When it comes to the act of welding, there are several different categories to choose from, each with their own unique processes and techniques that are used to get a similar job done.
Two of the most broad categories of welding are MIG and TIG. Each of these welding types require their own special types of machines: called MIG welders and TIG welders. To note there do exist multi-process welders that join the above and plasma cutting.
Today will be checking out TIG welding, and more specifically, TIG welder machines.
TIG stands for tungsten inert gas, but it’s technically called gas tungsten arc welding, GTAW. These types of welders are used for welding aluminum and 4130 chrome-moly steel.
The TIG process is different from other types of electric welding because this welder has the ability to start and stop soft the heath.
The machines use a foot-operated pedal that allows the welder to slowly innate and reduce the heat once the weld is completed. The soft start and stop prevent temperature shocking the metals.
Jobs such as nuclear power plant work, piping (oil and gas), and high profile consumer goods require the work of TIG welding for a good bond of the root pass.
Under some circumstances, all passes on a multi-pass pipe weld may need to be done by a TIG weld because provides a better quality weld than MIG welding.
The TIG welding process is often used with thinner material in the five-thousandths inch range would not withstand the heat of another process.
The heat from MIG or Stick welding processes would be too hot for the thin metal. Yet when the metal is thick, such as 1/2 inc, you wouldn’t use a TIG welder.
What are some things you should keep in mind when deciding which TIG welder to buy? If welding is a hobby, you may not need certain features offered by a high-tech TIG welder.
Yet if you’re in the industry and it’s your career, you’ll look for external filtering controls, industrial power souring, and software programming.
You’ll want to consider a welding machine that goes to a low amperage since you want the flexibility of both high and low power.
There are a variety of features to accommodate your TIG welding process to incorporate in your own job.
To help you narrow down your search more easily, we have put together the ultimate list of TIG Welders, including only the top choices available on the market.
Continue reading to find an organized breakdown of each product’s individual features, benefits, drawbacks, and buying advice to help you make your final decision.
Our Reviews Of The Best TIG Welder
PRIMEWELD TIG 225X 225 Amp IGBT AC DC Tig/Stick Welder
The PRIMEWELD TIG225X is our best recommendation because it has power width modulation and IGBT technology design.
The welder is used in both semi-automatic and automatic welding versions. It has versatile features to meet your welding needs.
The 225 amps of AC/DC Tig welding with stick function is suitable for both professional and hobby welders that can be used for various of uses.
Its features make it reliable and can produce high performances with a variety of false features.
Included with the machine is the complete torch set, which is a flexible head torch, flex tubing, and CK Dinse connector.
Whether a hobbyist or a professional, this is one TIG welding machine you don’t want to pass up. The price may dissuaded you from purchasing since it’s expensive.
If you’re not fully convinced about this machine, it comes with a 3-year warranty and 7 days a week customer support if you change your mind.
Lotos LTPDC2000D TIG Welder
The Lotos LTPDC2000D is our runner-up it can cut steel sheets of different shapes and sizes. It’s also one of the first multipurpose welding machines introduced into the market.
This 3 in 1 welding combo offers a plasma cutter, TIG welder, and Stick/MMA welder so you can be sure that no matter what challenge lies ahead you have the right tools for the job.
The Lotos LTPDC2000D is a beginner friendly machine. If you’re looking for a plasma cutter, TIG welder, and stick welder, this welder has a 3 in 1 combo to meet your needs.
Not only is it slightly cheaper than the winner, but it is also more than half the weight of it too.
One detail to be wary about is that the description claims that the Lotos plasma cutter can cut up to 1/2” still.
Yet, most users have found that it can only cut about 3/8”. It will still be able to penetrate up to 1/2” if tactically used.
Weldpro Digital TIG ACDC 200GD TIG Welder
The Weldpro Digital TIG ACDC 200GD is also another alternative choice to consider buying.
The machine is equipped with full function TIG welding features found on machines with a much higher price.
The Weldpro Digital TIG ACDC 200GD is digitally designed and equipped with This machine also comes with a 2-year warranty.
Amico TIG 160 Amp Torch ARC Stick DC Welder
The 2 in 1 TIG 160 Amp Torch ARC Stick DC Welder is the winner because it’s designed to deliver a flawless weld and make the post-weld clean up almost non-existent.
It’s known to outperform the competition when it comes to arc quality, voyage control, and duty cycle. Also, it’s available at an incredibly resonable price.
The TIG 160 is a smaller welding machine that’s portable and easy to move around. It’s suitable for on-the-go type projects because of a lightweight construction.
Cables of different lengths are also included with the purchase of this product, as well as some pieces of tungsten, different sized electrode, and a work clamp.
For more DIY activities or around the house welding projects, this portable TIG machine is ideal for smooth and fluid use.
Lotos TIG200ACDC 200A AC/DC Aluminum Tig Welder
The Lotos TIG 200 ACDC is known for being the best TIG welder for aluminum because it has a square-wave inverter for a more accurate aluminum weld.
This TIG machine also lets you adjust the hot striking arc current to improve the arc-starting functions.
The Lotos TIG 200 ACDC’s features allow its user the best and most concise welding precision when using the square-wave inverter for a more detailed weld.
With the individual knob settings, it makes altering the settings easier to fit your welding need.
This machine is a great deal, especially for someone new looking to weld on a tighter budget to start.
TIG Welders FAQ
Is TIG Welding Hard?
After you have made the decision to look into welding, your first step is to decide which welding technique you would like to focus your expertise on.
As previously mentioned, there are several different types of welding, with the two main types being TIG and MIG welding.
