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#1 middleageddeere OFFLINE  

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Posted May 15, 2011 - 08:28 PM

Just got a little Century 100 amp wire feed welder on trade and I have some questions. One-The guy recommended .030 wire for this one but is there a difference between wires? Two-Anyone have any tips or websites on welding? It has been a long time since I did any real welding and don't really know what I am doing. Thanks!

#2 Alc ONLINE  

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Posted May 15, 2011 - 08:37 PM

Miller and Hobart sites have some good welding tips
Hobart Welders
Miller - Welding Equipment - MIG/TIG/Stick Welders & Plasma Cutting
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#3 caseguy OFFLINE  

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Posted May 15, 2011 - 09:31 PM

...The guy recommended .030 wire for this one but is there a difference between wires?...


The answer is yes! The feed wheels inside the machine are of a specific size to handle different sized wire. There is a little leeway, but not much. The wrong size wire will lead to big headaches with either birds nests of wire inside the machine, or slipping of the rollers and no wire feeding at all. If you look at the rollers themselves, they should be marked with the size wire they will fit.

BTW, the websites that Alc linked both have great information on them!
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#4 olcowhand ONLINE  

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Posted May 15, 2011 - 10:05 PM

More than likely your welder has a wire feed wheel that can be flipped to handle 2 sizes of wire. Most are made for .030 & .035. My little Craftsman is just 85 amp & I use .035 exclusively & love how it welds. Of course you have to have the appropriate tip for each size wire.
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#5 RailmanB110 OFFLINE  

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Posted May 15, 2011 - 10:26 PM

I have been using a Century 100 mig for about 20 years, & on average it probably gets used once a week. I have only used it with gas, & use only .030 wire. It seems to me that if you go gasless (flux core), .35 might be a better choice. I find that it makes a huge difference how good the outlet power is for good performance. After 20 years of use, nothing has broke on it. I've welded everything from band saw blades to 1/2" plate (multiple slow hot passes).
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#6 mjodrey OFFLINE  

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Posted May 16, 2011 - 05:01 AM

What are your mostly going to weld with it ? If you are using it mostly on sheet metal,then I would use .023 wire.

#7 middleageddeere OFFLINE  

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Posted May 16, 2011 - 05:24 AM

Thanks for all the answers guys, very helpful! I am going to be using it for a little bit of everything, my first task with it is to fix my car hauler trailer. Then I am sure I will be doing a little body work on my Wrangler and on average I plan to use it for my L&G tractors and whatever come up. I don't think I will be using it for too much sheet metal. Since I don't really know what I am doing yet, it seems the smaller stuff would be a little bit tricky.

#8 NUTNDUN OFFLINE  

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Posted May 16, 2011 - 07:40 AM

Congrats on the new welder. If you end up using the gasless wire I have noticed a huge improvement removing the shield on the gun. This reminds me I need to get a bottle of gas. I have been using .030 flux cored wire on mine and would love to have the clean welds that mig/gas is known for.
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#9 jhn9840 ONLINE  

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Posted May 17, 2011 - 09:36 AM

www.weldingtipsandtricks.com

www.profabricationtechniques.com

jhn9840
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#10 RustyTub OFFLINE  

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Posted May 17, 2011 - 02:31 PM

All great sites that have been linked. Read them all. For what it sounds like you will be doing .030 may be the ticket. Although each machine is different. Also mentioned you want to make sure your power source is good. This is a big one. if the wire running to your outlet is under sized you have potential for disaster not only with the quality of your weld but fire hazard as well. I had a new dedicated line ran for my welder with a seperate shut off switch. ( I also did this for my compressor)

Also practice practice practice. its like seat time with your GT you can read a hundred books but they will never prepare you 100% for your exact machine.

Also Ironclad make a killer welding glove they make them in different heat ranges hold up very well 1 pair last me about a year ( I do a ton of fab work for the shop) Ironclad | Best Welding Glove These make it easier to handle your work and your torch. Making for a much more enjoyable weld.


And if you run into any issues just ask questions. there are so many variables that go into making that nice perfect bead.
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#11 Billygoat OFFLINE  

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Posted May 17, 2011 - 06:25 PM

Have K321 that has one of the tins with 5 cracks. Welded it up tonight, used.035 wire. I was using a Miller Regency 250 power source, Miller Spoolmatic 30 gun. Ran at 16 volts and 2.5 wire speed setting. Had to move pretty quick and left quite a bit on the backside to grind off, but came out pretty good overall. Couldn't build up around a couple of bolt holes, but flat washers will hide that.

#12 Billygoat OFFLINE  

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Posted May 18, 2011 - 09:25 AM

Checked my settings this AM. 14 volts not 16. Sorry about that.

#13 RustyTub OFFLINE  

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Posted May 18, 2011 - 03:03 PM

Sounds like you are focusing too much heat into your weld. what gauge steel are you welding? Are you welding steel? when someone throws spool gun out I automatically assume Alum.

any way either way I would turn the heat down a fair amount. this will also mean the wire speed needs to be slowed up as well.

For filling in around bolt holes I use a Stitch method which is just multiples of spot welds. make one spot weld release the trigger just enough to kill the feed and the torch but keep the gas flowing. When the weld puddle cools for about 3 seconds strike another arc from a new puddle release and allow to cool. repeat this procedure till the crack, Gap , hole or what ever is filled. with pratice this is a very handy way to weld light gauge steel. When you get this down this weld should look like overlaying puddles with very little build up on either side leaving very little clean up.

(This may be called something else but this is how it was taught to me, and I can't remember what my instructor called this weld when I was being certified)
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#14 Billygoat OFFLINE  

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Posted May 18, 2011 - 06:07 PM

Had to weld a few more that I missed last night. Welded them up the same as last night. These came out good also. I understand what you are saying RustyTub, but it's just not worth the hassle to me to have perfect bolt holes. I think we're coming close to hi-jacking he OP's thread here. I just wanted him to know thin metal could be welded with .035 wire if that is what he chose to use. Buying spools of different size wire can get expensive. (at least for me)

#15 olcowhand ONLINE  

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Posted May 18, 2011 - 06:34 PM

I just wanted him to know thin metal could be welded with .035 wire if that is what he chose to use. Buying spools of different size wire can get expensive. (at least for me)


Yep Billy, that's exactly why I use .035 only. With the welder settings right, and a cool hand, .035 can do as good as .030. That said, I don't have to weld tin roofing!




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