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Craftsman welder...Is it crap?!?!

Discussion in 'The Garage' started by BigBurban350, Jun 2, 2003.

  1. BigBurban350

    BigBurban350 1/2 ton status

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    I am looking at a Craftsman MIG welder:

    Craftsman MIG Welder
    Welds steel from 24 ga. through 3/16 in. in a single pass. Stainless steel from 18 ga. through 1/8 in. thick. Also welds using flux-cored welding wire on steel from 18 ga. through 3/16 in.


    Online / Catalog Exclusive!
    Handles 0.024 and 0.030 diameter wire on spools from 1 to 10 lbs (4 & 8 in. spools)
    10% duty cycle at 80 amps; welds up to 125 amps
    Uses standard household current; 4 separate output settings
    20 max. primary amps (can be used on 15 amp circuit); max 31 open circuit volts

    [​IMG]



    /forums/images/graemlins/deal.gif /forums/images/graemlins/deal.gif /forums/images/graemlins/deal.gifAs Compared to: /forums/images/graemlins/deal.gif /forums/images/graemlins/deal.gif /forums/images/graemlins/deal.gif


    Lincoln Electric Features:

    For any light steel applications around your home, farm or hobby shop

    Simply load your spool of wire, press the trigger and weld

    30-100 amps output for welding up to 1/4" mild steel using flux-cored wire

    Plugs into 115V outlet

    Safety feature keeps welding wire electrically cold until gun trigger is pressed

    Compact, portable, lightweight and easy to use

    Install K610-1 to easily upgrade the Weld-Pak 100 HD for MIG welding

    Install K610-1 and K664-2 to MIG weld aluminum

    Procedure chart inside wire feed section door makes setting the 100 HD a snap!

    Fan-cooled for long life expectancy

    Three year warranty on parts and labor

    Made in U.S.A.

    [image]http://www.homedepot.com/cmc_upload/HDUS/EN_US/asset/images/pii/2/0/6/5/A15602_3.JPG [/image]
     
  2. 89GMCSuburban

    89GMCSuburban 1/2 ton status

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    Price comparo?
     
  3. BigBurban350

    BigBurban350 1/2 ton status

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    The craftsman(mig) is $300 and the lincoln is $325 and another $100 for the mig conversion. Is flux core any good?
     
  4. 89GMCSuburban

    89GMCSuburban 1/2 ton status

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    Flux core is very convenient...you don't need any gas to weld.
    I've never heard of anyone using a Craftsman before, so I can't tell you about the reliability part.
    Lincoln is exactly that, a Lincoln.
    See if you can find someone using a Craftsman and see how they like it. I've never heard anyone complain about their Lincoln, though...
     
  5. willyswanter

    willyswanter 1/2 ton status GMOTM Winner

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    A 10% duty cycle at 80 amps... but you can weld at 120 amps... So whats your duty cycle at 120 like 3%? Sorry but that is just not useful unless your tack welding all day. I would spend the extra 100 bucks and get the Licoln 155 flux core or 175 mig.
     
  6. tone91

    tone91 Registered Member

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    I have the craftsman 105 pro and I like it for what little I weld. I've only used the flux core wire with it because I weld outside. I don't have a garage. I think you would be a lot happier if you went up a few grades from the one you are looking at.I believe mine cost about 450 or 500 two years ago. I do like lincolns too. They do make a good welder.
     
  7. Resurrection_Joe

    Resurrection_Joe 1 ton status

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    I bought a Lincoln SP135T on ebay from what basically amounts to a store. It comes ready to weld with gas, all you need to add is the gas cylinder. It's also 110v, which is nice if you have the proper electirical circuts and whatnot. I am running .25 wire with gas at full power and it will do a full penetration weld on 1/8th, possibly more. Using flux core it will do 1/4". I ran a dedicated circut to it in my shop.

    Anyway here's the kicker - I payed $420 shipped

    Lincoln SP135T

    The guy selling them is really communicative, and he ships fast, not trying to kiss his ass but he does.

    Hope this helps, a Lincoln like you said, with the gas conversion included, for the same price but shipped, and 35 more amps.

    (I really like it)
     
  8. gravdigr

    gravdigr 1/2 ton status

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    I use a craftsman with about the same stats as the one you listed and I like it. I have a 180 amp stick welder for anything heavy. I use the mig mainly for body work so the duty cycle is no biggie as I have to watch the heat to keep from warping panels. The choice from flux core and gas is VERY handy as I ran out of gas this weekend and could just switch. Only problem with flux core is you can only get it in .030 and the lowest heat you can use is 2 so you tend to burn through thin metal. In all I like it just wish it had a guage of some sort to tell gas level.
     
  9. Grim-Reaper

    Grim-Reaper 3/4 ton status Author

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    Duty cycle on any of the 110v units is piss poor. Step up to a 220v unit if you can.

    Craftsman badge engineers most stuff like that. The mowers are Murry, Welders I don't know but it's not "manufactured" by Craftsman. Personnaly I would stick with a well known name Like Lincoln, Miller or Hobart (owned by Miller). I have the Hobart Handler 175. It's basicly a trimmed down Miller 175. Been very happy with it and have done some big projects like Building a 5.10 Trailer frame out of 2x3 box. Never missed a beat.

    If you have a Stick welder then a 110v makes a good welder for the thin stuff but if you looking for one welder to do it all then get a 220v unit. Even the low ends are going to be better then the best 110v unit. I have no regrets on my Hobart.
     
