MIG Welding - How Mig Welders Work, Cost, Functions, And More

by Jerrico_Usher

Learn about the MIG Welder and how it compares to other types

Many professionals opt to go with a Mig Welder for a variety of reasons. This type of welding may be done on a variety of different metals and other materials. It's also quick, and easy to complete jobs with. Mig welding is easy to learn, cost effective and offers a variety of high welding speeds.

In addition, there is little clean up with a Mig welder as less smoke is produced from the welding process. There is also no slag to chip off. For these reasons, professionals opt to use Mig welders whenever possible because they have so many advantages over other types of fusing equipment.


MIG Welders
MIG Welders



A Mig welder is perfect for a lot of jobs. Farmers use the MIG welder to repair farm equipment on a regular basis as it saves them time, something in short supply when you run a farm.

Metal fabricators like the MIG welder because it works on a wide variety of metals and only requires they purchase one machine for several types of welding.

Home mechanics and professional motor sports championship teams, on the other hand, like it because it's easy to use for building and repairing equipment. 

Another reason for the popularity of Mig welders is their ability to handle a variety of metals. A Mig welder will fuse all common materials whether they are light weight gauge or thick plates.

This allows one machine to handle a variety of applications. Often welders are designed for certain materials or certain thicknesses, but this is not the case here. One machine means less maintenance, less repairs and more space in your work area for other necessary tools of the trade.



Types Of Welders:

  • Gas metal arc welding (GMAW)
  • Metal inert gas (MIG) welding
  • Metal active gas (MAG) welding
  • Wire feed welding


Many of these welder technologies work relatively on the same principals but how the technology applies the weld, current, features, capabilities, and how it gives you control over what and how you can weld it, are what change.

Being either an automatic or semi-automatic arc welding process, a continual and consumable wire electrode and shielding gas can be used. This is done by feeding them through a welding gun.

MIG welding is done using a constant voltage with direct current (DC) being the most often used power source choice.

In addition to DC power source, constant current systems and alternating current (AC) can also be used.




Below I'll Review A Few Good MIG Welders, Their Accessories, Details, And Cost: [Including Videos!]



██████ The Lincoln Electric Power MIG 140C K2471- 1 ██████

Lincoln Electric Power MIG 140C K2471-1
Lincoln Electric
Only $790.00

Overview of the Power MIG 180+

This is a Power MIG 140C and 180+ welder. Getting a great ARC start is essential to a good weld from cold and this unit can do it easily.

There is a wide voltage "sweet spot". This makes the ARC very forgiving and setting up your controls is very easy and efficient.

The low spattering is great because it reduces the time needed to clean up the mess slag and other welders often create.

This unit has an aluminum and stainless steel performance- the types of steel and aluminum you can cover with this unit are large and varied- no mild steel treating only here!

The output is one of the highest in the industry for welders for a 120 input class welder.

Using a 24 gauge and as far up as 10 gauge MIG weld material (.135") you can do a 10 gauge sheet metal weld in a single pass.

Welds of up to 5/16th's of an inch of steel with innovative self-shielded innershield wires (FCAW-S). Positive traction activated by dual gear-driven rolls. This unit uses a patented split wire guide for best wire alignment.

Connectivity is enhanced with brass-2-brass welding gun connections. Improved torque and performance (trouble free) with a industrial closed drive motor design.

Optional Magnum100SG spool gun helps maintain reliable operation at high speed feeding (that aluminum demands). No expensive outboard modules required.

MAG Accessories


K2532-1 Magnum 100SG Spool Gun, Air-Cooled The Magnum® 100SG spool gun is the lowest cost way to add reliable and precise spool gun wire feeding performance for soft aluminum wi...

Lincoln Electric
Only $249.00

View on Amazon

Hobart 770150 MIG Multi-Function Welding Pliers

The Hobart 770150 MIG Pliers are a universal, multi-use tool with twelve function.  The 770150 Pliers are ideal for welding, electrical, mechanical, farm, home, plumbing an...

$14.35  $11.00

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Hot Max WC-100 Welding/Plasma Cutter Cart

Hot Max
$89.99  $75.40

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Hobart 300199 DP-3035 Direct Plug-In Spool Guns For Use With Handler 210 MIG Welder

The Hobart DP-3035-10 Spoolgun is designed for use with the Hobart Handler 210 MIG Welder, Item# 1646189. Application: Spoolgun, Works With: Hobart Handler 210 MIG welder, Weld ...

Only $229.99

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  • Wide 30-140 amp welding output range
  • MIG weld 24 gauge up to 10 gauge (.135") sheet metal in a single pass.
  • Weld up to 5/16" steel using self-shielded Lincoln® Innershield® wires (FCAW-S).
  • This system has an easy two knob tapped control which provides a simple set up for used with either gas-less flux cored welding or gas shielding MIG welding.
  • The Electric Power MIG 140C is a great option for home welding projects including auto repairs and farm work. This unit goes for about $680.00



There is a slightly more powerful version available

These MIG ready units have a wire feed speed control of 50-500 IPM.

They allow you to potentially weld steel and aluminum with a weld thickness up to 5/16" of mild steel.

The Lincoln Power MIG has a ten foot long clamp cable length and a regulator and gas hose included. Shielding gas is required when welding MIG.

The welding wire diameter is between .025 and .045 and the power cord is six feet in length.

Duty cycle for this unit runs at twenty percent at 90 amps, 19.5 volts.


Generally, These Welders Come With:


  • Shielding gas apparatus
  • Two pound spool of .025 in MIG wire
  • A one pound spool of . 035 in. flux cored wire
  • Ggn with ten foot cable assembly
  • .025 in. and .035 in. contact tips
  • Gasless and gas nozzles
  • Spindle adapter for 8 in. diameter spools


Second MIG Welder Review


Northern Industrial MIG Welder (Northern Tool)


Welder Set Up And Features

Another option is the Northern Industrial MIG welder from Northern Tool. This unit is a 115 volt, 22-135 amp welder (model number MIG 135). Cost for this MIG welder is about $649.99 which makes it a less expensive alternative to the Lincoln Easy MIG.

The Northern Industrial is able to weld mild steel, aluminum and stainless steel with a duty cycle of twenty percent at 88 amps. This unit is ready to weld straight out of the box. The Northern Industrial MIG has an eight foot long power cord and a ten foot long clamp cable. It also has wire feed speed control and a ten foot removable MIG gun which uses Tweco style replacement parts.

This welder is a great option because it's cheaper (not less quality), more portable, and can be used by those who don't have access to 220 volts. Shielding gas is not required but both the regulator and gas hose are included, along with the flux core wire. Many manufacturers produce Mig welders so you have a great number to choose from.

The Northern Industrial welder is affordable but powerful. Perfect for the home mechanic, this unit is runs about $300- $650 and is ready to be put to work as soon as you take it out of the box.

(see video above)

Millermatic model MIL907321

For those who prefer a bigger machine, consider the Millermatic model MIL907321. This unit offers the highest output in its category capable of producing 250A at 28VDC.

This will cost you more but depending on how much you plan to use it and having more power it may be worth it. This particular unit is around $3,000.

Updated: 08/14/2012, Jerrico_Usher
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