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Is firepower 140i/220i welders any good?

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  • Is firepower 140i/220i welders any good?

    Hi, I have an opportunity to pick up a Firepower 140i welder for 200 but its missing a few items like the mig gun and gas regulator. I never heard of firepower before only brands I heard is worth buying is Miller or Lincoln. I know it's a china made welder but China can make some quality stuff, just the majority of what they make is crap. I googled it and not much comes up for reviews or YouTube videos on it. I did find out it shares the same unit with Tweco 141i, Thermal Arc, and Esab or there similar to one another. The unit says victor technologies on the back. He also has a used firepower 220i with tig torch and gas regulator for $500. Can someone shed some light on this? Are they reliable? Should I pass on it?

  • #2
    Your buddy comes along and says, hey...you want to go places, I have a Yugo for sale... $200, just needs a few things to make it run? Should you buy it or a bike for $50 that you can get on and start peddling?
    As for the $500 special...it's like the $200 special but more money.

    I may be off the mark here, but...I think a better deal (opportunity) is out there if you go looking a little harder.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by Brian9595 View Post
      Hi, I have an opportunity to pick up a Firepower 140i welder for 200 but its missing a few items like the mig gun and gas regulator. I never heard of firepower before only brands I heard is worth buying is Miller or Lincoln. I know it's a china made welder but China can make some quality stuff, just the majority of what they make is crap. I googled it and not much comes up for reviews or YouTube videos on it. I did find out it shares the same unit with Tweco 141i, Thermal Arc, and Esab or there similar to one another. The unit says victor technologies on the back. He also has a used firepower 220i with tig torch and gas regulator for $500. Can someone shed some light on this? Are they reliable? Should I pass on it?
      FirePower was a lower priced Victor Tech brand before Victor was bought by Esab. Thermal Arc is now also owned by Esab, and possibly, Tweco as well.

      Never buy any welder that is not complete and available for trial. Esab is the largest welding supplier in the world, and has an excellent service network.
      That said, what you are buying probably has no warranty, and may not be serviced by Esab, although most acquired company's products are.

      Make sure that you are getting mig, tig, stick, and gas equipment and check on warranty before considering the used unit. I would definitely pass on the 140I.
      Last edited by Northweldor; 02-13-2019, 02:40 PM.

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      • #4
        Might want to price out all the missing stuff to see if its really a "deal'.... Like Northwelder states, trying before buying has its merits....

        Dale
        Last edited by Dale M.; 02-13-2019, 09:28 PM.
        Lives his life vicariously through his own self.

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        • #5
          They both work pretty well I had no complaints we even took the mig gun off the 220i to test out the 140i and it worked the same as the 220i on 110 power from what i can tell. I would bet they're out of warranty but figure they're close to a 1/3 of what they go for retail and the 220i is complete with gas regulator it might be worth it idk. I just wanted to know how it was brand wise and if they are reliable enough to learn to weld better and do a few projects like trailers, cars, random stuff, etc. I priced the mig gun, tig torch, and regulator for the 140 and it would be 300 extra definitely not worth it for the 140 but what about the 220i. My understanding from oldguyfrom56 Firepower=Yugo=worst welder ever made.

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          • #6
            Don't let what I say ruin your day. See, I helped you get a response. Stirred the pot and made soup. As far as things go, your follow up post told more to the story and if you know a bit about welding and what to expect from a welding machine, I'm trusting you then can make an informed decision on the value it could holds for what you want to do, and $500 can buy in your area.

            Having said that, and Yugo...in the same statement, I'm a car guy. Haggle. You could tell buddy you'll give him $200 if he throws in the whip to make it run and it might not be a bad deal after all? How does a guy misplace a gun cable in the first place? I don't know? But you do have leverage if you have the cash. See, I'm really a glass half full kind of guy after all?

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            • #7
              I think the 220i would be a good learning machine since it has 3 functions stick, mig, and tig and its dual-voltage and for $500 in my area I can't get much maybe a Lincoln 140 or 180 in rougher condition these look well taken care of or new I couldn't tell the difference apart from some scratches. I think my original post was more on the deal than the welders. Hopefully, some people can chime in who had experience with the Firepower welders and put in their 2 cents.

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              • #8
                Bang for the buck. Remember the coke commercial? The one about teaching the world to weld in perfect harmony? Let me tell you, in some ways it does. I mentioned Yugo early on.

                "Priced at a sensational $3,990, it cost half as much as the next cheapest vehicle, and aroused a storm of interest. Orders poured in, with 7,500 bookings made even before the car arrived in the United States. The advertising campaign was upbeat, suggesting every household should have its Yugo.
                Nov 20, 2008 "


                Let me tell you, that baby is as simple as a transformer buzz box. A fella is broke and on the cheap, that Buzz Box will stick metal together just as good as anything. That's a fact Jack. So...if you can hold and arc...your paying for extras? The easy, the variety of choice.


