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  #11  
Old 04-11-2009, 02:27 PM
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Gary,
Number One, I suggest buying Miller's student's package. You'll find it listed on millers website. You get allot of great info of all forms of welding, included in the package. It's well worth the money.
Second, I suggest Tig, get AC/DC machine, it will do stick also. Your allready have a mig. Tig is a challenging skill to learn. It takes practice to master, but it's fun to do! I enjoy just laying down beads with tig.
Right now there's quite a few welders being sold on craigs list. For someone just starting out, some serious money can be saved.
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  #12  
Old 04-11-2009, 02:31 PM
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Gary, I think it's great what you're doing with your son but I'd encourage you to buy machines at a hobbyist level for now and upgrade as both of you progress along. When I was 14, my dad pushed me towards woodworking and crappy cars. He tried hard, and managed to teach me a lot. But in the short, rebellious years after that I intentionally drifted away from what he was trying to help me understand.

I gave "my way" at life a shot before I was able to fall back on his lessons. Of all the tools we own, and all the things he taught me, I am most grateful for the gift of confidence in my own abilities. The money for tools has always found a way to appear when needed, but I never could have afforded the education to teach me to "try".


So, for your welder purchase I'm going to recommend the same thing most everyone gets--the next step. Hunt around for a 220v 180-210 class welder. Maybe even one with dual voltage 110/220 like Walker's trying to find. The Lincoln Tombstone welders have taught a lot of folks, and they're still in use everywhere. The ac/dc units could be good for a lifetime in hobbyist use. Since you've already got the torch setup, a plasma machine isn't quite a priority but it'll be a nice addition. I'll second the suggestion to stay away from multi-process machines for the very same reason--one part breaks then everything stops.

When and if your boy becomes a "pro" then he'll be able to look around and see what tools he's going to need in his career. Depending which career path he takes will determine his needs. Right now that's too far away to even guess at.
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  #13  
Old 04-11-2009, 03:34 PM
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WOW!!! Awesome ideas folks. Thank you. This gives me lots more great stuff to think about. I'm going to contact Madam X for my Homer avatar. BEAUTIFUL!!!

I really appreciate the feedback. I talked my son today and he wants to join the forum. So maybe in a few days you'll see another newbie from Kalifornia.
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  #14  
Old 04-11-2009, 03:43 PM
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Originally Posted by garythenuke View Post

