Compact arc welders for remote travels.

Submitted: Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 17:17
ThreadID: 69010 Views:5499 Replies:11 FollowUps:16
This Thread has been Archived
Gday all,

Just curious If anyone takes a compact portable Arc Welder on extended trips.

We are in the very early planning stages of the “Big lap with our kids” (still years away). We will be doing a lot of the more remote trips solo with a camper trailer which has not been not purchased yet.
I have never been a big fan of camper trailers but for a trip of this timeframe It will be necessary for the sanity of SWMBO and the kids, IMO The trailer now becomes the Achilles heel of our setup for the rougher tracks.
If something does break and needs to be welded I realise you can use a couple of batteries joined, however I would like to avoid this If the situation ever arises.
Recently I have seen some very small portable compact Arc Welders which would be suitable, but I have not investigated into power needs etc. This would be something that will be stored deep in the belly of the trailer and hopefully never gets used.
Does anyone pack an Arc welder for there travels, I assume It would need a generator to run?????
Any thoughts or comments to or for would be appreciated

Cheers

Back Expand Un-Read 0 Moderator

Reply By: Wayne (NSW) - Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 17:21

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 17:21
Ingo57,

There was a post last week that covered welding in the bush.

Two batteries and jumper leads are all that is required. Plus the usual welding rod and eye protection.


Wayne
AnswerID: 365847

Reply By: Member - Fred B (NT) - Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 17:43

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 17:43
Electric arc welders use huge amounts of current, especially at striking the arc. You are going to need a decent genset to drive an arc welder properly; somewhere in the vicinity of a 4 to 5 kva genset (dependant upon a range of factors) , so the cheapest and easiest way is batterys. Less gear to lug around; it's enough to get you out of strife until you get a professional job done in town somewhere....
Fred B
VKS 737: Mobile/Selcall 1334

Lifetime Member
My Profile  My Blog  My Position  Send Message

AnswerID: 365852

Reply By: Member - AJB (VIC) - Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 17:59

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 17:59
The problem with running welding machines off generators is that you need a large generator to run the welding machine. The compact arc's you see may be inverter type and they need very clean power to run so you do not damage the welding machine. I have a couple of inverters and the smallest requires 4.7 KVA to run. My 5.8 KVA work gererator does the job but I would be more comfortable if it were a 7 or 8 KVA. They are work generators, not camping ones. I have used a cheap arc on the 5.8 and it worked OK and I didn't really care if that one snuffed it.
My EU2 generator would have no hope running a welding machine and if I tried i'd probably bugger both the machine and the generator and if I linked 2 EU's together I may bugger 2 generators. They are too expensive to test for me
The link mentioned above is the way to go to do the repairs IF they happen. Practice at home first. The only other option, although expensive is the 24/36V MIG, Ready MIG or something. It still requires you connect to a couple of batteries but they are a neat piece of gear.
AnswerID: 365854

Reply By: Member - DOZER- Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 18:18

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 18:18
I have taken a welder around oz. it was a converted alternator called an autoarc. Not only does it produce 185 amps at full revs, but it also produces 240 volts dc, good to run grinders, lights and whatever else that isnt speed controlable....this and an endless air ment i was sufficiently able to repair anything. When not in use, it was a stand alone charger for the second battery.....ie if the aux was flat, it put 85 amps into it...if it was full, it put nothing in... Today, you can buy migs that run off the main battery.....alot better than fitting a second alternator.
Andrew
b4 you bag me out, walk a mile in my shoes, then your a mile away and have my shoes :)

Member
My Profile  My Position  Send Message
Classifieds: Bt50/Ranger Speedy grande2 18x8 alloys (x4), Landcruiser 200 series/100 series 4 alloy rims with tyres and nuts GC

AnswerID: 365859

Reply By: Member - JohnR (Vic) - Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 18:34

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 18:34
Ingo, apparently no one has looked to the Piranha one below which works well on 12v from your battery. They will be hungry for power though just the same


Go to Piranha Offroad

We have a small DC welder that runs well on a 10 amp power point and that shouldn't be difficult on the Eu20i on a low duty cycle. I haven't tried it yet but have been thinking of it. Great little welder bought at a field day. Nice stable arc to work with.
Cheers,
Who?
John

Member
My Profile  My Position  Send Message

AnswerID: 365862

Follow Up By: Member - Ingo57 (NSW) - Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 20:53

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 20:53
Thanks John,

I will follow this up tomorrow

Cheers
0
FollowupID: 633616

Follow Up By: Peter_n_Margaret - Friday, May 22, 2009 at 18:29

Friday, May 22, 2009 at 18:29
The one pictured above is a Readywelder 2.
I carry one of those. Paid $700 for it new in 2005.
It gives 280A of welding power from 24V DC.
It is no toy!

