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Old 05-25-2022, 03:48 PM   #1
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Portable Stick Welders

I'm full-time in a 2019 Jayco North Point 387RDFS, pulling with a 2018 GMC Sierra 3500 Long bed, DRW. As with any fifth wheel or RV, things break.

I'm looking for a portable welder that can make emergency welds adequate to get me to a park or shop where I can have a professional welder make repairs.

I'm looking for opinions on portable welders. I'm looking at this stick welder and a pack of 3/32 E 7014 rods.

https://www.harborfreight.com/stick-...der-64978.html

If there is a stick welder that is better suited as a 120v/240v stick welder, I'd appreciate a link.

Second question: A 50AMP RV electrical post has two 120v/50AMP legs. Is there an adapter that will plug into a 50AMP RV post and convert the output to 240v to run a welder in 240v mode?
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Old 05-25-2022, 03:58 PM   #2
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That welder should work fine for seldom use. You can make an adapter easy enough, get a RV 50 amp male plug and a 30 amp female receptical for the welder to plug into. Connect to 50 amp and 30 amp together with 10 ga. SO cord. I would make the adapter cord lenght about 1 foot or so long. When finished it will look similar to a RV "dog bone".
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Old 05-25-2022, 04:00 PM   #3
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Dave,
I would check Ebay, and Amazon, as well as craig's list.
You should be able to find a small buzz box that runs on 220 or even 120 volts and will still run a 3/32' e 7014 rod, for something just under $200.00.
I did.

Mike in Colorado
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Old 05-25-2022, 04:48 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JETAV8R View Post

Second question: A 50AMP RV electrical post has two 120v/50AMP legs. Is there an adapter that will plug into a 50AMP RV post and convert the output to 240v to run a welder in 240v mode?
You might want to double check your knowledge on this.

Every standard 50amp RV receptacle I have seen in 240v. L1 + L2 = 240v. In most RV's nothing runs on 240v, however that does not mean it is not available.

Deepening on what you are trying to plug into a 14-50R socket (50amp/240v "RV"), you many need an adapter for a different plug plug type to fit your welder.

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Old 05-25-2022, 05:00 PM   #5
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Are you an experienced welder? If not then a small MIG welder might be a better option as it is easier to use for a novice. If you don’t want carry a bottle of gas you can use flux core wire instead.
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Old 05-25-2022, 05:11 PM   #6
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It will probably work fine on 240, not so good on 120. While I agree that a MIG machine is easier to use, it's also way easier for a beginner to make cold welds with a MIG. The normal progression for learning is Oxy-Acetylene first to "learn about the puddle", then stick, then MIG and from that point on to the more elite processes if desired. Most of the time you can learn all of this at a local community college in their "Welding 101" class for very little money and they provide everything. It's all about the puddle, many beginners get a MIG machine and end up gluing the metal together instead of melting it together. OK for yard art, not OK for on road suspension. Learn the puddle.
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Old 05-26-2022, 07:00 AM   #7
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It will probably work fine on 240, not so good on 120. While I agree that a MIG machine is easier to use, it's also way easier for a beginner to make cold welds with a MIG. The normal progression for learning is Oxy-Acetylene first to "learn about the puddle", then stick, then MIG and from that point on to the more elite processes if desired. Most of the time you can learn all of this at a local community college in their "Welding 101" class for very little money and they provide everything. It's all about the puddle, many beginners get a MIG machine and end up gluing the metal together instead of melting it together. OK for yard art, not OK for on road suspension. Learn the puddle.
Yep, IMHO arc is much easier to use... more intuitive. Mig requires playing with a lot of settings.

One thing that complicates things is that the OP was talking about welding suspension stuff... which likely requires welding upside down... very difficult with ARC welding... mig would be better in that setting...
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Old 05-26-2022, 08:55 AM   #8
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Has the op ever used a stick welder? Itís more of an art than most think. If you donít have some skill with one it will be more frustration than help.
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Old 05-26-2022, 09:01 AM   #9
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I agree with Brian.
Being a retired welding engineer from John Deere, (Waterloo, Iowa plant) for 12+ years, about 90% of the kids I trained to MIG weld had their wire feed (amps) too high, and the welds look like spaghetti laid in the joint. And of course, they all failed a root bend test. Once I convinced them to up the voltage a bit, their welds looked and tested better. Seems like that is the hardest thing to teach a new welder.
Learning to "puddle" an Oxy joint is sooooo much fun.

Mike in Colorado

PS; The best rod for overhead welding is E-7018, and being a "low Hydrogen" rod, it needs to be warmed up prior to welding, so the OP will need an oven to carry along. I don't think that is practical. E-7014 "can" be used if he keeps the arc short.
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Old 05-26-2022, 03:53 PM   #10
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Many campgrounds/RV parks do not allow any kind of "repair" work to be done. I've been in one that would not even allow me to replace the windshield wipers on my towed (left the next day). I find it hard to believe that any cg/park would allow a welder to be run on their electric.
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Old 05-26-2022, 06:44 PM   #11
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The RV park 50 amp is already 240v. Itís your trailer breaker panel that keeps the two legs separated.
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Old 05-26-2022, 07:07 PM   #12
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IF it's broke and needs welding done in order to continue traveling......you are not going to do it

There's 'welders' (machines'), 'weldors' (those that weld) and 'dobbers' (those that attempt to weld)
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Old 05-26-2022, 07:28 PM   #13
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Quote:
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Many campgrounds/RV parks do not allow any kind of "repair" work to be done. I've been in one that would not even allow me to replace the windshield wipers on my towed (left the next day). I find it hard to believe that any cg/park would allow a welder to be run on their electric.
How would they move a broken rig then? The key above was emergency. Either the OP will have to fix it or a mobile tech will.

I had a broken spring on my trailer once. It was not moving until fixed, regardless of who was doing the fixing.

Just one more reason I rarely use campground.
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Old 05-26-2022, 07:31 PM   #14
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Instead of investing in a welder waiting for something to break why not just upgrade the suspension and replace with heavy duty components?
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