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Thread: Some questions about spool guns

  1. #1
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    Some questions about spool guns

    I have a job coming up which will require some aluminum frames to be made out of 2" tubing. I have an older Lincoln electric 175 tig welder, but the tubing I need to weld is going to be around 3/16 to 1/4 thick and that's a bit much for it. I was looking into a spool gun setup to make the welding process faster. I was looking into purchasing a new Lincoln 180 dual mig welder and getting the Magnum pro 100sg spool gun. It's a lighter duty gun and I'm not sure if it or the 180 dual are heavy enough for that tubing. I have no experience with spool guns and was wondering if someone could point me in the right direction and answer some questions.

    Thanks

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    Re: Some questions about spool guns

    Quote Originally Posted by Kebab View Post
    I have a job coming up which will require some aluminum frames to be made out of 2" tubing. I have an older Lincoln electric 175 tig welder, but the tubing I need to weld is going to be around 3/16 to 1/4 thick and that's a bit much for it. I was looking into a spool gun setup to make the welding process faster. I was looking into purchasing a new Lincoln 180 dual mig welder and getting the Magnum pro 100sg spool gun. It's a lighter duty gun and I'm not sure if it or the 180 dual are heavy enough for that tubing. I have no experience with spool guns and was wondering if someone could point me in the right direction and answer some questions.

    Thanks
    You can weld it with your 175, just preheat it to about 200-250 degrees and go to it. Easy,peasy. Mig welding it will not look all that good. If you do get another machine go to at least 200 amps. It will be much more versatile. The 180 would be able to mig weld 1/4" with the spool gun but it is not much of a trade up from your 175.

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    Re: Some questions about spool guns

    Quote Originally Posted by thegary View Post
    You can weld it with your 175, just preheat it to about 200-250 degrees and go to it. Easy,peasy. Mig welding it will not look all that good. If you do get another machine go to at least 200 amps. It will be much more versatile. The 180 would be able to mig weld 1/4" with the spool gun but it is not much of a trade up from your 175.
    Thanks for the answer!

    I typically like to tig weld as much as I can, unfortunately in this case production speed is most important. The frames are quite large so i'll probably be welding on the floor of my shop and moving around a lot. None of these frames will be seen as they will all be closed in. So the looks don't matter that much. They're basically just aluminum frames to make wall panels for a display. I have a lincoln 255 machine at my shop, however pricing out a spool gun for that machine from a local supplier was around $2000 CAD. Apparently I can't run the 100SG on my 255. So for about the same cost as the larger spool gun ($100 more or so) I can get the 180 dual welder and the 100SG spool gun. Then I have a machine in my shop that's setup and ready to go for future jobs. My main concern was that I'd be able to weld aluminum that thick with the smaller machine.

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    Re: Some questions about spool guns

    Quote Originally Posted by Kebab View Post
    My main concern was that I'd be able to weld aluminum that thick with the smaller machine.
    Helium mix?
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    Re: Some questions about spool guns

    Quote Originally Posted by John T View Post
    Helium mix?
    From what I was reading I can just use pure argon. Are there benefits of using a helium mix instead?

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    Re: Some questions about spool guns




    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
    Miller 211
    Hypertherm PM 45
    1961 Lincoln Idealarc 250
    HTP 221


    True Wisdom only comes from Pain.

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    Re: Some questions about spool guns

    Welcome to the forum kebab !

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    Re: Some questions about spool guns

    Quote Originally Posted by John T View Post



    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
    Oh wow! I think I'm gonna look into getting helium at my shop

    Quote Originally Posted by motolife313 View Post
    Welcome to the forum kebab !
    Thanks!
    Last edited by Kebab; 06-19-2018 at 12:29 AM.

  9. #9
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    Re: Some questions about spool guns

    You'll be pushing the upper limits of the 180 and SG spool gun welding 1/4" AL for any length of time.

    And it is only a 10' whip- It will be useless is you need to move around a lot for production speed.
    Ed Conley
    http://www.screamingbroccoli.com/
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  10. #10
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    Re: Some questions about spool guns

    ^^^^^
    Exactly what Ed said. If u are going to invest the. Do it once. Look at the miller 350p with 30A spool gun and 25ft leads. It’s a dual welder with huge capabilities. You will spend more the 2 k but you will never spend again based on it capabilities.

