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#119206 11/01/24 09:18 AM
Joined: Jan 2016
Posts: 7,427
Likes: 135
NormK Offline OP
SENIOR TECHNICIAN
Just trivial rubbish but I just realised that this year it is 60 years since I bought my arc welder and it is still going as well as the day I bought it and I use it most days for something that needs welding. No wonder the company no longer exists. It cost me 54 pounds in1964 and from memory I was earning 15 pounds a week, so if you put it into todays calculations it would be a very expensive arc welder. Things have certainly got much cheaper and therefore they become disposable items. We whinge about the quality of products these days but we couldn't afford to buy them based on those figures. The Victa toe cutters were the same 10 years earlier at 54 pounds and wages at that time from memory were about 8/10 pounds a week. Times have changed a lot

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NormK #119207 11/01/24 07:08 PM
Joined: Sep 2015
Posts: 1,996
Likes: 137
SENIOR TECHNICIAN & HISTORIAN
Hi Norm,

I've forgotten what brand your arc welder is Norm ,I've still got 6 arc welders and 2 mig welders and a tig, never worried
about the Duty cycle on welders ,just weld all day and they still work .People throw them out at the side of the road here
and at scrap yards and they are still working welders.

The oldest I have is a Samson ,not sure how old it is, looks before 1965 with the wooden lift handles, probably impossible
to kill these old arc welders.

Cheers
Max.

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NormK #119208 11/01/24 08:08 PM
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NormK Offline OP
SENIOR TECHNICIAN
Hi Max, mine is a Monarc made in Albury. I have only ever see one other and it was on Gumtree about a year ago and he couldn't get $50 for it. I told him the copper in it is probably worth the $50. I struggle to pick mine up these days. I have a mig but they are so fiddley if you don't use them regularly, They play up so much I usually don't bother with it I had to weld up the handle on a Pope mower yesterday and he must have asked me at least 5 times if I could weld it. That is what jogged my memory that I had bought the welder in 1964 at Genco in Richmond

Last edited by NormK; 11/01/24 08:11 PM.
NormK #119209 11/01/24 09:24 PM
Joined: Sep 2015
Posts: 1,996
Likes: 137
SENIOR TECHNICIAN & HISTORIAN
Hi Norm,

Can't say I've seen many Monarc welders ,yes as you know that's the only problem with the old welders is the weight and the bulkiness makes them difficult to lift and carry ,the Samson says on the tag 415 - 425 West Botany Street Rockdale NSW and is about 60 to 70 kg with 4 solid cast iron wheels so you mostly wheel it around.

I find the migs are handy for welding thinner metal with gassless wire ,I could have used them with the last mower rack I
welded because the arc you turn the amps down and it won't weld then turn the amps up and you burn holes in the
thin metal box tube and galvanized steel but you can still weld the burn holes up with the arc and would have cost
10 times the price of arc rods if I used the mig wire with that amount of welding.

Cheers
Max.

maxwestern #119210 11/01/24 10:24 PM
Joined: Jul 2014
Posts: 110
Likes: 8
Apprentice level 2
I was taught how to arc weld in my 20s and then became friendly with a pro welder and spent years assisting another friend who ran a metal fabricating business therefore I never needed to weld anything myself until I moved interstate to our rural property.

A neighbour gave me a no- name arc welder and a packet of rods he had inherited but never used and after watching a few online videos I soon was confidently welding 2 to 10 mm steel, a very handy skill out in the bush.

A few months ago I was given an old WIA "Hobby Welder", heavy booger, just needed a bit of TLC and it works perfectly for my needs.

As far as " duty cycle" goes my two are supposedly at the bottom of the scale but as I'm not trying to build a replica Eiffel Tower who cares.

Yep, old school arc welders are great. I know nuthin' about Mig, Tig or Shmig, not welding thin stuff.

A good auto-darkening helmet and a big fan are two essentials. And an angle grinder to tidy things up.

NormK #119211 11/01/24 11:29 PM
Joined: Jan 2015
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AVB Offline
SENIOR TECHNICIAN
hmmm I have never gotten around to using a stick welder. My little Miller Cricket MIG/Wire welder has done well. Although I still prefer the Ace/Ox welder on some of the smallest items. I am however considering a TIG welder for doing aluminum.

The only real I had with the Cricket was I welding shop I brought it from kept selling me the wrong flux core wire. Once I got the right wire things have greatly improved on my welding.

NormK #119212 12/01/24 07:27 AM
Joined: Jan 2016
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NormK Offline OP
SENIOR TECHNICIAN
It is all a case of horses for courses, in this repair industry you are continually confronted with such a variety of materials that need welding. I haven't mastered ally welding, never really tried because I didn't have the equipment to do it and the cost of that always outweighed the return I would ever get on the few ally things I would have to repair.

NormK #119213 12/01/24 09:55 AM
Joined: Jan 2015
Posts: 1,470
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AVB Offline
SENIOR TECHNICIAN
Yes the multi-process welders are expensive to say the least. Having to learn to weld plastics was nerve racking but necessary with all the JD plastics coming in.

NormK #119214 12/01/24 10:19 AM
Joined: Jan 2016
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NormK Offline OP
SENIOR TECHNICIAN
Hi AVB,
yes the plastic welding is becoming essential. I haven't done enough practice on it, I have only had success with the staples. I have to get time to practice with the heat gun.

NormK #119217 13/01/24 11:08 AM
Joined: Sep 2015
Posts: 1,996
Likes: 137
SENIOR TECHNICIAN & HISTORIAN
I've used a soldering iron before to weld plastic and sometimes use the same type of plastic as filler rod.


NormK #119218 13/01/24 12:49 PM
Joined: Sep 2022
Posts: 53
Likes: 3
Trainee
I've welded my Specsaver plastic frames with a soldering iron a couple of times...ugly but works!

Danny

NormK #119219 13/01/24 05:11 PM
Joined: Jan 2016
Posts: 7,427
Likes: 135
NormK Offline OP
SENIOR TECHNICIAN
I have tried the soldering iron over the years but haven't had much joy with it

NormK #119220 14/01/24 12:34 AM
Joined: Jan 2015
Posts: 1,470
Likes: 23
AVB Offline
SENIOR TECHNICIAN
With the soldering iron you must use a variable temperature one as different plastics melt at different temps and they will dry out and burn if heat to heated too hot. I just build like welding metal and grind back to smooth finish. Luckily most of what I run into is ABS plastics.

Either way it takes a lot practice to get good at it.


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