View Full Version : Panasonic Gunslinger
01-08-2007, 06:18 PM
Anyone have any experience with the Panasonic Gunslinger 260? Would it be OK for a small shop and light fabrication, or would it just be better to stick to the red and blue (availibility for parts and repair). This seems to have everything in one - stick, mig, flux core and tig. How would you rate it?
01-08-2007, 08:56 PM
I own a panasonic gunslinger 260.
I have never used any other 220v welder, so I have no reference. I got mine for $600 from somebody who went out of business. It was less than a year old. It works for me. Well constructed and heavy at 300lbs, it is heavy even on the wheels. Everything inside seem to be well protected from dust. Duty cycle is good. It will probably do what ever you throw at it.
The manual only recomment reverse polarity welding, hence tig would be difficult. I don't know why they recommend not switching the ground and electrode holder. I have never tried it.
However, if I was going to pay retail price for it I would go with a more popular brand. While I have never had any problems in three years. Locating parts will be a problem. Even a local welder repair shop stopped selling them because of difficulting/shipping recieving parts. Apparently there is no domestic supplier.
05-09-2011, 01:28 AM
I bought the Panasonic Gunslinger 260P new in 2004. This is a mig-plasma combo with up to 260A on the mig side (260A-40%, 200A-60%, 160A-100%)and 35A for cutting (1/2" rated). My only welding "training" was fifteen minutes with the Praxair regional manager using this very machine. All welding processes require time to get good at let alone to master, but this little lesson showed me that mig would be easy enough for me to learn.
So far I've only been working with stainless steel - mostly tacking pem nuts that have already been pressed into sheet material. Usually one part or the other is softer but in this case both are stainless, so some of the pems fall out after time thus requiring a weld to secure them. The arc is smooth and the control has the usual Japanese "silky smooth only-what-you-expect" feel.
When I got the machine, I found the manual to not be quite detailed enough for such a novice as myself. For example, the wire speed dial is not labeled to go to zero-feed, but fully counter-clockwise is zero feed. I had to nudge it up just a hair from fully-CCW to feed the wire through the first time. The 260P came with a braking hub made out plastic and was otherwise fitted with an angled diecast aluminum hub with just a retainer to keep the spool from coming off. The latter works very well since the spool does not turn very fast in use and is well behaved.
The Panasonic welders are built very solidly and with refined features. I would recommend them to anyone. I've never had a Panasonic item fail or misbehave under normal use, including this welder, three answering machines and a VCR. All the consumables are standard items available through any welding supply house as those part are big-name guns and torches. The only thing I ordered that was a specific Panasonic part was the wheels to feed different wire sizes.
In the Gunslinger series, Panasonic had a mig-plasma machine, a mig-stick unit and a mig-stick-tig unit. There was also the Bandit, a stick machine that was even heavier than the Gunslingers (320-lbs vs 270-lbs).
05-09-2011, 03:14 AM
I used a panasonic welder once and was quite impressed. I have only heard good things about them, but that isn't saying much due to so few of reviews. If the price was right I would own one to give her a good running.
05-09-2011, 07:54 AM
They are still building the Gunslinger, (called the 261 now).
If you need parts or assistance, google Panasonicfa (factory automation) in Buffalo Grove, Illinois.
05-09-2011, 05:58 PM
Oop! The Bandit was actually 5-lbs lighter than the Gunslingers. It just looked heavier with the lifting hooks.
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