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Thread: Ground cable and clamp upgrade, Miller 211

  1. #1
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    Ground cable and clamp upgrade, Miller 211

    So I have a 211 that I purchased new in November of last year and the biggest complaint I have is the ground cable seems a little thin and I also want to upgrade the clamp to the USA Forged full brass style. Is it worth doing this and if so, what's the best way of going about doing this?
    Current machine: Miller 211
    Past machine(s): Hobart Handler 190
    “The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants” - Thomas Jefferson

  2. #2
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    Re: Ground cable and clamp upgrade, Miller 211

    I replaced my ground by going to the local welding shop bought a piece of cable, the length I wanted (15'), 2 lugs and a ground clamp. I asked the shop to put the lugs on with their tool and out the door I went. Works for me fine, but then I'm a novice welder and don't know the difference except I really liked the longer cable. Good luck.

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    Re: Ground cable and clamp upgrade, Miller 211

    I'd say it's worth upgrading given the truly crap stock setup. If not the cable for sure 100% the work/ground clamp should be changed out.

    Everything will work more efficiently with a less anemic work cable/clamp, and run cooler (longer component life).

    You'll get a little more oomph at the top end and a slightly crisper arc also (though this could be in my mind), but don't expect a drastic change.



    A local welding shop is the best way to do this, and I found their prices were on par with buying online when everything was factored in.

    I believe my 5 year old mm211 came with a 10ft 6awg work cable, with 1/4" lug (double check lug size, I may be incorrect). Very undersized IMO especially when coupled with the chintzy excuse for a work clamp miller ships out.



    I changed it out for a 15ft 2awg with a tweco ground clamp.

    2awg is a nice balance between overkill for the amps/duty cycle and still being easy enough to handle/carry when moving the entire unit in one go

    Harbor freight sells a decent ground clamp for around 15 dollars, but I opted for the tweco in the hopes they had a better brass with more conductivity (No idea though).

    ***whatever you do be sure to check the work cable to clamp connection every now and again.***

    With the heat cycling it will eventually loosen up, which leads to more heat and so on.

    I can't count the number of times I've used someone else's welder only to find the cable loosey goosey in the clamp. Then you tighten it up and they wonder how you got their "crap" welder to weld so good, must be the golden arm.

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    Re: Ground cable and clamp upgrade, Miller 211

    Ground clamp I would upgrade. Cable, not so much. Remember that cable is only half the circuit. Are you upgrading the MIG gun to a larger size as well? If not, don't sweat the cable size.

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    Re: Ground cable and clamp upgrade, Miller 211

    Very fair point about the ground cable.

    I did find the extra length of the new cable very useful though, even before I upgraded to a 15ft gun.

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    Re: Ground cable and clamp upgrade, Miller 211

    So in the mean time, I did just put a brass clamp on. I also plan on upgrading the gun to something with a rating higher than 100A, but I haven’t found a gun I want to buy yet. I love the ergonomics of the MDX100, just wish it had a 15’ cable. I could do the older M150 with a 15’ cable, but I’m not sure how it feels in the hand, also, even though I haven’t needed to replace the liner yet, I like the process for replacing the liner in the MDX100 gun. Anybody got any suggestions for a 15’ gun as well that doesn’t require anything other than installing it?
    Last edited by Deadsquiggles; 03-07-2021 at 02:24 PM.
    Current machine: Miller 211
    Past machine(s): Hobart Handler 190
    “The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants” - Thomas Jefferson

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    Re: Ground cable and clamp upgrade, Miller 211

    I have heard that anything less than .030 wire will not feed in a gun of 15' or more.

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    Re: Ground cable and clamp upgrade, Miller 211

    Quote Originally Posted by Deadsquiggles View Post
    So I have a 211 that I purchased new in November of last year and the biggest complaint I have is the ground cable seems a little thin and I also want to upgrade the clamp to the USA Forged full brass style. Is it worth doing this and if so, what's the best way of going about doing this?
    I have the older transformer 211
    same cheesy ground clamp....

