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Thread: Machine purchase help

  1. #1
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    Feb 2021
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    Machine purchase help

    I currently have a Miller Dialarc 310 HF that I purchased about 6 years ago. It is water cooled and does not have a foot pedal. It has worked good for getting me started on tig welding, but lately I have been considering a more modern machine. I am a hobbyist, some months I am using the machine daily, other months I donít use it at all. The Miller had worked great welding steel and stainless steel, but when it comes to aluminum I really struggle to produce a good looking weld. I understand my lack of experience is the biggest problem, but Iíve ran newer machines at trade shows and they seem to operate so much smoother.

    I have searched on here and google, and it seems to be a common debate, transformer vs inverter welders. The Miller is much bigger of a machine than I need. If I need to weld 1/2Ē, I donít mind making multiple passes and letting the welder cool down. I am considering buying a Lincoln SquareWave 200 and selling my Miller. Can any of you folks chime in and maybe talk me out of it, or into it?

    Thanks!

  2. #2
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    Mar 2010
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    Re: Machine purchase help

    If you do any stick welding, keep the dialarc for that.
    And as a back up if the Squarewave 200 fails.

  3. #3
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    Re: Machine purchase help

    Would the squarewave make welding aluminum easier to weld? Enough so to justify the $1800 for a hobbyist?

  4. #4
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    Re: Machine purchase help

    I have an old school transformer Lincoln 300/300. It is a beast. I also had a Precision Tig 275. It was also a beast. But they do not even compare. The Precision Tig was so much nicer to use. All the bells and whistles made my product better. But the point I am making is that maybe no need to compare Transformer to Inverter.

    Having said that, I think an inverter offers so much more in terms of arc control. The best Tiggers all have new machines, right? But before all this new tech, we were putting men on the moon with sine wave transformer welders.

    Would I consider 1800 a worthwhile investment for a hobbyist? Absolutely.
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  5. #5
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    Re: Machine purchase help

    Quote Originally Posted by Joker11 View Post
    I have an old school transformer Lincoln 300/300. It is a beast. I also had a Precision Tig 275. It was also a beast. But they do not even compare. The Precision Tig was so much nicer to use. All the bells and whistles made my product better. But the point I am making is that maybe no need to compare Transformer to Inverter.

    Having said that, I think an inverter offers so much more in terms of arc control. The best Tiggers all have new machines, right? But before all this new tech, we were putting men on the moon with sine wave transformer welders.

    Would I consider 1800 a worthwhile investment for a hobbyist? Absolutely.
    Thanks for the reply Joker!

    I asked this question because I haven’t spent enough time on an inverter machine to actually say, “yes I am happier with it”. I’ve only ran a bead on a flat piece of aluminum a few times on a inverter type. I’ve layed hundred down with my transformer one. But I have no pedal or HZ adjustment. I did possibly come across a pedal for my machine locally that I could buy, which I am sure will make a big improvement over what I have now. I don’t weld aluminum that often, but when I do, I want it to be right.

    If the $1800 is worth it to be more consistent, and have more control then I feel it’s worth it.

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