Need advise

Well, I was happily welding yesterday with my Lincoln MIG and it just quit. My husband took it into the shop today and it may be a circuit breaker or may need a new motherboard(in which case they recommended I should probably replace the whole thing). I think the Lincoln is a 175, about 10 years old. It is gas shielded and I use 220 power. In checking the net in case I need to get a new machine, I have been thinking about a new Lincoln or a Miller Matic. I also see a few Hobarts on ebay. Any one have any suggestions? I want to stay under $1000.00 and don't really want to spend that much. Thanks, Lin


Rich Waugh's picture

Lin, First, check into the

Lin, First, check into the blown fuse scenario, since that's the cheapest way out. It's not that uncommon, either. Machines get older and dirty inside and then fuse blow.

If that fails, I'd recommend one of the new Millermatic 180's. When Miller and Lincoln changed from the 175 to the 180 designation, they also changed the machines so they will accept newer spool guns that are much cheaper than previously - around $200 instead of $800 or more. This is great if you want to do aluminum with your MIG welder.

I doubt very much if it matters whether you get the Miller or the Lincoln - both are fine machines. I'd get whichever one your local welding supply house will support the best. That said, You should check out online prices on them, as you may be able to save a significant amount of money buying online. You can still buy your consumables from your local supply.

This place sells both Miller and Lincoln at what look like good prices.  If nothing else, that may give you some bargaining power with your local supply house if you want to go that route.

Let us know what you finally come up with, okay?


lin's picture

Thanks

Thank you Rich for your imput! They both seem like good machines from what I have read. I have gotten good use out of the Lincoln and lean a little that way because I hate to read the technical info to learn how to use a new machine. I do think the Miller has a better plug system if I remember correctly. The old machine is off to Phoenix and I just hope I get an answer soon as I have alot of work to finish. Good hint about bargaining power. I like to buy local if it doesn't cost me too much and the local shop has been very good to me. Lin


johndach's picture

MIG machines.........

Lin,

I have an ole Hobart stick welder and a newer (but old) Hobart 360 amp TIG welder and mid last year I bought a Miller MIG unit to do a job. Miller bought out Hobart so if you get either, you have both..... So far, the Miller is great. A bit more that the $1000.00 limit you set, but in these areas, most of the time, more $$ really does get you more goodies. I have a 211 Auto set 110/220 flux core/gas unit. Got it to do some railings for a customer.. I do not do a lot of MIG work, mostly TIG, but I found this unit to be very forgiving, easy to use and , and, and,,,,,,, well It is worth the couple of 100 dollars more than a grand,,,,, at least in my opinion. I like the dual voltage, voltage feed back, flux/gas shield and portability. As to what unit to get, I prefer getting what ever my or a local welding shop carries verses internet sales, in case there are problems with the unit. This is just my opinion on this sort of thing, as I do purchase a lot of stuff on the net, but a bigger purchase, as this is, and potentials of problems and/pr questions, etc.... for me it just makes sense to have someone to talk to. I had a "mis" machines high pressure gas nipple that came with the machine,,, leaked and was a total pain, and costly in gas leakage. Called the welding folks, they had a fellow in the area the next day and replaced the gas assembly. No delays, no travel no problem. It wasn't their fault, it was a Miller" problem, but the welding shop took care of it post hast.

Again this is just me, I am rather "out in the boonies" for this sort of equipment, but the welding shop took care of it just fine. I also got to know the local service fellow better so better business relations all around. Again this is just my experience!!!!

Good luck in what ever you choose to do.

John Dach
360.681.4240
john@MLCE.net
web site: http://www.MLCE.net


Bob Turan's picture

Millermatic 211

Lin-
John-

I also bought a Millermatic 211 last year and am very happy. My old Millermatic 135 was great, but when I wanted to weld aluminum, I found that the spool gun was so expensive that it made sense to upgrade. I have since used the 211's 110/220v plug feature several times, and this machine is a joy to use. I got it from a local store while Miller was having a special, so I got a good deal. Since they did not take trade-ins, I asked the guy at the counter if I could post my old machine on their bulletin board, and another customer heard me, and said he'd buy it. It needed a minor drive repair, so I bought the part, installed it and sold it to the other customer.
I hope your Lincoln just needs a new fuse, but if you need a new machine, I don't think you will have any trouble with the Miller - The auto settings work so well that I have only switched to manual a couple of times for special work. Good luck!
Bob 2ran


lin's picture

advice

Thanks guys for your imput, all good! If the fuse is gone I am leaning towards the Millermatic 211. I should know in a day or two and am watching ebay auctions. I will try to get a better deal locally using those prices. I need to get back to welding. Lin


lin's picture

reprieve

I got a call from the shop late yesterday and they can fix the machine for $250. It has been a good worker for me so I am going to put off buying another one for awhile. I have decided on the Millermatic 211 and the local shop said they would match the best price I could find on the net. This gives me time to save extra money for the miller. I really like the easy change plug that changes from 110 to 220 with no tools. Good design feature. Lin