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edspedalcars
10-17-2013, 11:47 AM
Anyone actually own or have experience, 'using' a Eastwood MIG welder 135 Amp?

I'm currently going through the weeding out process.
Lincoln, Miller, Hobart, etc. are mainstays, I know. But there are other choices for my money.

The website has 131 reviews with a 4 1/2 star rating, for this model.
Can't know how many of those are bogus.

Candid first hand, experienced zombie feedback, would be appreciated.

Thanks
Ed

MrIdaho
10-17-2013, 04:30 PM
If you have the money, you can't go wrong with a Miller,Hobart or Lincoln IMO.
BUT do you have 220volt available? There are several 110v units that will weld just fine. 3/16 is about max for a 110v unit. Perferabily DC instead of AC but that can be changed with several large diodes.
Assuming a mig welder (great for building bikes) as a stick welder can be used but they tend to be used for thicker material.
LOTS of different welders. Look at the duty cycle as well. The higher the duty cycle the better the welder.
Copper transformer is better than aluminum and is reflected in the price.

edspedalcars
10-17-2013, 05:41 PM
If you have the money, you can't go wrong with a Miller,Hobart or Lincoln IMO.
BUT do you have 220volt available? There are several 110v units that will weld just fine. 3/16 is about max for a 110v unit. Perferabily DC instead of AC but that can be changed with several large diodes.
Assuming a mig welder (great for building bikes) as a stick welder can be used but they tend to be used for thicker material.
LOTS of different welders. Look at the duty cycle as well. The higher the duty cycle the better the welder.
Copper transformer is better than aluminum and is reflected in the price.

Thanks MrIdaho

As I tried to express in my question, I am aware of the desire of most, to be, 'on board' with a M, L, or H.
I'm not one to just go with the flow, unless I have done the research, and compared makes and models, capabilities, pricing, etc.

Trust me, you don't want to be with me, when I'm buying boots, a truck, a car, or a motorcycle. http://forum.atomiczombie.com/images/smilies/cheesy.gif
I'm not a Harley guy, (though that would be sweet), a Ford guy, Chevy guy, or Dodge guy. I want to buy a 'truck'.
It only matters to me which brand, model suits my needs, when I'm ready to buy.

I find what's being advertised by Eastwood to be as good as or 'better' than, some of the leaders in welding equipment.

However, I don't trust all the 'high rated reviews', looking instead for the low rated reviews, and how many, as compared to higher ones.
In particular, a video comparison between the Lincoln Mig Pak 10 and the Eastwood MIG 135.
In this case 99.9 % of the reviews (131) are virtually all 5 star. ????

That is the reason for this thread. I really want to know about actual users experience, with the Eastwood MIG welder.

But thanks for throwing your two cents in.
Ed

Tradetek
10-17-2013, 10:06 PM
Ed,

Head over to weldingweb.com and do some searches. The "pros" over there are VERY anti-anything made in China (although a lot of them seem to be okay with buying things at HF??? WTH???), but you will see that there are a lot of comments regarding the China built equipment over there from "mere mortals" like us... The Eastwood brand and warranty support does have mixed comments over there, but Eastwood does have a good name in the auto hobby world though. With the welder you are looking at having a 3 year warranty serviced from the US (vs some garage importer selling on eBay), I'd consider it all things being equal.

The biggest complaint that I repeatedly see in video reviews done by hobbyists working in their garages, is that the "off-brands" pretty consistently overstate their material effectiveness ratings. Meaning, yes the welder can manage to "stick" two pieces of quarter inch together, but don't expect it to be a good weld... while the "name brand" manufacturers (Miller, Lincoln, Hobart and ESAB) want to protect their name and tend to rate their equipment based on what they will stand behind as an effective material thickness. They will do more, but don't complain about them if doing double their rated capacity gives poor results.

