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Whats a decent cheap welder for welding aluminum 1/8" tube?

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Whats a decent cheap welder for welding aluminum 1/8" tube?

Old 11-19-2020, 06:58 PM
  #21  
mbb
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If do go with mig, you need 180A + size minimum. 240V.
You can't weld anything with the little 120V welders but 1/16 in wall.

Preheating Al with torch or oven helps greatly too.

Also need dedicated gun liners, nozzles, rollers, etc for the Al wire. Oils picked up from other wires will transfer to Al wire and interfere with welds.

Fitup is critical. You can check weld books....but you need gaps between parts on butt welds. About 1/16" or you wont get full penetration welds. Too much and you wont get a weld .

Last edited by mbb; 11-19-2020 at 11:45 PM.
Old 11-20-2020, 09:54 AM
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Originally Posted by Stim View Post
I have, you better have a sense of humor!
They make TIG look easy.
Lol, it is pretty easy,just slow.
Old 11-20-2020, 10:16 AM
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Originally Posted by mbb View Post
If do go with mig, you need 180A + size minimum. 240V.
You can't weld anything with the little 120V welders but 1/16 in wall.

Preheating Al with torch or oven helps greatly too.

Also need dedicated gun liners, nozzles, rollers, etc for the Al wire. Oils picked up from other wires will transfer to Al wire and interfere with welds.

Fitup is critical. You can check weld books....but you need gaps between parts on butt welds. About 1/16" or you wont get full penetration welds. Too much and you wont get a weld .
thats why you get the spool gun attachment! not to mention you have to switch polarity on most machines
Old 11-20-2020, 11:51 AM
  #24  
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Can you use stainless for the build? You will be able to weld the stainless with your current S/U. If you go stainless, remember ...about the time you raise your shield, the slag will pop off and be in your eyes. ask me how I know. I learned to count to about ten or so, then raise my shield.
I'm used to weld for a living many moons ago and I'm certified pipe. Aluminum ain't no joke unless you are set up for it.
Old 11-20-2020, 01:42 PM
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Originally Posted by Rolandt03 View Post
thats why you get the spool gun attachment! not to mention you have to switch polarity on most machines
Spool guns suck imo push pull for mig is the wtg
Old 11-20-2020, 04:37 PM
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Originally Posted by Ebuck1 View Post
Spool guns suck imo push pull for mig is the wtg
I sold my miller tig for a high end spool gun for the lincoln.I think it's sloppy. Maybe good with spray transfer with plate aluminum.Tigs the way to go.
Old 11-20-2020, 11:52 PM
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I know dam well I can’t weld aluminum, but I’m fabricating up a tower for my boat, and need to find a way to tack the pieces in place until I can get them welded by a pro. Got shot down on my brazing idea, and I’m running out of clamps fast!
Any ideas?
Old 11-21-2020, 06:15 AM
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Originally Posted by nuffaredy View Post
I know dam well I canít weld aluminum, but Iím fabricating up a tower for my boat, and need to find a way to tack the pieces in place until I can get them welded by a pro. Got shot down on my brazing idea, and Iím running out of clamps fast!
Any ideas?
In that case...



I wouldn't even bother welding it.
Old 11-21-2020, 07:35 AM
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Better yet,,,,,

Old 11-21-2020, 08:25 AM
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Primewwld 225 TIG, $799
HTP mig will also do aluminum, 2300
Old 11-22-2020, 02:08 PM
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Originally Posted by nuffaredy View Post
I know dam well I canít weld aluminum, but Iím fabricating up a tower for my boat, and need to find a way to tack the pieces in place until I can get them welded by a pro. Got shot down on my brazing idea, and Iím running out of clamps fast!
Any ideas?
Lots of welders are mobile and come to the site, you hold it, he tacks it, you go away and he welds it up.
Old 11-22-2020, 09:20 PM
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Originally Posted by 04keywest1720 View Post
Im a fairly novice welder with some experience with a stick welder which I still have. I need to weld up some aluminum frames to support some granite for an outside kitchen. They will all be covered up and not visible so figured this may be a good time to give it a try. Also my welder for this type a project is booked until after Thanksgiving and i need it done beforehand

I was thinking of getting a flux core welder from harbor freight or similar but open to suggestions. Also assuming that would be a better option than the stick welder but could be wrong.
Use stainless steel or carbon steel if possible. Welding aluminum is very difficult and NOT for novices.

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