Welding and Cutting Steel

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11/27/2014 10:35 AM

I've got a pretty minimal experience with welding but I can hold a bead pretty good. Lately, I've been wanting to get into welding a little more just to make some hobby stuff. For the time being, I've borrowed a buddy's 120v Lincoln wirefeed welder and I'm making my mom a simple cart to roll chairs around. She owns a small wedding venue and she has about 80 folding chairs so my cart will store the chairs and keep her from having to move the chairs one at a time.

My first question is that I'm currently using a wood cutting circular saw with a metal blade to make my cuts. Is there any danger for the saw doing this? From what I've read, the only damage is to the blade but I couldn't find anything about it damaging the saw itself. I'm not too worried about blades for now since they're pretty inexpensive but I don't want to jeopardize my nice circular saw.

I'm looking for a 220v welder. This lincoln seems to fit the bill but wasn't sure what kind of quality it is. The reviews are seemingly positive. The welder I'm currently borrowing is the 120v version and it seems to function great right now. What other brands would you recommend if any? This is the price range I'm trying to stay in but I'm not opposed to spending a little more if there is a better quality to be had.

http://www.northerntool.com/shop/tools/product_200405531_200405531

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11/27/2014 10:40 AM

Can't go wrong with a lincoln or miller.

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www.alljackedupinc.com home of the Switch Hauler, the only modular hauling system www.sprocketstuff.com home of the Counter Sprocket Tool

11/27/2014 10:43 AM

Go buy a cheap harbor freight grinder and throw on good cutting disk, save the skill saw. Eitherway is fine and safe but it's hard on the saw.

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You're trying to use logic in your post and 4stroke doesn't appreciate logic! (FACT)


11/27/2014 10:53 AM

ToolMaker wrote:

Can't go wrong with a lincoln or miller.

+1

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11/27/2014 10:55 AM

4stroke4DWIN wrote:

Go buy a cheap harbor freight grinder and throw on good cutting disk, save the skill saw. Eitherway is fine and safe but it's hard on the saw.

Ya the grinders go pretty fast when they get hot.
I used to use grinders till I bought this; Everything is Butter!
[LINK TO IMAGE]

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11/27/2014 10:58 AM

With this blade
Photo

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11/27/2014 11:14 AM

4stroke4DWIN wrote:

Go buy a cheap harbor freight grinder and throw on good cutting disk, save the skill saw. Eitherway is fine and safe but it's hard on the saw.

The buddy that lent me the welder also lent me a milwaukee grinder. I'm having a problem cutting the metal with that. The grinder wants to jump every inch or two that I cut. Is there a trick to getting around that?

I've also been looking to get a mitre saw for wood working. I think this would help tremendously with cutting but again, I'm afraid of ruining a nice power tool by improper use. When you say it's hard on the saw, is it hard on the saw because you have to run it for a long time to get a cut? Or is it hard on the saw because it bogs it down, which in turn causes it to heat up?

Thanks for the pointers guys.

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11/27/2014 11:40 AM

They get hot and the brushes go bad, you can replace them easily

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11/27/2014 11:59 AM

Hobart is part of the Miller brand. I've had a Hobart 187 Handler for home use for the past six years and it's held up and performed with now issues. It was also less expensive than the comparable Miller and Lincoln units.

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11/27/2014 12:12 PM

Portable band saw,investment.

Try local pawn shops 1st.

You gotta watch them fiber blades,they get to much rpm or a crack and it will scatter. Best wear some glasses.

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11/27/2014 12:12 PM
Edited Date/Time: 11/27/2014 12:13 PM

4stroke4DWIN wrote:

Go buy a cheap harbor freight grinder and throw on good cutting disk, save the skill saw. Eitherway is fine and safe but it's hard on the saw.

IWreckALot wrote:

The buddy that lent me the welder also lent me a milwaukee grinder. I'm having a problem cutting the metal with that. The grinder wants to jump every inch or two that I cut. Is there a trick to getting around that?