We have established in the past that you and I are 2 peas in a pod, and in the case of shopping we are the same as well... I spend a lot of time analyzing a purchase every which way before buying anything too. Part of my analysis includes the fact that I am willing to spend a bit more to A) buy from a local source which helps my local economy by employing local people, B) buy American made products if I can justify any price/quality differences C) buy foreign or less expensive products if there is a significant savings. In the instances where I choose to "settle" for option C, I accept the reality and tradeoffs of the choice I have settled on (like my recent HF drill press purchase).

In this case I'd compare the following:
$339.99 Eastwood 135 MIG Welder (http://www.eastwood.com/mig-welder-110vac-135a-output.html) (linked to make sure we are talking apples to apples) with it's free shipping and 3 year warranty as factors in my comparison

$329.99 Lincoln Electric K2185-1 (http://www.lowes.com/pd_366784-1703-K2185-1_4294772340__?productId=3499662&Ns=p_product_qty_sales_dollar|1&pl=1&currentURL=%3FNs%3Dp_product_qty_sales_dollar|1&facetInfo=) (which supports flux core and MIG) - But as one of their "retail" products it only has a 1 year warranty, but you can buy a "no-fuss" warranty from the store, which I see as a better alternative to mail in warranty's.

$329.99 Hobart Auto Arc 130 (http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B002VECKTC/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B002VECKTC&linkCode=as2&tag=inm06-20) - This is the retail brand for Miller, and based on what I can find appears to be the same welder as the Millermatic 130. See this thread at WeldingWeb.com (http://weldingweb.com/showthread.php?41282-Auto-Arc-130) for more info. This is backed up by the owners manual (http://www.millerwelds.com/om/o243712b_aut.pdf) that came back as a search on the Miller web site. It has a 3/1 warranty and you can call Hobart to verify that it is a Hobart welder (house brand for Miller).

All things being equal, I think would buy the Hobart Auto Arc 130 and get an American made product with an equal warranty period. I'd make this choice over the Lincoln because the cost of a comparable warranty from the store would be an extra $100. I'd edge out the Eastwood because it is made in China and doesn't have specifics about the settings for flux core versus MIG in their manual so you can't see what is truly supported for each material using both processes (MIG and Flux Core do not support the same).

Hope this helps,

Bill

edspedalcars
10-17-2013, 10:32 PM
Thanks Bill

Great feedback. I have stopped by welding.com, and read some of their comments, as well as some others.

I really appreciate, your feedback. It's the sort of thing I'm looking for, BUT, wait for it, I still want to hear from a Eastwood 'owner/operator'.

I assume there may not be too many out there, in zombieland, but one hopes.

I'm really liking my borrowed Weld Pak 100, but I have to be an informed/educated buyer.
Like when I bought the HF 90 amp flux core, knowing I would be upgrading.
I will probably keep it for when I don't really care to use gas.

I got my feet wet with it, and now I want to go swimming.

Thanks for your input Bill

Ed

Tradetek
10-17-2013, 10:45 PM
I think that the Lincon from Lowes that I listed is the replacement for the WeldPak 100. Given the great results you have been getting from it, I'd never consider the Eastwood given that you can buy the Lincoln at your local Lowes, and there shouldn't be much price difference after sales tax.

How did Eastwood even get into the running now that I know what Lincoln you are using?

Bill

edspedalcars
10-17-2013, 10:58 PM
Just found it during my many searches. I happen to see their video demo, and was intrigued with it.
Just wanted more actual, in the field, feedback.

I won't be getting anything before the new year, UNLESS, something comes up I (shouldn't) pass up. Like the 3 Weld Pak 100's, from a local town, not more than 10 miles away, was selling recently, for $250-300 each. But at the time I had no idea of actually getting one. Oh well!.

That's my story Bill, and I'm 'stuck' with it.http://forum.atomiczombie.com/images/smilies/smile.gif

Ed

P.S. I also get 10 % off anything I buy at Lowes/HD, so I have to consider that also. But welders never seem to go on sale.

