View Full Version : Need a TIG
07-26-2011, 10:29 AM
I am wanting to buy a TIG welder. Do not want to spend a lot of $. I have a high $ Millermatic MIG that I use all the time. I will not use the TIG all that much for now. Would like one that can go up to 1/4 " steel.
I am looking at the Eastwood 200. Does anyone have one of these. What to you think about it? What kind of gas do you run with a TIG?
Any thoughts would help.
Thanks for your time!!
07-26-2011, 11:09 AM
Typically you want to run pure argon with a TIG welder. I have a Miller SD180 Synchrowave that we use to build frames and other stuff. It does well on up to 3/16" steel, but for 1/4" you really need a 250 AMP welder. The rule of thumb is 1 amp per thousandth in steel thickness. Aluminum takes more, stainless steel less. I have welded 1/4" with my SD180, but it really tasks the machine and I usually "v" the metal pretty deep.
I think you'll find that you'll use your TIG a lot, especially if you do a lot of fab work. A MIG works okay, but I reserve it mostly for sheetmetal or non-critical places where I need to make long welds and grind them smooth.
07-26-2011, 02:20 PM
Lazzo, thanks for the input. I can not find a SD 180 synchrowave on the miller site. You may of had this TIG for a while. Thanks again!!
07-26-2011, 02:24 PM
It has been replaced by: Miller Syncrowave 200 Runner TIG/Stick Package 907308001
07-26-2011, 02:28 PM
What are you planning to use it for? Do you know how to TIG?
TIG's are nice but expensive and require skill/practice. A MIG will do the same thing but will give up some strength etc.etc... (not trying to start argument on TIG/MIG debate)
Most the "cheaper " smaller TIG welders will not do 1/4'' at all or will really tax them. I am sure the Eastwood unit will do 1/4'' steel on DC but it will have a very low duty cycle and take forever. I doubt it will do 1/4'' AL on AC.
Now if your doing this for hobby type stuff then it should work fine. Price wise its not to bad and you could use it to gain skill, if you don't already need have them, then sell it later and get a bigger unit. If your going to be using it a lot then get a miller unit.
I have been looking ate getting one. Probably end up getting a Miller Syncrowave 250.
07-26-2011, 03:18 PM
i bought htp inverter tig and love it had a miller sync before but sold and bought htp inverter it pulls way less amps out of the wall so saves you some dough
07-26-2011, 05:14 PM
If you search "tig welders" on Ebay you'll find a couple of AC/DC inverter machines made in China that are essentially the same price. I have to think that's where this one comes from.
The price is about 2/3 of what Miller gets for their now entry level Diversion 165, which is also an inverter machine. But without the Miller name and support.
Look too at what you get with it. I don't know if you get a foot pedal with the Eastwood. It's extra cost with the Diversion ($150 or so).
Another welder in the low end market is the Miller Econo Tig or Hobart Tig Mate (the same machine except for the paint job and emblems). This is a transformer machine.
I replaced my Econo Tig with a Thermal Arc 185 AC/DC inverter a few months ago. I really like the extra features compared to the Econo Tig. But the price on the Thermal Arc jumped up a lot at the first of the year, to the mid to high $2k range.
Thermal Arc has some DC only inverters for less than the Eastwood unit. If you don't need or want to weld aluminum, you may want to look at those.
A Miller Dynasty with similar specs to a Thermal Arc 185 AC/DC is about $3.5k.
One of the big things about buying Miller or Lincoln is that you can get it serviced or buy accessories (that work) just about anywhere (including warranty work). Thermal Arc not so much, but it is supported in most larger cities. And they are probably more reliable than the Chinese knockoff. With the Eastwood, you're going to have to send it back to them for service, or to a third location.
I looked on the net for reviews. The Eastwood site had a handful of meainingless reviews, and all the others I found were for mig welders not tig.
07-26-2011, 05:44 PM
Thanks for all the information guys. I think is is a Miller that I will be looking at. I will talk with my local welding shop that I deal with and see what they can do for me. 1/4 inch is most likely more that I will ever weld. I just used that range as I am sculptor and that is what I know. 1/8 inch 3/16 will most likely do me.
07-26-2011, 07:00 PM
I bought one of those three in one machines off of ebay, tig, dc arc, and plazma cutter. Works great, when it works. Wouldn't recommend it. The machine is from accurate tools. They did fix it, and the last time sent a whole new machine, but when you are in the middle of welding or cutting, the last thing that you need is for your machine to quit working. I just bought a new mig welder, decided to spend the extra money and got a miller 211 with auto set. Works great. Don't buy junk. Keith
07-26-2011, 07:08 PM
keep us posted jeff :bowtier:
07-26-2011, 07:25 PM
At present time, I have nothing but Miller. I have a 200 Sync and a 212 Mig. Both perform like nothing I have ever had in the past. I recently added a Plasma by Miller. It's a good thing their blue isn't in the middle of an oval and a bit darker. I have purchased, used and destroyed other brands. Some were junk and others were major brands. I'll stay with Miller. Like Rick mentioned, knock on wood, if they go bad, I can get them fixed easy peasy - parts, walk into any major welding supply and get them or if you have a week, the internet has the deals. Speaking of deals, shop some of the major online stores also. It's nice to do business with a local, but saving money is the thing for me.
07-26-2011, 07:33 PM
When the internet store offers you a big discount, free shipping, and you don't have to pay sales tax, it makes it hard on your local guy to match that.
But you can ask, you might be surprised. Especially if you're in or near a large metropolitan area.
This sounds like an all-but-brand new machine for 750.... As Rick said, they sell for over 2k
07-26-2011, 10:00 PM
That Thermal Arc is the model I used when I took a tig certification course.
It worked awesome and made nice welds. If it was nearby, it would be mine.
I really want a tig, I felt that I was actually better at it than mig because I'm nearly totally ambidextrous. I write with my left hand but my right hand is dominant, so feeding the filler rod was really easy for me to learn.
I LOVE welding aluminum, too.
Hope you find a good deal on a tig, you'll have fun with it.
07-26-2011, 10:33 PM
Ihave a miller syncwave 250 and love it .:bowtier::flag6::bowtieb:
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