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Thread: Best engine driven machine for MIG

  1. #1
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    Best engine driven machine for MIG

    Hello everybody, I apologize in advance if this topic has already been discussed in another thread. I am new to these forums and struck out searching for something similar. I am trying to get my independent welding business off the ground and have purchased a small trailer that I am in the middle or restoring and outfitting for my needs. And I have come to the point where I need a large generator so I can stop turning down jobs. I have a 110v lincoln MIG, miller syncrowave 180sd, miller plasma cutter as well as a good torch. So I have talked myself into needing (and really wanting ha!) a miller bobcat 250 or comparable.
    I need to have the fallowing available on the rig:

    220v MIG/flux cored
    AC TIG
    and a generator large enough to handle everything else:
    Compressor, miller 220v plasma, saws etc.

    It looks like a bobcat can be three machines I need combined but everything I have read about these engine driven machines is focused on their stick welding capabilities, but I am more concerned about how the MIG / flux cored and AC TIG(less so as I already have the syncrowave) processes and power output.

    Can you guys shed some light on whether or not I am on the right path with my needs? thanks in advance for any help, and again I hope I'm not bringing up a topic already available in an old thread.

  2. #2
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    Re: Best engine driven machine for MIG

    No remote capabilities with the bobcat. And you will need a highfrequency box to do AC tig on aluminum and even then your back to no remote so you can't adjust the amperage as you're welding. I do run my extreme 12vs off my bobcat and it works great

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    Re: Best engine driven machine for MIG

    Thanks for the input! What would you suggest that has remote capabilities?

  4. #4
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    Re: Best engine driven machine for MIG

    A miller trailblazer has the option to run a remote but I don't think they have AC and you would still need a high frequency box to do aluminum. I'm not sure if the smaller lincoln rangers have AC or the option for a remote. Your likely going to be hard pressed to find a smaller unit that will run your 180sd as they have a pretty healthy current draw. What do you want to be able to do with your set up?

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    Re: Best engine driven machine for MIG

    I need a machine or combination of machines that will run or produce:
    220v MIG
    220v flux cored
    220v AC/DC TIG
    220v plasma cutter
    110v air compressor
    Various 110v shop tools, saws, grinders etc.

  6. #6
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    Re: Best engine driven machine for MIG

    I have the capability now to do all of that now except the 220v MIG/flux cored (provided I can power the syncrowave)

  7. #7
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    Re: Best engine driven machine for MIG

    With the bobcat you have 42 Amps of 220 power that will determine what you can and can't run off it I'm betting the syncrowave draws more than that when it's at the upper end of of its current range

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    Re: Best engine driven machine for MIG

    Yea, I have it tapped into my 30amp WH circuit at the house and I have yet to trip it, so I'm not too worried about it (maybe wrongfully) but I really want to know what machine will MIG/flux cored as well as or better than say a Millermatic 212


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  9. #9
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    Re: Best engine driven machine for MIG

    I don't use a mig welder like that I run flux core self and dual shield with my voltage sensing miller feeder it works great off my bobcat

  10. #10
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    Re: Best engine driven machine for MIG

    So you primarily use your bobcat as just a generator for wire feed welding?


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  11. #11
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    Re: Best engine driven machine for MIG

    And if so what process do you use with the bobcat?


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  12. #12
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    Re: Best engine driven machine for MIG

    No my wire feeder is a suitcase style so it doesn't have a plug on it it runs off my regular stick leads

  13. #13
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    Re: Best engine driven machine for MIG

    Gottchya, you'll have to excuse my ignorance but what is the difference between what your 12vs can do and the bobcat itself?


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    Re: Best engine driven machine for MIG

    My 12vs feeds wire like a mig welder the bobcat just supplies the voltage

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    Re: Best engine driven machine for MIG

    Lucas,

    I think you are missing with the bobcat that it doesnt have a mig welder built into it. It is capable of powering a suitcase wire feeder, but it is not standalone capable of mig. You will either need to use it to power a 220V mig or buy a voltage sensing wire feeder to run off of it.
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  16. #16
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    Re: Best engine driven machine for MIG

    I'd look at the Lincoln 305-G with an LN-25, and spool gun.
    Donít pay any attention to me
    Iím just a hobbyist!

    Carl

    Dynasty 300
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    SG Spool gun
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  17. #17
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    Re: Best engine driven machine for MIG

    Yea Droopy, I did not realize that. Is there a machine that will do what I need? And what is with this diagram? Name:  ImageUploadedByTapatalk1393353121.955369.jpg
Views: 616
Size:  45.9 KB


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  18. #18
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    Re: Best engine driven machine for MIG

    And thank you CEP, I will check out that Lincoln 305


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  19. #19
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    Re: Best engine driven machine for MIG

    I have the same spool gun, here is what it can do on 16-GA aluminum.
    Attached Images Attached Images   
    Donít pay any attention to me
    Iím just a hobbyist!