FrankCrank
10-17-2013, 11:04 PM
....when I was looking for my TIG welder I had my heart set an a particular model from the UK. Serendipity stepped in and I ended up getting a different one from a local store near Bangkok in a half price sale promotion. No issues so far, and they stock all the spares and had 2 year warranty, plus didn't have to lug it over from UK using all my baggage allowance! Doubt this helps you much Ed, and it really is a bit of a lucky dip I think, at least in this neck of the woods.
Bill - how's your TIGing going? Have replaced my torch for a #9 setup with gas lens, original torch was way too clunky and cumbersome, new one is the bees knees :)

darnthedog
10-17-2013, 11:21 PM
While I know your looking at new have you looked at Craigslist?
Not sure which city you browse but inland empire there is a nice miller flux/mig unit selling for $250
There is something to be said for name brands that your local welding suppliers sell and service. If you have any issue you don't have to pack it up and ship it back for repair.
Not to contradict anyone but all welders are now essential made in China as that is where all the internal components are made.
Eastwood has made claims that the welders are made in USA on welding forum. However I have yet to find a welding shop that has them. Same can be said of Everlast and Hobart. Longevity is not supported by welding supply shops either but I do have local distributors of them as well as with the Everlast. But that may just be where I live. Because I notice more Hobarts when visiting east of the Mississippi. Not that I was shopping for welders. Just observation.
But there are people that nearly give these away. I even saw a weldpak hd in Orange County listing for $150 which is the same unit I own. However it was missing the wire speed knob and I would tread cautiously with any thing broken unless you can verify it operates and only needs a new pot. Other issue is to make it a gas mig you'd have to purchase a kit from welding supplier supporting Lincoln's.
So the Miller I saw claimed to be 110v 131 flux/mig. And only asking $250- so it is a pretty good deal for name brand unit.
As to the Eastwood I don't have any experience with it. It matches the specifications of all the units tradetech mentioned. Except the K2185-1 is a fluxcore only according to Lincoln website. The k2697-1 140 easy mig has the gas shielded listing. They are all 20% duty cycle at 90 amps. But that's just my $.02 worth

edspedalcars
10-17-2013, 11:30 PM
Hi Frank

So, I take it your welder is NOT an Eastwood MIG 135. http://forum.atomiczombie.com/images/smilies/smartass2.gif

But I'm good at gleaning the real message, if there is one.

What I get from your message is that, after all possible defects and irritants considered, the
less than favorable solution, may in fact, be a workable solution for quite some time.

Did I get it right? If so we are on the same wave length, as far as 'how' to decide, what is best for me.

Thanks for your thoughts.

Ed

MrIdaho
10-17-2013, 11:44 PM
looked on cragslist inland empire for
inland empire there is a nice miller flux/mig unit selling for $250
My son who lives in Fontana needs a new welder as his is beyond repair.

FrankCrank
10-17-2013, 11:52 PM
....got it in one Ed! Another example - not long back from a months hols in UK, and while there I wanted to get my first ever tablet PC. Hours spent trawling reviews and umming and aahing, and then thought.....nuh, can't decide, so just forget it. Again, serendipity - at Heathrow airport on my way back one of my best picks was on offer a few quid cheaper than the UK shops, so just went ahead and bought it. Great little toy - just gotta learn all this Andriod stuff! Same pattern for most of my purchases come to think of it - tons of research then in the end just have to take the plunge...

edspedalcars
10-17-2013, 11:54 PM
Good evening DTD

Yes, to Craigslist and Ebay. I'm searching in the Inland Empire area also. Just checked and could not find the Miller for $250.00

I also found others stating that virtually all welder brands, 'components' are made in china. I don't put a lot of thought into that, as I was an appliance store owner and repairman. I used to chuckle when people would tell me they wouldn't own a ' Whirlpool' product under any circumstances. But their 'Kenmore' washer and dryer were made by, and owned by, Whirlpool.

