Welding is a vital part and parcel of any metal work. Indeed, of all the joining techniques, none is as reliable as the welding.
It does generate permanent joints which are strong enough to bear the highest amounts of weights and impacts imaginable. This is why it is worth spending some time to learn the trade.
WHAT IS MIG WELDING?
MIG stands for metal inert gas. It is a welding type of arc welding process. It entails the use of a continuous set of solid wire electrodes.
These are fed through a welding gun and subsequently into the weld pool. In the process, it binds the two base materials together.
At the same time, a shielding gas is used to protect the weld pool from any possible contaminations. This is done by passing it into the welding gun.
10 BEST 120V MIG WELDER REVIEWS
#1: Hobart 500559 Handler 140 MIG Welder 115V
If all you have are some petty tasks, you want a basic welder that has the bare minimum set of features. Perhaps no other welding machine is as reliable as this one. As you are about to see, it possesses the bare minimum set of features that are needful for such circumstances.
5-position Voltage Control Selector
You will have the pleasure to choose from among five voltage positions and options. This is made possible by the existence of the 5-position voltage control selector. Due to it, you will be able to obtain stable and smooth welding outcomes at all points and welding thicknesses.
Industrial-cast Aluminum Drive System
Its drive system comes in the form of the industrial-cast Aluminum material. Aluminum is light and sturdy. Because of this, you will find the welding machine quite portable yet tough enough to confront the most difficult of the tasks. It, therefore, guarantees you some level of reliability in the long run.
Heavy-duty Work Clamp
To secure your work well, the welder comes along with the heavy-duty work clamp. It is this clamp that you use to secure the materials you are working on. It places the materials quite tough and hard as not to be able to escape or fidget. This arrangement takes good care of your safety and reliability at all times.
- Enables you to fine-tune your arcs
- Offers smooth and stable arcs on all the various thicknesses
- Works well in your standard household 115V outlet
- Has a pretty comfortable speed range
- Incorporates both durability and quality
- Cannot handle professional chores with ease
- Performs relatively fewer uses
- Brings about limited returns on investments
#2: ARKSEN MIG-130 Welding Machine Gasless Flux Core Wire DIY Home Welder Automatic Feeding, Yellow
Do you want a general purpose welder? Get hold of this one! It is indeed perfect for your home, welding and the auto repair shop. This is because it can handle a wide variety of common tasks and chores. It also possesses the necessary controls and features which are required for the job.
Flux-corded Wire-no Gas Welder
The welder uses the convenient flux-corded wire as well as the self-release metal-inert gas. It uses them to prevent oxidation of the portions of the metals that are under the welding process. In light of this, the end result of the welding is superb. It is also less predisposed to the problems that arise at such times.
Adjustable Welding Speed
You will also enjoy the benefit of determining the speed of the welding process. You may wish to weld at a slower pace or a faster pace depending on your unique specification and requirement. To adjust the speed of the welding process, you will have the wire feeding speed adjust rotary. It has around 10 levels of speeds for you to choose from.
Portable Design and Wider Applicability
In all, the welder is very portable and highly applicable. It does not weigh too much and is thus more convenient to carry around. You will, therefore, find it simpler to carry around and deploy to a remote location. It is hence perfect for your normal day to day tasks.
- Heavy-duty and quite durable indeed
- Ideal for all kinds of welding applications
- Quite suitable for the welding mild steel materials
- Has a built-in cooling fan which manages the temperature levels
- Protects against excessive heat buildup
- May not be relied on in the long run
- Brings about limited returns on investments
- Inconvenient to handle and engage
#3: Goplus MIG 130 Welder Flux Core Wire Automatic Feed Welding Machine w/Free Mask
For quick light tasks, a simple welder of this kind is absolutely essential. It is simplistic in both design and scope. It is, therefore, handier and relevant for those tasks which ordinarily are not too involving. This also means you do not have to possess too much expertise to be able to handle it well.
4 Levels Adjustable Welding Speed
Its most outstanding feature is the fact that you can adjust the welding speed. It has four levels of options to make this a reality to you. By adjusting these four buttons, you will be able to determine how fast or soon your welding tasks conclude.
