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GFC
11-10-2006, 04:01 PM
I am considering purchasing a new Miller Trailblazer 275 with a 23HP Kohler engine. I would like some feedback on the pros and cons of this machine. Also would be interested in learning where the best places are to shop online. Am interested in websites with competitive prices and a reputation for dependability. Thanks for your advice.

MAC702
11-10-2006, 05:23 PM
go to www.ebay.com. All the major online vendors are selling them brand-new at their best prices right there, no need to compare all the sites.

Why the Trailblazer 275 instead of the 302, out of curiosity?

The TB series is the cat's meow when it comes to machines of this class and footprint. It's a professional welding machine, far superior to a Bobcat in every way that welds.

GFC
11-10-2006, 05:45 PM
Mac702,
I thought the only difference between the 275 and the 302 was the AC capability needed for TIG (which I don't need)?

MAC702
11-10-2006, 07:48 PM
That used to be the case before this latest generation. Now it really does have less output on the top end, less amperage on CC (275 v. 300A), and less voltage on CV, too (33V v. 35V.) What's the price difference where you're at?

GFC
11-10-2006, 10:00 PM
MAC702,
The 302 has an added AC outlet for TIG aluminum. BR Welding Supply list indicates about $320 price increase over the 275.

backuproller
11-10-2006, 10:47 PM
i got a new 302 in the yard and the first time i fired it up i thought it was broke. i mean compared to the old bobcat 250, this thing is quiet as a church mouse. the dealer told me it was a quiet machine, but dang this is nice. i used to weld with the old one and the neighbors would go to squwalling around 2100. now, shoot i can weld all night and nobody says a word until i fire up the speedaire to run the needle scaler.

as far as the machine, MAC is right. smooth starts and nice looking quality welds. and i like the dual generators. this thing welds as nice as the big 40's and 50's i ran a few years back. for a gas powered machines, go for the 302, the cost is negligable for the extra power. never know when your gonna have to gouge a weld you just made. the lower powered machines suck at gougin unless you run a baby rod.

DDA52
11-11-2006, 12:49 AM
Another big difference is in the wire dept. If you run a wire feeder with the 302, the max amperage output is 325a ....only 275 with the .....275. That was in the sales brochure on the second page I believe.

Take a look at this site........... http://www.miller4less.com/

MAC702
11-11-2006, 12:56 AM
MAC702,
The 302 has an added AC outlet for TIG aluminum. ...
You're right; I hadn't meant to imply that this difference no longer existed, if I did.

FWIW, I've also used the AC output in SMAW to counteract arc blow. Works great.

MAC702
11-11-2006, 12:59 AM
Another big difference is in the wire dept. If you run a wire feeder with the 302, the max amperage output is 325a ....only 275 with the .....275. That was in the sales brochure on the second page I believe.

For the 100% duty cycle numbers that I see, it's 300A and 275A, respectively. Is the 325A a lower duty cycle, and where did you find it?

DDA52
11-11-2006, 01:15 AM
Yup, Lower duty cycle at max output. Lemme see if I can copy it here.

Trailblazer® Series Issued June 2006 • Index No. ED/4.77

Gas, LP or Diesel Engine-Driven
Welder/AC Generator

Processes (X-Ray Quality)
Stick (SMAW)
MIG (GMAW)
Flux Cored (FCAW)
AC*/DC TIG (GTAW)
Air Carbon Arc (CAC-A) Cutting and Gouging
(Rated: 3/16 in carbons, Capable: 1/4 in carbons)
Air Plasma Cutting and Gouging
with optional Spectrum models
*302 models
Output Range 275 DC 302
DC Stick 30 – 275 A 30 – 300 A
DC TIG 10 – 275 A 10 – 300 A
AC TIG/Stick N/A 20 – 225 A
MIG/FCAW 13 – 33 V, 275 A 13 – 35 V, 325 A
Generator Power Output Rated at 104° F (40° C)
10,500 Watts Peak — 9500 Watts Continuous
Industrial Applications

Yup, it worked.:cool2:

Actually, it was at the top of the first page of that brochure.

MAC702
11-11-2006, 01:57 AM
So the TB275 has a max output of 275A (but can do it at 100%) and the TB302 has a 100% at 300A, but can output a max of 325A at a lower duty cycle. Just seems weird that they aren't more similar in maximums v. 100% duties.

Good observation, Don.

rvannatta
11-11-2006, 12:28 PM
So the TB275 has a max output of 275A (but can do it at 100%) and the TB302 has a 100% at 300A, but can output a max of 325A at a lower duty cycle. Just seems weird that they aren't more similar in maximums v. 100% duties.

Good observation, Don.

I think part of the limiting factor is the engine.---both have the same engine so in some ways the TB 300 is 10lbs of ---- in a 5 lb bag.

If you look at Miller's published comparison at
http://www.millerwelds.com/products/enginedriven/selectorguide.html

they list the machines as idendical except for a polarity switch and the ability to do AC TIG and of course the maximum amperage.

It looks to me like the TB 275 is simplly a TB300 derated with a couple
things left off.

tthis contrasts to the Bobcat 225 and 250 which are different from the TB.

The polaritiy switch seems like a joke as In I don't know why they put
it on any machine ---- as reversing the leads if you want reverse polarity doesn't seem like a big deal.--- particularly if you have Tweco joints somewhere in the leads....

I guess what points me to suggesting the TB300 instead of the TB275 is that sooner or later one is going to have to 'unweld' something with a carbon arc.
You just can't live beside a welder and expect that 100% of what you will ever need to do is to put welds in. Every so often one has to 'come out'.

When the day comes that you need to run an air arc for some gouging, no one ever had a welder that was too large or put out too many amps for the job. the extra output of the TB300 matters when you want to gouge.

tresi
11-12-2006, 12:43 PM
Don't forget to check your local dealer or give dealers in a nearby city a call. In Rogers,AR the most popular red and blue welders can be bought for $200-$300 less than on ebay. That makes up for the sales tax. No waiting, no shipping charge. Even the ebay stores that paid the shipping the bottom line came out within a few dollars of buying local. The real bargain of buying local is that my dealer will sell any accessories sold with the welder, including leads, at his cost for buying a welder from him. Do your shopping take notes and add up everything that you'll need before you think ebay is cheaper. Don't forget the quoted shipping cost assume that your a business address with a loading dock or at least a forklift. If they have to ship it on a liftgate truck it will cost at least another $100.

rvannatta
11-15-2006, 12:27 PM
Don't forget to check your local dealer or give dealers in a nearby city a call. In Rogers,AR the most popular red and blue welders can be bought for $200-$300 less than on ebay. That makes up for the sales tax. No waiting, no shipping charge. Even the ebay stores that paid the shipping the bottom line came out within a few dollars of buying local. The real bargain of buying local is that my dealer will sell any accessories sold with the welder, including leads, at his cost for buying a welder from him. Do your shopping take notes and add up everything that you'll need before you think ebay is cheaper. Don't forget the quoted shipping cost assume that your a business address with a loading dock or at least a forklift. If they have to ship it on a liftgate truck it will cost at least another $100.

There is a lot of rubber in the list prices. sort of like autos.

Indeed our local Miller distribtor is one of the EBAY players (Quimby).

they all know what the ebay prices are and will meet them.

DDA52
11-16-2006, 01:21 AM
Dang...that makes it easy. Almost like cheating a little.:p Quimby seems to have some pretty good prices, too.:cool: I used to buy stuff at B&R in MD a while back...but this was way before the net was going.:rolleyes: :p