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I’m looking to repair my e28, which is currently a bit rusty... There’s a fair bit of welding to do, including patching panels, repairing the front subframe, presumably filling holes and no doubt other misc jobs.

 

I’ve been told tig by some people as there’s less distortion, but mig by others as it’s faster and easier (and cheaper?). Personally tig appeals, but more so for making parts rather than patching panels.

 

I believe in order to get the most use out of the welder whilst still being able to weld thin sheet metal, I need to get a mig with a maximum minimum of 30 amps and a minimum maximum of 180 amps.

Must be single phase 15 amps (or lower, though can’t see a decent welder being lower than that).

I’ll be needing to purchase all of the associated paraphernalia to go with it.

 

I personally don’t know how to weld yet, but know several people who can mig and a few who can tig that are happy to teach/help out.

 

Not looking to spend $5k either...

Edited by eliongater

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I have a multi-function machine from boc. IT has a mig torch, tig torch and a arc torch. I have only used it on mig so far and it works well. Cost me a grand. 

it will not tig alloy. 

this unit will not allow adjustment of the wire speed, just the volts. some find this hard to use, but i dont know any better so its not an issue for me. 

Paid a grand for it directly from BOC.

You will also need a helmet, gloves, clamps and magnets flap wheels and stuff. Leave about 3-350 to get started with this, and a 15a plug in teh wall. Check what the shed is wired with. IF you have 2.5tps tile it should then just buy a plug from bunnings and swap it over. 

i have made gates and modded my sub frame. When i start my body repairs i will put out the tig and learn how to use that also. 

 

there are other machines out there but i chose teh BOC unit as boc will keep spares for many years. Most of the units in the price bracket are made in china and i had concerns regarding parts long term. 

Also look at bunnings for the coregas swap a bottle scheme.  Cheaper than BOC. 190 deposit(refundable if you take it back) on the bottle and about 120 per bottle on a swap basis after that. 

 

 

 

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I have had several BOC welders over the years and we currently have 3 at work, have never had a single issue with any of them, they are worth the extra money. If you are just learning and doing occasional stuff most chinese machines will be up to it, but the most important thing to look at is the duty cycle, they are based on 10 minutes so a 20% duty cycle means you can weld for 2 minutes in every 10, 40 % means 4 minutes welding etc. MIG welding generally uses an Argon / Co2 mix while TIG requires pure Argon which is a lot more expensive. I personally dislike flux cored wire welding so i recommend sticking with solid wire and shielding gas. flux cored is UGLY and smokey and generally not as strong. A 180 amp welder with a good duty cycle will do almost every job you need it to do.

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The point about spares availability is a salient one, especially if you anticipate doing welding in years to come.

I was advised that TIG may be more versatile than MIG, but that it is more expensive to buy, and more difficult to do effectively.

Unless you need to weld Arc, start with MIG, and see how you go.

Do you know someone who does welding? https://www.trademe.co.nz/Browse/Listing.aspx?id=1637988273 may be worth a look?

 

Edited by gjm

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I purchased a near new Boc magmate welder a year or so ago and taught myself. It’s an inverter type and I find it amazing. I got and old large co2 fire extinguisher and got it converted and I fill it for $40 so great for home use. I don’t know any better but I believe co2 welds hotter so not as good on thin steel but all I’ve done is thin steel and it’s no problem. My welder is my favourite toy . You’ll not regret a good welder. I can’t speak for tig

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Hey Eli, you should consider doing the welding course at Weltec.  You can even sit your ticket at the end of it, if you're good enough.  Teaches you what you need to know, gives you a good idea of what kit you'll need.  Excellent tutors.  Plenty of practice.

If you're interested I'll introduce you to my wrenching mate, he's near you and did the course, set himself up with an excellent mig.  He's planning on scratch-building a sports car; you'll want to look at his welder.

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@Funkyflynz  have you any words of wisdom, as a man who's experienced and talented at laying down a good bead?

 

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41 minutes ago, agent75 said:

I purchitsed a near new Bocifmagmate welder a year or so ago and taught myself. It’s an inverter type and I find it amazing. I got and old large co2 fire extinguisher and got it converted and I fill it for $40 so great for home use. I don’t know any better but I believe co2 welds hotter so not as good on thin steel but all I’ve done is thin steel and it’s no problem. My welder is my favourite toy . You’ll not regret a good welder. I can’t speak for tig

Co2 generally runs hotter and you get more splatter but If you are grinding your welds anyway It makes no difference, costs a fraction of what the argon mixes cost. Works fine for stop/start welding on thin sections.

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Thanks for your input guys. I think I’ll probably spring for a boc unit (was already looking that way), though my dad still thinks I should get a cheap one with a 3 year warranty...

I was always planning on running gas (was thinking Argo shield, but if straight CO2 will do the job cheaper I might look into that). I’ve seen flux core welds, not the prettiest.

