5 Tips for Buying Your First Welder

Welding is said to be a form of art, and there are a lot of different processes you can choose from. One thing you need to remember is that there is no one process that is a good fit for all the applications, so you need to know what you want to achieve and get the equipment depending on that. Know that it will all come down to your knowledge, skills, experience, and the welder you choose, so before buying your first welder, you will need to know which one fits the best for your personal need and applications. In this article, we are going to try and help you with the process, and give you some tips on how to choose the right equipment and get the job done with ease.

1. Technologies


There are three main types of welding, and they include Stick Welding, also known as Shielded Metal Arc Welding (SMAW), MIG Welding (Metal Inert Gas), also known as Gas Metal Arc Welding (GMAW), and TIG Welding (Tungsten Inert Gas), also known as Gas Tungsten Arc Welding (GTAW).

The SMAW technology incorporates simple machines where the negative electrode is set on the machine, and the working area is the positive polarity. This process is the best one if you want to create heavy-duty items that are made to withstand extreme temperatures, that won’t get damaged with use, and that can be used in the industrial field. Items like pipes and plates are usually created with this technology.

The GMAW process is one of the most popular ones, and it is commonly used pretty much everywhere. It is said that this technology is the easiest to master, and the process occurs between the consumable wire and the work station. During the process, the welding arc melts the wire, and with that, items are created or fixed. To get the needed result, a shielding gas is used, and the most commonly used one is carbon dioxide.

The last technology we are going to talk about is GTAW, and this one requires the most skills, knowledge, and practice. The reason for this is because the process requires precision since everything is manually controlled. The welding in this process occurs between a tungsten electrode and the piece we are working on. If you choose this technology, you will need to have great coordination, and you will need to be able to be extremely precise.

2. How are you going to use the equipment?

Now let’s talk about the reason why you want to get your welder. Some people choose to get one to save some costs on repairs, while others are interested in starting a new hobby. Depending on the things you want to achieve, you should think about the right equipment and technology that you might want to use.

One thing you will need to remember is that there is a difference between basic tasks and creating metal sculptures. On the same note, if you want to repair some things on your car, and if you want to do it with precision, you cannot use the same welder as you would to mold metal items. In addition to this, you will need to consider your knowledge and skills, as well as the working station. Some of the devices require a lot more space than others, and you need to think about where you want to do this project.

3. Where are you going to use the devices?


When choosing the right device for you, you need to consider if you want to finish the project out in the open, if you are going to work in your garage, or if you have a special shop where you can do all the work. You should always read more about the types of welders and where they can be used. For example, the MIG welders are the best option if you want to work both inside and outdoors, and they are some of the easiest machines to work with. If you are not sure which one is the right one for the job, you can always talk to a professional and get advice for your specific situation.

4. Metals that you can work on

Now let’s talk about the job at hand, and what you can use the welders for. When it comes to the MIG machines, they are best for fabrication, for working on your car, and they are also great for DIY projects. They can be used to melt steel and aluminum. The flux corded devices are also great for DIY projects, they can be used on the farm, and they are mostly used for fabrication and repairs. You can melt stainless steel with them.

The DC sticks devices are great for outdoor works, and for fixing and repairing things. You can mold cast iron and stainless steel, and even though you can use them for aluminum as well, the process may be too difficult. Last but not least, the DC TIG models are used for heavy-duty tasks, and they are commonly used for the automotive industry and aviation. You can also use them for creating art with different types of metal. They can melt steel, copper, brass, bronze, and even titanium.

5. Do you want the device to be portable?


The last thing we will cover is portability. Depending on the project at hand, you may want to use a welder that is portable, or you may want to position it on your working station and leave it there until you are done with your project. Flux cord and DC stick welders are extremely portable, and you can use them pretty much everywhere. The MIG and DC TIG machines are somewhat portable because they do require gas to work. So, think about this, and how much space you need in your shop to choose the right device for you.

Know that you should also consider the heat control of the unit, the thickness of the metal that you are trying to process, and you should think about the speed. Some of the devices can get the job done faster than the others, but this also depends on the precision. If you want to get something done with extreme precision, you may not want to get the fastest working unit. Some of the units, like the MIG, are extremely easy to master, and the DG TIG requires the most skill to learn.