Wire Feeding Speed Adjust Rotary Knob
Other than managing the speed of welding, you will also be able to manage the feeding speed. This is basically the pace at which the materials that are welded are fed into the system. The arrangement yet again lets you determine how fast the welding task is performed.
Flux-Cored Wire No Gas Welder
This welder does not use gas at all to weld the various parts and components. This means it spares you from the common problems that often arise at such times. The most notable of these issues is the oxidation of the welded parts and components. You have the pleasure of robust outcomes for your taking.
- Great for welding the normal iron and thin steel materials
- Suitable for both the do-it-yourself and the general repair tasks
- Maintains the temperatures to their lowest levels at all times
- Brings with it numerous attendant advantages and benefits
- Lets you accrue professional finish for all kinds of surfaces
- Calls for frequent repairs and maintenance
- Cannot operate for a prolonged duration of time
- Limited in scope and applicability
#4: Miller Electric 120/240VAC, 1 Phase
Do you perform the common maintenance and repair tasks? If you answered in the affirmative, this welder could indeed be yours for the taking. It is great for a variety of common tasks and chores we have today. Among these are the farms, ranches, hobby, repairs and auto cycles.
Built-in Gas Solenoid Valve
Unlike most other welders, it uses gas to bind the various components together. It has a built-in solenoid valve to regulate the flow of gas. By this arrangement, you will able to determine the pace as well as the overall quality of the outcomes. It also takes good care of your safety.
Utmost Welding Power
With the ability to bind materials that are up to 20.5 inches thick, you have no more reliable friend than this welder. Its awesome binding power is strong enough to penetrate such depths and leave behind the most reliable of outcomes imaginable.
Wide Steel Output Range
On the whole, the welder can generate 30 to 230 Amperes direct current. This is strong enough to bring about the toughest outcomes and handle all kinds of chores. It also aids in tackling those materials that are too thick and strong for ordinary kinds of welders.
- Very portable to carry around with ease
- Certified by the Canadian Standards Association
- Consumes plenty of electrical power
- Pairs and works along with several accessories
- Imbues maximum convenience
- Calls for plenty of storage space
- Produces lower power output
- Unreliable for demanding chores
#5: Forney Easy Weld 261 140 FC-I Mig Machine, 120V, Green
Never attempted welding before? Worry not! You do not have to possess too much technical skill and expertise to weld your materials. This one is basic enough to let you do so with ease and no prior experience. It can, as a matter of fact, handle do-it-yourself applications and hobbies particularly well.
The welder utilizes no gas at all. On the contrary, it uses the flux-core welding mechanism. This mechanism brings along some safety benefits. It spares you the likelihood of explosions and the associated burns and injuries. This also guarantees you some added peace of mind.
You have the leeway to manage every aspect of the welding process at any given time. This is made possible by the existence of the numerous controls apparatus. In particular, the infinite voltage and the wire feed speed controls are the two most reliable. You will also be able to obtain precise outcomes.
Higher Duty Cycle
Its duty cycle is also comfortable and reliable. It stands at 30% at 90 Amperes. You will therefore not have to reset the welding machine every quite often as is the case with other kinds of machines. This allows you to weld continuously and to leverage the benefit of unobstructed peace of mind in the process.
- Less dangerous by reason of utilizing the flex-core welding technology
- Higher amperage output of 140 Amperes
- Can weld up to 24-gauge materials comfortably
- Handles 0.030-inch wires
- Allows for the attachment of many relevant accessories
- May disparage unskilled users
- Moderately heavy and inconvenient to carry around
- Inflicts higher maintenance costs
#6: Lincoln Electric K2185-1 Handy MIG Welder
Are you constantly on the go? You badly want a welder that it not only portable but also optimized for remote applications. No other welder comes second to this one as it has those capabilities. It is generally lighter in weight, requires less power input, and easier to handle on the whole.
Cold Contactor Safety Feature
Welding machines are ordinarily susceptible to overheating and burns. This one is structured in such a manner as to prevent those twin issues. It comes along with the cold contractor safety feature to make this dream a reality. It maintains the welding wire cold until such a time that you press the gun trigger.
Optimal Welding Wire Diameter
Its welding wire has the optimal diameter of around 0.035 inches. This is pretty thin as to call for limited space. It also expedites the transportation of the welder and its application in remote locations. You have the pleasure of maximum convenience to leverage at all times.
