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PostPosted: November 30, 2015, 10:30 pm 
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My wife just found what appears to be a really good buy on a Lincoln Weld-Pak 100 MIG machine. It's a light duty (120V) unit, I realize, but we work with light weight materials to build lightweight cars. Does anyone have any experience with these. They are no longer made by Lincoln, from what I understand, but they still seem to be supported by the aftermarket. Any and all info and insight would be greatly appreciated! :)

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PostPosted: November 30, 2015, 10:39 pm 
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I've personally welded on hobart, miller, lincoln, chicago electric, and matco spool gun, 120v mig units. They are all very usable, and its really more about your personal machine knowledge than anything with them. they all had similiar controls.. wire speed, heat controls, etc.. but the setting on each were vastly different. a 4 on the matco was closer to a 6 on the miller. The lincoln did the job just fine.. all the way up to 5/16 plate. Plenty of penetration and no issues with over heat even after 2 hours of continuous welding in the hot summer heat.

If given the opportunity, I would purchase a lincoln all day long. they're priced well, and are smooth running machines.

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PostPosted: November 30, 2015, 10:55 pm 
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I started my build using the Weld-pak 100 it worked just fine. Easy machine to use and I've had mine for many years with no issues. Great machine for the money in my opinion. However, there's always a but.......about a year ago I bought a Miller Diversion 180 TIG machine and wish I had spent the money years ago. TIG machines are pricy and that kept me from buying one for a long time. However, if you can find a dealer that will give you a Wife receipt, its easier to explain why you had to buy another welder, beside you just like blue.


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PostPosted: November 30, 2015, 11:09 pm 
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of the "bargain" welding units - (120v mig's).. I think the best by far is the millermatic 140. That being said, you'll always pay more for the blue box.. ^^

A very competent fabricating friend of mine always says "MIG for the money, TIG for the honeys"

He occasionally follows it up with "and ARC for the lushes building pipe runs" :lol:

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PostPosted: November 30, 2015, 11:23 pm 
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Thanks, guys! TIG is totally out of the question for me at this point in time, but I can swing $200 for this little unit. It's complete except for the gas regulator, and I kinda know the guy that's selling it.

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PostPosted: November 30, 2015, 11:29 pm 
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ngpmike wrote:
Thanks, guys! TIG is totally out of the question for me at this point in time, but I can swing $200 for this little unit. It's complete except for the gas regulator, and I kinda know the guy that's selling it.



Thats a great price for a name brand 120v mig. Cant touch them for anything less than 400 around here.

When you replace the regulator, dont skimp on it! buy a quality one.. your gas flow is important!

Unless of course you just run flux through it :lol:

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PostPosted: November 30, 2015, 11:36 pm 
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Never been too impressed with flux-core results. I'll go with gas. The reg isn't too bad, but the bottles... OUCH!

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PostPosted: December 1, 2015, 1:47 pm 
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I believe the rule of thumb for MIG is 1 amp per .001 of steel thickness. So while the Weld-Pak 100 should be fine for most of the chassis tubing, and it probably can be used successfully on heavier by experienced and knowledgeable welders, I don't know that I would trust my welds with one on the roll bar or heavier (suspension, engine mounts, etc.) bracketry. Yes it's rated up to 10ga, but that's probably specific to flux core, which has better penetration than MIG. Personally, I would (and did) hold out for a higher amp machine. The 'consumer grade' Hobart and (retail store) Lincoln "140 amp" welders will still save you some money over the 'commercial grade' Miller and (welding store) Lincoln "140 amp" welders, while being able to maximize use of the available power supply. I do also believe in sticking with products that can be readily supported and serviced by your local welding supplier as well, since you probably don't want to pay for the shipping to have repair/warranty work done on your mail-order welder. As a budget option, I strongly considered the Real Gear 140* sold through Praxair partially for this reason...Until I lucked out on a great deal for a used Millermatic.


*Supposedly a knock-off of the previous gen 'commercial grade' Lincoln, and uses Lincoln consumables.

