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Are you interested in getting into the craft of welding, but you are not sure of where to begin? Well luckily, you came to the right place. Finding the best MIG welder for beginners can be a little tricky and confusing, as there are so many sizes and shapes, available out there that it can get overwhelming. Just like everything else, there are both right and wrong types of welders to choose from, when you are starting from the start or very bottom, doing a proper research into the option for a beginner is amazingly helpful.
If you are just getting started with the welding or you are a hobby welder who now needs some new equipment’s, then it is necessary to focus on the basics. You need a welder which will help you complete your project without having to deal with a lot of fuss. There are a lot of good welders that are available on the market today. We will help you find the best welder for the beginners and hobby welders so that your particulars needs can be done.
MIG welding is an amazing process of using electricity to join and melt pieces of metal together to give you a smooth and nice finish. It is sometimes also referred to as a hot glue gun of the wide welding world and it’s mostly regarded as one of the easiest and trouble free type of welding to learn. MIG welding is super easy to learn and can form extremely smooth welds on aluminum, steel and stainless. It has the capability to weld materials as thin as 26 gauge. Mig welding will normally provide a cleaner, and a more professional finish than even the most perfect mig weld. Tig welding on the other hand, is a slower process than mig welding, and will cost you more than a comparable mig welder. Now a days, Plasma cutting has permitted metal workers to create precise, professional, and clean cuts.
After an exhausting, search about some of the top rated and best MIG welders for beginners available out there, we found three great MIG welder ideal for both professional and nonprofessional use. All of them offers great functions in a very affordable price. We have included a MIG welders from different price range on this list. With these amazing top MIG welders to choose from, you probably shouldn’t have any problem finding the one that’s best for you. Let’s take a look at them.
Quick Search & Comparison of Best Mig Welders for Beginners
Miller Electric 120/240VAC- Editor’s Choice
Many MIG welders share an eye catching resemblance to the others, but there are only a few that actually stands out from the rest. The Miller Electric MIG welders are one of those brands which die hard welders not only love, but also appreciate what they have to offer. Their line-up of welders is simply some of the best welders out there making them stand out in this busy industry. This Miller Electric 120/240VAC 1 Phase MIG Welder is an ideal welder. An example of a durable, complete and true heavy duty MIG welder. This model is built to last and takes on any type of welding project with ease and professionalism. This complete set gives you everything you need to weld aluminum, stainless-steel, mild steel and other different types of material.
This Miller Electric 120/240VAC 1 Phase MIG Welder isn’t just for everyone, but for those who have experience and are looking to make welding more than just a weekend passion, and they will absolutely love it’s performance. This is a heavy duty welder considering the weight as it provides a light weight and durable build quality. It’s completely setup for out of the box use, for welding metals and aluminum with great ease while giving you an optimal performance with every task. It is manufactured to join metals from light to the medium thickness, and works perfectly with both, the solid and the flux wire, as well as for the aluminum wire. It’s great for maintenance, repair, auto or cycle shops, farm and ranch jobs, hobby welding. It has an input voltage of 120/240VAC and has Millermatic 211 series.
It includes; 10 foot Work Cable with Clamp, 10 foot M-10 MIG Gun, dual gauge regulator with gas hose, built-in gas solenoid valve, sample spool of 0.030 inches Solid Wire, (2) hook and loop cord wraps, (2) 0.030 inches contact tips, and material thickness gauge. It’s overall width is 20 and 1/2 inches, is CSA Certified, overall height is 12 and 1/2 inches. It features an advanced auto Set TM, a smooth-startTM, an auto spool gun detect, an angled cast aluminum drive system, a thermal overload protection, a quick selectTM drive roll, a fan-on-demand phase, 1 Input Voltage: 240VAC, Welded material; aluminum and steel, an output range; 30 to 230A DC, welding processes; MIG or Flux core portability, a handheld and portable welder.
Following are some of the pros and cons of this Miller Electric 120/240VAC.
This Miller Electric 120/240VAC 1 Phase MIG Welder is best for everyone, especially for those who are d looking to make welding more than a weekend passion will appreciate it’s performance. A heavy duty welder except for the weight as it offers a lightweight and durable build quality. It gives you amazing performance and is great for both professional and nonprofessional use. It’s super easy to use. The price fits the product perfectly and is an amazing product overall.