Adjustable Wire Feed Speed Control
Lastly, its feed speed is adjustable. The wire feed speed control exists to allow you to do just that. By leveraging this control, you will be able to determine the pace at which the welding task is performed at a time. This gives you some form of leverage over the welding process.
- Higher power output
- Performs numerous chores and applications
- Backed by a comprehensive manufacturer’s warranty
- Accompanied by a generous after-sale regime
- Quite strong and durable
- A bit costly to purchase
- Too complicated to a starter
- Moderately bulky to move around
#7: LONGEVITY Migweld 140 – 140 Amp Mig Welder Capable Of Flux-Core and Aluminum Gas Shielded Welding 110v
Industrial applications require tougher and more reliable welders. This is due to the demanding nature and scope of their tasks. A tough, complicated, and specially designed welder of this kind is all you require for such tasks. It is also usable by both the professionals and beginners alike.
Multiple Welding Capabilities
This welder is a dual purpose in the sense that it handles both the flux-core and the gas welding options pretty well. By placing your bet on it, you get to enjoy the convenience of switching back and forth these two options as per your expectations and needs.
Convenient Power Source
Unlike most heavy-duty welders, this one draws its power from your standard 110V power outlet. For this reason, you get to enjoy the benefit of maximum convenience and lower utility bills. The feature also makes it possible for you to use the welder at the convenient of your own compound.
Unbridled Welding Capability
With this welder, you may easily tackle the mild steel material. This is because the welder can penetrate depths that reach 3/8 inches comfortably. If you have tough materials or would want to bring along strong and reliable joints, this is the one to place your bet on.
- Simpler to learn and engage
- Extremely light in weight
- Applicable just about everywhere
- Great for the home, repair outlets, and shops
- Handles all kinds of metals and surfaces
- May impose extra utility bills
- Quite prone to the problem of overheating
- Cannot accept too many accessories
#8: Forney Easy Weld 299 125FC Flux Core Welder, 120-Volt, 125-Amp
If you intend to pursue a full-term career in welding, you have this welder to try out. It is designed for the novice welder like you. Its simple construction and easy-to-use features can walk you through the start to the finish. Moreover, it is also cheaper to acquire and will not impose too much stress on your part.
Deeper Welding Capabilities
The welder can penetrate a whopping 1/8 inches of firm steel. This depth is great especially when weighed against the toughness of the material concerned. You have no better friend to generate those reliable joints which are supposed to endure the test of time. Its outcomes are simply great.
Comfortable Amperage Range
This welder can on the whole work within the comfortable range of 15-20 Amperes. This ampere rating is great in that it is low enough to inflict too much utility bills yet high enough for awesome outcomes. You, therefore, have the pleasure of reduced utility bills and more reliable outcomes for your taking.
Long Power Cord
A long power cord attaches to the welder. It is the one that draws the power from the mains electricity outlet. The cord has the ability to handle a whopping 15 Amperes of electrical energy. Being long, it guarantees you some extended range of applicability. It hence brings about some flexibility to you.
- Not so difficult to operate
- Requires no assembly before use
- Wastes less of your time
- Very affordable indeed
- Less convenient to carry around
- Limited applicability (handles the gasless flux core welding alone)
- The higher power input of around 120-Volt
- Too basic in scope and features
#9: Miller Millermatic 141 MIG Welder, 120 Volts, With M-100 MIG Gun with 10′ Leads and Running Gear/Cylinder Rack
If welding is your lifeline, you want this welder that is intended for professional welding and full-time occupation. By its sheer scope, design, and engineering, the welder is quite comprehensive indeed. By reasons of these issues, the welder can handle those tasks that are professional in nature.
First and foremost comes the compact design. It takes up less space and is also easier to store and handle. For this reason, the welder is very portable and can be carried around with ease. This arrangement means you are not all constrained in your use of the said gadget.
Superior Stick Arc Performance
Setting this welder apart from the others is the superior stick arc performance. This one utilizes neither the gas nor the flux-core to bind the various surfaces together. Instead, it uses the electrodes to do the job. It hence produces outcomes that are more long-lasting and tolerant of damages.
Just the right Weight
By weighing just about 13 pounds, this welder is just the right one. It is comparatively easier to transport around and use in remote locations. Moreover, it is also accompanied by the shoulder strap and a convenient handle. These jointly enhance its transportation out and about a designated area.
