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Thread: Alphatig 200x Can't get an arc

  1. #1
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    Alphatig 200x Can't get an arc

    I have an Alphatig 200x from 2017 that gets occasional use. In the past, I've had pretty good results and successful function of the machine in DC and AC Tig, and stick welding. Today I went to try some stick welding and couldn't get an arc to start. I was replacing a hinge on the gate of an old horse trailer. If I rubbed the electrode around on the metal I could see the tiniest of orange sparks, but couldn't get an arc to start at any amps, combination of dips, scratches, etc. It could be technique, I'm not a pro, but have successfully done it before. I tried positive ground, negative ground, verified that the foot pedal was removed, moved the ground clamp very close to the work, all with no change. I can verify that I have a good connection at the ground clamp and at the stick holder, though there is a possibility of a failure inside of the dinse connector since I can't see in there. Good clean metal in the weld site and the ground clamp site.

    Having somewhere to be with the trailer, I figured I'd go ahead and tig it. I hooked the torch to the negative, the ground to the positive, configured for DC Tig, and couldn't get any arc at all. Full pedal, high amps, etc. Frustrated, I got out the OA torch and got the job done, mostly without setting the trailer on fire. But this machine is taking up too much real estate in the shop to not be working.

    Is there anything I can try short of sending the thing back? I realize the one common link between the two methods is the ground lead, and if it were to have some sort of failure that I can't see, it would limit current flow in both modes. Has anyone else seen similar symptoms?
    Last edited by jaredyates; 03-20-2021 at 09:31 PM.

  2. #2
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    Re: Alphatig 200x Can't get an arc

    I reached out to the AHP tech support and they had me do their diagnostic guides. The voltages were not in spec. They say I need to send it in, pay for shipping both ways, that the cost of the repair will likely exceed half of the cost of a new welder, and that they will only warranty their repair for 30 days.

    Back when I was researching a welder, all the old crusty guys here said, "don't buy that imported junk." I watched the videos of the guys that had good results with these welders, and the read the posts by the guy here who likes to sell them. When I purchased the first one and smoke was pouring out if it because of failed capacitors, I sent it back and got a replacement. This replacement has mostly sat in my climate-controlled shop for a couple of years, with very light and very occasional use. What I've realized now, having used this welder for around 3 hours of run time, is that all of those old crusty guys were right. Kudos to you. I should have never trusted these bottom-dollar folks. I got what I paid for.

    I tried to be optimistic and support the up-start, and where has that gotten me? $800 poorer, another $800 in gas, ppe, cart, and consumables. I fell for the stories of the youtube guys who are happily earning their amazon affiliate commissions. I figured surely there would be support for this machine, with this many of them out there. Is there any aftermarket repair? Does anyone want to buy a practically new welder for whatever useful parts are in it?

    What is the best path forward? I've got everything I need to weld, except for a welder. I can promise I'm not going to buy an AHP welder, at least not from them. Are any of the brands that support their products offering a similar TIG machine, preferably one that can connect to the piles of cables that I have now littering the shop?

  3. #3
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    Re: Alphatig 200x Can't get an arc

    Quote Originally Posted by jaredyates View Post
    I reached out to the AHP tech support and they had me do their diagnostic guides. The voltages were not in spec. They say I need to send it in, pay for shipping both ways, that the cost of the repair will likely exceed half of the cost of a new welder, and that they will only warranty their repair for 30 days.

    Back when I was researching a welder, all the old crusty guys here said, "don't buy that imported junk." I watched the videos of the guys that had good results with these welders, and the read the posts by the guy here who likes to sell them. When I purchased the first one and smoke was pouring out if it because of failed capacitors, I sent it back and got a replacement. This replacement has mostly sat in my climate-controlled shop for a couple of years, with very light and very occasional use. What I've realized now, having used this welder for around 3 hours of run time, is that all of those old crusty guys were right. Kudos to you. I should have never trusted these bottom-dollar folks. I got what I paid for.

    I tried to be optimistic and support the up-start, and where has that gotten me? $800 poorer, another $800 in gas, ppe, cart, and consumables. I fell for the stories of the youtube guys who are happily earning their amazon affiliate commissions. I figured surely there would be support for this machine, with this many of them out there. Is there any aftermarket repair? Does anyone want to buy a practically new welder for whatever useful parts are in it?

    What is the best path forward? I've got everything I need to weld, except for a welder. I can promise I'm not going to buy an AHP welder, at least not from them. Are any of the brands that support their products offering a similar TIG machine, preferably one that can connect to the piles of cables that I have now littering the shop?
    Bite the bullet. Id recommend the htp 221. The price stings but its a work horse. I have the single voltage 220 version and started out with just the air cooled torch. I later added the water cooled torch. You wont find many people here that dont like this model. Depending on the Dinse size you have now on cables, it should work just fine.

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  5. #4
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    Re: Alphatig 200x Can't get an arc

    Hey Jaredyates - I have a 2015 Alpha Tig 200dx - I've used it to Tig and Stick for the past 4 yrs or so I've had possession of it. Can I ask - what was the process you were using the last time you used the machine? Only b/c the guy in this seat had used for TIG for some time then decided to give the stick function a ride - while I switched it to STICK - I hadn't unplugged the foot pedal - and I got the same experience you described. Even though switched to Stick - the machine was - well who knows - probably Alpha support - but once I unscrewed the foot pedal completely from the connection it fired the stick up perfectly. Fast forward a couple years to about a month ago - same damn thing! lol - I mainly TIG with it - but again - left the foot pedal screwed into the connection. You probably already made sure that was completely out - but I just wanted to offer that as my only experience - a shame - b/c I have had a great deal of success - full transparency - about 3 mo after getting it from someone - had to replace a board - was I think $40 - but otherwise - (knocking on wood) - have had a pretty solid experience. There ARE better welders that WILL give you better results and performance for sure - good luck - hope you post the final chapter of what you do or happens here...... John

    WOOPS - reread your post - you said you verified the foot pedal was removed - sorry bout that!!! interested in what you end up moving onto forward though.
    Last edited by jfk92; 03-30-2021 at 08:07 PM.

  6. #5
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    Re: Alphatig 200x Can't get an arc

    Don't buy Neverlast...owned by the same people.

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  8. #6
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    Re: Alphatig 200x Can't get an arc

    Quote Originally Posted by Louie1961 View Post
    Don't buy Neverlast...owned by the same people.
    I can't believe you. If people will read up on your history, they'll understand you character and to take that with a grain of salt.
    Esab Migmaster 250
    Lincoln SA 200
    Lincoln Ranger 8
    Smith Oxy Fuel setup
    Everlast PowerPlasma 80
    Everlast Power iMIG 160
    Everlast Power iMIG 205
    Everlast Power iMIG 140E
    Everlast PowerARC 300
    Everlast PowerARC 140ST
    Everlast PowerTIG 255EXT

  9. #7
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    Re: Alphatig 200x Can't get an arc

    You're funny Mark, but I still have all the e-mails and text messages. SMH

  10. Likes Oscar liked this post

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