What amperage would you recommend for welding the body work on the e28, it’s pretty thin, so I’d imagine it’d be quite low. Would 50 A cut it or is that too high?

There’s a used boc multi process 175 that’s caught my eye, however the mig minimum is 50A.

 

@gjm no need for arc yet, but most multi process welders have it. Not a selling point either way for me though.

@agent75 what’s the process behind convertering a fire extinguisher? That sounds like a cost effective way to go.

@Olaf I would love to do the welding course, but both hours in the day and timelines make that difficult.

@aja540i @Mr Vapour Thanks, that was roughly my thinking. Duty cycle doesn’t need to be too high, but I understand how it works. Already checked with an electrician and I just need the 15amp plug.

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4 hours ago, eliongater said:

Thanks for your input guys. I think I’ll probably spring for a boc unit (was already looking that way), though my dad still thinks I should get a cheap one with a 3 year warranty...


@Olaf I would love to do the welding course, but both hours in the day and timelines make that difficult.

1.  There are other excellent welders without going straight to BOC.

2.  Introduction to MIG and TIG Welding Course is night school (evening classes) - next one starts in July.   Are you fully committed after work?  https://2018.weltec.ac.nz/courses/mechanical-trades/mig-and-tig-welding-introduction/   Never be in too much of a hurry to learn how to do it right!  😀

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7 hours ago, eliongater said:

Thanks for your input guys. I think I’ll probably spring for a boc unit (was already looking that way), though my dad still thinks I should get a cheap one with a 3 year warranty...

I was always planning on running gas (was thinking Argo shield, but if straight CO2 will do the job cheaper I might look into that). I’ve seen flux core welds, not the prettiest.

What amperage would you recommend for welding the body work on the e28, it’s pretty thin, so I’d imagine it’d be quite low. Would 50 A cut it or is that too high?

There’s a used boc multi process 175 that’s caught my eye, however the mig minimum is 50A.

 

@gjm no need for arc yet, but most multi process welders have it. Not a selling point either way for me though.

@agent75 what’s the process behind convertering a fire extinguisher? That sounds like a cost effective way to go.

@Olaf I would love to do the welding course, but both hours in the day and timelines make that difficult.

@aja540i @Mr Vapour Thanks, that was roughly my thinking. Duty cycle doesn’t need to be too high, but I understand how it works. Already checked with an electrician and I just need the 15amp plug.

The amperage is only one of the variables to consider when welding panel steel (or anything) remember it has to be hot enough to melt the wire you are using! Total heat input is much more important and that involves energy input AND time elapsed, you can weld panel steel with a lot of energy input if you are fast enough. I don't think i have ever turned my mig to it's lowest setting and i have done a lot of patches in the E21.

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I have a few welders available to purchase.

Do you care particularly about race, or perhaps more specifically language comprehension? I'm deeply discounting eastern european welders at the moment due to oversupply. No English.

14 week delivery via high seas. 50% up front.

 

 

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@aja540i I had a go with my mates Lincoln 200C, and 50 amps seemed to work fine on thin stuff (admittedly that welder was smarter than us).

@Olaf Any recommendations other than BOC? I know Lincoln and Miller are big names.

1 hour ago, M3AN said:

I have a few welders available to purchase.

Do you care particularly about race, or perhaps more specifically language comprehension? I'm deeply discounting eastern european welders at the moment due to oversupply. No English.

14 week delivery via high seas. 50% up front.

 

 

Are you confusing this with mail order brides or do you have an exceptionally bizarre wielding shop? Regardless, I feel other members of the forum might need specifications......

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I have a Lincoln Powercraft 210 mig + dc lift tig, does everything I need for mig, and allowed me to learn tig on steel.  Since then I've also bought a BOC Smootharc 185 ac/dc tig with foot pedal which is proving to be sweet as for steel and alloy. 

Nothing bad to say about either brand

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i have plenty of spare bodies here if you want to practice on some cars that don't matter if you stuff it up before you start on your own car.

i also have an arc welder you are welcome to use any time, probably not useful for what you want to do, but i used it to build the frame and drawbar for the E30 BBQ trailer and it did just fine, need to strengthen up my car trailer too at some stage... getting a bit cold now tho ha.

 

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Thanks @musccoo and @_ethrty-Andy_. I can’t really justify a brand new Lincoln welder. Currently on the hunt for a 2nd hand BOC, Lincoln or Miller.

I think I’ll take you up on that Andy.

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can confirm that an E36 boot fits inside an E28 boot, in case anyone was wondering ha.

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1 hour ago, _ethrty-Andy_ said:

can confirm that an E36 boot fits inside an E28 boot, in case anyone was wondering ha.

What do you mean by this . Please explain 

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12 hours ago, Mr Vapour said:

What do you mean by this . Please explain 

That I could fit an e36 boot lid into the boot of my e28. For anyone wondering, e28s have massive boots.

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