Precious Metals Forum

Go Back   Precious Metals Forum > Bunker Talk > BSTS

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
Old 08-17-2012, 08:41 AM   #1
ADK
Predaceous stink bug
 
ADK's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Backwoods of NY
Posts: 223
Liked: 123 times
Emergency Generator / Welder

Good morning guys ---

I have a pretty high end welder for personal use, but I love welding, making things, and being able to fix stuff. It's a regular 220v fed machine.

I'm thinking of selling it and paying a bit more to get hooked up with a generator welder. It's a Miller Trailblazer 302 gas --- since some of you guys seem to be in the construction trades, you might know that machine.

Any thoughts on the importance of a generator for your home? Do any of you guys run this setup? What's the deal with hooking a disconnect and transfer switch to run the generator right to your panel box in the house?

I'll loose the ability to weld aluminum with much quality off the bat, but I find that most work that I do (some for pay, most for myself) includes stainless steel and mild steel, which can be run DC. I would still be able to run AC stick. I can eventually add the additional "plug in" units to the generator that would allow me to run quality welds on aluminum if I really needed to --- I probably wouldn't buy it unless I had a job paying for that tool.

I'm just throwing this out there to like-minded folks to see what you think.

Thanks!

ADK
__________________
I like the idea of trading silver with the gentlemen while keeping gold like a king and always appearing as a peasant...

Last edited by ADK; 08-17-2012 at 09:19 AM.
ADK is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-17-2012, 09:48 AM   #2
Yellow Jacket
 
DCFusor's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Floyd, Virginia
Posts: 1,682
Liked: 1233 times
I have a huge hobart I'd sell ya, but I wouldn't be doing you much of a favor.

You are probably better off separating the functions. EG, have a good generator (and transfer switch), and a good welding rig - both specialized to their tasks.

In addition to a switchover switch, many people find it wise to NOT switch everything, so they can use a more-reasonably sized generator. It's far less inefficient to have a generator the "right size" for the job, not just get a huge one that can handle things you don't need - by whatever definition, that could cause you to need one 3 or 4 times larger (electric water heat, HVAC come to mind) that aren't on most of the time. Gas engines are most wasteful at low throttle, and most homes can get by on a fairly tiny generator if those couple huge loads aren't there. This might require adding another breaker box for just the "emergency" loads and only switching that one to the generator.

For example, that 20kw hobart eats more gasoline per hour with no load at all than a fully loaded 3kw one does. Just sayin.

FYI, I do a lot of welding here and have every welder known to man, or nearly.
For Al and SS - TIG is the way. For sheer "put down the weldment" wire welding (with gas) is the way. I've only used that Hobart for metal thicker than 3/8" as it's not very controllable below that. Depends on what you do, obviously. I even have oxy-acet for brazing, cutting, and silver soldering (as well as quartz blowing).
DCFusor is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-17-2012, 10:46 AM   #3
ADK
Predaceous stink bug
 
ADK's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Backwoods of NY
Posts: 223
Liked: 123 times
Thanks for the idea on having a separate breaker box. I like that route.

I'm interested in only running the critical items for, as you said, a smaller generator. I'd like to run the boiler and circulating pumps which are low draw, some lights, items for cooking, and the washing machine --- things can air dry. (Dryers are around 5,000 watts! What a waste!) Stove and water heater are gas.

The Miller TB 302 is an 11kw generator.

I currently have a Miller Dynasty 200DX with all of the trimmings. It's a fantastic welder for my use --- mostly stainless. I also TIG mild steel if I am working small parts, but there is just something fun running stick on mild steel if the project is big enough. I have a plasma cutter, as well. I would keep the cutter.

I've toyed with getting a MIG and I may eventually.

Maybe I'll keep the Dynasty and get the TB unit as a generator and stick welder... Hmmmm...

Thanks for the input!

ADK
__________________
I like the idea of trading silver with the gentlemen while keeping gold like a king and always appearing as a peasant...
ADK is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-17-2012, 11:14 AM   #4
Yellow Jacket
 
DCFusor's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Floyd, Virginia
Posts: 1,682
Liked: 1233 times
Most homes will run quite well on something like a Champion (honda copy) OHV 6.5 hp, 3300w generator, mine does that easily. You're talking a little over $300 for something that will often go 10-12 hours on a 4 gal tank of gas here.

I got a great TIG from Grizzly tool. The Harbor freight one stinks. The "name brands" are twice the cost and actually no better.

