Welding machine?

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dhafling
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Welding machine?

Post by dhafling » September 28th, 2020, 11:32 am

I am about to embark on my first trailer build followed by building a Mack smoker on it. I am new to welding. I have a cheap Chicago Electric 125 to build these with. Talked to a client today that recommended to NOT use the cheap welder, but go get a bigger machine. Thoughts? I also have access to an old small welder that does have the gas option. Should I use that instead or is it still too small of a machine. All machines are 110V.



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Re: Welding machine?

Post by dacolson » September 28th, 2020, 12:59 pm

Do you have access to 220/240? Makes a world of difference. I ran 120 for a year and got so fed up with tripped breakers I finally sprang for adding a second panel to bring 240 to my garage ...
You can build a trailer on 120 but if you are building one w 3/8” or 1/4” channel, you’ll be pushing the limits for sure.


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Re: Welding machine?

Post by JKalchik » September 28th, 2020, 2:23 pm

Not only would I concur with getting a bigger welder..... a trailer to be used on the highway may also not be the best place to learn how to weld. It would probably be a good idea to get some training, something like a community college welding intro class, so you've got a little better idea of materials, fitment, processes, choice of filler, etc.

An experienced welder would be able to take your 110v welders and run with a trailer build, and probably make it look easy. That's the problem, they have the eye to make sure that the fitment is right, polarity, amps and/or volts, and when they'll need to run multiple beads for strength.


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Re: Welding machine?

Post by dacolson » September 28th, 2020, 8:18 pm

:yth:


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Re: Welding machine?

Post by Dirtytires » September 29th, 2020, 10:35 am

Gas is awesome and really helps to cut down on the splatter. On my machine at least, it is rated to do a deeper weld with flux core wire...but flux core is messy and just plain horrible stuff so gets no love in my shop.

You can bevel the material and do multiple passes to join thicker material on a smaller machine so it is always possible. Lot more time and work but it can be done. With that said, it really depends on your materials and your welder capacity as to what you can do. A lot also depends on your electrical outlet. If you are running off a shared,standard 15 volt circuit expect a bunch of headaches. I have a dedicated 30 amp outlet for my welder and can burn anything I need to on 110. But again, make sure your machine is rated for this....

If you are just learning, I might suggest you build the smoker first so you can gain some experience. The smoker won’t mind a few sub-par welds but the trailer could quickly become a dangerous situation.



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Re: Welding machine?

Post by JKalchik » September 29th, 2020, 2:15 pm

@DirtyTires, if you're looking for some easy, really impressive, beads, look into DualShield wire. It's flux core wire, but still uses shielding gas. Personally, I have no used it, but from some folks I used to know, it will lay down a killer bead easier than just about anything else out there.

And if you have to work in a breeze, flux core may be the only way to get the job down with a MIG machine.

There are places for flux core. But, like you, I'd be happier to not have to work in that environment.


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Re: Welding machine?

Post by dhafling » September 29th, 2020, 7:28 pm

Found a out builder that said if I furnish all the material for the trailer only he would weld together for 450. That seems reasonable? I am located in Houston Texas.



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Re: Welding machine?

Post by Dirtytires » September 30th, 2020, 10:42 am

Metal fab work averages on the $100an hour in some places....I’d say that is super fair for a completed trailer.



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