    I replaced mine with a magswitch. have one on my stick welder also.... They are GREAT.

    https://magswitch.com/product/300-am...-clamp-w-fins/
    Miller 211
    Hypertherm PM 45
    1961 Lincoln Idealarc 250
    HTP 221


    True Wisdom only comes from Pain.

  10. #9
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    Re: Ground cable and clamp upgrade, Miller 211

    So at this point, the ground clamp seems to be pretty cut and dry. What has everyone done for gun upgrades on their 211s?
    Current machine: Miller 211
    Past machine(s): Hobart Handler 190
    “The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants” - Thomas Jefferson

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    Re: Ground cable and clamp upgrade, Miller 211

    HTP America makes a nice flex neck gun that is rated at 150 amps I believe. If you want to buy the Cadillac of MIG guns, then in my mind the Bernard 150 amp Q gun is going to be the best, but pricey too. https://weldingsupply.com/cgi-bin/ei...:OR:Q1515AB8BM

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    Re: Ground cable and clamp upgrade, Miller 211

    Do most welding supply stores cart consumables that fit the Bernard guns?
    Current machine: Miller 211
    Past machine(s): Hobart Handler 190
    “The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants” - Thomas Jefferson

  13. #12
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    Re: Ground cable and clamp upgrade, Miller 211

    I would imagine yes since Bernard was bought by miller. But I do everything by mail order.

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    Re: Ground cable and clamp upgrade, Miller 211

    Quote Originally Posted by Deadsquiggles View Post
    So at this point, the ground clamp seems to be pretty cut and dry. What has everyone done for gun upgrades on their 211s?
    Nothing.

    Works just fine.
    Miller 211
    Hypertherm PM 45
    1961 Lincoln Idealarc 250
    HTP 221


    True Wisdom only comes from Pain.

  15. #14
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    Re: Ground cable and clamp upgrade, Miller 211

    Ended up ordering a 15’ M-150 gun and MDX conversion kit so I can use all the consumables I have on hand. Might have to post back how I like after I get some time with it. I really like how my MDX feels so we’ll see. Worst case, I’ll end up ordering a custom Bernard, which speaking of, how do you go about ordering a Bernard that you spec out? I found the configurator on the website, but couldn’t figure out where to find a price or where to order it?
    Current machine: Miller 211
    Past machine(s): Hobart Handler 190
    “The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants” - Thomas Jefferson

  16. #15
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    Re: Ground cable and clamp upgrade, Miller 211

    For an HTP replacement gun, which of these two has the correct power pin end and 2 pin electrical connector?
    1. https://usaweld.com/collections/mill...29079727308883

    2. https://usaweld.com/collections/mill...miller_welders
    Last edited by Deadsquiggles; 03-09-2021 at 08:17 PM.
    Current machine: Miller 211
    Past machine(s): Hobart Handler 190
    “The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants” - Thomas Jefferson

  17. #16
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    Re: Ground cable and clamp upgrade, Miller 211

    Depending what type of work you do, a double ground clamp can be handy. Ground clamps on each end of a chunk of cable is handy if your machine cable ground is short.
    I find it's easier doing that then having a 50' or 100' chunk with a single clamp.
    It's especially handy on jobsites where machine is grounded to building steel. Now just ground to building steel with double ground and to work.

  18. #17
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    Re: Ground cable and clamp upgrade, Miller 211

    Quote Originally Posted by Deadsquiggles View Post
    For an HTP replacement gun, which of these two has the correct power pin end and 2 pin electrical connector?
    1. https://usaweld.com/collections/mill...29079727308883

    2. https://usaweld.com/collections/mill...miller_welders
    Call them and ask. Their customer service is second to none. They can also do custom guns if you tell them what you want built.