- Convenient to transport back and forth a designated area
- May be assembled and disassembled without the use of any tools
- Plugs in both the 120V and the 240V power receptacles
- Absolves you of all the unnecessary worries and anxieties
- Eliminates the need for sticky electrodes
- Calls for some assembly before use
- Only for professional applications
- Difficult to get started in
#10: MIG Welder, Handheld, 120VAC
Does your entire life revolve around frequent and prolonged applications? If I heard your answer ‘yes,’ you may want to pay keen attention to the following mini-review. This is because this welder is the one that is manufactured with your unique circumstance in mind. It is tough and durable enough for such applications.
Fully Adjustable Drive System
Its drive system is fully adjustable. This simply means that you can modify its settings in such a way as to respond to your unique needs at the moment. This adjustability reduces the possibility of wire tangle and crushing. In so doing, it enhances your overall safety and the reliability of use.
Brass-to-brass Gun Connection
The connections that channel the gas are made of brass. This way, it is very reliable and less likely to let you down at all. This enhanced conductivity also enhances the quality of the final outcomes. It sees to it that the end results are reliable and capable of enduring the strongest stress impacts.
Cast Aluminum Body
Throughout its exterior is the cast Aluminum body. This construction is very reliable in a number of ways and means. It has a rigid drive which aids in the wire alignment. For this reason, it brings about some awesome levels of reliability that is not achievable by other kinds of welders.
- Handles a wide variety of welding options
- Gives you the power to control the feeding speed
- Quite resilient to the agents of abuse
- Comprehensive applications
- Limited operational expenses
- No so easy to comprehend
- Potentially injurious
- Only for professional use
HOW TO MIG WELD FOR BEGINNERS
Select the right MIG welder
The first step entails selecting the right MIG welder. Be sure to factor your skill level, expertise, experience, and intended use as you go about picking the right welder. You may take some time to practice before embarking on the actual task of welding. This is to sharpen your skills and minimize injuries.
Put on the right Protective Gears
Follow this by putting on the right protective gears. Some of the ‘must have’ gears are the welding helmet, welding gloves, leather boots and shoes, cotton clothing, welding sleeves, welding jacket, and a welding curtain if the kids are involved. The obvious reason here is to shield yourself from any dangers.
Tune your MIG welder appropriately
You now have to fine tune your welder appropriately. This simply means setting it in such a way as to be able to discharge the required task and purpose. In particular, you will have to set the right duration of use, the intensity of the welding process, temperature requirements, and the kind of material handled.
Set the safety of your workshop right
After fine tuning your welder, you now have to set the safety parameters of your workshop right. Be sure that the area is properly ventilated, well-lit, and has clearly marked safety exists which are unobstructed. These are to minimize the likelihood of accidents arising and aid in evacuation.
Finally, you now have to weld cautiously. Vary the temperatures, intensities of welding, and the angles necessary from time to time. This way, you will be able to derive the right outcomes. Refer to the manufacturer’s manual to aid you in the process.
SAFETY CONCERN THAT SHOULD LOOK
The number one risk that comes along with the welders is the risk of fire outbreaks. This is because most welding undertakings entail some use of fires and flames. If and when the flames are not handled with decorum and contained appropriately, they may normally burst and inflict untold damages.
Since most modern MIG welders draw their power from mains electricity outlets, it is not uncommon for electric shocks to arise. The situation is worsened by the fact that the typical welding undertaking entails some kind of clutter which is mainly in the form of electric wires.
The interaction between the gas and the metallic components result in the formation of fumes. These are usually toxic as they might normally inflict lung cancer when inhaled excessively. It is for this reason that the workshop has to be well aerated and properly ventilated.
As hinted, the typical welding undertaking entails some plenty of clutter. These mainly arise from the many wires that are involved in the transmission of power from the mains electricity to the various electrical parts and components. They too may often obstruct the pathways and make evacuations a nightmare.
The flying debris, sparks from the flames, and falling objects which may arise from time to time also impose some dangers. To keep these issues at bay, you may want to completely shield yourself by putting on comprehensive protective gears that cover your whole body.
