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Thread: Welding while traveling - international dilemma

  1. #1
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    Welding while traveling - international dilemma

    HI HELPFUL FELLOWS .

    I AM AN ARTIST INVITED TO CHINA TO MAKE SOME SCULPTURE,

    I USE LOTS OF MIG WELDING, HAVE SEVERAL REAL MACHINES HERE IN US.
    It is part of a cultural exchange program, providing me with apartment and studio, ( no equipment). I know china gets a bad rep on this site, but i love travel and new places, so i cannot resist.

    the place i am going does not have much equipment, so its either bring my own, or buy it there (imagine harbor freight right from the source

    ANY ONE have any thoughts or experience on this, I was thinking about getting a Lincoln 180 Dual Voltage MIG, nice little machine small, and bringing it over with me and getting an outlet adapter, is this possible for the little 220 international outlet?

    Or , I am also leaning towards buying some chinese thing over there, and just risking it, at least I wont have to carry it.

    I mainly weld 3/8 to 3/16 and 1/4 round bar into various geometric designs and structures, so nothing heavy or crazy needed.

    prefer no flux, mig solid wire cleaner and better.

    thoughts? what would you do. buy it there, or pack it up?

    thanks. and check my site to see some work. www.craigusher.net


    happy new years to yall

  2. #2
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    Re: Welding while traveling - international dilemma

    Source it over there. You're already going to have to source the gas bottle, as you can't fly with it.

  3. #3
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    Re: Welding while traveling - international dilemma

    Your work looks awesome. Is there any local artists that you know in China that could offer some info ? What about trying a China artist website ?
    How long are you gonna be there for ? Can you buy a New machine here and have it shipped there ? Maybe check with MILLER or LINCOLN about them sponsoring you and have them ship for free ? Good Luck and congrats on your achievement .

  4. #4
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    Re: Welding while traveling - international dilemma

    Wow, that is a dilemma.

    I guess I would purchase myself a Hobart Trek180, and use thier housecurrent to piggyback the charge. This mig will weld 3/8". is Co2 available over there?
    Weld like a "WELDOR", not a wel-"DERR"
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  5. #5
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    Re: Welding while traveling - international dilemma

    I went to China for an artists exchange back in 2005.

    If you need supplies, get on it now. Talk to the people that will be hosting you. Be very clear what you need as I find things get lost in translation.

    While the food and accommodations are great, there is a "make do" culture that can be a bit difficult to work with at times.

    Make sure you understand something of the culture before you go, take a lot of very inexpensive gifts, maybe little things that you made. (you can never take too many, I took 50 and ran out)

    Be prepared to feel illiterate, that is, unless you know Chinese.

    Take a good camera.

    Cheers!

  6. #6
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    Re: Welding while traveling - international dilemma

    Craig, call Kevin at Arcon Welding(these are new Powcons if you didn't know) and tell him what your doing. He will probably set you up with a demo unit. You can talk to Mike also. Their # is 410-572-6000 or toll free at 888-512-7266. They have a machine that will handle all voltage issues. I'm sure they'll be glad to help.
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  7. #7
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    Re: Welding while traveling - international dilemma

    Suggest you look at buying a machine in China that meets the power you find available where you'll be working. Voltage and Power frequency(50Hz vs 60Hz in the states) are different there.

    I know you like working with gas shielded MIG. However, finding a consistently high quality supply of mixed Ar/CO2 shielding gas can be difficult. You can't always run to your local welding supplier and get high quality shielding gas like you can here in the states. 100% CO2 would be much more reliable; but even so I suggest you familiarize your self with running some type of self shielded fluxcore so you have a fall back in case you have gas supply issues.

    You can purchase Big name red or blue welding machines in China. There are some models being manufactured there; so the import duties won't kill you. But for your needs I'm willing to bet you can find a good locally made machine that will run on locally available power; for a fraction of the cost. You'll just have to resign yourself to leaving it in China when you're done; because it'll be a boat anchor here in the states. Maybe you can resell it to the next exchange artist?