I've also been looking to get a mitre saw for wood working. I think this would help tremendously with cutting but again, I'm afraid of ruining a nice power tool by improper use. When you say it's hard on the saw, is it hard on the saw because you have to run it for a long time to get a cut? Or is it hard on the saw because it bogs it down, which in turn causes it to heat up?

Thanks for the pointers guys.

Which way are you holding the grinder? You want to cut WITH the (moving forward)rotation of the blade. If going against you'll get that hop.

Are you using a CUTTING WHEEL or a grinding wheel? Grinding wheel trying to cut will jump to high heaven.

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You're trying to use logic in your post and 4stroke doesn't appreciate logic! (FACT)


11/27/2014 12:26 PM

4stroke4DWIN wrote:

Go buy a cheap harbor freight grinder and throw on good cutting disk, save the skill saw. Eitherway is fine and safe but it's hard on the saw.

IWreckALot wrote:

The buddy that lent me the welder also lent me a milwaukee grinder. I'm having a problem cutting the metal with that. The grinder wants to jump every inch or two that I cut. Is there a trick to getting around that?

I've also been looking to get a mitre saw for wood working. I think this would help tremendously with cutting but again, I'm afraid of ruining a nice power tool by improper use. When you say it's hard on the saw, is it hard on the saw because you have to run it for a long time to get a cut? Or is it hard on the saw because it bogs it down, which in turn causes it to heat up?

Thanks for the pointers guys.

4stroke4DWIN wrote:

Which way are you holding the grinder? You want to cut WITH the (moving forward)rotation of the blade. If going against you'll get that hop.

Are you using a CUTTING WHEEL or a grinding wheel? Grinding wheel trying to cut will jump to high heaven.

I am using a cutting blade for cutting. I also tried holding the grinder both ways. Maybe it takes a little muscle memory to get the hang of it.

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11/27/2014 1:04 PM

IWreckALot wrote:

The buddy that lent me the welder also lent me a milwaukee grinder. I'm having a problem cutting the metal with that. The grinder wants to jump every inch or two that I cut. Is there a trick to getting around that?

I've also been looking to get a mitre saw for wood working. I think this would help tremendously with cutting but again, I'm afraid of ruining a nice power tool by improper use. When you say it's hard on the saw, is it hard on the saw because you have to run it for a long time to get a cut? Or is it hard on the saw because it bogs it down, which in turn causes it to heat up?

Thanks for the pointers guys.

4stroke4DWIN wrote:

Which way are you holding the grinder? You want to cut WITH the (moving forward)rotation of the blade. If going against you'll get that hop.

Are you using a CUTTING WHEEL or a grinding wheel? Grinding wheel trying to cut will jump to high heaven.

IWreckALot wrote:

I am using a cutting blade for cutting. I also tried holding the grinder both ways. Maybe it takes a little muscle memory to get the hang of it.

2 hand it and kinda score the line and then go back and make the cut.

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You're trying to use logic in your post and 4stroke doesn't appreciate logic! (FACT)


11/27/2014 1:31 PM

I have a Dewalt chop saw for cutting metal pipe , tubing, flatbar and angle iron. Not too expensive and works really well. I'm always cutting and welding something. Built a badass laundry cart for the wife years ago. smile Seriously though, many people are jealous of her laundry cart. Built some target stands last weekend to take to the gun range. Can move them to whatever distance we want where most at the range we frequent are fixed. Everything at our shop is on carts and wheels that I welded up.

Look at some of the smaller 220 volt Miller mig welders. Get it set up for 75/25 argon co2 mix to begin with. I have one at work that is probably 12 years old. We have used the daylights out of it. On its third lead/ gun and just keeps on keeping on. Mostly used on automotive sheet metal and structural components with .023 wire. I'll use it on up to 1/4 in steel and occasionally heavier gauge stuff though with excellent results.

A few years back I bought a larger Miller mig for the shop and quite honestly it kind of sucks on the lighter gauge sheet metal. Even replaced to liner to try to keep it from spitting and sputtering. No one wants to use it, they just keep the little one rocking and rolling.

Get a good welding hood with a large lens. Auto darkening is your friend....