    Carl

    Dynasty 300
    V350-Pro w/pulse
    SG Spool gun
    1937 IdealArc-300
    PowerArc 200ST
    3 SA-200s
    Vantage 400





  20. #20
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    Re: Best engine driven machine for MIG

    Looks good, I have never used an aluminum spool gun, how different is the process from MIG welding?


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  21. #21
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    Re: Best engine driven machine for MIG

    Quote Originally Posted by Lucas_Jackson View Post
    how different is the process from MIG welding?
    Same thing, well maybe just a little heavier than a regular Mig gun.
    Donít pay any attention to me
    Iím just a hobbyist!

    Carl

    Dynasty 300
    V350-Pro w/pulse
    SG Spool gun
    1937 IdealArc-300
    PowerArc 200ST
    3 SA-200s
    Vantage 400





  22. #22
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    Re: Best engine driven machine for MIG

    Not 100% sure what your needs are but.
    From Miller, only the uber expensive Trailblazer does AC - the air pack one with the built in air compressor - like $12000 list expensive.
    The Bobcats do AC, but it will not be the quality you get from your Syncrowave.

    For under $5000, Lincoln Ranger GXT will do AC and has some sort of a TIG module for remote + high frequency. You can get the GXT for under $4000, but the TIG module will set you back $2000ish.

    If you need compact reliable stuff, you won't go wrong with Miller or Lincoln, however, a Generator plus some inverter machines is probably the cheaper way to go (if you have the space).

    Quite frankly, I'd look into things like stand-alone generators + stand alone air compressors and use more efficient inverter machines. Upgrade the welders you have (used late model Dynasty + Inverter based MIG - Thermal Arc or Multimatic etc.) You can use those welders at your shop as well. Yeah, you have to load them on the truck everytime you go out on a call. When that gets old, and you have enough business - then buy the dedicated engine driven welder. One caveat, with the inverters I wouldn't want them on a trailer. I know everything is tougher these days, but bouncing a dynasty on a trailer seems to be a sure fire way to shorten the life span. I'd have a padded cabinet in the back of a truck. A 200 Dynasty plus a 200+ MIG will get you into light trucks - and some trailer repair. Beyond 200 amps you are really starting to talk about water coolers etc. A serious TIG. On the MIG side of things.
    I don't know what your budget is, but if you look at upgrade + new generator + sell what you don't need anymore, your probably money ahead of where a dedicated engine driven welder would be. And if you go used... I've seen XMTs on Craigslist for $1500, Dynasty 200s for $2500, Wire feeders for $500 (yes suitcases are typically expensive but who buys just a suitcase? Not a lot of buyers...) Figure what you have is pretty quick sell at $1500, a bit longer if your holding out for more. That will buy you the generator. So you've upgraded all your equipment plus 100% mobile for $4500.... The cost of just an engine drive. (and you have to add suit case to that).

    If your business is booming, next year buy that engine driven welder.

    I think its a universal truth that everyone that has their own business wishes they started earlier and spent less (or more wisely) when they did start.
    Con Fuse!
    Miller Dynasty 350
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    Miller Multimatic 200
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  23. #23
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    Re: Best engine driven machine for MIG

    That is great advise, and I definitely want the work to justify the tool not the other way round, (which I've been known to do in the past haha)
    What does a syncrowave go for nowadays? I would love to upgrade to a dynasty with more control given the gap between the two isn't wider than my wallet


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  24. #24
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    Re: Best engine driven machine for MIG

    Quote Originally Posted by Lucas_Jackson View Post
    Yea Droopy, I did not realize that. Is there a machine that will do what I need? And what is with this diagram? Name:  ImageUploadedByTapatalk1393353121.955369.jpg
Views: 616
Size:  45.9 KB


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    If you are not familiar with engine drives the brochure is a little misleading because to to do MIG you have to use a a suitcase feeder or plug a Mig machine into the auxiliary power receptacles.

    http://www.millerwelds.com/om/o4419e_mil.pdf

    Look through the manual section 6.3 for the Typical Mig set up for an engine drive
    Ed Conley
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  25. #25
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    Re: Best engine driven machine for MIG

    http://weldingweb.com/vbb/showthread.php...mig&highlight=

    Check out Yorkie's set up if you want to go with a stand alone generator.
    Ed Conley
    http://www.screamingbroccoli.com/
    MM252
    MM211 (Sold)
    Passport Plus & Spool gun
    Lincoln SP135 Plus- (Gone to a good home)
    Miller 125c Plasma 120v
    SO 2020 bender
    Beer in the fridge

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