  10. TX Mudder

    TX Mudder 1/2 ton status

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    I have a Craftsman Mig with those stats, but mine looks different. Mine came with the MIG kit - all I needed was the bottle.
    I like mine. I weld on '4' most of the time because I do 1/4" a lot. If I had the money, I would have prefered to get a 220 but for the money it is doing a great job.
    -- Mike
     
  11. Resurrection_Joe

    Resurrection_Joe 1 ton status

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    Yeah, forgot to mention, I have Lincolns AC225 Stick welder too...
     
  12. Erich_in_AZ

    Erich_in_AZ 1/2 ton status

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    I HAD a craftsman (not that model, I think a step up), and stepped up to a 220v Hobart. Looking back makes me want to throw rocks at the Craftsman. I wouldn't even consider welding 1/4" with one of those, as I had enough trouble with 1/8" getting penetration. I would recommend a MINIMUM of a Hobart or Lincoln 135amp, but truthfully, would save up and get a 220v. You won't regret it in the long run
     
  13. jjlaughner

    jjlaughner 3/4 ton status

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    I have a Century 85amp welder with the Argon setup . To get some thick gauge metals to weld up I have to run about half speed on the hottest setting to got welds to burn in. We had to use the 120Volt welder because of power limitations in the garage. My dads got some cool old stick welders from his John Deere days. Unfortunatly we only have 1 line running to the garage and it supports the lights and plug-ins (old house). When the pole barn gets build its going to have its own meter dropped to the side, bring on the John Deere A200 series compressor (rewired for 120Volt and is lacking in the umf! department /forums/images/graemlins/deal.gif) and stick welders /forums/images/graemlins/thumb.gif

    It all depends on what you are going to do with it. I'm using argon because most of the stuff I weld is old and rusty, we can rewire the welder and take the gas off and run a flux wire but have yet too. Another good thing about smaller welders are being able to do thin sheet metal for panel replacement. I can also crank it up and weld 1/4" pretty well also, which is enough for most anything I need to do most of the time.
     
  14. Fletch79

    Fletch79 Registered Member

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    If this is your first welder, look around for a used Lincoln 220Volt stick welder.
    They are super durable, can be had reasonably, and wiring up a 50Amp 220V circuit is easy, provided your panel can accept another set of breakers.
    I found my Lincoln-arc 225 for $100; came with a helmet, and a bunch of rod.

    I'm an advocate of learning with a stick welder.
    It's very versatile; great for general purpose fab projects.
    Not suited for grafting quarter-panels, but I've seen some virtuoso's pull it off.

    The little hobbyist MIG welders are handy, but you can't beat a cheap stick-rig to learn on.

    My $0.02 ($0.03 Canadian)

    Fletch
     
  15. eldon519

    eldon519 1/2 ton status

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    How much penetration can you get with the Lincoln AC225 stick on a single pass?
     
  16. BigBurban350

    BigBurban350 1/2 ton status

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    Well, after contemplating how much it would cost to add 220 in my walkout basement it would be more cost efficient to go with 110. So that left me with a wire feed. So I went over to sears and got a craftsman(3 yr warrenty same as lincoln). Its acctually bigger then to one I posted, it welds up to 1/4" in one pass! Its got fully adjustable settings not like that cheapy one above. Now I just gotta get a tank.
     
  17. Erich_in_AZ

    Erich_in_AZ 1/2 ton status

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    1/4" inch single pass seems to be a real strech for a 110v welder. How many amps is it rated at? Do you have the P/N from sears? My 175A Hobart is rated at 1/4 single pass
     
  18. bigblock454

    bigblock454 Clack Clack Clack Premium Member

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    I have the welder you are talking about. You absolutly MUST have at least 12 gauge wire at your welding plug. Mine with the welder turned up past 6 on the heat will trip the 20 amp breaker. I ended up wiring a 6 gauge 220 plug to the side of my garage and using one leg to ground for 120 with a dryer plug and replacing the stock welder plug with 10 gauge wire. That is the only way I could continously weld on max heat. I strongly suggest you wire a 10 gauge outlet using at least a 30 amp plug/socket.

    Other than that you will enjoy the unit. On totally clean metal you can weld 1/4 in a single pass. Goto your local welding outfit and get a "Q" tank, don't bother with the small 20 cu ft tanks.
     
  19. BigBurban350

    BigBurban350 1/2 ton status

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    [ QUOTE ]
    1/4" inch single pass seems to be a real strech for a 110v welder. How many amps is it rated at? Do you have the P/N from sears? My 175A Hobart is rated at 1/4 single pass



    [/ QUOTE ]

    Heres the # 934.205591. 105 amps 20% duty cycle and once again is says it can do 1/4" in one pass. Like the other guy says you can on clean metal.
     
  20. camiswelding

    camiswelding 1/2 ton status

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    dont waste your money on a rebranded welder from a company that sells everything from clothes to garden supplies. Buy a welder from a company that makes them. I run 5 different Lincoln machines in my shop... and if you can afford it get a 220v machine... the best you can buy. Lincon seems to be more up to date on up and coming technology than Hobart and Miller but its the the difference between ford dodge and chevy..personal preference
    Try the SP-135t or larger.. if you want to weld reliably go for the 22ov machines. There is one interent company that is cheaper then anyone else by a couple of bucks... or you can buy on EBAY but if you are a novice make a friend at your local welding supply.. its worth it.. also buy a SPEEDGLAS 9000Xi auto helmet.... probably the best one out there...around $250.00 and what are your eyes worth??? harbor frieght brand... nope not mine
    If you need more info go to one of the welding forums like K5 and youll be able to talk to only welding pros... kinda like all you K5 pros for me!!!!!!!!!!!!!! /forums/images/graemlins/k5.gif
     

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