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11/27/2014 5:59 PM

If all you're doing is weekend warrior stuff then go to harbor freight and get one of their cheap hot saws. So much easier that a circular . I have a Lincoln 110v mig that is just a workhorse. It uses innershield wire so you dont need a gas bottle. It's good for light angle and tubing. It's a bit slow on the heavier wall stuff but I get the idea that you're not doing production welding. The Lincoln you are looking at would cover just about anything you want to do but you are confined to your garage because of the 220v. I have taken my little 110v to do repairs and stuff for friends. You cant go wrong with Lincoln or Miller like others have said. Harbor freight has some really cheap wire feeders but I have no idea how well they work. If you can afford the Lincoln then go for it. Top of the line shit. As well as Miller.

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11/28/2014 6:34 AM

newmann wrote:

I have a Dewalt chop saw for cutting metal pipe , tubing, flatbar and angle iron. Not too expensive and works really well. I'm always cutting and welding something. Built a badass laundry cart for the wife years ago. smile Seriously though, many people are jealous of her laundry cart. Built some target stands last weekend to take to the gun range. Can move them to whatever distance we want where most at the range we frequent are fixed. Everything at our shop is on carts and wheels that I welded up.

Look at some of the smaller 220 volt Miller mig welders. Get it set up for 75/25 argon co2 mix to begin with. I have one at work that is probably 12 years old. We have used the daylights out of it. On its third lead/ gun and just keeps on keeping on. Mostly used on automotive sheet metal and structural components with .023 wire. I'll use it on up to 1/4 in steel and occasionally heavier gauge stuff though with excellent results.

A few years back I bought a larger Miller mig for the shop and quite honestly it kind of sucks on the lighter gauge sheet metal. Even replaced to liner to try to keep it from spitting and sputtering. No one wants to use it, they just keep the little one rocking and rolling.

Get a good welding hood with a large lens. Auto darkening is your friend....

I can see myself doing the same thing. I love tinkering and building stuff myself so I don't mind spending a little more money on quality tools.

My wife and I are considering purchasing her dad's horse property in a year or two and building a house on the property. There are a few ideas I'm tossing around about what we want to build. One idea is a steel building that is finished out on the inside. If I go that route, I think the 220 would be best since the structural integrity will matter.

Northern Tool sells Hobart but surprisingly enough, they're slightly more expensive than the Lincoln.

I was at Home Depot this morning and they had a ridgid chop saw for $180 and the dewalt for $200. Once I decide how often I'm going to weld, I'll probably invest in one of those.

Do you have a plasma cutter? The steel yard I go to has one and it looks too easy to use a plasma cutter.

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11/28/2014 6:50 AM

IMO, a chop saw is definitely the way to go. Plasma cutters are awesome machines (and very fun to use), but for the type of work you're describing the chop saw seems like it would be more useful.

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11/28/2014 7:08 AM

I bought both of these 1 year ago from Northern Tool and both have exceeded my expectations. They get used nearly every day and have been the model of reliability so far. The only thing that I don't care for is the lag between restarts on the plasma cutter but it's something that I can live with for the money. Buy yourself a drag tip and go to work.

Hobart

Northern Industrial

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11/28/2014 9:56 AM

borg wrote:

If all you're doing is weekend warrior stuff then go to harbor freight and get one of their cheap hot saws. So much easier that a circular . I have a Lincoln 110v mig that is just a workhorse. It uses innershield wire so you dont need a gas bottle. It's good for light angle and tubing. It's a bit slow on the heavier wall stuff but I get the idea that you're not doing production welding. The Lincoln you are looking at would cover just about anything you want to do but you are confined to your garage because of the 220v. I have taken my little 110v to do repairs and stuff for friends. You cant go wrong with Lincoln or Miller like others have said. Harbor freight has some really cheap wire feeders but I have no idea how well they work. If you can afford the Lincoln then go for it. Top of the line shit. As well as Miller.

I have the same set-up and it absolutely is cool to be able to haul it around to help friends.
Don't hate me, I bought this set up lightly used from a friend.
Lincoln welder 3200 weld pak with cart, hose and regulator
Milwaukee chop
Makita 4" grinder
Heavy duty ext.cord
Nomex sleeves, auto darkening hood
5 spools of flux core and misc hose.
$300

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The older I get, the faster I was.