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PostPosted: December 1, 2015, 1:58 pm 
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Driven5 wrote:
I believe the rule of thumb for MIG is 1 amp per .001 of steel thickness. So while the Weld-Pak 100 should be fine for most of the chassis tubing, and it probably can be used successfully on heavier by experienced and knowledgeable welders, I don't know that I would trust my welds with one on the roll bar or heavier (suspension, engine mounts, etc.) bracketry. Yes it's rated up to 10ga, but that's probably specific to flux core, which has better penetration than MIG. Personally, I would (and did) hold out for a higher amp machine. The 'consumer grade' Hobart and (retail store) Lincoln "140 amp" welders will still save you some money over the 'commercial grade' Miller and (welding store) Lincoln "140 amp" welders, while being able to maximize use of the available power supply. I do also believe in sticking with products that can be readily supported and serviced by your local welding supplier as well, since you probably don't want to pay for the shipping to have repair/warranty work done on your mail-order welder. As a budget option, I strongly considered the Real Gear 140* sold through Praxair partially for this reason...Until I lucked out on a great deal for a used Millermatic.


*Supposedly a knock-off of the previous gen 'commercial grade' Lincoln, and uses Lincoln consumables.


If you preheat with propane or oxy-acetylene, there is no reason you cant get proper penetration out of a 90/100amp mig welder on 5/16th plate with proper technique.

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PostPosted: December 1, 2015, 2:31 pm 
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If you preheat with propane or oxy-acetylene, there is no reason you cant get proper penetration out of a 90/100amp mig welder on 5/16th plate with proper technique.


I don't think this means that you would recommend that welder for the job of welding 5/16" plate. Thankfully you can build these cars without any plate nearly that thick. A good 20 amp outlet will probably help this unit.I think it can also make a difference what voltage your house gets. I forget the standards but 120VC can vary from maybe 110 to 130.

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PostPosted: December 1, 2015, 2:47 pm 
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horizenjob wrote:
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If you preheat with propane or oxy-acetylene, there is no reason you cant get proper penetration out of a 90/100amp mig welder on 5/16th plate with proper technique.


I don't think this means that you would recommend that welder for the job of welding 5/16" plate. Thankfully you can build these cars without any plate nearly that thick. A good 20 amp outlet will probably help this unit.I think it can also make a difference what voltage your house gets. I forget the standards but 120VC can vary from maybe 110 to 130.



That was exactly my point, If you can properly do 5/16th plate by pre heating (which is overkill for these cars) a 90/100 amp unit should be able to build an entire car with little issue.

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PostPosted: December 1, 2015, 3:23 pm 
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For an experienced and knowledgeable welder, that's fine. But that's not what the majority of people on this site are. For a novice that is learning as they go, I still can't see any benefit in recommending a welder that needs to be operated outside of manufacturer specifications. Looking through the only Weld-Pak 100 manual I could find online with a settings chart, it looks like Lincoln does not recommend it for MIG on anything thicker 14ga (.075) steel.

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PostPosted: December 1, 2015, 7:42 pm 
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A few good points raised here with voltage to the house and decent supply to the garage, I will try welding some quarter plate @ 100 amps with .6 wire and see how it turns out. I think the limiting factor on the aforementioned set may be the torch, I cant see that poking up with a lot of heat at the higher end of the scale and would personally go for a set that takes the euro torch. ( not sure what you call them over there )

Bob

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PostPosted: December 1, 2015, 9:53 pm 
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bob wrote:
A few good points raised here with voltage to the house and decent supply to the garage, I will try welding some quarter plate @ 100 amps with .6 wire and see how it turns out. I think the limiting factor on the aforementioned set may be the torch, I cant see that poking up with a lot of heat at the higher end of the scale and would personally go for a set that takes the euro torch. ( not sure what you call them over there )

Bob



.6 wire!? I run .035 wire through my machine. I have a dedicated 30 amp outlet with its own breaker wired in my garage. its 115-125v depending on the time of day. I also have an 80 amp sub panel off the main box from the house that has its own 230v 40 amp circuit as well. The guy who owned the house before us worked for a popular, large, body shop in the area, and did quite a bit of his own work in the garage here. I'm assuming he used the outlet to run a large welder of sorts.

Oddly enough, there was a pool here as well - yet the pool electronics were not tied into the garage sub panel.. they were run off the main box in the basement of the house.

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PostPosted: December 1, 2015, 10:05 pm 
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Let's try this again! I tried posting this a few minutes ago, but some how it got dumped.

Thanks for all the input guys! When I look at the plans, I can only find one piece (other than the roll bar) that is heavier than 1/8". I'm not an 'inexperienced' weldor, just one who is sadly out of practice. For the price that I'm paying for the little Lincoln, I'm sure that I can easily sell it and recover my investment if I decide that it won't suit my needs. As for the roll bar any any other heavy pieces that may crop up, I always have my trusty old Lincoln 'Buzz Box' to fall back on.

Once again, thanks for all the input and sage advice! :cheers:

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