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Discussion Starter #1
Well, I took the plunge. I bought a Lincold 140HD Weld-pak from a local guy (brand new) yesterday. I've been messing with it in my garage, and I have to say I like it. I've never welded before, but it doesn't seem too hard.

I bought that and a 4 1/2" Makita angle grinder. I will be using these to mini-tub my car. Next purchase will be the Detroit Speed mini-tubs, or if anybody can recommend something cheaper, that would be great.

I have a few questions though. Welding the tubs in, I will only be tacking them in, not laying a bead, correct? I don't think it would take a whole lot of skill to tack something in, but then again, I am not experienced in this area at all. Does anybody have an example they can show me of how exactly to tack them in, and what it should look like?

Second, what would be better, flux-cored or using gas? I won't be welding too often, and if I can get by using flux core, that would be great. If not, how much am I looking at for a bottle of Argon/CO2? How long will it last? What is the main difference between that and flux-core besides the obvious?

Thanks for helping a newbie at welding.
 

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I would tack them then go back and fully weld them one small section at a time to avoid building too much heat. Flux core will spatter more than useing gas.
I can't stress enough the importance of clean steel for a good weld. Grind the paint back 1/2" from where you are going to weld, both sides. Get some pieces of steel the same gauge as your tubs and what you're welding on to practice and get the machine set up.
 

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Welding the tubs in, I will only be tacking them in, not laying a bead, correct?
For the most part yes, The majority of the tub welding will be filling in the holes that you drill into tub, The rest can get stitched together (short beads). I would suggest since it's your first time to get the mini tub installation cd they have and watch that first to give you an idea of the process. As far as using gas vs. flux-core I would go with the gas it will produce cleaner results for what you are looking to do. PM If you need any DSE parts Im a dealer and can probably help out a little. Hope I helped answer some of your questions.

Billy
 

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Discussion Starter #4 (Edited)
I would tack them then go back and fully weld them one small section at a time to avoid building too much heat. Flux core will spatter more than useing gas.
I can't stress enough the importance of clean steel for a good weld. Grind the paint back 1/2" from where you are going to weld, both sides. Get some pieces of steel the same gauge as your tubs and what you're welding on to practice and get the machine set up.
How deep should it go, just til' it's 'shiny'? Can I get away with using flux core? Or will I be giving up weld strength as opposed to using gas? The only welding in this that I will be doing will be the actual tubs going in.

The majority of the tub welding will be filling in the holes that you drill into tub
Interesting. I thought you radiused the edge (somehow) and filled it in.

What does a bottle of gas run these days? I have no clue. I'd really like to do it with flux-core, since I have a full roll, but if it comes at the cost of weld strength, I think I can spin for a bottle of gas, as long as it isn't ridiculous.

So you drill holes along the edge, and fill them in?

Thanks guys.
 

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I would use gas way cleaner and easier. Stich weld after tacking an inch or less at a time moving around like first stitch back of tub, 2nd mid, 3rd up front this allows the heat to disipate.
 

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Next purchase will be the Detroit Speed mini-tubs, or if anybody can recommend something cheaper, that would be great.
Auto Weld makes mini-tubs that are just like DSEs but MUCH cheaper!!! I've heard they make nice stuff.

'68-'79 NOVA Exact Shape tubs
Part#4082......$119.95

Their web site is horrible ... they need help badly ... just scroll down until you find the mini-tub section ...

http://autoweldchassis.com/univ.ivnu
 

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I would def. use the gas. Check around for a good deal on a small bottle. Perhaps someone is looking to upgrade to a alarge bottle and will sell you theirs.
You may also be able to rent a bottle. Around here it is app: $40 per year Canadian for the rental and the gas is app: another $40. How you ste your regulator will determine how fast you go through it.

I bought my Lincoln 135 a few years ago and the difference between flux and mig is unreal.

If you are welding outside and there is a breeze it is best use flux core.

There are also many "how to" videos on you tube,here is one:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BsDxqb2p5OM
 

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I would definately do some practice on some scrap steel before welding first. It may seem easy but you can mess up if your not careful. Ive been practicing about 4 months now and Im still looking for more practice.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Auto Weld makes mini-tubs that are just like DSEs but MUCH cheaper!!! I've heard they make nice stuff.

'68-'79 NOVA Exact Shape tubs
Part#4082......$119.95

Their web site is horrible ... they need help badly ... just scroll down until you find the mini-tub section ...

http://autoweldchassis.com/univ.ivnu
Thanks for the link man! Those are alot cheaper! Has anyone used them before, or dealt with these guys before?

I would definately do some practice on some scrap steel before welding first. It may seem easy but you can mess up if your not careful. Ive been practicing about 4 months now and Im still looking for more practice.
I've been doing practice for a couple days now using flux-cored wire. It's what came with it. I have noticed though that the wire likes to spark in alot of directions. It doesn't just lay down a bead real easy. From what it looks like in the video, it should lay out kind of like caulking, or glue. Is that a good comparison?
 

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Thanks for the link man! Those are alot cheaper! Has anyone used them before, or dealt with these guys before?