Hobart 500559 Handler 140 MIG Welder
Built with Hobart quality and durability, the Handler 140 is Hobart’s most famous wire feed welder and is also a great value, it is MIG ready, and no additional kit is needed. This portable welder makes it convenient to transport, so you can weld whenever and wherever you need. The Handler 140 provides an excellent arc performance and is backed by the amazing Hobart 5/3/1 Industrial Warranty. Each and every unit is designed and manufactured in Troy, OH USA.
It is versatile with industrial performance. The Handler 140 is highly versatile and is ideal for the welder that wants to work on an auto body, smaller household repairs, or even some heavier farm projects that requires an extra welding power. The Handler 140 operates on a 115 volt household current, and a 20 amp circuit is usually recommended. A 5 position tapped voltage control selector which gives you the complete power and ability to fine tune your arc offering a nice, smooth and stable arc on all of the thicknesses. It’s made with a heavy duty work clamp and an industrial cast aluminum drive system, the handler 140 is basically a wire welding package with an outstanding industrial performance.
It’s super convenient and easy to set up and use. Set up takes just a few minutes and you are completely ready to weld. It’s also easy to use for the first time welder, making it perfect for beginners. A proper weld set up guide is also included to set your welder accurately. You can simply use the handler 140 for welding; mover decks, autobody panels, exhaust systems, tool carts, trailer frames and hitches, gun or bow racks, lawn and garden equipment, PTO attachments, metal sculpture and fences.
A handler 140 with a built-in gas valve includes, a dual gauge regulator and gas hose, a 10 foot MIG gun with liner, 10 foot work cable and clamp, a 10 foot power cord, the extra .030 contact tips, an 8 inch spool adapter, a sample spool of .030 flux-cored wire, owner’s manual, and a set-up guide.
It welds 24 gauge up to 1/4 inches mild steel. It operates off 115 volt household current. A 25 to 140 output amperage. Duty cycle from 20% at 90 amps. An industrial cast aluminum wire drive system, 200 amp heavy duty work clamp, Dual groove and quick change drive roll, 5 position tapped voltage control settings, weight 57 lbs. It offers a durable feed head with a quick release drive roll lever. Manufacturers provide a limited warranty to the entire product.
We mentioned some of the pros and cons of this Hobart 500559.
This Hobart Handler 140 is the most famous flux cored or MIG welder designed by Hobart. It is an amazing and a reliable choice for range of auto body or household welding projects and is a great quality for money. It is ready for welding right out of the box, no assembly is needed and includes various accessories including a 10 foot MIG gun, a spool of flux core wire, and a regulator with a gas hose. You just need your gas cylinder and safety equipment and you are ready to start MIG welding. A great quality, hence great price product, best for beginners.
Power 140C 120V MIG Welder 140A
Great ARC starts helps in getting started easy and convenient. Wide voltage sweet spot gives you a highly forgiving ARC, so setting controls is a breeze. It produces an extremely low splatter which helps in reducing clean up. An outstanding stainless and aluminum performance, not only mild steel. The product type is Spot welders and duty cycle percentage is -20%. It provides a maximum voltage of -120 Volts and an output amperage is -140 Amps, while the Input Amperage is -20 Amps.
It’s generic specifications are Power MIG 140C welder, a highest output in 120 volt input power welder class, a rated output is 90A/19.5V/20%. The dimensions counts as 14 inches height x 10.15 inches width x 18.6 inches diameter, with a total of 71 lbs. Overall height from top to bottom is 14 Inches, overall width, from side to side is 10.15 Inches and an overall depth from front to back is 18.6 Inches.
We mentioned some of the pros and cons of this Power 140c by Lincoln.
This Power 140c is the best mig welder available on the market for the beginners, Do It Yourselfers at home or on the farm. Obviously, you get what you pay for. This welder will last a life time with a proper and decent care. If you need a higher duty cycle and the one which can be able to weld slightly thicker metal, then you will need to buy the 180c model which is only 240v. Now Lincoln creates a dual voltage machine that can also run on either 120 or 240v by simply using a proper plug it initially comes with. 240 volts allow you more power in your hand for thicker metals. If you need just a simple and great welder and are limited to the standard 110 by 120 voltage wall plugs, get the 140c. An amazing and cheapest model off of this list.