  19. #18
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    Re: Ground cable and clamp upgrade, Miller 211

    Quote Originally Posted by Louie1961 View Post
    Call them and ask. Their customer service is second to none. They can also do custom guns if you tell them what you want built.
    I ended up figuring it out and placing an order last night for the 180A flex neck gun, rigid swan neck, and a handful of consumables. But if I have any issues, I'll definitely call them.
    Current machine: Miller 211
    Past machine(s): Hobart Handler 190
    “The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants” - Thomas Jefferson

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  21. #19
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    Re: Ground cable and clamp upgrade, Miller 211

    Quote Originally Posted by Bob-O View Post
    I have heard that anything less than .030 wire will not feed in a gun of 15' or more.
    Well....the question has zero to do with the whip. He asked aboa ground. Make it 30 feet, no matter.
    As to a 15 foot whip...030 is a non issue. 023 can fight you. Move the machine back from the work piece and get the whip straight...good liner/clean tip etc. Do-able.

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  23. #20
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    Re: Ground cable and clamp upgrade, Miller 211

    Quote Originally Posted by Bonzoo View Post
    Well....the question has zero to do with the whip. He asked aboa ground. Make it 30 feet, no matter.
    As to a 15 foot whip...030 is a non issue. 023 can fight you. Move the machine back from the work piece and get the whip straight...good liner/clean tip etc. Do-able.
    Yeah, so after I got my answer for the ground clamp, I figured rather than start a new thread to ask about whip length and mig guns, I just asked in my existing thread. As far as feeding issues with .023, I plan on holding onto my 10 foot MDX100 until I can prove out that I'll have no issues with the 15' HTP. Really shouldn't be an issue as I don't run much .023" at all, actually I haven't run any in my 211. Either way, I appreciate all the good info and recommendations I've gotten from this thread, for both the ground cable and mig guns.
    Current machine: Miller 211
    Past machine(s): Hobart Handler 190
    “The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants” - Thomas Jefferson

  24. #21
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    Re: Ground cable and clamp upgrade, Miller 211

    So my HTP mig gun showed up today. Definitely as ergonomic as my MDX100, if not more. Trigger angle is a little weird but comfortable. Swapped the flex neck for the rigid swan neck. This is when I noticed how different the set up of the liner was compared to Miller, nothing secures the liner at the gas diffuser, but it didn’t seem to cause issues. Got it all hooked up and ran some wire through it. Initially I had some issues where I’d pull the trigger and nothing would happen, and then a few seconds later, it’d feed no problem. The machine doesn’t seem to have an issue pushing the wire the extra 5’. Welded on some scrap and only had one instance where it didn’t feed when I pulled the trigger. I’m gonna use it some more over the next couple days, and I’d it continues, I’ll give HTP a call.
    Attached Images Attached Images  
    Current machine: Miller 211
    Past machine(s): Hobart Handler 190
    “The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants” - Thomas Jefferson

  25. #22
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    Re: Ground cable and clamp upgrade, Miller 211

    Quote Originally Posted by SlowBlues View Post
    I changed it out for a 15ft 2awg with a tweco ground clamp.
    Quote Originally Posted by John T View Post
    I replaced mine with a magswitch.
    I'm about to pick up my 211. I'm definitely going to look into these.

  26. #23
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    Re: Ground cable and clamp upgrade, Miller 211

    Quote Originally Posted by John T View Post
    I have the older transformer 211
    same cheesy ground clamp....

    I replaced mine with a magswitch. have one on my stick welder also.... They are GREAT.

    https://magswitch.com/product/300-am...-clamp-w-fins/
    Does the magswitch mess with your stick welding due to magnetism ?
    Thanks

  27. #24
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    Re: Ground cable and clamp upgrade, Miller 211

    Quote Originally Posted by Jonath108 View Post
    Does the magswitch mess with your stick welding due to magnetism ?
    Thanks
    IMHO, the ground magnet would have to be less than one inch from the arc to have any effect on the welding,,,

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  29. #25
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    Ground cable and clamp upgrade, Miller 211

    Quote Originally Posted by Jonath108 View Post
    Does the magswitch mess with your stick welding due to magnetism ?
    Thanks
    Never.



    However these will for certain. I'm sure what pound rating these are but maybe the lighter duty ones won't.





    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    Last edited by Lis2323; 04-12-2021 at 07:54 PM.
    :

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