MIG WELDING TIPS & TRICKS
#1: Put on the welding helmets all the time
Never even entertain the thought of welding without putting on the welding helmet. This is to safeguard your head and eyes from the injuries and too bright lights. The failure to do so will also ensure that you comply with some of the statutory laws that govern your jurisdiction.
#2: Open the rooms fully while welding
You should always open the rooms fully while welding. The aim of doing so is to allow for the unobstructed flow of air into and out of the workshop. In so doing, the possibilities of lung cancer and other respiratory disorders arising is kept to an absolute minimum.
#3: Take breaks every quite often
It is not advisable to welding continuously without taking a break. Other than exhaustion and the possibilities of collapsing at the workplace, you get to expose yourself to more dangers while working for too long at a time. Taking a break thus minimizes these issues.
#4: Furnish enough light into the workshop
Needless to say, the light in your workshop has to be sufficient enough to let you see what you are doing well. Sufficient light will also eliminate all forms of ambiguities which may characterize poor visibility. These include inaccurate drawings, measurements, and estimations.
#5: Keep all emergency exits clearly marked and freed of any obstructions
Be sure to delineate some doors or windows as emergency exits. You should clearly mark them and get rid of any obstructions that might block them. These steps are necessary as to be able to make evacuations simpler and hassle-free in times of emergencies.
WHAT SHOULD I LOOK WHEN CHOOSING A 120V MIG WELDERS
The Nature of Task at Hand
These welders are designed and intended for different kinds of welding chores. Some are for professional welding yet others are for starters alone and so on. You have to determine exactly what you want to use your welder for. It is only then that you will be able to find the most relevant one.
Skill Level and Expertise
Given that they are designed for different kinds of chores, they possess varying controls. These controls subsequently require different kinds of expertise and skill levels to engage. You should yet again see to it that you clearly ascertain your own skill level and expertise. You should thereafter settle for a welder which you can easily handle.
Exact Location of Use
Welding can take place anywhere and anytime. However, not all welders may operate optimally just about anywhere. It is because of this that you have to also clearly determine where exactly you plan to weld beforehand. You should settle for the most portable welder if you intend to travel a lot or weld in a remote location.
Costs and Warranty
You definitely want to buy only that welder that is well within your affordable range. You should first and foremost ascertain your own financial resource endowment. You should thereafter compare the various welders on the market on the basis of their features and prices. Lastly, you should go ahead to find the best one.
Some brands have consistently stood out as being very reliable than others. Chief among them include Hobart, Goplus, Lotos, Everlast, Lincoln Electric, Forney, and the Longevity Migweld. In your search for the right welder, consider giving them first priority over and above the remaining ones.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS (FAQs)
Q1. When were the MIG welders invented?
The exact date is unknown. However, conservative estimates place the date around 1800.
Q2. Is there a correlation between the choice of the MIG welder and the final outcome?
YES, of course. As hinted from the above review, some welders are more reliable than the others. They, therefore, are able to do a better job.
Q3. Does the brand of welder determine the safety of MIG welding?
To some extent, yes! Some brands are fitted with extra safety features which are lacking in some other brands. This one makes them better suited at enhancing your safety.
Q4. Are there any precautions I need to take while utilizing them?
Of course! You have to put on the necessary protective attire and aerate your room properly.
Q5. What are some of the benefits of MIG welding?
This technique is faster and generates longer lasting outcomes than ordinary alternatives.
Q6. What is the recommended pace of the MIG welding process?
There is no standard recommended time. However, you are advised against welding too fast as this may lead to substandard work. Take your time especially while handling the joints.
Q7. Which combination of MIG gas is great for welding heavy-duty steel?
The 85% Argon – 15% CO2 is the best for such kind of material.
Q8. For how long should I weld at a time?
Do take a break after every 2 hours for the sake of your health and safety.
MY FAVORITE IS the Miller Millermatic 141 MIG Welder simply because I am a fulltime and professional welder. This machine is suited for the most complicated of tasks and is, therefore, quite reliable. However, this need not necessarily be the case with you. You have to determine your own tastes and preferences first and foremost before determining the one that most suits your cause.
It is not enough to learn the various MIG welders in vogue. You definitely want to enjoy the attendant benefits. It is against this backdrop that you now want to go ahead and acquire at least one that suits you. All the best as you take the first bold step to this end!