Types of Welding
There are three most common types of welding. Like, Stick Welding, MIG (Metal Inert Gas) Welding, TIG (Tungsten Inert Gas) Welding. Stick welding is also known as Shielded Metal Arc Welding (SMAW) and is one of the easiest and the most common types of welding, but it can sometimes create quality issues. As we already mentioned, MIG is the easiest and the most versatile one to learn, TIG is the most delicately pleasing, Stick and arc produce the toughest welds and can operate even under less than desirable conditions. While every type of welding has its own advantages but in this very article, we are going to share some of the best MIG Welder for beginners along with some important information you need to know before you’re getting your hand on your very first welder.
Stick welding is a favorable welding process and has been around for quite some years now. It is still used in most of the welding shops and also out in the field. It’s versatility and simplicity highly contributes to its popularity. It is used mainly to weld steel and iron and is used broadly in the repair and maintenance industries or any construction of some heavy steel structures. But apart from that stick welding has 3 main drawbacks; not so good for DIY welding, plus you have to chip the residue from the stick weld beads. And lastly, it can be a little hard to start and maintain an arc for the beginners.
TIG welding is an arc welding process which joins metals by heating them with the arc between uses a non-consumable tungsten electrode and the work piece to create the smooth and nice weld. The process is created with a shielding gas and may also be used with or without addition of the filler metal. In race car fabrication, they normally use TIG welding for 4130 chrome-moly steel and aluminum. If you ever welded with an oxy-acetylene torch, you can conveniently weld with a TIG machine. It uses an electric torch, and the welder’s hand feeds filler rod into that molten puddle. TIG can be used to weld titanium, copper, even two different metals, and is practical for making tricky welds, for instance, welds on round things or s-curves.
The drawbacks of the TIG welding are that, you can only weld thin materials with this machine. Welding with this welding machine is a little time consuming and the speed is slower than other welding machines available out there, as well. And at the end, it also has got a lower filler deposition rate.
MIG welding is an arc welding process in which a continuous solid wire electrode is fed through the welding gun and into the weld pool, as a result joining the two base materials smoothly together. A shielding gas is also sent through the welding gun and it also protects the weld pool from rottenness. No doubt why MIG stands for metal inert gas. High quality welds can be produced in much faster time. Since a flux is not used in this type of welding, there is no chance for the trap of slag in the weld metal, producing a high quality weld. The gas shield covers the arc so that there is a little loss of alloying elements.
Although, all three of them have their own importance and uses but since you are a beginner, or just want to know which welding machine would be best for you, we are going to talk about which one is better?
Is TIG or MIG welding better?
The technical names for both of these are metal inert gas (MIG), and tungsten inert gas (TIG). The main variance between Tig and Mig welding is that one of these welding procedure practices a nonstop feeding wire (MIG) while the other uses a long welding bar and gradually and nicely feed them into the weld pool (TIG). MIG can weld thicker metals quicker than the TIG welder. If the metal you are using is thin, TIG can be a better option. MIG welding works with the most types of metals. You can use stainless steel, aluminum, and mild steel.
Is Stick welding or MIG welding better?
Welding speeds and the weld metal deposition rates are above than those obtained with the Stick Welding. Mig welding is ideal for a multi pass welding (with a proper filler metal selection). In Mig welding, less operator skill is needed as compared to the Stick Welding. The fume rates are at low levels, in contrast to the Stick Welding and Flux Cored Welding. This welding process provides improved electrode deposition efficiency if set side by side to the Stick Welding and FCAW.
MIG welding is a very convenient, simple and easy process to learn in comparison to learning how to TIG or Stick weld, especially if you are a beginner.
Why Should You Use MIG Welding?
Here are some of the benefits of MIG welding; MIG welding has the ability to join a wide range of thicknesses of metals. It has an all position welding ability. It has a good weld bead. This type of welding helps in the minimization of weld splatter, and lastly, it’s easy to learn.
It is a low cost and a high productivity welding process. It is used to weld all types of commercially available alloys and metals. Through Mig, Welding can be done in all of the awkward positions with proper and accurate selection of parameters and equipment’s. Using a continuously fed electrode keeps up a high operator duty cycle and also minimizes the occurrence of defects or errors on stops and starts.
A deep weld penetration can easily be obtained which allows the use of small weld sizes for similar weld strengths in particular applications. A minimal post-weld clean-up is needed because of the absence of a covering slag on the bead of the weld. A very wide selection of filler metal diameters and compositions are available to weld thin or thick material. This welding process is perfect for mechanized welding. Literally, X-ray quality welds can be produced through MIG welding.
