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New Guy w some welding plans.

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  • New Guy w some welding plans.

    Hi, I own a stick welder and so far have barely used it. It is older Craftsman buzz box 230 amp version. I recently repaired the fan wiring inside the unit and it now hums as it should. I find it hard to control the arc, it produces a lot of splatter (nature of the beast I think) and I think it would more useful for heavier repairs.
    I also own some oxyacetyline torches I mainly use for cutting.
    I am considering an MVP 210 hoping it would be more versatile for what I want, some general automotive work, crafts . I basically want to learn to weld and I love tools.
    I was looking at a newer multihandler 200 that was intriguing but could not find any reviews on it.
    I am considering a second semiretired career- I am only 48 but am considering either getting my ASE auto certification (I have a larger automotive background) or taking some welding classes, either path is a stress on time (family and current job) the interest in either path is because I would like to make some side money part time and working with my hands takes my mind off things. I am not sure if either of those thoughts will play out so for the meantime I will enjoy reading up on some of the info available on this forum.

  • #2
    Can't go wrong with the 210 MVP.
    Ed Conley
    Screaming Broccoli, Inc
    Miller Passport Plus, Spoolmate 100
    SO 2020 Bender
    Miller 125c Plasma
    "Hold my beer while I try this!"


    • #3
      Spend some time with the Craftsman welder. Try out various electrodes at various amperages. I'm reading between the lines, but it sounds like you haven't given it a much of a chance. Try some 1/8" 6013 electrode (available at Home Depot or Lowes). Select each of the amperage selections that are available to you between about, say, 80 and about 150 amps. Just weld flat on a piece of, say 1/4" steel. Weld the entire length of the electrode on that setting. Just for practice. Spend some time developing some skill. There is nothing wrong with a stick welder. Try it, you'll like it.
      "If a problem can't be solved, enlarge it." (The 34th president of the United States)


      • #4

        I've got the 210 MVP and the 210i.....they are both great welders
        Handler 210MVP
        Stickmate 210i


        • #5
          You will feel like a super freekin hero with the 210 over that old buzzer.


          • #6
            You should not hesitate. The 210 classmig is the real workhorse of the small hobby main t shop and would want one dedicated it even if I had every other machine ever made. In fact auto home hobby it might be the only machine you ever need.
            I have a neighbor can run them all, own a 1 machine, a 175 and I haven't seen him to weld a single thing in steel since he got it 15 years ago, maybe more.
            . I see a post above related to this, has a 210 mvps and a new stick which is the order I would go if starting over today.
            one thing about welders is,, you can always buy more. This covers the bases, if a guy really needs a specialty cross that if and when it happens.
            machines I bought on spec sit, ones I bought on demand saw work and were mostly right for the job.
            . I would not hesitate to buy as needed for business but,,,, i really keep a 250 feeder for the few contract jobs and i should try different wire in it. A 250 is 2x as fast a a 210 and takes full spools. Machine cost difference moot if a guy is half busy and critical if he employs men.
            Having said that the third unit I might own,,, changed my mind on this as of late is a 140 with small wire and makes it s place to park a second gas bottle but a I get a little older and weld less it's a whole nether level of easy to use a small machine and a guy can really weld near foil level with it if he has to.
            . I am a career welder and always want the top end of a small machine but my former opin is it's too small for so many things, you can carry that way up but the jump to a 210 is really significant, double the power and makes it capable of some occasional common fabrication. It also takes a spooky for alum and to tell the truth has retired my tig as it's so fast and simple.
            . I am not a hobby type, I want it done and dont look for crap to fiddle on. I need to be prepared and last 15 yrs it has been an *** saver the few times I really need it not including 10 miles of alum pipe and 1000 fittings most people dont have.
            . I understand people want tig, some have some use but personally wouldn't bother and that statement comes from someone has and can run it.
            . The alum, even with the fittings dont use but a small spool or 3 a year anymore custom and not worth any improvement.
            As for sticks I like both new models. The new 210 is really good idea for the equipment types got to run some 5/32 lo by but a dvi is about handy like they never been for field work