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Thread: BIRDSELL Mfg. CO. Model 15 Spotwelder

  1. #1
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    BIRDSELL Mfg. CO. Model 15 Spotwelder

    Last week, the following ad appeared in the local Craigslist Free section and although I was a bit late, I had to reply. I was later told that many quickly replied, most saying essentially "I want it and can come now to get it". I tend to be long winded and to give a few more details including that it looked to be a classic and needed to be restored, then used.... Anyway, here's the ad:

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    It turned out that the unit was left on the property when sold so little history about it was known. A second person, who apparently was visiting the new resident at the 100 year old house, happened to spend his spare time collecting/documenting historical information, so my telling him tales of the area and the companies and people I knew of took more time than getting the machine.
    Below are pictures of the welder's company name, one of the data plate, and then some of the whole machine:

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    After loading it, I had a minor problem. After I passed on more information about other old equipment, building some copies of the Wright Bros. 1908 Model B engines, and mentioning the project about redesigning (and producing) upgraded Model A engines, only then was I asked if I wanted the second welder. The second is an old Craftsman AC unit ..... but I seem to need to start a new thread in order to show the pictures of it prior to being loaded for the required Second Trip Home from the area.

    When I first saw the picture of the welder in the ad, I assumed the unit was made by Miller; I was wrong. The Birdsell company, about which I so far have found little information, was a very local concern, being less than a mile from the old Sears store(I remember the planting of palm trees there when the building was new, back in the latter 1950's) and probably lasting not much longer than that. I found an ad on Ebay of another Birdsell welder, its unclear picture showing a data plate that appears even older, the company address on it looking like the nearby town of Los Altos.

    Some of the wire insulation inside my unit is long gone, so it will need a good disassembly, cleaning, and replacement of that wiring, at the least. The main transformer may also need some care but with the low voltages, I hope insulation breakdown isn't the problem it could be with high voltages.

    Besides asking if members here have any information about either the company or this specific model, are there any welding associations or similar outfits that might? Where is the best place to get general information about spot welders like this, particularly settings?
    In case the data plate isn't clear enough, it reads 220v, 65amps, single phase 1.5 K.V.A.

  2. #2
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    Re: BIRDSELL Mfg. CO. Model 15 Spotwelder

    So, I'm assuming it is a spot welder?!

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    Re: BIRDSELL Mfg. CO. Model 15 Spotwelder

    Quote Originally Posted by rexcormack View Post
    So, I'm assuming it is a spot welder?!
    Doesn't the title, and particularly, don't the pictures adequately show that this one is? The foot pedal, the electrode holders, and even the cooling water hoses?
    The old(er?) welder I found on Ebay appeared to be an AC stick welder but the pictures didn't show much besides the box, and other pictures on the internet that I found were of spot welders, so the company may have focused on them at some point.

  4. #4
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    Re: BIRDSELL Mfg. CO. Model 15 Spotwelder

    Output 2.6 volts 9,000 amps ???

    Am I reading that right?
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    Re: BIRDSELL Mfg. CO. Model 15 Spotwelder

    Quote Originally Posted by California View Post
    Output 2.6 volts 9,000 amps ???

    Am I reading that right?
    I'd think it has to be 900 since the maximum power is 1.5 K.V.A., although the 2.6v is open circuit. I can't tell if there's a decimal point, but I just came in and am not going back out to examine the plate more carefully right now.

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    Re: BIRDSELL Mfg. CO. Model 15 Spotwelder

    The nameplate reads 220VAC x 65 A = 14.3 kVA. 15 kVA is correct. No decimal point.

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    Re: BIRDSELL Mfg. CO. Model 15 Spotwelder

    Quote Originally Posted by Oldiron2 View Post
    Doesn't the title, and particularly, don't the pictures adequately show that this one is? The foot pedal, the electrode holders, and even the cooling water hoses?
    The old(er?) welder I found on Ebay appeared to be an AC stick welder but the pictures didn't show much besides the box, and other pictures on the internet that I found were of spot welders, so the company may have focused on them at some point.
    Sorry, I missed "spotwelder" in the title!
    I was distracted by all the pretty pictures!

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    Re: BIRDSELL Mfg. CO. Model 15 Spotwelder

    Quote Originally Posted by Denis G View Post
    The nameplate reads 220VAC x 65 A = 14.3 kVA. 15 kVA is correct. No decimal point.
    You're right. In my internet searching, I found a bunch of different plates and sorta lost track of what I had, but even worse, didn't think the numbers through very well. Too much other stuff on my mind lately.

  10. #9
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    Re: BIRDSELL Mfg. CO. Model 15 Spotwelder

    I still have my fathers old Birdsell AC buzzbox welder. The thing still works fine even though it sets on a trailer, more or less in the weather, behind my 25KW PTO alternator that I use here on the farm. Something breaks out in the field, the old Birdsell gets towed out to fix it.

    Your post is the only other mention I've ever seen of a Birdsell welder!

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