Spot-welding? Useful or too specialized?

What skills to learn, what tools to get
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jacob
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Spot-welding? Useful or too specialized?

Post by jacob » Sun May 14, 2017 7:53 pm

Wheres the magic cut-off in terms of welding? Especially if you don't want to go for gas or don't have 220V?

In terms of Pareto, will this solve 80% of the problems? https://www.harborfreight.com/welding/spot-welders.html

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Gilberto de Piento
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Re: Spot-welding? Useful or too specialized?

Post by Gilberto de Piento » Sun May 14, 2017 8:29 pm

What are you trying to weld? Spot welder is for sheet metal.

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Re: Spot-welding? Useful or too specialized?

Post by George the original one » Sun May 14, 2017 9:10 pm

I've never been in a situation where I wanted a spot-welder over other methods, so I'd have to put it in the too specialized category.

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Re: Spot-welding? Useful or too specialized?

Post by jacob » Sun May 14, 2017 9:17 pm

@GdP - Well, specifically, my current problem is a garden hoe that's breaking apart from one side to the other .. so sheet metal may apply?

Toska2
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Re: Spot-welding? Useful or too specialized?

Post by Toska2 » Sun May 14, 2017 9:52 pm

Too specialized.

HF also has 110v arc welder that are junk. Miller makes a combo 110-220v that's $$$.

This thread needs a picture.

I could weld a 1" threaded nipple on some scrap. Not until next month tho.

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Sclass
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Re: Spot-welding? Useful or too specialized?

Post by Sclass » Sun May 14, 2017 10:53 pm

I spot welded a couple of small things I manufactured. It was good because it was fast. Worked well on battery terminals and things I couldn't solder. It was fast. I don't recommend fixing your hoe this way. The spots may be too weak.

I would buy a better hoe. If your hoe is welded, something is sketchy. I've done a lot of hoeing . :lol: The one i used looked like this. BIFL. It still sits in my mom's shed.

Image

Edit - wow my hands ache when I look at this image. You can feed yourself with one of these. I think something like this is a good survival tool short of a plow. So there seem to be some deals online for these. Search under grubbing hoe. :lol: sorry that is too funny!

The forged heads are cheap. Since you're handy with a draw knife and wood tools you can make a hardwood handle from a tree.

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Re: Spot-welding? Useful or too specialized?

Post by Farm_or » Mon May 15, 2017 6:34 am

The short answer is about 1/4 inch. I have a Hobart 140. Used a similar Miller powered by 120 on the job a lot too. Both brands are very good. HF, not so much... And if you do get a small wire feed, don't fall for the cheaper wire, especially the flux core. The HF stuff has a rough outer that alternately sticks and slips on the spool. That makes an unhappy weldor right quick!

Anything thicker I use my big 275 amp stick welder.

I've fixed a couple hoes. They don't make them like they used to. Have made a couple of all metal pitch forks too. Broke too many handles on those. The last one I broke was "unbreakable" composite handle.

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Re: Spot-welding? Useful or too specialized?

Post by Toska2 » Mon May 15, 2017 7:35 am

I find mig & flux core overkill for small jobs. There's too much waste with spools rusting.

Sclass's hoe is A+ compared to most others.

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Re: Spot-welding? Useful or too specialized?

Post by OTCW » Mon May 15, 2017 8:21 am

Toska2 wrote:
Mon May 15, 2017 7:35 am
I find mig & flux core overkill for small jobs. There's too much waste with spools rusting.

Sclass's hoe is A+ compared to most others.
Any hoe that you can take home to your mom's house and leave there is gotta be A+.

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Gilberto de Piento
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Re: Spot-welding? Useful or too specialized?

Post by Gilberto de Piento » Mon May 15, 2017 9:23 am

I don't think a spot welder is the right tool for this job. Wire feed would be my choice but I don't have a lot of welding expertise or experience.

That said, I wouldn't buy a welder to fix this one thing. Pay someone to weld it for you (machine shop, tech school, makerspace) or just buy a new one.

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Re: Spot-welding? Useful or too specialized?

Post by ffj » Mon May 15, 2017 9:48 am

PM me your address and I'll mail you a replacement head. I've got at least one in the barn that the handle has broken off the head. You'll have to make a new handle for it or use your current one though.

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Re: Spot-welding? Useful or too specialized?

Post by tommytebco » Mon May 15, 2017 9:56 am

the bottom line in welding is "experience" . Things like penetration, heat and amps are just terms until the sparks fly for you. Everything you do first is almost sure to be "ugly" even if you get lucky and it's functional. You need experience first. I think I would go with some cheap arc welder for starters. You can spot weld with any welder. used should be okay if it's demonstrated as functional and half price. For some reason, used welders never show up .

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Re: Spot-welding? Useful or too specialized?

Post by Riggerjack » Mon May 15, 2017 7:44 pm

Well, I've used MIG, and that is easy. But oxy acetylene is the really flexible system, as I understand it. You can weld as thick a metal as you have the heat to weld. You can heat a larger area, for neater results, and more penetration.

If you are looking for flexibility in your tools, oxy seems the ERE way to go. But whatever you do, there is that storage thing to be concerned about.

A few years ago you were talking about a home forge. Did that get a lower priority?

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Re: Spot-welding? Useful or too specialized?

Post by jacob » Tue May 16, 2017 9:57 am

@Riggerjack - Yes, forging, welding, and machining went on the backburner. The ROI in terms of usage and mobility didn't justify the high likelihood of this being fun once or twice compared to how much the equipment/space would take up and how useful it would be once it wasn't fun anymore.

Instead plumbing tools got higher priority. Not fun at all, but highly useful.

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Re: Spot-welding? Useful or too specialized?

Post by tommytebco » Tue May 16, 2017 10:07 am

AHH HAA!!
The answer to you problem is "Vo Tech Programs"
Rather than buying equipment, sign up for a class in welding. They will have all types of equipment and , in my experience anyways, "free lancing" on projects was encouraged. The tuition cost (a long time ago) was cheap. Probably still is.

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Sclass
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Re: Spot-welding? Useful or too specialized?

Post by Sclass » Tue May 16, 2017 10:36 am

OTCW wrote:
Mon May 15, 2017 8:21 am
Any hoe that you can take home to your mom's house and leave there is gotta be A+.
:lol: :lol: :lol: thank god I have my iPad covered. Gone is the day when I'd spit my coffee all over the keyboard after a line like that.

Good heads up on HF MIG/flux core. They're so cheap I almost bought one. I did a quick calculation last year on using welding shops or keeping and moving my TIG set. TIG went bye bye. No fun but the economics didn't make sense during my move. :|

Good idea on vocational training at the local cc. Alternatively though, YouTube and a HF MIG set may be hard to beat if you're smart enough not to hurt yourself.

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