    X2 on finding out about the culture before you go and also get your vaccinations in order. Some like Hepatitis take multiple injections over a period of weeks to develop full strength. Others will make you sick for a couple days right after receiving them. I had a DPT booster before I went to China about 10 years ago, and it hammered me for about 24 hours after I got it.

    Stay close to your local guide/interpreter until you get the lay of the land. My recollection is that the big cities were generally safe for Westerners, and you'll be surprised how many non-Chinese are in cities like Shanghai or Bejing. Traveling like the locals, on trains and buses, especially at night, can expose you to some less friendly elements of Chinese society. If you're staying in hotels while sight seeing; stay in those that cater to westerners. You'll appreciate the amenities; like normal toilets and showers, and you'll be safer and less likely to be hassled by petty criminals. Like any tourist, you'll be a target for pickpockets, beggars, and such. And unless you're of Asian decent, there's no hiding the fact that you're a tourist...
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  8. #8
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    Re: Welding while traveling - international dilemma

    As my Chinese daughter-in-law advised me when we went last year, "Dad, in Shanghai and Beijing no one will notice you. They almost all speak English (not exactly true) and are used to Americans. But when you get to my hometown they will stare at you like you're a panda". And boy! that was true. They would stop on the street and stare at us, then come up to my son and try to touch his blonde hair.

    Great people, good food, and a new culture if you haven't been there. You will see more high-rise buildings going up than you can count. It is amazing. Just be flexible with the food, customs, and culture. Take a lot of small gifts, as already stated. Just enjoy the trip!

    As far as equipment, I can't really say. If you know the province you can google and see what the power is there. It does vary by province.
    Burt
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  9. #9
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    Re: Welding while traveling - international dilemma

    Burt,

    I'll bet your grand kids will be stunningly beautiful and smarter than one has a right to.

  10. #10
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    Re: Welding while traveling - international dilemma

    Thanks, Robert.
    I hope so too, one day. They don't have any yet. She is actually in China now for 2-3 months because of her mom's health problems. They have been married over 2 years, and we have known her for about 8 years now. She is fun to know, and likes USA a lot. You know, people are people the world over. They love their families, work hard, want to improve for the next generation. We were at their wedding celebration with over 300 Chinese people and none of them understood us or us them, but they could not have been nicer. I have wondered if the tables were turned if they would feel as welcome at an American wedding.

    China is like the USA in the '50's with everything booming. Young people are smart, most all speak pretty good English, they are stylish and so much like American young people it is scary.

    I hope Craig has a great trip and posts some pictures of welding in China. I would have loved to spent some time in a shop there. Most shops are just an open door on the street, but you can see the stacks of steel on the sidewalk so you know it is a welding shop. I would have liked to do some plant tours but was not able to.
    Burt
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  11. #11
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    Re: Welding while traveling - international dilemma

    Quote Originally Posted by wb4rt View Post
    Thanks, Robert.
    I hope so too, one day. They don't have any yet. She is actually in China now for 2-3 months because of her mom's health problems. They have been married over 2 years, and we have known her for about 8 years now. She is fun to know, and likes USA a lot. You know, people are people the world over. They love their families, work hard, want to improve for the next generation. We were at their wedding celebration with over 300 Chinese people and none of them understood us or us them, but they could not have been nicer. I have wondered if the tables were turned if they would feel as welcome at an American wedding.

    China is like the USA in the '50's with everything booming. Young people are smart, most all speak pretty good English, they are stylish and so much like American young people it is scary.

    I hope Craig has a great trip and posts some pictures of welding in China. I would have loved to spent some time in a shop there. Most shops are just an open door on the street, but you can see the stacks of steel on the sidewalk so you know it is a welding shop. I would have liked to do some plant tours but was not able to.





    Apologies guy,s I didnt get the notice that people where actually responding to this. I appreciate all the AWESOME feedback.

    Thanks fellows.

    SO THE PLAN IS

    definatley source a welder while in china, and perhaps get used to fluxcore, though at that point I might just go stick .

    I like the idea of getting sponsored by lincoln or miller, does anyone have any inns or ideas on how to go about that/?
    I would need to make that happen by april.

    So . Thanks. Will certainly send yall a link to my blog that I will be keeping about the trip.

    Stay tuned !! Thanks !

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