I really appreciate the feedback. I talked my son today and he wants to join the forum. So maybe in a few days you'll see another newbie from Kalifornia.
We'll need to check the list & see if there's room in our allotment for California.
As everybody should know by now, too many Californians is known by the State of Texas to cause cancer.
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  #15  
Old 04-11-2009, 04:21 PM
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I'll add my 2 cents.
My three sons are all in the trades. They all got their start in my various home shops. The oldest, Jimmy started welding with my stuff at about your sons age. He really took a shine to it. He took welding as a vocation in high school. Then continued at a local technical school. He competed in the old V.I.C.A. competition. and was national welding champ for two years, in high school, and "post secondary" at tech school. Then he got into the Local "Millwrights union" about seventeen years ago and currently is a manager with GE Energy, making well over six figures a year.
#2 Son Tom took machining at tech school. He's been working at a local shop for about 15 years. He makes good money. They just sent him to Chicago to learn how to program and run a new machine that they just bought.
#3 son John took a while to figure out what he wanted. He also got his start with my shop. He took machining at the same technical school as Jimmy. He's worked at various shops in the local area. He's taken more classes to further his skills including welding. He was working as a tool maker/moldmaker at the local "Molex plant". But the economy got him. He took a voluntary layoff for ten weeks pay and benefits. Jimmy put a word in for for him, and he also just joined the millwrights union.
That should be pretty recession proof, even for the anti Christ's screwed up economy.
Also that would be:
welder (the machine)
Weldor (the person)
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  #16  
Old 04-11-2009, 07:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fla Jim View Post
I'll add my 2 cents.
My three sons are all in the trades. They all got their start in my various home shops. The oldest, Jimmy started welding with my stuff at about your sons age. He really took a shine to it. He took welding as a vocation in high school. Then continued at a local technical school. He competed in the old V.I.C.A. competition. and was national welding champ for two years, in high school, and "post secondary" at tech school. Then he got into the Local "Millwrights union" about seventeen years ago and currently is a manager with GE Energy, making well over six figures a year.
#2 Son Tom took machining at tech school. He's been working at a local shop for about 15 years. He makes good money. They just sent him to Chicago to learn how to program and run a new machine that they just bought.
#3 son John took a while to figure out what he wanted. He also got his start with my shop. He took machining at the same technical school as Jimmy. He's worked at various shops in the local area. He's taken more classes to further his skills including welding. He was working as a tool maker/moldmaker at the local "Molex plant". But the economy got him. He took a voluntary layoff for ten weeks pay and benefits. Jimmy put a word in for for him, and he also just joined the millwrights union.
That should be pretty recession proof, even for the anti Christ's screwed up economy.
Also that would be:
welder (the machine)
Weldor (the person)
Very inspiring. Thank you. And thank you for the clarification on the -er versus -or suffixes. I will use them for sure.
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  #17  
Old 04-11-2009, 07:59 PM
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I've got to agree with Dubby on the welder selection. I am finishing up the current phase of a land fill gas project at UNH. Another welder and I made 400 X-ray welds with 2 1970's Tombstones. No failures ( welds or machines). Over the years I have never had a Lincoln welder fail, break, burn up, or otherwise not do its' job. I have wheeled all manner of other machines to maintenance, the shop, over board or to the dumpster. A good rectifier will do stick, scratch tig, and will run a Lincoln LN25 wire gun. Check out the various manufacturers web catalogues, then search for the older model versions on e-bay, craigs etc. Working with your boy is admirable, more kids in this country could use that kind of one on one time with there dads. Above any other skill you guys will work in the shop, I suggest fractional math and geometry drills and attention to detail excersizes, like taking accurate measures and checking for square, level and plumb. Learning those skills now so that they become second nature to him, will put him miles ahead of his peers in an apprenticeship or as an entry level employee. Best wishes. Tim.
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  #18  
Old 04-11-2009, 08:03 PM
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Do be careful when teaching your children. I was just given a lecture/guided tour about a Miller Synchrowave 351 (two models - one with the IntelliTIG controller).
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  #19  
Old 04-13-2009, 09:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Caliber View Post
Gary,
Number One, I suggest buying Miller's student's package. You'll find it listed on millers website. You get allot of great info of all forms of welding, included in the package. It's well worth the money.
Second, I suggest Tig, get AC/DC machine, it will do stick also. Your allready have a mig. Tig is a challenging skill to learn. It takes practice to master, but it's fun to do! I enjoy just laying down beads with tig.
Right now there's quite a few welders being sold on craigs list. For someone just starting out, some serious money can be saved.
I ordered it today. I also looked at the local junior college campus. They have no welding or vocational classes. They have belly dancing, river dancing, hotel management, and more ESL classes than I could scroll through. The nearest certified program is 90 minutes north. Not a bad jaunt if he were older and getting serious. But I was hoping to do something together on Saturdays for a while.

Quote:
Originally Posted by cutter View Post
We'll need to check the list & see if there's room in our allotment for California.
As everybody should know by now, too many Californians is known by the State of Texas to cause cancer.
Thanks cutter... The upside is that my son probably already knows how to shrink and edit photos... He taught me how to use my own iPod last night...

Quote:
Originally Posted by USMCPOP View Post
Do be careful when teaching your children. I was just given a lecture/guided tour about a Miller Synchrowave 351 (two models - one with the IntelliTIG controller).
I'll look foreword to it. I got him into slalom and downhill skateboarding and now he keeps me up to date on all the latest gizmos and technology.
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  #20  
Old 04-13-2009, 09:27 PM
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Gary, a little over a year ago I got around to unwrapping a cheap HF welding blanket to sheild an aluminum casting from welding spatter. Inside the package was that Ubiquitous Universal California Cancer Warning.
Cracked me up.

Notice in the picture - the guy is welding in a short sleeve shirt, with no gloves and they want him to worry about the blanket.
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