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Hard wire mig or Dual Shield ?

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Hard wire mig or Dual Shield ?

Postby homeboy » Thu Dec 28, 2017 6:38 pm

I have a 250A wire welder coming and am debating using fcaw-G instead of straight mig. I have used flux core for a few years and have no problem with using it other than some smoke but I have vent fans that pretty much take care of that. My understanding is that flux-core is much more idiot proof with the higher heat and penetration which works for me. Just like some thoughts from people who use fcaw-G . I am a hobbyest and do some repairs and build a few trailers etc. The occasional 50yr old piece of rusty broken farm equip shows up and I want something that will weld it securely without having to worry about it holding. I have a 180a welder on flux core which I can switch to mig for the light stuff. Any thoughts? :?
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Re: Hard wire mig or Dual Shield ?

Postby LtBadd » Thu Dec 28, 2017 7:09 pm

I have a Lincoln PM 180 dual voltage unit at work and only run FCAW-s and it's great. If you've ever seen Jody's videos with him and JD Brewer you'll know JD really likes the FCAW dual shield for the structural work he does
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Re: Hard wire mig or Dual Shield ?

Postby homeboy » Thu Dec 28, 2017 9:41 pm

The real reason I got the new welder ( 60% duty cycle at 250A ) is the Lincoln 180 had to take too many rests when welding at higher amps or a lot like a trailer. I'am trying to get the best bang for the buck. The fcaw-G looks great but I am tending to stick with the fcaw. This is an inverter welder at under 70lb so still portable with fcaw. What gets me is many of these " experts " ( except Jody, he did a nice fcaw weld ) weld a botched up mess with fcaw, spatter from hell and generally speak of it as a poor second choice! Makes me wonder if they have stocks in the welding gas companies. I get other hobbiests ask, you got gas? When I say NO they look at me like I just sprouted a third eye. If I ever figure out how to run this new phone I'll send pictures of fcaw welds clean with just a quick hit with a wire wheel in a drill. Not saying I'am a good welder but it proves it doesn't have to look like a dog's breakfast. Vented!! Thanks for your advice. :roll:
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Re: Hard wire mig or Dual Shield ?

Postby PeteM » Fri Dec 29, 2017 1:27 pm

I've used fcaw-g a ton and it is a great process. Once you're dialed in for the welds you're doing its as clean, smooth, and durable as anything can be.

I've used Select-Arc to make thousands of feet of weld on rusty acid poached coal barge hoppers. Lincoln was a tad finicky on that type of stuff, but great on new steel.

It may be a bit more pricey, but when you have to really put the hammer down it is the best.
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Re: Hard wire mig or Dual Shield ?

Postby Poleframer » Tue Jan 02, 2018 6:00 pm

Another option would be to go to 80/20 gas mix and use spray transfer when you can (flat and horizontal only).
I gather that mix will work for either spray or short circuit.
I've looked into fcaw-g but man that wire is spendy compared to e70s6, and with .035 wire spooled up you can do either process with just a change of settings, just be sure to have at least a 250 amp gun, a small gun gets hot in a hurry with spray.
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Re: Hard wire mig or Dual Shield ?

Postby homeboy » Tue Jan 02, 2018 9:46 pm

Thanks for the replies and advice. Agreed the fcaw-g looks to die for but is comparativly pricey and seems a bit harder to find in single 10lb rolls. One factor is I have 2 shops. My smaller home shop is where I do most of my playing but sometimes I move some equipment to my bigger shop which is a carryover from my past construction career for bigger stuff, hence the importance of portability. The new welder is 110/220 which like my Hypertherm 30/air makes it extremely versitile for doing whatever/wherever. On the weekend I installed some stainless shelf liners in a local restaurant that had to be field notched.Plugged plasma in wall receptical and done. One question I have also is if according to the door chart past a certain voltage/amperage its recomended to switch from .035 to .045 wire is there any reason why just upping the wire speed on .035 isn't ok? Appreciate the input. :D
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Re: Hard wire mig or Dual Shield ?

Postby Poland308 » Tue Jan 02, 2018 10:29 pm

There is a maximum achievable amps for any given wire diameter. You can increase feed speed to overcome this to a point, but there are limitations.
I have more questions than answers

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Re: Hard wire mig or Dual Shield ?

Postby homeboy » Wed Jan 03, 2018 12:08 am

Thanks. I have been trying to find any info on that but no luck so far. I am thinking of possibly just going with .045 which should cover most anything I would do with up to 250amp. Big learning curve to try to get everything to fit so down the road I wouldn't be wishing I did something different. That makes it interesting. :roll:
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Re: Hard wire mig or Dual Shield ?

Postby Poland308 » Wed Jan 03, 2018 9:58 pm

Can’t remember what the post was but someone put up the chart for figuring the max achievable amps. Maybe they will post it again.
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Re: Hard wire mig or Dual Shield ?

Postby homeboy » Thu Jan 04, 2018 2:17 pm

This chart may have some usefull info. https://sep.yimg.com/ay/weldingdirect/m ... hart-4.gif :shock:
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