Types of MIG Welders: What to Consider When Buying!

You might be wondering which is the best MIG welder for you. There are various MIG welders and it can be quite difficult to know which one is great for your project.

The problem gets worse if you’re a beginner. However, even experienced welders often encounter a bit of difficulty when choosing MIG welders.

Whether you are an experienced welder or just a beginner, we feel your pain. Here is a look at the different types of MIG welders.

Types of MIG Welders

All You Need to Know About the Different MIG Welders

Before diving into the different MIG welders, it’s important to know how they work. A MIG welder uses electricity to weld metals. The MIG welder has a wire that is fed into the electrode.

When powered by electricity, the electrode forms an arc at the point of contact with the metal. The arc is extremely hot and reaches a temperature of between 3,000-20,000 0 C. This immediately melts the metal and the wire. Once melted, the wire merges with the metal. The process is quite easy and fast.

MIG welding is great for DIY projects because it is easy and the equipment isn’t that expensive. The three main types:

  • The gas-less MIG welder
  • The bare wire welder

The Gasless MIG Welders

The gas-less MIG welder does not have a gas shielding the wire and the metal during the welding process. Gas-less MIG welders are mainly used outdoors and they are more preferred because of the following reasons:

  • No need for gas or flow meter
  • Does not require a gas supply
  • Much safer because there is no risk that the shielding gas could create a hazard
  • Faster and more efficient
  • Easy to learn

The gas-less MIG usually comes with flux-cored wire. The flux-core wire thus shields the arc from being contaminated during the welding process.

The Bare Wire MIG Welder

The bare wire MIG welder comes with shielding gas to prevent the welding process from getting contaminated. The main gases that are used in

shielding are:

  • Carbon dioxide
  • Helium
  • Argon

The commonly used gas for shielding is argon. However, the three gases used together depending on the type of metals being welded. If you are not sure which welding gas to use, learn the properties of the welding wire and metal to see if they are compatible.

Understanding Wire Feed Welders: Essentials for MIG Welding

Wire Feed welders are used for MIG welding. They get their name because, use a process called wire feeding to create the arc that melts the metal together. Wire feed welders allow for more control than other types of welders, and can be custom set to different thicknesses depending on the type of metal being welded.

What are the benefits of using wire feed welders?

  • They are easier to use.
  • Faster and cleaner welds
  • The tool is a little less expensive than a MIG welder.
  • Less space required for storage and transport of the equipment.
  • The tool is portable, making it easier to keep working even if the power goes out because it can be plugged into a generator.

Key Factors to Consider Before Buying a MIG Welder

When buying a Mig welder, there are many considerations that can affect the final product’s usefulness and performance. For example, a hobbyist who mainly works on small projects may not need a very large welder.

On the other hand, a person intending to make a living from their welding skills might need a much larger welder with more initial cost and energy consumption. Another consideration is whether the welder will be used indoors or outdoors.

Here’s the Bottom Line

Both gas-less and bare wire MIG welders will give you great welds. Moreover, both are perfect for working on thin and thick metals. For instance, both the gas-less and bare wire MIG welders can weld metals as thin as 26-gauge.

MIG welding is very easy and relatively cheaper when compared to other types of welding. Before deciding which MIG welder you want to use, first take the following steps:

  • Determine that nature of your project
  • Know the properties of the metals you’ll weld
  • Visit a couple of welding supply stores
  • Settle on the best MIG welder
  • And begin your welding project
  • Use a bare wire MIG welder is if you’re working indoors
  • Use a gas-less MIG welder if you’re working outdoors.