When you are deciding between the welding category options that you will start with, it is important to consider factors such as what kind of equipment is needed, how you will learn, how much you will need to spend on all of the necessary gear, and the difficulty of learning and practicing the skill.
So, this brings us back to the question of whether or not TIG welding is hard. The truth is, there is no direct answer that will have the same accuracy for each individual.
While something might be hard for one person, it can turn out to be very easy for another.
Since we all have our own individual skill sets, the verdict on whether TIG welding is hard or not will really be up to you to decide for yourself.
There are, however, some basic required skills to consider, that will help you make a more educated guess of whether or not TIG welding will be something that comes easy to you.
Let’s take a closer look at some of these skills:
- Using both hands at the same time
- Holding the welding torch in one hand
- Holding filler material in the other hand
- Hand-eye and hand-food coordination
- Three-part process (requires attentiveness)
For TIG welding, you have to be able to hold the welding torch in one hand while you hold the filler material in the other.
Inexperienced welders may find TIG welding difficult at first. It requires strong hand-eye and hand-foot coordination because it’s a three-part process that requires attentiveness.
While it is true that TIG welding comes a little bit easier to those who have some kind of welding experience on their belt, it is not impossible for beginners to learn and become skilled at it.
If you have great coordination and ability to multitask with both hands, you might be more inclined to have success on your first try with TIG welding than someone else.
However, with practice and determination, anyone can learn to TIG weld.
What Is TIG Welding Used For?
TIG welding is used to weld smaller and thinner metals.
TIG welding involves using a tungsten electrode that runs through the metals to liquify it. It’s slower process of welding, but produces a higher level of detail once completed.
This is much different from other processes of welding: MIG welding, for example.
This alternative welding technique actually penetrates through the metal in order to provide an even deeper connection and hold between the two metals.
TIG welding, on the other hand, is a more tedious welding process that focuses on the minuscule details of a project.
Instead of attaching thick pieces of metal together, TIG welding is a more delicate process that involves a more minimal attachment.
Can Aluminum Be Welded With TIG Welder?
When you execute the technique of TIG welding, there are plenty of metal types that you can work with and manipulate with your welder machine.
Among this variety of metals is Aluminum. In fact, aluminum is the metal that’s most frequently associated with TIG welding.
TIG welding works with many kinds of metal, except for one, which is cast iron.
This is not an ideal medium for the TIG welding technique, due to the fact that it is too strong to be held together by such a minimal attachment.
Many people assume that aluminum cannot be welded with a TIG welder, but this is simply not the case.
The confusion about welding aluminum may be because it has a lower boil temperature than other metals.
Aluminum does not change colors when melting, so it’s more difficult to determine visibly when it’s hot or ready to melt.
Does TIG Welding Require Gas?
When executing any kind of welding technique there is always some kind of heat source that allows the user to melt and manipulate the metals for permanent attachment.
When you weld with a TIG welder, this concept is no different.
The process of TIG welding requires a non-consumable tungsten electrode current to the welding arc.
An inert gas, typically argon, protects and cools the tungsten and weld puddle. Without the argon, the tungsten will burn and contaminate the weld.
Modern TIG welders are multi-process, with allows the TIG weld and Stick weld with a flip of a switch and a change of some fittings, while the traditional TIG welder will only have a single function.
What Color Tungsten Is For Aluminum?
While operating a TIG welder, there is a distinction of colors that will allow you to manipulate different types of metals at your discretion.
When it comes to using aluminum with a TIG welder, there is actually no specific distinction in this aspect.
There is no exact, single color of tungsten for aluminum because there are a variety of situational factors that must be considered.
The variables that alter this decision are listed down below:
- Your machine
- Thickness of metal
- Available setting
The first factor that will affect the color tungsten that you use for aluminum is your individual machine. Each TIG welder is going to be different, with different settings as a result.
Additionally, the metal piece that you will feed through your machine will have a variable thickness.
Depending on the width of the specific metal object that you are trying to weld, you might need to alter the color tungsten that you use to do so.
Finally, you will need to consider the available setting that you have for the tungsten color. This will sometimes vary between machines and types of metal.
With the consideration of all of these components, though, you should be able to make the best decision in your particular situation.
TIG welding aluminum is easy to mess up, so there are a few more things to consider.
Here are common electrodes that you can use for TIG welding, but there are certain rules to keep in mind when doing so.
Common Electrodes Used For TIG Welding
Orange: 2% ceriated on AC, both blue: 2% lanthanated and gold: 1.5 on AC and DC, red: 2% thoriated, and green: pure tungsten on DC only.
This electrode should only be used with pure tungsten material, for DC welding only. DC stands for direct current, which distributes a negative polarity throughout the machine.
Green is DC only because with AC, pure tungsten will ball up, especially when you use an inverter.
The best and safest electrode is 2% lanthanated when it comes to AC and DC because it holds up the best and provides a stable arc throughout the welding process.
As you can see, the TIG welding method is a very specific one that produces particular results.
In order to execute this technique properly, you will need to exhibit or practice great coordination and the ability to multitask with both of your hands at the same time.
If you decide to make the jump toward learning to weld TIG style, you will need to purchase a quality TIG welder that will last you for a long time, while still providing the best possible results.
The TIG welder that you choose will determine how well you are able to learn and perfect your new craft throughout the rest of your welding career.
Whether you are looking to learn TIG welding skills for personal hobby reasons or for professional ones, you will absolutely benefit from laying out all of your possible options and making an educated decision on which one will be ideal for your individual needs.
With the consideration of the top 5 options that exist on the market, which were discussed here today, along with their individual pros, cons, features, and specifications, you are now several steps closer to finding the perfect TIG welder for all of your welding needs.
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