Cheers,
Peter
OKA196 Motorhome
0
FollowupID: 633922

Reply By: Bob of KAOS - Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 18:52

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 18:52
Ingo

I reckon you can be so well prepared, and cover every eventuality, that you end up with an extra 200 kg of equipment onboard. Which of course means that breakage etc is more likely.

Why would you prefer to avoid the 24 V solution when it is light, effective, and requires little extra to be packed.

Bob
AnswerID: 365866

Reply By: Shaker - Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 19:09

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 19:09
A camper trailer will only be an 'Achilles heel' if you buy one of the glorified garden trailer types.
Many are as tough as your vehicle, if you are buying second hand, look at the Track Desert Eagle with MC2 suspenson.
AnswerID: 365872

Follow Up By: Member - Ingo57 (NSW) - Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 21:17

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 21:17
I call them an Achilles heal because I,ve never owned one & hear of all the bad stories of suspension collapsing, chasis cracking etc.

Currently we are looking at the All Terrain camper or the Tambo, but I am still deliberating on spending the extra on a trailer with Independent suspension.


0
FollowupID: 633619

Reply By: Member - Mick O (VIC) - Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 19:22

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 19:22
Ingo,

it can be a bit hit and miss using batteries but have a look at this entry from my trip last year. Explains the concept. If you find last weeks forum post, I also posted a handy link on bush welding that can be found on the Land Cruiser forum.

Bush Welding

Cheers Mick

''We knew from the experience of well-known travelers that the
trip would doubtless be attended with much hardship.''
Richard Maurice - 1903

Lifetime Member
My Profile  My Blog  Send Message
Moderator

AnswerID: 365876

Follow Up By: Member - Ingo57 (NSW) - Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 21:34

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 21:34
G'day Mick,

Thanks for that mate.

What are your thoughts on the 12v Piranha Mig that John R posted above, have you seen or heard anything about this set up?

Cheers
0
FollowupID: 633621

Reply By: D200Dug- Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 19:35

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 19:35
Find the ABC series "Bush Mechanics" a wonderful ( and very funny ) look at how to keep cars going in the bush.

Lots of strange tips.

There is nothing you cannot do with a bit of fencing wire and a pair of pliers.
AnswerID: 365880

Reply By:- Thursday, May 21, 2009 at 00:09

Thursday, May 21, 2009 at 00:09
years ago about 20-25 that is my boss on a farm near bodallin (wa)
had a welder/power plug unit under the boneit off the datsun ute
that run off the alternater i think that the alternater came with the unit and was stronger .its so long ago i do not remeber were it was from but i remeber useing it to weld and grind and weld really well do not now if this helps
dekiwi
AnswerID: 365918

Reply By: Member - Beatit (QLD) - Thursday, May 21, 2009 at 07:17

Thursday, May 21, 2009 at 07:17
G'day Ingo,

You mean like this?

Image Could Not Be Found

We have done several trips this way and can testify that it works quite well. Having been screwed by a repairer in a remote situation makes you more aware for including something like a welder. We always take a gennie and the inverter welder weighs about 4Kg then add to that a grinder and some other gear like some scrap steel it really doesn't add muchweight in my opinion but it adds a lot of comfort.

We have used it several times and just knowing that you can makes the thought of a breakage less of a problem.