                You want Escalade smooth and comfortable...You buy a multiprocessing Inverter. I'm sure the Firepower line up hold up well?

                " Escalade Premium Luxury with a base price of
                $84,090
                ."

                So...What you need, what you want. What you can afford but also, what will it cost you to operate, repair if required? What can you do with it? What value will it hold? All good questions.

                If you take it for a test ride, it's doesn't look road hard and put away wet? Doesn't appear "Man Handled'? Things seems to work and function...it's a fair deal.

                You might take it and a dozen doughnuts to a friend, buddy... local welding shop who has a Mixed gas and a Argon gas cylinder to try all the functions, but if it comes with a gun cable, torch and flow meter...that's one pimped out Yugo.
                I'd take a chance. I say buy it if you can try it.
                They're all going to break down eventually. Old age and the cycle of life.
                What most don't think about is that it, the welding machine is called a depreciating asset for a reason. The do however hold a greater perceived value in the minds that know, working and knowing how to use them they can save you money and make you more money to save.

                Good luck with the reviews.


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                • #9
                  I would consider the 220i. New they go for about $1,150. without a TIG torch. I've heard of some disappointment with the 140i model (the TWECO/Thermal Arc branded ones). The small 160/200 amp stick welders were made by WTL, a respectable welder manufacturer. I believe they also made the plasma cutters. Not sure if they made the multi-function ones. The 220i should be virtually the same as the Thermal Arc Fabricator 211i.

                  Firepower is marketed through the automotive/tool channel rather than the welding supply channel. I bought a Firepower TIG160S, which is identical to the Thermal Arc 161s other than some external accessories.
                  Last edited by usmcpop; 02-14-2019, 09:29 AM.
                  --- RJL ----------------------------------------------

                  Ordinarily I'm insane, but I have lucid moments when I'm merely stupid.
                  -------------------------

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by usmcpop View Post
                    I would consider the 220i. New they go for about $1,150. without a TIG torch. I've heard of some disappointment with the 140i model (the TWECO/Thermal Arc branded ones). The small 160/200 amp stick welders were made by WTL, a respectable welder manufacturer. I believe they also made the plasma cutters. Not sure if they made the multi-function ones. The 220i should be virtually the same as the Thermal Arc Fabricator 211i.

                    Firepower is marketed through the automotive/tool channel rather than the welding supply channel. I bought a Firepower TIG160S, which is identical to the Thermal Arc 161s other than some external accessories.
                    In addition, I checked a little further, and FirePower manuals are being supplied by Esab, and likely parts and accessories will be too, at present.

                    In answer to your original question, you can forget all the "YUGO" garbage, since you are probably buying fairly good quality.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Northweldor View Post

                      In addition, I checked a little further, and FirePower manuals are being supplied by Esab, and likely parts and accessories will be too, at present.

                      In answer to your original question, you can forget all the "YUGO" garbage, since you are probably buying fairly good quality.
                      Isn't that a Bishop moment? One on those make it personal moments when a little more is said then necessary and you wish you could have shut the bis hop.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by usmcpop View Post
                        I would consider the 220i. New they go for about $1,150. without a TIG torch. I've heard of some disappointment with the 140i model (the TWECO/Thermal Arc branded ones). The small 160/200 amp stick welders were made by WTL, a respectable welder manufacturer. I believe they also made the plasma cutters. Not sure if they made the multi-function ones. The 220i should be virtually the same as the Thermal Arc Fabricator 211i.

                        Firepower is marketed through the automotive/tool channel rather than the welding supply channel. I bought a Firepower TIG160S, which is identical to the Thermal Arc 161s other than some external accessories.
                        how well do u think there machines hold up from your experience with the tig machine. I ended up purchasing the 220i works good from what i can tell my welds look like **** but id assume thats me and not the machine lol. I talked to a technician at a repair center before purchasing and he basically told me the same as you did plus added "I dont care who makes it miller, lincoln, esab, etc all inverter machines are not that great especially if you run it off a generator they can last forever or they can be DOA eventually it will break and being a 3n1 machine more chances for something to go wrong" i asked him about the china welders and he said "the thing with china welders its more of a brand thing some have rebranded welders made by one company but the warranty and customer service is different, alot of the welders now days have mixed parts anyways it may not say made in chine but i am willing to bet theres china made stuff on the cuircit board. I wouldnt buy firepower unless it was at a smoking deal but its better than everlast, vulcan, lotos, etc."

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                        • #13
                          I haven't used either the Firepower or the Thermal Arc 161STL enough to know about durability.
                          --- RJL ----------------------------------------------

                          Ordinarily I'm insane, but I have lucid moments when I'm merely stupid.
                          -------------------------

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