11/28/2014 1:20 PM

borg wrote:

If all you're doing is weekend warrior stuff then go to harbor freight and get one of their cheap hot saws. So much easier that a circular . I have a Lincoln 110v mig that is just a workhorse. It uses innershield wire so you dont need a gas bottle. It's good for light angle and tubing. It's a bit slow on the heavier wall stuff but I get the idea that you're not doing production welding. The Lincoln you are looking at would cover just about anything you want to do but you are confined to your garage because of the 220v. I have taken my little 110v to do repairs and stuff for friends. You cant go wrong with Lincoln or Miller like others have said. Harbor freight has some really cheap wire feeders but I have no idea how well they work. If you can afford the Lincoln then go for it. Top of the line shit. As well as Miller.

captmoto wrote:

I have the same set-up and it absolutely is cool to be able to haul it around to help friends.
Don't hate me, I bought this set up lightly used from a friend.
Lincoln welder 3200 weld pak with cart, hose and regulator
Milwaukee chop
Makita 4" grinder
Heavy duty ext.cord
Nomex sleeves, auto darkening hood
5 spools of flux core and misc hose.
$300

Did it come with the title by chance? Lol.

That's quite the steal. . . Pardon the pun. . .

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11/28/2014 2:16 PM

Chop saws and grinders with a zip disc work great. My favorite though is a handheld, portable bandsaw. No sparks or noise. Nice clean cuts. Where access isn't an issue, they're great.

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11/28/2014 7:49 PM

Generally speaking Lincoln mig welders have a softer arc start which really comes in handy when tacking thin gauge material.
Less likely to burn holes.
Though they are double the cost of a chop saw, the metal cutting saw's from Milwaukee and Makita are great,
Blades last a long time and there is no abrasive dust.


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11/30/2014 8:32 AM

IWreckALot wrote:

Did it come with the title by chance? Lol.

That's quite the steal. . . Pardon the pun. . .

Nah, but when this guy is done with something he is done. He sold a Springfield USGI M1A to another co-worker for $500. I got a Remington 700 for $600.
[LINK TO IMAGE]
I wish I new about the M1A first.

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The older I get, the faster I was.

12/10/2014 7:55 AM

Well I've gotten some side work and I've decided to go ahead and place some orders. The company I'm working for is a construction company and instead of paying me my hourly rate, I've asked that they give me some tools and they can write it off as a business expense. That way, I don't have to pay income tax on my hourly rate and they get some write offs. Win win.

I've got the two grinders that are set to be delivered today, the welder was on back order so it'll be delivered between December 17 and 26. I also bought the chop saw the other day. I guess I might have gone a little overboard, but since I have the opportunity, I decided to splurge a little bit. The wife is going to shit when I tell her I need $600 more for bike stuff.

I've got more on a list that I'm waiting to accumulate enough hours to buy.

Photo

Photo

Photo

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12/10/2014 8:02 AM

^^^congrats on the purchases! Getting some new tools is a great feeling.

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12/16/2014 10:53 PM

IWreckALot wrote:

The buddy that lent me the welder also lent me a milwaukee grinder. I'm having a problem cutting the metal with that. The grinder wants to jump every inch or two that I cut. Is there a trick to getting around that?

I've also been looking to get a mitre saw for wood working. I think this would help tremendously with cutting but again, I'm afraid of ruining a nice power tool by improper use. When you say it's hard on the saw, is it hard on the saw because you have to run it for a long time to get a cut? Or is it hard on the saw because it bogs it down, which in turn causes it to heat up?

Thanks for the pointers guys.

Looks like I am a little late on the draw, but if you're only cutting small gauge stuff a zip disc works just fine.

The issue you are having with the zip is that you have to keep the pressure steady and straight, you can't hold the grinder at an angle unless you hold that angle steadily. You'll get the hang of it, I cut circles with the things now. Also you have to make sure that the piece you are cutting isn't biting on the disc as you make your way through the mat'l. I know, safety third, but make sure you wear gloves and a face shield when you use those as they can shatter and become ninja stars very quickly. You will figure this out when one explodes on you and you crap your pants.