If the general public, actually knew where their beloved merchandise was actually made, this country would go belly up in less than a week. And that includes products that state, 'Made in USA'. Yea, but what does the, small print actually say?

Anyway back to welders.

Thanks for the input, DTD, The dialog about this subject is enlightening.

Thanks
Ed

darnthedog
10-18-2013, 12:02 AM
I search on craigslist several times a day for tig welders hoping to find a deal like my mig was. I actual found an exact duplicate of my mig just now in north west Phoenix for $375- come with gas upgrade and everything. But I really don't need another mig looking to get into tig and really desire HF for playing with the other metal

FrankCrank
10-18-2013, 12:08 AM
...I see no reason to doubt that the label that says 'Made in the USA' was made in the USA :)

darnthedog
10-18-2013, 12:15 AM
The miller 131 mig/flux must have been a good deal as Mr. Idaho saw it too. But like many great deals they go fast. Thus why I check several times a day. I just check again and it gone. So it either was removed or spamed off craigslist.

darnthedog
10-18-2013, 12:31 AM
...I see no reason to doubt that the label that says 'Made in the USA' was made in the USA :)
There are no diodes, resistors, transistors manufactured in USA period. I work in the industry. I don't believe we even make igbt's here. We do make certain semiconductor chips here. But manufacturing has been moved overseas for the cheaper labor and the lack luster environmental requirement. A good portion of the semiconductor industry moved to China for monetary reasons.
There are no LCD or LED manufactures in USA either. We import tons of stuff every day. The parts I make get ship off to China to be sliced/ diced and mounted. There are no unions in China that I am aware of so no mandatory benefits or retire packages to pay on.
What's funny is we do assembly a lot of Japanese vehicles. Toyota and Honda are just 2 examples. Anyway USA manufacturing has been on a down turn for years. I know as I have had jobs all over attempting to stay ahead of the lay offs.

edspedalcars
10-18-2013, 01:14 AM
...I see no reason to doubt that the label that says 'Made in the USA' was made in the USA :)

Frank...check this out

https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=4&cad=rja&ved=0CFoQFjAD&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.lexology.com%2Flibrary%2Fdeta il.aspx%3Fg%3D76d644ba-4ac6-4e4b-8679-34519b91502a&ei=vcFgUrG4EsmrigKIooCoBw&usg=AFQjCNG5YDmQXGCSfHFRPveK0QPUsCLXQQ&bvm=bv.54934254,d.cGE

FrankCrank
10-18-2013, 06:37 AM
...here's a good one for you. Just picked up another Sturmey Archer 3-speed hub. They're made in Taiwan now, and ordered it on Amazon in US delivered to a friend there in Alaska, and she brought it over on her return back to Thailand. Got it the other day down here in Phuket where we're working for a few days, by the time I get the hub back to my home near BKK I think it deserves a good rest - poor thing will be getting travel sickness! Of course, they were made in the UK a few years back, part of the Raleigh umbrella, along with Brooks saddles. Saddles still made England I believe, or at least the riveted label is :evilgrin:. Why this convoluted route to get a SA hub? - if I bought in the UK it would have cost me double - strange world we live in eh.....

DannyC
10-18-2013, 07:30 AM
I did put a post here all about my Moulton Mk1 re-build, but realised that was hijacking the original thread so I removed the content and put up and entirely new post elsewhere. My apologies.


Regards,

Dan.

Tradetek
10-18-2013, 09:57 AM
Ed, given the results you have been having with the Lincoln and that the one at Lowe's is the new model of the one you have been using, I'd use my 10% (military?) discount to bring the price down to $300, pay the CA sales tax to bring back up to the what? $324? And buy something new with a new product warranty versus saving $50-$75 bucks for something used with an unknown past. I really wouldn't even consider anything else unless you have issues with the Lincoln you are currently using.

