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  1. #1
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    Default Who Has Got The Best Tig Welder??????????

    Hi There ,
    I am currently looking at getting a TIG ...The prices that I see at the local welding shop leave me dumbfounded.
    I see ...every night/Day on the E-Bay that they have TIG welders for a fraction of the cost of the ones they have on sale at my local store at Newcastle .
    The question that I am posing is .???????????

    Has anyone ever purchased one of these TIG machines from E-Bay ...they sell for $200 and the local shop want $1500 .
    Are the Ebay models any good ,I dont have a lot of work for the TIG only domestic type motorcycle muffler building for enthuiasts.
    Looking forward to hearing from anyone who has been involved with the (El -Cheapo )type that I see on E-Bay.I would hate to pay a large amount of money out and find that a cheaper one from China/ or elsewhere would do the same job.All types of feed back are welcome .
    Thank you for your time .
    Steve
    Last edited by stevew; 21st Apr 2006 at 06:55 PM. Reason: Spelling Error

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  3. #2
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    I think I'd rather put my $200 towards a good secondhand machine, CIG, Lincoln, Kempi (Migomag) WIA or the like. They are fairly basic machines you just paying for a big bunch of copper. Also depends if you want AC as well as DC+ and DC-. The older solid state machines are basic, easily repaired and usually very reliable. The problem with cheapies is duty cycle and when they blow they are normally not repairable. Just my take and I don't know the ones on E-bay you refer to. Good Luck
    Squizzy

    "It is better to be ignorant and ask a stupid question than to be plain Stupid and not ask at all" {screamed by maths teacher in Year 8}

  4. #3
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    Hi Steve,

    I dare say you had already had a look at the thread 9see link below) I had started recently in a similar vain. However, apart from the answers of a couple of experienced (& generous with their time) contributors I got little response so I presume that most members here are wood workers of varying levels of skill. I can relate to where you are coming from that you can get a TIG/MMA machine with all the trimmings for under a $800 compared to $3000 for a brand name. But as mentioned previously you generally get what you pay for and although they are cheaper should something go wrong you have the hassle of having to send the item off (and generally pay for it!!) then waiting a while before it comes back. Although I have a couple of friends who have just TIG welding machines they have both gone with established brands as yet they havenít regretted it.

    http://www.woodworkforums.ubeaut.com.au/showthread.php?t=30153

    All the best.
    David

  5. #4
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    You really need to decide if you need or want to be able to weld Aluminium, that will be the biggest decision for your choice of machine, bar none! If you are talking an inverter style, instantly you are talking big bucks, but if you dont mind a simpler old style transformer machine, then you will find these for lots less money and also maybe a 2nd hand unit with AC/DC and HF start. If you are serious, then you only really have one choice, and that would have to be the Kemmpi in the link above, if you only want to play and dabble a lil then you could spend less than a 1/4 the money and still have reliability, all be it simplicity.

    He's a thought, if you are a lil technically minded you could convert an old AC stick welder to AC/DC and add on an HF unit (read "build") and go buy a simple TIG Torch and away you go. I did this recently and have had it working perfectly for over a year now. Most of the parts can be scrounged found borrowed but it will still do all that you want. I know some here may not agree, but you will also find that you can weld VERY thin Aluminium. I actually built mine with the intention of welding the tubes of radiator cores! and this it does ever soo well

    The biggest thing with TIG welding is practice!!! LOTS OF PRACTICE!!! An expensive inverter machine will let you do anything you will ever want to do and do it easier, after you master all the controles! But an old style machine will still do a wonderfull job also.

    Try this link, hope this works. http://www.hobartwelders.com/mboard/

    Have a wander through there, there are a number of members that have built their own machines with much success! You may come across a few pics of my welder if you look hard enough, or if you are really interested just PM me and i can help with a lil info and some pics.

    Oh, also, you dont need a machine capable of lots of amps, especially if you are only doing the thin stuff that you have mentioned. A machine capable of only 150 amps would do all that you are talking about! Typically 1 amp per Thou of material, and in practice, stainless seems to look better after welding if you use less again. I've welded 1.2mm stainless with as lil as about 30 Amps ( if you trust the front dial ) and ended up with almost perfect penetration and that pretty rainbow coloured effect left behind on the weld
    It's Ripping Time!!!

  6. #5
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    Hey Mick that is an interesting exercise but I don't know if I could trust myself making one especially as I'm presently not insured .

  7. #6
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    I too was tempted by the E-bay machines, but eventually bought one of these. http://www.fronius.com/welding.techn...maw/tp1500.htm Second hand from e-bay, but a very helpful dealer 15 min from home.

  8. #7
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    Buy a good one, Steve, they seem to have a good resale value so you can't really go wrong. TIG is the most fun you can have welding. Quiet, much less frantic than stick or mig, and the results are much more "what you see through the lens is what you get". I bought a second hand Miller, and it's old but looks like it might last till someone walks on Mars.

  9. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rossluck
    Buy a good one, Steve, they seem to have a good resale value so you can't really go wrong. TIG is the most fun you can have welding. Quiet, much less frantic than stick or mig, and the results are much more "what you see through the lens is what you get". I bought a second hand Miller, and it's old but looks like it might last till someone walks on Mars.
    I ran a 300 amp Miller AC/DC water cooled tig unit for years and it really was a beautiful power supply until; We were welding up a cracked boom on one of the Whitbread around the world yachts...had it running flat knacker for about 5 hours and Kaboom!...exceeded the 65% duty cycle at full power.. sorry bout that Boss...We got Migomags after that..flash units..whizzbang...but I preferred the old Miller.
    Squizzy

    "It is better to be ignorant and ask a stupid question than to be plain Stupid and not ask at all" {screamed by maths teacher in Year 8}

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