Grinders are great versatile tools, I like a blending disc to remove paint or finish something nicely, a good quarter inch disc for taking stubborn scabs off of shit that I'm fitting, and wire wheels for prepping my welds.

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Sack up and roll with the boys.

12/17/2014 2:37 AM

Miller or Lincoln.....buy yourself a decent metal chop saw with a built in vise....your fingers and face will thank you..

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12/17/2014 5:42 AM

4stroke4DWIN wrote:

Go buy a cheap harbor freight grinder and throw on good cutting disk, save the skill saw. Eitherway is fine and safe but it's hard on the saw.

IWreckALot wrote:

The buddy that lent me the welder also lent me a milwaukee grinder. I'm having a problem cutting the metal with that. The grinder wants to jump every inch or two that I cut. Is there a trick to getting around that?

I've also been looking to get a mitre saw for wood working. I think this would help tremendously with cutting but again, I'm afraid of ruining a nice power tool by improper use. When you say it's hard on the saw, is it hard on the saw because you have to run it for a long time to get a cut? Or is it hard on the saw because it bogs it down, which in turn causes it to heat up?

Thanks for the pointers guys.

bronwynrayne wrote:

Looks like I am a little late on the draw, but if you're only cutting small gauge stuff a zip disc works just fine.

The issue you are having with the zip is that you have to keep the pressure steady and straight, you can't hold the grinder at an angle unless you hold that angle steadily. You'll get the hang of it, I cut circles with the things now. Also you have to make sure that the piece you are cutting isn't biting on the disc as you make your way through the mat'l. I know, safety third, but make sure you wear gloves and a face shield when you use those as they can shatter and become ninja stars very quickly. You will figure this out when one explodes on you and you crap your pants.

Grinders are great versatile tools, I like a blending disc to remove paint or finish something nicely, a good quarter inch disc for taking stubborn scabs off of shit that I'm fitting, and wire wheels for prepping my welds.

I was cutting some sheet metal that was roughly 12ga. I believe you are right. I think the sheet was pinching the cutting wheel.

Welder will be at my doorstep when I get home today. At least that's what the UPS tracking says. . .

I'm finding that I need a welding table more than anything right now. That'll have to be on my priority list to build asap. I'm thinking something comparable to this.

I also like the receiver hitch options to attach your bench grinder and vice. They're not included in the picture but I will be adding a few of those.

Photo

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12/17/2014 6:30 AM

IWreckALot wrote:

I was cutting some sheet metal that was roughly 12ga. I believe you are right. I think the sheet was pinching the cutting wheel.

Welder will be at my doorstep when I get home today. At least that's what the UPS tracking says. . .

I'm finding that I need a welding table more than anything right now. That'll have to be on my priority list to build asap. I'm thinking something comparable to this.

I also like the receiver hitch options to attach your bench grinder and vice. They're not included in the picture but I will be adding a few of those.

Photo

Yep just get yourself some saw horses and C clamps and you should be able to fix that. If you do make up a table you can clamp it to that as well with the end you are cutting off hanging over the edge. Do your layout then score the line lightly so that your disc has a guide when you do the final cut.

You don't want a wood top to the table, you will want to be able to tack pieces to it to make jigs and practice welding. I will post a photo of the set up we have at work in our little fab shop and show you what I mean.

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Sack up and roll with the boys.

12/17/2014 8:28 AM

bronwynrayne wrote:

Yep just get yourself some saw horses and C clamps and you should be able to fix that. If you do make up a table you can clamp it to that as well with the end you are cutting off hanging over the edge. Do your layout then score the line lightly so that your disc has a guide when you do the final cut.

You don't want a wood top to the table, you will want to be able to tack pieces to it to make jigs and practice welding. I will post a photo of the set up we have at work in our little fab shop and show you what I mean.

That's what I was working with. I had a piece of sheet metal resting on some saw horses. That's too unstable, not flat enough and too much of a pain in the ass.

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