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harbor Freight welder

Discussion in 'Garage / Workshop' started by mat, Mar 14, 2011.

  1. Mar 14, 2011 at 5:37 PM
    #1
    mat

    mat [OP] Well-Known Member

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    I just got a 90 amp wire feed welder as an early birthday present. I know its not that impressive of a setup, but it is so much fun to use, and it works great specially considering it was only 150 with a 2 year warranty. Ill try to post some pictures of my first beads later tonight!
     
  2. Mar 14, 2011 at 5:56 PM
    #2
    fj6high

    fj6high Well-Known Member

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    I have a 20% off coupon and was thinking about buying that same welder. I really want to know if it works well enough to weld something thicker than a beer can...If I can get enough heat and penetration to weld a plate back onto the frame after a body mount chop.
     
  3. Mar 14, 2011 at 7:51 PM
    #3
    mat

    mat [OP] Well-Known Member

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    well so far ive just been practicing on some 1/8 inch thick rectangular tube, and i gotta say im impressed, i dont even have it turned up all the way and its a super strong welder. Im goin make me a rear bumper first yoter! then im making a friend some skid plates, if it doesnt look to shitty im might try to sell some stuff but well see.

    I would definitely buy this welder, but dont expect the welds to look good with the wire it comes with it splatters like crazy but ive heard lincoln wire and tips make it alot cleaner.
     
  4. Mar 15, 2011 at 12:41 PM
    #4
    mat

    mat [OP] Well-Known Member

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    im almost done with my first project. Im building a bed extender out of some scrap i found at a friends farm!
     
  5. Mar 15, 2011 at 12:45 PM
    #5
    stevenstaco

    stevenstaco B A N N E D

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  6. Mar 15, 2011 at 1:28 PM
    #6
    maestroz2

    maestroz2 Well-Known Member

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    I have been thinking about getting this one for a while now.

    I got a 1970 cutlass as a project car and it only needs a little bit of welding so i didn't want to invest too much into one. This sounds like a good option, I think you just convinced me.

    Some pics of your welds before/after Lincoln equipment would be awesome
     
  7. Mar 15, 2011 at 1:42 PM
    #7
    colinb17

    colinb17 If at first you don't succeed, don't try skydiving

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    anyone thinking abotu getting this welder to start out....do it. for the money, it's fantastic. my only suggestion is get some good quality wire. the stuff it comes with is shit.

    i'm currently using it to build a roll cage for a small flatbed trailer that i'm turning into an off road worthy camper.

    here's progress so far
    [​IMG]


    and it is possible to get some nice beads with it.
    [​IMG]

    Have fun with the new welder!!!
     
  8. Mar 15, 2011 at 1:44 PM
    #8
    mat

    mat [OP] Well-Known Member

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    i will post pictures tonight if im not too lazy. My beads are not clean by any means but he is right the wire it comes with sucks. but 20 bucks for a bed extender that makes me happy
     
  9. Mar 15, 2011 at 1:47 PM
    #9
    macgyver

    macgyver Well-Known Member

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    Hmmmm interesting...I have been thinking about buying a welder for little welding projects.
     
  10. Mar 15, 2011 at 3:12 PM
    #10
    mat

    mat [OP] Well-Known Member

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    do it

    im almost done with my first project!
     
  11. Mar 15, 2011 at 6:19 PM
    #11
    colinb17

    colinb17 If at first you don't succeed, don't try skydiving

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    just practice a lot, and you'll figure out how to lay a good bead witht he HF. i'm actually convinced that it's better to learn on a welder like this. after learnig how to get a good bead, consistantly, on this, whenever i go into the machine shop at school and use one of their real high quality welders, the welds come out beautifly with next to no effort compared to the HF one.

    also, i've found that the lincoln tips i've switched over too make it a little easier too.
     
  12. Dec 22, 2011 at 10:03 AM
    #12
    07TacoRidah

    07TacoRidah SHHHH, this is interesting

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    my friends step dad has one of these from like way back (still has it), what kind of wire did you use and where did you get it from? He's still got the wire it came with (along with the helmet lol). I have seen him do some test spots ... ... eh. but it's probably the wire he's using (also I don't think he's good at welding). Would like to see about practicing on his, and about the lincoln tips, what kinds fits/don't/etc?
     