At the group, yep I realize that "Made in the USA" simply means "Assembled in the USA", but at the end of the day, I'd rather keep at least the assembly labor paycheck going to a worker in my home country, just like I'd expect people in other countries to do when pondering the same choices. I figure keep as much of the money as possible domestic to help my economy.

@Frank: With my back issues I don't get to TIG as much as I wished and I've been doing a lot of little "household" projects using round tubing but mating different thicknesses together by recycling bike tubing. Getting some practice that way, and learning a lot that will help my first build be better, but still burning through sometimes, but that is mainly when I forget to open the gas valve on my torch... I hear you on the torch size, but I like the size of the PTA-17v. I did find out that I like it lot better with a button back cap though because I tend to hold the torch right up on the head of it. Also been using a gas lens, but with a 6 or 7 cup.

Bill

edspedalcars
10-20-2013, 11:28 AM
UPDATE, UPDATE, UPDATE!

Had a yard sale this weekend, and sold virtually everything we put out.
Seems there was an, estate sale going on three houses down from us.

We got so much business from that, I got giddy. It was a lot of fun, AND, I made enough to pay for a new welder, the first day, and enough to pay for the gas cylinder,(or a better welder) the second day. I even sold my HF welder, so now I MUST decide on a new welder. Even made enough for the Mrs to be 'real' happy, so it's all good.

So ladies and gentlemen, here's what I'm going to do. The sales will be starting soon for the holidays.

I have chosen 7 brands/models which I will ultimately make my purchase from.
My preliminary researching, tells me, (except for emotional loyalty), most of these are close to each other in capabilities, features, warranties, and price, except the Miller which is quite pricey. But I do like the Auto-Set feature but, is it worth the extra $$$$?

I'm still looking at video reviews, and welding website reviews and anyones comments.

Now that the money issue is not a major factor, I can relax and make a good choice.

After I buy my welder, I'm thinking of having a contest, 'with a prize', (TBD, it will be nice) for the person that guesses which welder I bought.

Here are my choices: (In order of cost, +/-) Final price may vary depending where purchased.

Eastwood 135.........................................$340.0 0
Longevity 140.........................................$340.0 0
Hobart Handler 125 ................................$464.00
Lincoln Weld Pak 140HD .........................$524.00
Eastwood 175.........................................$530.0 0
Hobart Handler 140 ................................$550.00
Millermatic 140 Auto Set..........................$755.00

Weigh in on these choices, if you want.

I'm looking forward to a fun contest. http://forum.atomiczombie.com/images/smilies/smile.gif

Enjoy
Ed

Tradetek
10-20-2013, 01:35 PM
Not trying to push anything here, but am curious what made you eliminate the $329.99 Lincoln Electric K2185-1 (http://www.lowes.com/pd_366784-1703-K2185-1_4294772340__?productId=3499662&Ns=p_product_qty_sales_dollar|1&pl=1&currentURL=%3FNs%3Dp_product_qty_sales_dollar|1&facetInfo=)?

As an actual bit of feedback, I'd eliminate anything that makes you dig deep into your pocket for money to pay for the cylinder. I don't know what they run in CA, but mine in IN cost me $300 to own it, and then I pay about $30 after taxes and other fees to exchange it.

Also, be sure that any cylinder you buy will be filled/exchanged by your local gas supplier. Out here people sell the things on Craigslist but the only outfit that will fill them is an hour away, versus the 5 gas stores (2 companies) between me and them. And then until the expiration date stamped on the collar. While the exchange companies just keep exchanging them and carry all the cylinder maintenance costs.

