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Old 04-09-2008, 10:25 PM   #1
4RunnerAdam
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Arc welder wont strike an arc

I have an older Century 220v 230a arc welder. I bought it used. It diddnt have a plug on it, so I bought a dryer cord from Home Depot and wired it up. It has a white, black, and green. I'm guessing white is neutral, and the green and black wires are the hots. Anyways, I wired it up about a month ago and it worked fine. I ran a few test beads and everything seamed to work. Only problem was the cord wouldnt reach the front of my truck where I needed to weld my spring hanger on. So I bought some 12-3 wire, and used about 8 feet as an extension cord. Fired the welder up, and now when I go to strike an arc, using ES6011 rods, I cant get it to start an arc. It will spark but wont start. Sometimes it will stick too. And the amperage lever sometimes doesnt want to move up and down, but eventually it will.

Keep in mind I'm a begginer arc welder. But last month when I used it, I was able to burn a few rods with it with only minimal trouble getting an arc started.


Is there something wrong with the welder? What should I check for? I'll pop the case open tomorrow. Any common problems with these older arc welders? Or do you think its operator error? I had a perfectly clean ground and welding surface. Tired it on my spring hanger, tried it on a scrap plate. I also tried removing the extension cord and still wouldnt work. Also, it might be my immagination, but it seemed like the fan was running a lot slower than it used to, like its not getting full power.


This sucks, I bought this thing to weld my spring hangers and motor mounts for my 350 swap. I cant afford to buy another welder anytime soon.
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Old 04-09-2008, 10:49 PM   #2
GPER
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Did you check it without the extension cord???????? The gauge wire for the extension cord should be bigger( smaller number) than the welder cord.
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Old 04-09-2008, 11:09 PM   #3
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I would say it has something to do with the 12-3 wire your using as an extension cord. Im assuming a 220V welder with a 50A breaker?? If it is 220 then to make an extension cord you will need 6/2 (black, white, green). Im no electrician (wait i am) but that would be my somewhat educated guess.
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Old 04-10-2008, 05:29 AM   #4
4RunnerAdam
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YEs, its a 220v welder. 30 amp breaker. I used it with the 6 foot dryer cord when I first got it, and it worked fine. I tried it again hooked up the same way with only the dryer cord and it wouldnt work. So something has to be wrong.

FYI the reason I used 12-3 is because I did a search on pirate4x4 and several people said they made up extension cords for their 220 welders using 12-3.
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Old 04-10-2008, 08:29 AM   #5
RD TRCTR
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I've got a Hobart Iron Man 210 that I run off an extension cord (the location of the outlet sucks). I used 10/4 wire (b/c it's all I had laying around) and mine works with no problem at all.

From what your saying it sadly sounds like a welder issue. Arc machines are fairly simple so you might be able to separate the case and look at it.
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Old 04-10-2008, 09:45 AM   #6
jfiscus
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Check your wires again on your new cord, be sure one hasn't come loose. If it worked fine before it still should now. (at least w/o the extension cord)

Have you tried a few different sticks? (sometimes a stick can get screwed up and not work right)
Are your sticks new sticks or old ones that came with your welder? (old sticks can be bad & are much harder to strike than new ones)

I have a welder that came w/o a plug (I put one on it) that just sparks when you drag a stick on it but doesn't arc at all, but I have 3 other arc welders that work so I have never looked into the problem myself...
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Old 04-10-2008, 10:19 AM   #7
Bear Chow
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I would do a continuity check on the extension cord. Only becouse it keeps getting brought up here. I would then do a continuity test on the welder. If still nothing hit a welding forum.

Hobart has an awsome active forum that can help you with all your welding questions.

Paul
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Old 04-10-2008, 06:41 PM   #8
4RunnerAdam
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New sticks. I tried 2 different ones. I removed the extension cord and wired it up the exact same way I did when I had it working last month. I tripple checked the connections and they are all good. I'll pop the case here in a few minutes and report back.
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Old 04-10-2008, 06:59 PM   #9
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OK, I got it figured out. Once I pulled the case off, I realized I had it wired wrong :mad: :p Wired it up right and it works great!

Now I can burn my spring hanger on!

There was a bunch of white substance of some kind built up on the amperage selector rod. Is this some kind of lube, or corrosion?
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Old 04-10-2008, 08:10 PM   #10
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Here's what I'm talking about

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Old 04-11-2008, 04:59 PM   #11
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Is it corrosion or more like grease. I was wanting to say grease but am not positive!
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Old 06-10-2008, 02:17 PM   #12
jeepbmxin
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the white stuff your seeingon the internals is grease one thing to check for is if u have the welding cables on the correct pollarity i went to school for welding and 99% of the time the problem with running a certian stick rod was that people was trying to run it on the wrong current. so try that at first. and let me know how it goes.
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Old 06-13-2008, 12:33 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 4RunnerAdam View Post
OK, I got it figured out. Once I pulled the case off, I realized I had it wired wrong :mad: :p Wired it up right and it works great!

Now I can burn my spring hanger on!

There was a bunch of white substance of some kind built up on the amperage selector rod. Is this some kind of lube, or corrosion?

Already got it figured out....thanks for the help though!
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