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Thread: favorite brand of welding rods.

  1. #1

    Default favorite brand of welding rods.

    Anyone here have a favorite or least favorite brand of welding rods or wire?

    I compared 3 brands of 3/32 7018 rods: Blue Demon (McMaster), Hobart, and Esab.

    The Blue Demon brand is so far my least favorite. They splatter a lot more, are more willing to stick, and the slag looks ugly and do not peal off very good. They also smell funny.

    The Hobart brand in my opinion welds pretty darn good They aren't too expensive, weld with little splatter and makes a nice pretty bead. The flux chips off with ease and covers the bead uniformly.

    The Esab rods are close to the Hobart rods, but weld even nicer. They are a bit more expensive than the Hobart rods, but are worth it for important projects.
    Everlast lx225
    Hobart Handler 210 with spool gun
    Hobart Stickmate LX
    Thermal Arc 400GMS
    40 amp Northern Tools plasma torch
    130 chicago electric tig welder
    90 amp chicago electric flux mig
    10"-22" Grizzly lathe
    15"-5.5" Grizzly vertical end mill

    In need of nice TIG machine. drooling over PowerTig 250ex

  2. #2

    Default

    I use a lot of hobart, everyone seems to carry them and price is good, as far as a brand goes I think rod condition plays a larger part in that. A damp good rod will not run right. Keep all of mine in those yellow saf tubes with the "O" ring sealed screw on tops. Preheat the ones that require it and even the ones that don't like 6010, 6011, 6013, they just start better warmed up. Big advantage with the Power Arc 200 over my buzz box is you can dial in so easily compared to cranking the transformer slug back and forth. That really helps in making the rod work regardless of brand.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    The Boonies of Texas
    Posts
    421

    Default

    Hobart here, mainly because they are readily available where I shop. They seem to work fine for farm and ranch equipment repairs.

    Thurmond
    Miller Bobcat 3 Phase,
    Miller Suitcase X-Treme 12VS wire feeder for the Bobcat with M-25 300A .045" gun / Bernard 400A 5/64" wire mig gun .
    26 series gas cooled TIG torch, setup for quick connect to Bobcat.
    17 series gas cooled Tig Torch for Low Amp Solar Tig (Direct Solar Panel Powered Tig welding)
    Hobart Handler 187 Mig / Fluxcore
    EVERLAST PowerUltra 205P
    EVERLAST PowerTig 250 EXT 2013 Model

  4. #4

    Default

    I have some 7018's and have been in the box they came in since I ordered my 250es back in February. They are lincoln's should I cook them before use and if so at what temp and for how long?
    sold my miller mig
    got a PT250EX
    saving up for a plasma cutter

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Northern Virginia
    Posts
    1,253

    Default

    I've been using Lincoln, no complaints, but nothing to compare them to either.

    Geezer makes a good point about uniformity of comparison: a true test would have the same type of rod in the same condition (low hy rods require storage and prep), the same guy on the same machine, machine at the same point in the duty cycle for different brands, same base metal to weld on. Not to detract from Welderdude's idea, I think it's a great one. I'll fess up to buying Harbor Freight electrodes, and will even contribute a sample to the test if Welderdude wants to take it there.

    The HF electrodes were on deep discount, 7018s or 7014s for maybe $2 per pound. Soon after I saw some kind of "don't buy Chinese electrodes" advice on a website that showed a railcar full of rusting scrap metal, saying you don't know what's in the electrode.
    DaveO
    Oxweld oxy acet gear
    IMIG 200
    PowerTIG 210 EXT... Amazing!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Northern Virginia
    Posts
    1,253

    Default

    DGarnier, there was a recent post
    http://www.everlastgenerators.com/fo...light=hydrogen
    ...that talked about low hy rods and storage.
    DaveO
    Oxweld oxy acet gear
    IMIG 200
    PowerTIG 210 EXT... Amazing!

  7. #7

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by dgarnier View Post
    I have some 7018's and have been in the box they came in since I ordered my 250es back in February. They are lincoln's should I cook them before use and if so at what temp and for how long?
    If they are new in an unopend box you can use them as is, most preheaters use 275 degrees, why I don't know I suspect it is because of the heater element, you have to ask yourself why not 250 or 300, good question yes, normally one hour @ 400 will revive them, to recondition them you need higher temps. Keen has an oven that goes to 500 degrees costs about 800 bucks, I use an electric fry pan only goes to 450 degrees and costs about 2 dollars at the flea market/garage sale.

