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MM 212 or 180 that is the question

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  • MM 212 or 180 that is the question

    Alrighty guys, I'm brand new to this board and have a big decision to make. I'm faced with the question of which welder to buy - the MM 212 or the 180. I'm going to be building Jeeps with it, mostly welding bumpers, suspension components, and some sheet metal but not much at all. I've been building a Jeep for a guy and my payment for my work is basically a welder. He knows what they cost and I've now got the P.O. for either a 212 or a 180 plus tank, fill, wire etc.

    I've noticed that the 212 has 7 "taps" in voltage regulation - would infinite be much better? Autoset, is there an autoset option on the 212 that is out now? I'm not too worried about space in the garage that each machine would take up so size isn't an issue.

    Any opinions welcome.

    I think I can get better after some practice with my own machine:

    Jake
    Rocket City Rock Crawlers
    Jeep build ongoing in my garage.

  • #2
    Just went through the same decision and chose the 212. Better machine with more power. If you wait the 212 auto set will be out first quarter. I have a 140 auto set that I am selling and never ever used the auto set feature so for me it was not important.

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    • #3
      That 212 autoset.... any idea how much more in price, if any it will be over the standard 212? First quarter - in January?
      Jake
      Rocket City Rock Crawlers
      Jeep build ongoing in my garage.

      Comment


      • #4
        The MM 212 is a more robust machine is every way. I wouldn't even think twice about this decision. Especially if somebody else was paying the bill. Portability is greatly overrated for most users, and despite the handle on top, the small case machines like the 180 are too heavy to be comfortably schlepping around, anyway.

        7 voltage taps covers the range well and makes the machine easy to use. Infinite voltage controls are a disadvantage for most users, making the machine harder to dial in. I've never used their "autoset" to know how well it performs.
        Last edited by Zrexxer; 12-22-2008, 09:32 AM.
        Trailblazer 302 * Millermatic 212 * Syncrowave 180SD * X-Treme 12VS Feeder * Spoolmate 3035
        Thermal Dynamics Cutmaster 52 Plasma * Lincoln 175 MIG

        Victor Superrange II * Victor Journeyman

        Hobart HH 125EZ


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        • #5
          Yes, if it is already in consideration make the leap to the larger machine.
          http://www.facebook.com/cary.urka.urkafarms

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          • #6
            Another vote for the 212.
            "Good Enough Never Is"

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            • #7
              cj8lvr, I agree too that for what you will be using it for and the deal your working out that the MM 212 would be your best choice.
              Take care, Steve
              Steve W

              Millermatic 211i
              Hypertherm Powermax 380
              Miller Thunderbolt AC/DC arc welder
              Lincoln AC 225 arc welder
              Victor O/A torch setup
              Gentec O/A torch setup

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              • #8
                But, do check out the specs for the new MM 211. It's in the 2009 catalog and is available for shipment. It runs on 110 or 220. It may fill your needs with some portability. About a grand

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                • #9
                  Thank you all!

                  Well guys I think I have come to a decision. After reading your responses here and talking with my guy at the local Airgas, I'm going to hold off and wait for the MM 212 with autoset. It was a tough decision and one that yeilds me no welder in the immediate time but will probably be best for my needs in the long term. Airgas guy said he just got next year's catalog in the mail last Friday and he didn't work Friday. He dug through it, found the 212 w/ autoset and then got on the phone with Miller. Earliest he could get one for me will be March 2. I'll have to wait. I want to go through him because he's a great guy and everybody in town has recommended him. He's the kind of guy that will hook you up on down the road on gas and other consumables especially if you buy a machine from him to start with. It's an even tougher decision considering I'm due to become a father March 11 so time spent with my new tool is going to be especially limited for a number of months but I'll have the last welder I ever need.
                  Thank you all for your help and I'll certainly be around here for a while reading, learning, and on down the road, helping.

                  In the mean time feel free to keep up with my blog on this Jeep build I'm doing for the guy who is, in turn, buying me this welder as payment:
                  http://cj-8axleswap.blogspot.com/
                  Jake
                  Rocket City Rock Crawlers
                  Jeep build ongoing in my garage.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    I dunno....seems to me the std 212 would be more versatile than the autoset. I was always tweaking my MM210 here and there to improve the arc. Seems like that ability would be lost with an autoset dial. Spray would probably be out of the question which would be sad. Gotta be able to run a heavy globular or spray transfer.


                    OK, I went back and looked at it again. If you can figure out the where the voltage dial needs to be, one could figure out glob and spray. Without a digital readout, an infinitely variable voltage dial will get more in trouble than it will help.....IMO.
                    Last edited by dda52; 12-22-2008, 11:41 PM.
                    Don


                    Go Spurs Go!!!!!!

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by dda52 View Post
                      I dunno....seems to me the std 212 would be more versatile than the autoset. I was always tweaking my MM210 here and there to improve the arc. Seems like that ability would be lost with an autoset dial. Spray would probably be out of the question which would be sad. Gotta be able to run a heavy globular or spray transfer.


                      OK, I went back and looked at it again. If you can figure out the where the voltage dial needs to be, one could figure out glob and spray. Without a digital readout, an infinitely variable voltage dial will get more in trouble than it will help.....IMO.
                      I agree, get the MM212 now, and you will have run a lot of wire before the new model comes out.

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                      • #12
                        I wouldn't sit around waiting for some new model to come out. The MM 212 is available here and now, and it's a very capable machine. I know because I own one.

                        Find yourself a good price on one and get to welding.
                        Trailblazer 302 * Millermatic 212 * Syncrowave 180SD * X-Treme 12VS Feeder * Spoolmate 3035
                        Thermal Dynamics Cutmaster 52 Plasma * Lincoln 175 MIG

                        Victor Superrange II * Victor Journeyman

                        Hobart HH 125EZ


                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Come on, y'all are just messing with me now!
                          Jake
                          Rocket City Rock Crawlers
                          Jeep build ongoing in my garage.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Not really. The autoset is more of a gimmick than a really useful tool, IMO. I would much rather have a tapped unit with a door chart and go from there with my own settings. With the auto set, you will have to hunt around for a sweet spot for a given wire a lot more than with a tapped unit.
                            Don


                            Go Spurs Go!!!!!!

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              I have a feeling how well or poorly auto-set functions is going to be heavily influenced by the brand of wire being ran on the unit. In my experience, at the same voltage setting, three different brands of wire ( same diameter) can have significantly different wire speed settings.

                              In manual mode, the variable voltage dial on the MM212 Auto-set unit will make it a more time consuming, and complicated unit to dial in then the current tapped version, making the MM 212 A-S unit better suited for a more advanced operator.

                              I honestly doubt, you'd be disappointed with either version of the 212.

                              For welding on Jeeps, at home, I 'd probably a go with a combo of something like a HH 210, and a tig unit like my Maxstar 150 STH as minimum TIG/stick unit. Of course the extra top end voltage the MM 212 provides would hurt to have available if it were ever needed.
                              MigMaster 250- Smooth arc with a good touch of softness to it. Good weld puddle wetout. Light spatter producer.
                              Ironman 230 - Soft arc with a touch of agressiveness to it. Very good weld puddle wet out. Light spatter producer.


                              PM 180C



                              HH 125 EZ - impressive little fluxcore only unit

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