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1320StreetKing
12-29-2006, 01:04 PM
I just purchased a Craftsman gas/no gas 110v mig welder from Sears. This is my first welder. I had to think about affordability and serviceability as well as a good guarantee and they have guaranteed all tools I have purchased from them in the past really well.

Are these welders any good? Or did I just make a mistake? I will be mainly doing sheet metal work with it. It says it can weld 24 gauge to 3/16 metal.

88GT
12-29-2006, 03:41 PM
I just purchased a Craftsman gas/no gas 110v mig welder from Sears. This is my first welder. I had to think about affordability and serviceability as well as a good guarantee and they have guaranteed all tools I have purchased from them in the past really well.

Are these welders any good? Or did I just make a mistake? I will be mainly doing sheet metal work with it. It says it can weld 24 gauge to 3/16 metal.
Depends on a number of things. Can you afford a gas set up? What sort of weld quality will you want. Is the sheet metal goung to be for doing things such as patch panels on cars? Or will it be sheet metal where weld appearance isn't a concern? If it's for doing body work, I'd say you made a mistake. I find it very difficult to weld sheet metal with a flux welder. Sears had a gas welder that I thought about buying, but the big turn off for me was the short length of the feeder line from the welder to the nozzle. Assuming you arent an experienced welder, you will have a difficult time welding with it on sheet metal.

1320StreetKing
12-29-2006, 03:57 PM
This craftsman welder can be used as a gas welder or flux welder and has 8ft of length gun travel.

88GT
12-29-2006, 04:05 PM
This craftsman welder can be used as a gas welder or flux welder and has 8ft of length gun travel.
Mine is 10 ft. I think. I would set it up for gas. It won't be cheap. You will need a cart for sure, and a smaller bottle filled will add quite a bit to the cost as well. I wouldt get the small bottle either. Get a larger one. Especially if the place you plan to exchange/fill it is a good drives distance.

CoolasIce
12-29-2006, 06:01 PM
I don't know about lately, but Century made the welders in the past.
Not exactly a top-of-the-line welder.

wisconsinjimmy
12-30-2006, 02:53 PM
most of the welders are made by one of two companys cannot remember which ones and I believe they are all off shore now. I do not worry to much about the feed line as I like to keep the welder close so I can adjust the feed rate at all times and by all means get a large bottle and throw the flux wire out the door as the welder is for light work, Flux is for outdoors in windy conditions. It used to be you bought the bottle and then exchanged it when empty and some states are a pain in the ahum like MO where either the tank is leased or it is sold and that is stamped into the tank so always keep a copy of your purchase reciept. Practice practice and mote practice is the real trick and keep a shield between you and on lookers also where a mask and have good ventilation and have fun.

88GT
12-30-2006, 03:16 PM
most of the welders are made by one of two companys cannot remember which ones and I believe they are all off shore now. I do not worry to much about the feed line as I like to keep the welder close so I can adjust the feed rate at all times and by all means get a large bottle and throw the flux wire out the door as the welder is for light work, Flux is for outdoors in windy conditions. It used to be you bought the bottle and then exchanged it when empty and some states are a pain in the ahum like MO where either the tank is leased or it is sold and that is stamped into the tank so always keep a copy of your purchase reciept. Practice practice and mote practice is the real trick and keep a shield between you and on lookers also where a mask and have good ventilation and have fun.
Also, if you try to exchange it without the cap, they may make you buy another one, claiming they can't allow you to leave the premises without one. That happened to me.

1320StreetKing
12-30-2006, 05:51 PM
Mine is 10 ft. I think. I would set it up for gas. It won't be cheap. You will need a cart for sure, and a smaller bottle filled will add quite a bit to the cost as well. I wouldt get the small bottle either. Get a larger one. Especially if the place you plan to exchange/fill it is a good drives distance.

Hmmm it seems that i only have to buy the gas regulator,get a tank with the gas and I am set?? What would not be cheap about that? :confused:

Stanger
12-30-2006, 06:00 PM
Hmmm it seems that i only have to buy the gas regulator,get a tank with the gas and I am set?? What would not be cheap about that?

I paid $175 for my 60cf tank of C25(which is what you want). I did not need the regulators as I already had them. If you don't have the regulators you will need a gas conversion kit which is probably about $100. So you could be looking at $300. You could always get a smaller tank but it isn't worth it in my opinion. The difference in refill price is almost non-existent. I bought the biggest tank that I could legally buy in IL, the bigger are rent-only which I didn't want to deal with. I either payed $175 now or $110 every 10 years(I think) plus refill cost. Don't get too worked up about your welder, it isn't junk. I have been borrowing a Craftsman 80 amp mig and it is doing fine on sheetmetal. Like I said earlier I am using C-25 gas and .023 solid wire. Once I got it dialed in for sheet it was ok. I am looking at buying a HH187 now though. Good luck and don't get discouraged.
Grant

Phil V
12-30-2006, 07:30 PM
I do know that the Craftsman welders used to be made by Century which is an American company that has been in business here since 1939. Their claim to fame is mig and arc welders as well as battery chargers. My 170 amp 220 V Century mig welder has been a great welder and worked flawless for the last 8 years. Just welded a piece yesterday with it. I tried a Miller 110 mig and was dissatified with it, I can weld a lot better with my Century welder than that Miller. Century welders are sold under several different names including Snap On, Solar, Craftsman etc etc. My personal experience with the Century welders are they are well made and do well what they were designed to do -- mig weld.