    Currently my shop runs 3 millers.
    350 p as mentioned with 045 Dual shield set up and 035 aluminum in spool gun
    350 dynasty
    Millermatic 211 set up with 025 hardwire for the little stuff

    With the right equipment you will save nothing but time on your jobs

  11. #11
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    Re: Some questions about spool guns

    PR- he already owns a Lincoln 255 so he does have a machine capable- just needs the Spoolgun.
    Ed Conley
    http://www.screamingbroccoli.com/
    MM252
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    Lincoln SP135 Plus- (Gone to a good home)
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  12. #12
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    Re: Some questions about spool guns

    Dang- looks like he will need an adapter kit too if it is just the regular 255 and not the 255C

    K2310-1


    Top Features
    Enables the Power MIG 255 wire feeder welder to accept the K2490-1 Magnum® 250LX, K487- 25 Magnum® SG Spool Gun or a Prince XL Spool Gun. Includes K1738-1 Spool Gun holder. Note: Power MIG 255C does not require adapter.


    https://www.lincolnelectric.com/en-u...ncolnElectric)
    Ed Conley
    http://www.screamingbroccoli.com/
    MM252
    MM211 (Sold)
    Passport Plus & Spool gun
    Lincoln SP135 Plus- (Gone to a good home)
    Klutch 120v Plasma cutter
    SO 2020 bender
    Beer in the fridge

  13. #13
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    Re: Some questions about spool guns

    Why not get this and run it off your 255, no adapter needed. https://www.amazon.com/Ready-Welder-.../dp/B004N4SCQS
    Tiger Sales: AHP Distributor www.tigersalesco.com
    AHP200x; AHP 160ST; MM350P, Spoolmatic 30A; Everlast PowerTig 185; Thermal Dynamics 60i plasma.
    For Sale: Cobra Mig 250 w/ Push-pull gun. Lincoln Wirematic 250

  14. #14
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    Re: Some questions about spool guns

    Quote Originally Posted by Broccoli1 View Post
    You'll be pushing the upper limits of the 180 and SG spool gun welding 1/4" AL for any length of time.

    And it is only a 10' whip- It will be useless is you need to move around a lot for production speed.
    Looking on Lincolns site more and more I noticed that even the 210 with a spool gun says 3/16 aluminum. I'd like to think a good helium mix would make it so I could weld 1/4, but as you mentioned i'll probably be close to the edge of what it'll do. However if 1/4 is a large as I'm going to weld with it, I wonder how the 210 would perform?

    The 10' whip is a pain in the ***. Is there any way to get a longer lead for it?

    Quote Originally Posted by prconnection View Post
    ^^^^^
    Exactly what Ed said. If u are going to invest the. Do it once. Look at the miller 350p with 30A spool gun and 25ft leads. It’s a dual welder with huge capabilities. You will spend more the 2 k but you will never spend again based on it capabilities.

    Currently my shop runs 3 millers.
    350 p as mentioned with 045 Dual shield set up and 035 aluminum in spool gun
    350 dynasty
    Millermatic 211 set up with 025 hardwire for the little stuff

    With the right equipment you will save nothing but time on your jobs
    I'll find out what the pricing on that stuff is tomorrow. the 350P and the 30' gun

    Quote Originally Posted by Broccoli1 View Post
    Dang- looks like he will need an adapter kit too if it is just the regular 255 and not the 255C

    K2310-1


    Top Features
    Enables the Power MIG 255 wire feeder welder to accept the K2490-1 Magnum® 250LX, K487- 25 Magnum® SG Spool Gun or a Prince XL Spool Gun. Includes K1738-1 Spool Gun holder. Note: Power MIG 255C does not require adapter.


    https://www.lincolnelectric.com/en-u...ncolnElectric)
    It's just the regular ol' 255. Both the spool guns that would fit the machine were about $2000 plus the $300 ish adapter
    Last edited by Kebab; 06-20-2018 at 12:58 AM.

  15. #15
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    Re: Some questions about spool guns

    I would call HTP at USAweld.com and talk to them about their spool gun . I think it will be much more cost effective and they are a decent spool gun. They can set up their spool gun for most machines.

    Also preheating works for miging aluminum too.
    Last edited by thegary; 06-20-2018 at 07:07 AM.

  16. #16
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    Re: Some questions about spool guns

    I like to tig most of the time to, but if appearance isn't a big deal my vote would be mig hands down.
    Pete




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  17. #17
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    Re: Some questions about spool guns

    Its looking like I can't get a longer whip for the 100sg. So now I'm looking at the larger Lincoln spool gun with the 25' whip. I can put it on my good ol' 255. However is there any reason to go with a newer welder for welding aluminum?

  18. #18
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    Re: Some questions about spool guns

    Quote Originally Posted by Kebab View Post
    Its looking like I can't get a longer whip for the 100sg. So now I'm looking at the larger Lincoln spool gun with the 25' whip. I can put it on my good ol' 255. However is there any reason to go with a newer welder for welding aluminum?
    CALL HTP... Talk to Diana usawelds 800-872-9353

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