I sense you just want the Miller...But after owning something similar myself...way over a gallon/hour...it's ok for welding big stuff, just about totally worthless as a backup generator, and a heck of a lot more noise - the fans alone...
DCFusor is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-17-2012, 11:19 AM   #5
Golden Cockroach
 
PMBug's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: In Scrooge McDuck's vault
Posts: 7,094
Liked: 2456 times
After hurricane Ike, we acquired a generator and had the box to our home reconfigured so we can connect it to the generator and run specific circuits. I don't have the generator specs handy, but it is sufficient to run all the important things.
__________________
The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step. - Lao Tzu

Important stuff: PMBug 101 * Forum Guidelines * Support PMBug
PMBug is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-17-2012, 11:25 AM   #6
Predaceous stink bug
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Posts: 191
Liked: 134 times
A buddy of mine used his big welder in an extended power outage.It worked fine but ate alot of gas,he's a farmer so he had gas in tanks on the farm & was OK.
We installed a 20 Kw whole house generating system & have a 1000 gal propane tank to power it.This will power everything,well pump,AC,just like having regular power.

GOD BLESS OUR TROOPS!!!
BigJim is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-17-2012, 01:17 PM   #7
ADK
Predaceous stink bug
 
ADK's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Backwoods of NY
Posts: 223
Liked: 123 times
DCFusor --- I do like the idea of the Miller. I've had a few Miller machines and always had good luck with them. I've always been of the mindset that I'm too poor to buy cheap tools. But, I agree that there are some good deals out there that aren't Lincoln Red or Miller Blue. I'll definitely look into a stand-alone generator along the 3300w realm. I'll have to look at my potential loading a little closer.

It seems like a general consensus that the big welder as a generator would be a waste of fuel. Most of what I weld is 5/8 thickness or less anyhow.

I think that I might just go with the stand-alone generator and keep the Dynasty.

PMBug --- I would be curious to know what wattage generator / brand you use and how that's worked out for you.

BigJim --- Now that's a serious setup!
__________________
I like the idea of trading silver with the gentlemen while keeping gold like a king and always appearing as a peasant...
ADK is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-17-2012, 01:46 PM   #8
Yellow Jacket
 
DCFusor's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Floyd, Virginia
Posts: 1,682
Liked: 1233 times
Due to the rest of my lashup, I can actually run my house on a tiny Honda inverter-generator, as all it has to do is keep up with my average drain - I have 24 kwh worth of batteries and some big inverters to actually run things. This Honda is the second most efficient generator you can buy. The first? My Volt. No kidding, the tech in there can't be matched at any price right now but it's kind of expensive to use for just that. Of course, it's also my car - I'm just back from driving it 47 miles on a solar charge. I just added a 1.3kw inverter to it to run the same battery charger I run off the tiny Honda (which BTW, is nearly silent too).
Maybe 6-10 hours off less than one gallon of gas for that guy when it's putting out 600-700w or so - could be worse! In the case of the Volt, it just cycles its much larger engine on and off as required, and the power to me comes off its own batteries. It gets nearly twice the watt hours/gallon that the honda does, it's about twice as good as the 3300w one, and that's about 3x better than the large welder. I can't use the full few hundred amps out of that without putting a hurt on my house batteries. So you can see - the efficiency range is huge, not "something tiny at the margin". The "Efficient generator" on my older web page (not linked here) still gets more hits than anything else. That one was 24v DC - generator from a P51 mustang and a tweaked honda engine.

http://www.coultersmithing.com/forum...php?f=48&t=455

A couple of my neighbours have the big setup with the propane etc, and every farmer has something like that. They are great for when the grid goes down for only a day or two...but wow, the next time they fill that propane tank...you'd better sit down before opening the bill.

This is one of those things that really depends on your use-case. In my case, the grid is always down, but I have solar panels - even a dark day gets me something from those...battery backup, all that. So all I need is to keep up on average.

Due to the house batteries/inverters - I live on what amounts to a huge UPS system. I can still weld or run the other big machines even if it's dark out and all I have is the tiny honda...After all, I can't weld continuously, I have to take a break, and things catch up again while I do.

I like the Miller/Hobart stuff too, BTW.
DCFusor is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On



All times are GMT -5. The time now is 04:09 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® from Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Content Relevant URLs by vBSEO 3.6.0 PL2 ©2011, Crawlability, Inc.
Content of PMBug.com copyright © 2011 - 2019 Measuring Up. All Rights Reserved.