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Welding enthusiast and blogger

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  • Welding enthusiast and blogger

    Hi all, Jeff here!

    I recently started a blog about welding gear so before I move on I would appreciate it if you could take a look at the list of my top 11 MIG welders (Hobart IronMan 230 being #1) and tell me if you agree with my recommendations, and if not why and which MIG welders you'd include. Much appreciated!

    Here's the list: https://migtigstickweld.com/best-mig-welder/

  • #2
    Well Done Hoss. Thanks. I also own the Ironman 230 and its a champ for sure. So is my 140. Will fire up my new TIG 165i this weekend.

    Comment


    • #3
      Seems to be good start, will see how it goes over time though...

      Dale
      "Fear The Government That Wants To Take Your Guns" - Thomas Jefferson..

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by Jeff Powell View Post
        Hi all, Jeff here!

        I recently started a blog about welding gear so before I move on I would appreciate it if you could take a look at the list of my top 11 MIG welders (Hobart IronMan 230 being #1) and tell me if you agree with my recommendations, and if not why and which MIG welders you'd include. Much appreciated!

        Here's the list: https://migtigstickweld.com/best-mig-welder/
        I skimmed about 1/2 way through and you have quite a few errors! Whole duty-cycle section should be rewritten, and you seem confused about voltage and amperage.

        Comment


        • #5
          I found this on zena.net What does the term "duty cycle" mean?

          Duty cycle is a welding equipment specification which defines the number of minutes, within a 10 minute period, during which a given welder can safely produce a particular welding current.

          For example, a 150 amp. welder with a 30% duty cycle must be "rested" for at least 7 minutes after 3 minutes of continuous welding. (When you are paying an employee for welding, anything less than 100% duty wastes money.)

          Failure to carefully observe duty cycle limitations can easily over stress a welder's power generation system contributing to premature welder failure. Many welders do not have internal protection systems that prevent this sort of over stress -- leaving the task to the owner or operator.
          NOTE:
          Unlike conventional, old technology welders, ZENA welders are designed not to generate more power than they can safely produce continuously -- true 100% duty cycle operation -- freeing our customers from the need to worry about welding system duty cycles and equipment damage from overheating.
          Look carefully at welder specifications. Many welding equipment manufacturers will identify a particular welder by its maximum possible power generation capacity, even though that welder may only be able to produce that level of power for a short period of time.

          For example, a given welder may be touted as a 200A welder. However, careful reading of the documentation that comes with the unit may show that the welder can only produce this rated power with a 20-30% duty cycle (or even less). There is a huge difference between this welder and another 200A welder that can produce its rated power continuously -- both in work capability, and in long term reliability.

          Professional welders understand that almost all welding equipment manufacturers rate their welders using the maximum current that can be produced as the key specification -- not the 100% duty point. So to compensate, a pro will buy a 225-250A welder in order to get the100-150A 100% duty performance that they need to do their work.

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          • #6
            I found this on Eastwoods website. When you purchase a MIG welder, you will notice a specification on the packaging or in the manual called the duty cycle. This refers to the amount of welding that can be achieved in a given amount of time. The reason this specification is important is it informs the user of how long the MIG welder can work at its optimum level, since MIG welders, or any other welders, do not perform continuously as opposed to some other automotive tools that do.

            A perfect example of a duty cycle can be found in the Eastwood MIG 175 Amp Welder. The MIG 175 has a rated duty cycle of 30% at 130 amps. This means that the power signal of the MIG 175 should remain on for 30% of the time and off 70% of the time at 130 amps of power. If you look at your welding time in increments of 10 minutes, the duty cycle is a percentage of that 10 minute increment. In other words, with a 30% duty cycle at 130 amps, you can weld for three solid minutes and should let the welder cool off for seven minutes. You can increase the duty cycle percentage by turning down the amperage output, but going above the amp output (in this case, 130 amps) will yield a lower duty cycle. If you exceed the duty cycle and the breaker is tripped, allow the MIG welder to cool down for at least 15 minutes. A rated duty cycle on any MIG welding machine is there to protect you and your welder from any long-lasting damage.