  8. #8

    Default

    they are still in the box, so I guess they should be ok - hopefully my new 250ex show up and made the trip ok and I will get to burn some of these 7018's
    sold my miller mig
    got a PT250EX
    saving up for a plasma cutter

  9. #9

    Default

    I too would agree that rod condition plays a big roll in how they burn. I dont preheat my rods, but I do keep them in a sealed container with a rubber seal.
    Everlast lx225
    Hobart Handler 210 with spool gun
    Hobart Stickmate LX
    Thermal Arc 400GMS
    40 amp Northern Tools plasma torch
    130 chicago electric tig welder
    90 amp chicago electric flux mig
    10"-22" Grizzly lathe
    15"-5.5" Grizzly vertical end mill

    In need of nice TIG machine. drooling over PowerTig 250ex

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Northern Virginia
    Posts
    1,253

    Default

    Here's one for Esab rod customers:
    http://www.esabna.com/7018/evaluation.cfm#surveyArea

    If you're using an Esab 7018, fill out the form and get free safety glasses. Sure seems like Esab has a lot of promos going- are they trying to buy their way into the market? They sure have a lot of information available on their website, that whole Esab University deal.
    DaveO
    Oxweld oxy acet gear
    IMIG 200
    PowerTIG 210 EXT... Amazing!

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    The Boonies of Texas
    Posts
    421

    Default

    There was also a link higher up on the page for sample 7018 electrodes:

    http://www.esabna.com/7018/sample.cfm

    Thurmond
    Miller Bobcat 3 Phase,
    Miller Suitcase X-Treme 12VS wire feeder for the Bobcat with M-25 300A .045" gun / Bernard 400A 5/64" wire mig gun .
    26 series gas cooled TIG torch, setup for quick connect to Bobcat.
    17 series gas cooled Tig Torch for Low Amp Solar Tig (Direct Solar Panel Powered Tig welding)
    Hobart Handler 187 Mig / Fluxcore
    EVERLAST PowerUltra 205P
    EVERLAST PowerTig 250 EXT 2013 Model

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Northern Virginia
    Posts
    1,253

    Default

    A good catch- that one gave returns on the "freebie" radar, but I decided against pursuing it myself since it says an Esab sales rep will call. I'm sure Esab is hoping to hear from commercial welding shops and welding foremen, not me and my dinky AC crackerbox plugged into the dryer outlet.
    DaveO
    Oxweld oxy acet gear
    IMIG 200
    PowerTIG 210 EXT... Amazing!

  13. #13

    Default

    Here are some pictures of the 3 rods I reviewed plus a hobart 7018AC rod. The beads I ran aren't the best I have ever ran, but they get the point across.


    From bottom to top is the Hobart 7018, the Esab 7018, the Blue Demon 7018, the Hobart 7018AC, and a regular hobart 7018 on AC.
    I used 80 amps DCEP for the first 3, the hobart AC rod got 90 amps, and that ugly blob is the regular hobart on 110 amps AC.





    The order is the same as above, but right to left.
    Everlast lx225
    Hobart Handler 210 with spool gun
    Hobart Stickmate LX
    Thermal Arc 400GMS
    40 amp Northern Tools plasma torch
    130 chicago electric tig welder
    90 amp chicago electric flux mig
    10"-22" Grizzly lathe
    15"-5.5" Grizzly vertical end mill

    In need of nice TIG machine. drooling over PowerTig 250ex

  14. #14

    Default

    When I was doing structural steel, my favorite 7018 was the ESAB in 5/32. right outta the oven they had a smooth start, seemed like you could dig them right into the end of your weld and keep going. I never failed a full pen. weld, but the ones I ran with ESAB I never even worried about. plus if you guys check out their website they have a STACK of free infomational CD's and pamphlets they send you FREE! when I got mine they even came in a nice little CD case. They ARE sort of a sales pitch, but VERY good info, and did I mention the price? FREE!

    I can't remember the website, but there is a thread on here with the info.
    I'd like to think I'm the guy they are talkin about when they say, "he could F%^& up a cannon ball in a plowed field."
    .................. /...\
    ..............-...|.....|
    ...*.......-'. \..\__/
    ....\.-'.........\
    ... /......... _/
    ...|......... /"
    ...|.... /_\'
    ....\....\_/
    ......""""

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