Why Mig Welder Quality Matters?
If you are a beginner to this skill, you might be thinking why you should even look for the best MIG welder. To conclude, why invest in a conceivably expensive object when you are not even planning to do this very skill professionally, won’t a cheap duplicate work? well the short answer to this is a no.
The big reason is because quality matters a lot. A nice MIG welder is necessary for a beginner to start and easily practice with. If you are new to this skill and a first MIG you come across is a poorly made knockoff brand that can hardly complete a successful and nice weld, you will most probably be turned off to the skill completely.
When you are initially learning how to do a MIG weld, you will know about how the automatically fed spool generates an electrical current that joins the wire by melting to the base. A great quality MIG will make sure that this process is as simple, convenient and clean as possible. It also permits you to experiment with almost every kind of metals despite of how thick or thin the plates are. MIG welding is quite simple to learn and almost do not require any cleanup; it also permits you to achieve a higher rate of productivity. Of course, that is only possible if you have the right welder.
NEVER WELD GALVANIZED STEEL. Galvanized steel includes a zinc coating that produces harmful and poisonous gas when it is burned, which is never recommended. Exposure to this kind of stuff can possibly result in heavy metal poisoning (welding shivers). It can cause flu like symptoms which can persist for a couple of days, but that can probably also cause permanent damage. And this is not a joke.
HOW TO CHOOSE BEST MIG WELDER FOR BEGINNERS
The following buyer’s guide is intended to help you in choosing the best mig welder
Welding machines normally run on 110V or 220V circuits with couple of machines offering dual voltage capability which is amazing for flexibility and not having to rely on an access to a 220V circuit. The 110V machines are normally best for home use as that is the most typical circuit type you will find in your home. If you need to weld thicker materials it would be desirable to have a 220V machine with a high maximum AMP rating. It is necessary to note that high voltage does not necessarily mean more power.
To accurately get a concept of the power which is wattage and is usually measured in terms of VOLTS X AMPS. Note both of the AMPS and the VOLTS when estimating capabilities. If we apply this feature to home use, every circuit is managed by a circuit breaker which is typically rated in AMPS. To compare this, you would need a 40 AMP 110 V circuit to get the exact same power as a 20 AMP 220V circuit.
The AMP rating on a MIG welding machine will give you an exceptional idea about its power potential and how thin or thick of material the welding machine can actually handle. To weld thicker materials, you would need to look for a higher maximum AMP rating. For thin sheet metals you would want a lower minimum AMP rating, you will want to be capable to dial down the power so the bead is not too hot to work with the thin sheet metal contrarily you will melt right through it rather than bonding the pieces.
Duty cycle is a welding machine specification, measured in few minutes and also defines how long within a 10 minute period, a welder can safely and accurately produce a welding current. For instance, a welder with a 30 percent duty cycle must at least rest for 7 minutes after every 3 minutes of continuous welding. It is necessary to note that is for the continuous operation, as starting a weld or stopping to re position or sometimes change the setup will likely delay the duty cycle.
WIRE SIZE AND TYPE
Since MIG welding machines can easily use both metal core wire used in a flux-cored used in non-gas shielded welding or gas shielded welding, to conclude the machines capabilities as well as a planned application when choosing a wire. Also, bear in mind the spool size the machine can handle when deciding your selection. Another very important tip is choosing a wire that is best suited for the application. Some wires are all purpose and some of them are better for welding dirty and rusty metals as it will contribute more oxidizers all along the weld.
Every MIG or any other welding machine has different capabilities when it comes to the thickness the machine can accurately weld. This will be in the manufacturer’s specifications of that specific product.
While everything is said and done, finding the best MIG welder for your personal needs is not all that hard. Plan a budget based on your individual needs in terms of welding materials and jobs. Always make sure you know what is included with each welder, and that you are able to buy any important items that are not included in that product. Lastly, make sure you pay your full attention to the portability, the length of duty cycle, and the warranty provided on that unit.
Now that you have a better and full understanding of the capabilities and features of welding machines for home use, you should definitely not have a problem choosing the one best for you. A nice companion to any of the welding machine is an angle grinder, and if you not already have one. We hope this guide was helpful to you up to some extent.