            I went to several other sites and all were exactly as this.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Hunter55 View Post
              I found this on Eastwoods website. When you purchase a MIG welder, you will notice a specification on the packaging or in the manual called the duty cycle. This refers to the amount of welding that can be achieved in a given amount of time. The reason this specification is important is it informs the user of how long the MIG welder can work at its optimum level, since MIG welders, or any other welders, do not perform continuously as opposed to some other automotive tools that do.

              A perfect example of a duty cycle can be found in the Eastwood MIG 175 Amp Welder. The MIG 175 has a rated duty cycle of 30% at 130 amps. This means that the power signal of the MIG 175 should remain on for 30% of the time and off 70% of the time at 130 amps of power. If you look at your welding time in increments of 10 minutes, the duty cycle is a percentage of that 10 minute increment. In other words, with a 30% duty cycle at 130 amps, you can weld for three solid minutes and should let the welder cool off for seven minutes. You can increase the duty cycle percentage by turning down the amperage output, but going above the amp output (in this case, 130 amps) will yield a lower duty cycle. If you exceed the duty cycle and the breaker is tripped, allow the MIG welder to cool down for at least 15 minutes. A rated duty cycle on any MIG welding machine is there to protect you and your welder from any long-lasting damage.

              I went to several other sites and all were exactly as this.
              So, are you proposing the OP should plagiarize too!

              Also, I would ignore the Zena stuff, since the bold-face type is a sales-pitch for their old off-road alternator / welders.

              In terms of learning, if that's what you are suggesting the OP should do, I think the article from Jan/18 METAL FORMING MAGAZINE that Esab quotes, on their site, is about the best. Reading this will give a better understanding of " Duty Cycle". However, even this article does not advise that you should never consider a duty cycle without checking volt/amp curves.

              https://www.esabna.com/us/en/educati...lity-check.cfm
              Last edited by Northweldor; 11-02-2019, 08:38 AM.

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              • #8
                I was curious as to why You implied the OP was incorrect in His post when everything I posted verified the information in His post. If You believe He is incorrect, tell us why. The ESAB article is more thorough in that it uses different numbers but the results are the same.
                Last edited by Hunter55; 11-02-2019, 09:36 AM.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Hunter55 View Post
                  I was curious as to why You implied the OP was incorrect in His post when everything I posted verified the information in His post. If You believe He is incorrect, tell us why. The ESAB article is more thorough in that it uses different numbers but the results are the same.
                  I will tell you why his "Duty-Cycle" paragraphs needs re-writing, but don't expect me to do an editing job that should have been done before posting.

                  Here are the paragraphs:

                  "The Duty Cycle
                  Overheating is a pretty common problem in welding that has made a lot of expensive MIG welders into overpriced and useless pieces of junk. These welders can be used for short periods of time but once they overheat you will need to wait for ages before using them to resume your work. You can save yourself a lot of trouble and avoid a pain in the butt situation by purchasing a welder that has thermal overload protection. This will keep it from hitting that point.


                  The duty cycle relates to the amount of time a welder can run at a certain output without overheating due to the temperature limits of each component's parts. Usually, this is measured by using 10 minutes’ cycles. If a welder has a 30% duty cycle and a 180/240-volt capacity, then the welder can handle welding for 3 minutes at that output. After that, it will need 7 minutes to cool. "


                  The statements underlined in bold above are not true. All "expensive" equipment (and all but the worst, cheap equipment) has more than adequate protection (fan, thermistor, etc) to keep the machines from turning into"... over-priced and useless pieces of junk..." Instead, most welders will gradually decrease in rated performance, and only require a short "...7 minutes,,,", not "...ages to cool...", before resuming regular performance. In fact, few welder failures actually occur because of duty-cycle overheating: many might need the replacement of cheap ($6. for the last one I bought) thermistor.
                  The last two sentences in the first para. above have no point, since, to my knowledge, there is no welder on the market that does NOT have " ...thermal overload protection..."

                  The second para. bold type shows some of what I described as confusion of voltage/amperage that I also saw elsewhere. before I quit. I think the OP means to say "...180 OR 240 AMP OUTPUT..." , but, a "voltage capacity" rating makes no sense.