88GT
12-30-2006, 07:51 PM
Hmmm it seems that i only have to buy the gas regulator,get a tank with the gas and I am set?? What would not be cheap about that? :confused:
Like Stanger said, plus the different wire. If $300-400 is cheap to you, then why did you buy the welder you did? I got my 135 plus for about $700 with gages. To set it all up, cart, bottle, wire and all, it's about a $1200 set up. Yeah, it came with a small roll of wire, but that wont last long.

Stanger
12-30-2006, 11:03 PM
Yeah, it came with a small roll of wire, but that wont last long.
That is usually a 2 lb. roll of flux so that you can weld right out of the box. Another note, do not buy too large of roll of solid wire if it is stored in humid conditions. Light surface rust will form on the wire and it won't feed or weld correctly. And another suggestion, keep your gas at a reasonable temperature because I have recently been informed that when a bottle of gas mix is stored in an area below freezing the gas will go bad. This is supposed to only take place on the mixes, not straight CO2 or straight Argon. Apparently the Snap-On pamphlet states this and it has happened to a friend of mine. The funny thing is that most if not all gas suppliers store the bottles in open sheds with no temperature control.
Grant

dixie1776
12-30-2006, 11:29 PM
craftsman welders were made by century, which is now owned by lincoln. not sure if lincoln is going to continue the line, but they do own it, however i'm not sure if craftsman is still associated

88GT
12-30-2006, 11:30 PM
That is usually a 2 lb. roll of flux so that you can weld right out of the box. Another note, do not buy too large of roll of solid wire if it is stored in humid conditions. Light surface rust will form on the wire and it won't feed or weld correctly. And another suggestion, keep your gas at a reasonable temperature because I have recently been informed that when a bottle of gas mix is stored in an area below freezing the gas will go bad. This is supposed to only take place on the mixes, not straight CO2 or straight Argon. Apparently the Snap-On pamphlet states this and it has happened to a friend of mine. The funny thing is that most if not all gas suppliers store the bottles in open sheds with no temperature control.
Grant

I never worry about the temp of my bottle. Not that it's a bad idea, but if I brought everything in the house that I thought was temp sensative, we wouldn't have a place to sleep. I just be sure to turn the gas off after each use...but I do forget sometimes;)
But on to the toppic. Flux core isnt good. A gas set up is much better

drizler
01-02-2007, 09:29 PM
I just purchased a Craftsman gas/no gas 110v mig welder from Sears. This is my first welder. I had to think about affordability and serviceability as well as a good guarantee and they have guaranteed all tools I have purchased from them in the past really well.

Are these welders any good? Or did I just make a mistake? I will be mainly doing sheet metal work with it. It says it can weld 24 gauge to 3/16 metal.


Take a look at this web site it will tell you all about every type of welding and they are a pretty friendly bunch. Do get a decent sized bottle as its literally within a few bucks difference to fill an 120 as a 20 cf. Check out what they will refill locally before buying one too. It gets sort of weird and the dollar sign keeps pointing at your wallet. http://www.hobartwelders.com/mboard/
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rustyramblers
01-07-2007, 02:13 PM
Mine is 10 ft. I think. I would set it up for gas. It won't be cheap. You will need a cart for sure, and a smaller bottle filled will add quite a bit to the cost as well. I wouldt get the small bottle either. Get a larger one. Especially if the place you plan to exchange/fill it is a good drives distance.

You know, a cart for the welder is a pretty good first project. I built mine with some 1" angle for the base, 1/2" square tube for a handle, a pair of wheels, a steel rod for the axle and a peg up front (I did this instead of another set of wheels to keep cost down), and some misc. hardware. It took me an afternoon to build it and paint it (black paint from a spray bomb I had sitting around). I think I may have spent $30-$40 on materials to build it.

Matt

drizler
01-07-2007, 05:38 PM
You know, a cart for the welder is a pretty good first project. I built mine with some 1" angle for the base, 1/2" square tube for a handle, a pair of wheels, a steel rod for the axle and a peg up front (I did this instead of another set of wheels to keep cost down), and some misc. hardware. It took me an afternoon to build it and paint it (black paint from a spray bomb I had sitting around). I think I may have spent $30-$40 on materials to build it.

Matt

Best of all you end up making it out of real steel scrap plate and angles rather than that tin foil the manufacturers love so much. Instead of rusting it just browns and lives on as long as you will. Try to leave that cheap thin crap for the places where you are stuck with it like cars. You can usually get most of the steel for that sort of stuff way cheaper at the scrap yard. Thats good folks to get to know. Treat em right and they will treat you right.
When it comes to the thin stuff and burning through make sure to remember the value of a copper penny and a piece of flattened copper pipe for a backer heat sink. They will save yer bacon working on the thin stuff over and over. A piece of copper takes about 3/4 of the skill right out of it.