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Discussion Starter #1
I know many folks on his forum have skills ranging from reloading to log cabin restoration to tuning and more.

How many novice or expert welders it fabricators do we have out there? Novice, self taught here.

About 12 years ago I bought my first welder to do some small projects on my first jeep. Making brackets for air tanks, repairing exhaust and such. It was a beginner machine and served me well through the years. Lincoln 115v Home Depot special. Most of that time it was loaded with flux core wire and remained portable. We would take it to the trails and did some work that it wasn’t rated for and it always came through in a pinch. Welding driveshafts or cracked frames even. Eventually outfitted it for mig and continued to use it with good results.

I’ve been building a new rock crawler and a new skill I’ve picked up is tube bending. I picked up a very high quality tube bender for cheap second hand. jD squared model 3, outfitted it with swag Offroad’s hydraulic ram mount and added an air operated hydraulic ram so it runs like a dream. My v-twin belt drive air compressor does the work instead of my arms. Also, a big advantage of a hydraulic bender is that it doesn’t need to be bolted to the floor in the middle of the shop. I have mine welded to an old engine hoist stand so i can roll it back to the corner when not using it.

Building a roll cage and bumpers has been a lot of fun becuase it requires a lot of thinking and developing new skills. Multiple bends in the same plane requires attention to detail while bends on multiple planes requires repeatable accuracy.

Back to the welding, most of the project has been done with 1.75” OD x .120” wall tubing. 115v volt welder can handle this job but barely. There are some heavier duty parts of the job coming up including 1/4” material and suspension hangers welded to the frame and I didn’t trust my 115v with the task. I hate borrowing tools so I sold my 115v machine and picked up an ESAB rebel 115v/230v machine. Haven’t received the product yet but I’m pretty excited about it. There are many great machines out there but with the current (expiring soon) rebate and reviews I went with the ESAB.

Anyway what kind of equipment are you guys running for your cool projects?
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Not as cool as you, but i’m Self taught. Running a Hobart mig welder. Done pretty much everything on an off-road Jeep YJ. Even reapair broken metal furnitures.
That’s very cool. I looked at Hobart when I was in the market for a 230/115 combo machine.

I’ve also repaired furniture for family members and also people have had me repair bbq grills, lawnmowers and even a tiny stereo knob that I had to hold with tweezers.
 

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Got a cnc 4 axis milling machine, engine lathe (gun smith) mig and tig welders. Plasma cutter. Saws, drill presses. Havent bought the ZR2 Duramax yet. Saving to reduce monthly payment. Probably go for the bison after first of year.
 
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