                  Now.Hunter55, since I did this, as you requested, perhaps you can start a new thread under "General", called "Defense of the Blog", explaining how YOUR posts verified the info in HIS post. (This would avoid hijacking his thread with a discussion between you and I).
                  Last edited by Northweldor; 11-02-2019, 10:07 PM.

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                  • #10
                    I stand by my statements. His post was informative and well written.

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                    • #11
                      I might as well throw it out there, since the OP was looking for feedback anyway. I agree with Northweldor. Proofreading is an issue, and technical bits like the duty cycle discussion were filled with hyperbole and errors. The explanation of the duty cycle ratio itself was correct, and didn't need three essays of defense.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Northweldor View Post

                        I skimmed about 1/2 way through and you have quite a few errors! Whole duty-cycle section should be rewritten, and you seem confused about voltage and amperage.
                        Much appreciated, I'll go over that section again!

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                        • #13
                          Although, there was a bit of a discussion, I am very happy to see you actually taking a close look!

                          I'm grateful to you all and I will do my best to correct all errors. Love and peace to you all!

                          EDIT: I tried to like each of the replies but it says I can't like the same post more than once. :-(
                          Last edited by Jeff Powell; 11-03-2019, 07:34 AM.

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                          • #14
                            OK, I put some thought into why the heck did I include Volts into the duty cycle specs and this is what got me confused:

                            Click image for larger version

Name:	Hobart Handler 210MVP specs.jpg
Views:	44
Size:	44.6 KB
ID:	706547


                            Now I have a few questions:

                            1. Does Hobart say here that 210MVP can reach the maximum 210 Amps only when plugged into 230 Volts outlet (running on 230V) and then, its duty cycle at this amperage is 30%?

                            2. When taking a look at specs of different welders, let's say we have two models, both MIG, both rated at 210 Amps and both with a 30% duty cycle when maxed out, my understanding is that the duty cycle itself for both machines will vary as it also depends on:
                            • difference in size (bigger machine = more cooling space)
                            • size (and quality & power) of the cooling fan
                            • size (and quality) of the fins
                            • size of the hot air exhaust vents
                            • robustness of the components (to get hotter less)
                            • the temperature in the shop (outside) = the hotter the air, the less effective cooling
                            • the dust pilled up inside the welder over time (prevents effective cooling)
                            • dynamics of welding process (effective welding vs stops)
                            Looking forward to your replies

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Jeff Powell View Post
                              OK, I put some thought into why the heck did I include Volts into the duty cycle specs and this is what got me confused:

                              Click image for larger version  Name:	Hobart Handler 210MVP specs.jpg Views:	8 Size:	44.6 KB ID:	706547


                              Now I have a few questions:

                              1. Does Hobart say here that 210MVP can reach the maximum 210 Amps only when plugged into 230 Volts outlet (running on 230V) and then, its duty cycle at this amperage is 30%?

                              2. When taking a look at specs of different welders, let's say we have two models, both MIG, both rated at 210 Amps and both with a 30% duty cycle when maxed out, my understanding is that the duty cycle itself for both machines will vary as it also depends on:
                              • difference in size (bigger machine = more cooling space)
                              • size (and quality & power) of the cooling fan
                              • size (and quality) of the fins
                              • size of the hot air exhaust vents
                              • robustness of the components (to get hotter less)
                              • the temperature in the shop (outside) = the hotter the air, the less effective cooling
                              • the dust pilled up inside the welder over time (prevents effective cooling)
                              • dynamics of welding process (effective welding vs stops)
                              Looking forward to your replies
                              I don't know what is confusing in the specs. above.

                              #1 is correct in the first clause, and likely wrong in the second. On most machines the rated duy-cycle is usually at less than max. amperage. Look at the volt/amp curves for both voltages: I can't remember exactly what the 210 rating is.

                              #2 is correct, but except for ambient temp. and the dynamics of the welding process, most factors would be difficult to quantify without reverse engineering. That's why i directed you to the Esab quoted article above.

                              In real-world welding, even in an industrial fab shop. arc-on time seldom exceeds 25%. This is why overheat shut-downs are very rare, contrary to what you are STILL saying in your blog.

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