philosopher Goober Pyle, "Speed, speed, speed! That's all they think about!" :lol:
This post was edited by Bret4207 at 04:20:12 10/16/12.

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