Bill

darnthedog
10-20-2013, 07:59 PM
The k2185-1 comes as a fluxcore and there is not gas kit @ $150 upgrade price. As Ed is using a gas shielded mig and likes it. He is looking to upgrade from a fluxcore.
Ed- I have not looked at the specs of any of the listed to compare- however I'd go for either the Lincoln weldpak 140 or the Hobart 140 if they come loaded with the gas kit. And if they are available through your local welding supplier. Nothing like have to ship 60 lbs across the country to get it fixed. The Millermatic may sound nice. But I worry that it will try to choose how fast it thinks I should weld verses how fast I am welding. Also should the auto function quit on you, you might mistake welding issues on yourself rather than the machine. But I leave it up to you. I only suggest the 140 over the 125 due to the extra power you need for thicker joints. When welding the 1/4 inch tabs on my warrior I could have used the extra umph to attach them. I made it work, but the welder sweated it out. Also it will work for welding bumpers together at 140, where as the little 125 might not make it. Both the Lincoln and the Hobart are well supported by most welding shops. In fact I'd pass the list to your welding shops to see if they support them. Just my $.02 worth of advice. Good to hear you made out on the yard sale. Congratulation on whatever you choose to purchase.

Tradetek
10-20-2013, 08:17 PM
DTD, maybe I don't understand the point you were trying to make, but the 2185 is wire ready. All you have to do is hook up a cylinder. I quote from the "What's Included" listing on the LE site : "Gas nozzle, gas regulator and hose for MIG welding. (http://www.lincolnelectric.com/en-us/Equipment/Pages/product.aspx?product=K2185-1%28LincolnElectric%29)"

Again, not trying to push, but want to make sure that Ed is making the best decision he can based on accurate info regarding the welder.

Bill

darnthedog
10-20-2013, 08:35 PM
DTD, maybe I don't understand the point you were trying to make, but the 2185 is wire ready. All you have to do is hook up a cylinder. I quote from the "What's Included" listing on the LE site : "Gas nozzle, gas regulator and hose for MIG welding. (http://www.lincolnelectric.com/en-us/Equipment/Pages/product.aspx?product=K2185-1%28LincolnElectric%29)"

Again, not trying to push, but want to make sure that Ed is making the best decision he can based on accurate info regarding the welder.

Bill
Bill
I stand corrected it does come with gas kit.
It is 115v 20amp input. With a limit of 88 amp. Output.
I misread Lincoln site- shielding gas not included means gas bottle.
But I'd still go for the 140 amps.
The k2471-2 has the additional feature of being able the run the spool gun in the future. Should he ever want to play with aluminum in the future.
But as I have always said it is up to Ed.

edspedalcars
11-02-2013, 11:18 AM
Made my decision--Made my purchase

Thanks goes to ‘everyone’s‘, comments, likes, dislikes, loyalties, disloyalties, concerns and suggestions.

I searched all the usual places, reviewed all the usual brands and models, new vs used,
determined what my costs would be, and mulled over everyone's, preferences.

I have made my choice and made my purchase.

As I stated, previously, I thought it would be fun to have a contest.
Teaser.. It's a test of ones sleuthing and deductive powers, with at least 10 clues.

It's been fun for me, preparing the contest. I hope everyone else will enjoy it as well.

However, I cannot announce official start, until the prize details are completed.

Enjoy
Ed

MrIdaho
11-02-2013, 12:39 PM
You purchased the Lincoln unit Is my guess

Tradetek
11-04-2013, 01:32 AM
Based on the prose on the other thread I think Ed purchased the Eastwood as I alluded to in said thread.

Bill

babar
11-06-2013, 03:07 AM
anyone know if the eastwood TIG can stick weld using a stinger. Can all TIGs do this?

darnthedog
11-06-2013, 09:19 AM
All stick welders can become scratch tig welders. However I believe it depends on the tig welder if it can stick weld. There is high frequency starts and various other circuitry that may not allow an arc weld usage.
Arc welding, plasma cutting, tig welding use the same type of power supply. But you will have to refer to your tig welders manual to know for sure if your tig welder can stick weld.

Tradetek
11-06-2013, 11:10 AM
anyone know if the eastwood TIG can stick weld using a stinger. Can all TIGs do this?

Based on their product descriptions AND manuals, it does not appear that they do.

Bill