I've been doing practice for a couple days now using flux-cored wire. It's what came with it. I have noticed though that the wire likes to spark in alot of directions. It doesn't just lay down a bead real easy. From what it looks like in the video, it should lay out kind of like caulking, or glue. Is that a good comparison?
Thats what flux core is like. It sparks and splatters alot but its a good way to practice and get the feel. I have been getting advice from my brother and friend who have been welding for years so I get some direct ideas of what works and what doesnt. I actually hang out with them and watch them weld (not unshielded of course) and ask alot of questions.
 

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You really need to convert the welder over to running off sheilding gas, especially if you are going to tackle this project. It sounds like you are reasonably new to welding, and I for one hope you will find it to be very gratifying to be able to weld well. But, first, you need to REALLY comfortable with welding. Doing a mini-tub requires you to weld in positions that are not like just laying a piece of steel on the table. In some cases, you should be welding overhead. So, practice this as well. Be sure to wear a respirator as well. With shielding gas, you cannot have a fan pointed right at you, keep your weld area ventilated. It'll blow the gas clean away, leaving you with welds that look like the surface of the Moon!! Good luck, and have fun!!:)
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Thanks all. Looks like I will be getting a bottle for this.

Has anybody ever successfully mini-tubbed in a weekends amount of time?
 

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Thanks all. Looks like I will be getting a bottle for this.
Im looking at getting a bottle but I would suggest you rent one. My brother gets his tanks through a business account so he doesnt really front anything. I wouldnt get a new one because some places when you get them filled will just take your tank and give you something different in return so then say goodbye to your newly purchased tank.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
What size bottle would be sufficient for what I'm doing? I can buy a new one for $142 + tax at 40 cu.ft., 80 cu.ft. for $210 + tax, and it only goes up from there.

Seems a bit expensive. Is this reasonable?
 

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That's the cost of a filled bottle for the first time. After the initial purchase, you only need to spend the bucks on the refill. ~$45.00 or so.

When you start to weld, listen to the arc. It should be a nice steady crackle. The number one mistake I've seen newbies make, is having the feed speed too high. I have an older Lincoln 110V Weldpak and for the most part my feed speed is around 2.5 to 3 on the scale.

Have fun with it! Before you know it, you'll be looking for things to weld!

Chuck
 

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Discussion Starter #17
That's the cost of a filled bottle for the first time. After the initial purchase, you only need to spend the bucks on the refill. ~$45.00 or so.

When you start to weld, listen to the arc. It should be a nice steady crackle. The number one mistake I've seen newbies make, is having the feed speed too high. I have an older Lincoln 110V Weldpak and for the most part my feed speed is around 2.5 to 3 on the scale.

Have fun with it! Before you know it, you'll be looking for things to weld!

Chuck
I am having fun with it! I love heating up that wire! I did notice though, that if your wire speed is too fast, not only does the wire come out too fast, but a chunk (?) of the wire will break off (long piece). Maybe that's due to not enough power, but who knows. It seemed to go away after trimming the wire a bit.

Thanks for the tip. I found a 150 cu.ft. bottle on CL for $150. Should I snag it? What would be adequate for what I'm doing?
 

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I am having fun with it! I love heating up that wire! I did notice though, that if your wire speed is too fast, not only does the wire come out too fast, but a chunk (?) of the wire will break off (long piece). Maybe that's due to not enough power, but who knows. It seemed to go away after trimming the wire a bit.

Thanks for the tip. I found a 150 cu.ft. bottle on CL for $150. Should I snag it? What would be adequate for what I'm doing?
Call your local welding place and ask how much to fill that bottle. I am interested as well.
 

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I am having fun with it! I love heating up that wire! I did notice though, that if your wire speed is too fast, not only does the wire come out too fast, but a chunk (?) of the wire will break off (long piece). Maybe that's due to not enough power, but who knows. It seemed to go away after trimming the wire a bit.

Thanks for the tip. I found a 150 cu.ft. bottle on CL for $150. Should I snag it? What would be adequate for what I'm doing?
Don't know how it is where you are, but in Calif. the bottle needs to be certified before it can be filled. If you buy a bottle from CL, you need to make sure it is fillable before you spend the money.
 

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Discussion Starter #20 (Edited)
Don't know how it is where you are, but in Calif. the bottle needs to be certified before it can be filled. If you buy a bottle from CL, you need to make sure it is fillable before you spend the money.
The bottle is fillable/good until 2013. I just picked it up and did some welding with it. Wow, this stuff is way cleaner than flux, LOL. $150 for a 150 cu.ft. bottle, and ~$25 refills aren't too bad.

Does anybody have a good example of what a good MIG weld looks like? I've been playing with wire speed/voltage until I got the constant 'frying' sound.

What is the proper way to tack weld? Do you just 'touch' the trigger on the gun? I tried this when experimenting with my test steel. I found that the wire likes to disintegrate and go all over the place if I do that.

Also, is stitching just laying a bead, but only a certain amount at a time? (like an inch or so)?

Also, about how long will that bottle last me? It's full (around 1800-2000 PSI on my regulator) and I have it set to 15 L/min. A guy told me on the phone that a 40 cu.ft. bottle would last me 2 hrs. Is it reasonable to say this one will last me 7 1/2 hours or so?

Thanks all. I'm really looking forward to getting my hands dirty in this project.
 
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