Kind regards
AnswerID: 365929

Follow Up By: Member - Fred B (NT) - Thursday, May 21, 2009 at 10:07

Thursday, May 21, 2009 at 10:07
Hi Beatit,
would you be able to give us some more details of your "welder / genset" set up please? What inverter welder? How much does it draw etc....?
Thanks.
Fred B
VKS 737: Mobile/Selcall 1334

Lifetime Member
My Profile  My Blog  My Position  Send Message

0
FollowupID: 633667

Follow Up By: Member - Ingo57 (NSW) - Thursday, May 21, 2009 at 10:08

Thursday, May 21, 2009 at 10:08
G'day Theo,

Right on mate!!!! Thats exactly what I was thinking. Also good to see that its been trialed and proven (How a picture can tell a thousand words).

What brand and size is your Inverter welder??

Many thanks for the post and Pic.

Cheers Ingo
0
FollowupID: 633668

Follow Up By: Member - Beatit (QLD) - Thursday, May 21, 2009 at 10:30

Thursday, May 21, 2009 at 10:30
G'day Guys,

It's a Eutectic brand but I don't have the specs handy, they are located here though,

Welder info

I couldn't find my model as the one I bought did not have the TIG function.

We run it on the gennie at about 40 AMPs but probably can do more if you can weld (unlike me!) also we have access to another 20i with a cable but have not had to join them up. So one 20i which we have run on eco and flat out until it trips to work out that at about 40 we can continue to weld.

Kind regards
0
FollowupID: 633672

Follow Up By: Member - Porl - Thursday, May 21, 2009 at 10:45

Thursday, May 21, 2009 at 10:45
Hey Beatit

So was it the 74kg one? The one in the pic doesn't look like it would weigh that much but that seemed to be the smallest model i could find on the web page link.
0
FollowupID: 633674

Follow Up By: Member - Ingo57 (NSW) - Thursday, May 21, 2009 at 10:47

Thursday, May 21, 2009 at 10:47
Gday Porl,

This is the direct link

http://www.castolin.com/wCastolin_com/products/welding/ultramax2.php
0
FollowupID: 633675

Follow Up By: Member - Beatit (QLD) - Thursday, May 21, 2009 at 10:49

Thursday, May 21, 2009 at 10:49
Yes it looks like the Ultramax but a less functional model - it doesn't have TIG. Maybe they have superceeded the model to the Ultramax.

Kind regards
0
FollowupID: 633676

Follow Up By: Member - Porl - Thursday, May 21, 2009 at 10:50

Thursday, May 21, 2009 at 10:50
4.3kg, h#ly cr@p I gotta get one.
0
FollowupID: 633677

Follow Up By: Member - Ingo57 (NSW) - Thursday, May 21, 2009 at 10:55

Thursday, May 21, 2009 at 10:55
h#ly cr@p just rang em $747.00
0
FollowupID: 633679

Follow Up By: Member - Beatit (QLD) - Thursday, May 21, 2009 at 10:58

Thursday, May 21, 2009 at 10:58
They've gotten cheaper!!!!! Think I paid $850 for mine. There are cheaper knock off available now I believe. At the time I was looking there was not much choice.

Kind regards
0
FollowupID: 633681

Follow Up By: Member - Beatit (QLD) - Thursday, May 21, 2009 at 11:02

Thursday, May 21, 2009 at 11:02
PS From memory the TIG function model was a couple of hundred more hence the ommision - wish I had it!

Kind regards
0
FollowupID: 633682

Follow Up By: Member - Ingo57 (NSW) - Thursday, May 21, 2009 at 15:42

Thursday, May 21, 2009 at 15:42
Just found out some more Info to share If anyone is Interested

Cigweld make a 100amp Inverter stick welder for $445.00, you can also buy a tig kit separately (which I didnt price).
The unit weighs 5.5kg comes with a starter kit: mask, gloves, electrodes etc and all packed in a case insulated with foam.
Probably not as good a build quality as the one above in the pic but pretty much the same size.
The next models up are a 130amp then a 170 after these they start getting a bit heavy.

Thanks again for the heads up Theo.
Any bloke that drives a 4.8 has always got good Ideas. LOL

Cheers

0
FollowupID: 633716

Follow Up By: Member - Beatit (QLD) - Thursday, May 21, 2009 at 15:47

Thursday, May 21, 2009 at 15:47
HAHAHAHA My wife says differently! I like my4.8 though and I did notice we had that in common!

Kind regards
0
FollowupID: 633717

Sponsored Links

Popular Products (14)