  13. Dec 22, 2011 at 3:03 PM
    #13
    colinb17

    colinb17 If at first you don't succeed, don't try skydiving

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    harbor freight consumables are junk. can't remember the brand of wire off the top of my head, but i like .035 vs .030. just go to home depot/lowes/northern tool, or whatever you have by you and the wire there will be much better than what you have.
     
  14. Dec 24, 2011 at 7:13 PM
    #14
    Mikehole

    Mikehole Well-Known Member

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    Nerd alert here, guys.
    I'm going to sound like a douche, but please be careful when welding stuff on the frame of your truck then using it at highway speeds. I am a dorkass that comes from a structural engineering background (I had to take a full semester of welding) and there are many factors that go into the quality of the weld. The simplest one is appearance, and many of you are probably judging the quality of the weld based on that. The appearance actually has not all that much to do with the strength of the weld. The electrode (wire or stick) has to be at the right temp and so does the base material. The bead can look beautiful like a roll of nickels sliding over, but it may not be bonded with the base material (because it's too cold) which could result in failure after only a little vibration (road bumps). Or contrarily, the base material could be significantly weakened from being overheated during the welding process, which means the metal under the weld could tear, again from only a bit of vibration.
    I'd hate to hear about someone suffering from a catastrophic weld failure at 70 mph. Making racks or tire carriers is one thing but doing stuff to the frame is something totally different.
     
  15. Dec 24, 2011 at 7:21 PM
    #15
    dexterdog

    dexterdog My pee parts itch

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    Slow down there chief, there isn't any serious welding going on with the Harbor Freight welder. It's good for basic projects-nothing structural. Nobody is going to be welding on sliders with it.

    I've had this same welder for a few years now and it has served its purpose well. I've used it for personal use and light repairs at work.
     
  16. Dec 24, 2011 at 7:31 PM
    #16
    4WD

    4WD cRaZy oLdmAn

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    I've got one of those harbor freight wire flux welders, little bastard works pretty well.

    I'll start by saying I'm def. not a welder, but I can stick 2 pieces of metal together & run a bead, ugly as hell but when you break test it, the metal tears away but leaves the weld intact, from what i was told thats a successful weld. that being said I had a friend of mine who IS a welder & had him give it a go... he was sticking all kinds of metal together of varying thickness, all being nice flowing,strong welds from what I saw he could weld sliders on a frame with it
     
  17. Dec 24, 2011 at 7:55 PM
    #17
    DAVE94LIGHTNING

    DAVE94LIGHTNING Well-Known Member

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    I have the 220v welder. Mug or flux. I'm still using the stock flux wire with no gas for basic stuff. Here's a welding table that I put some wheels on.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  18. Dec 24, 2011 at 10:30 PM
    #18
    Mikehole

    Mikehole Well-Known Member

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    (wipes sweat from brow)
    :)
    I'm just being cautious and encouraging others to do the same. I haven't welded for 15 years, so I don't remember much. What I do remember is laying what I thought was a perfect weld in class, then taking it over to the testing machine and having my tensile strength be woefully short of what it should have been.
    I didn't mean to sound like a nagging mother.
     
  19. Nov 24, 2012 at 10:56 PM
    #19
    ETaco23

    ETaco23 Marshall offroad Fabrication

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    I know this is a old thread.. But i thaught i would add to it.

    I just got the 90 amp harbor freight welder, auto darkening helmet, the welding cart, and other stuff.
    I descided to go to Home Depot and get good .035 wire and contact tips, Also gloves...

    Im a nube welder, just got it for learning and small projects. So far so good. It works perty good. Im happy with my purchase. :)
     
  20. Nov 24, 2012 at 11:06 PM
    #20
    Nightstr

    Nightstr Well-Known Member

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    I got mine a few months ago and have done small projects like seat brackets for my jeep, exhaust hangers, etc... I also whent to Home Depot and got better wire. Not bad for $90 in my opinion.
     
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