The 10 Best MIG Welders

Updated January 05, 2018 by Brett Dvoretz

10 Best MIG Welders
Best High-End
Best Mid-Range
Best Inexpensive
We spent 39 hours on research, videography, and editing, to review the top choices for this wiki. Metal Inert Gas (MIG) welding is easy to learn, requires virtually no cleanup, and allows for high productivity. Whether you are an automotive body worker, construction professional or home DIY enthusiast, our selection of welders includes something for just about any type of project. We've included both 110 and 220v units, and combo models that handle flux wire welding too. When users buy our independently chosen editorial picks, we may earn commissions to support our work. Skip to the best mig welder on Amazon.

10. Campbell Hausfeld WG216001AV

The Campbell Hausfeld WG216001AV features four heat settings, so you can adjust it to suit the type of metal you are working with. It also allows for infinite wire speed feed control to ensure you get that perfectly even weld beam every time.
  • arc is trigger activated
  • comes with a flux wire starter spool
  • weld cable is just eight feet long
Brand Campbell Hausfeld
Model WG216001AV
Weight 48.1 pounds
Rating 4.0 / 5.0

9. Pro-Series Fluxcore

The Pro-Series Fluxcore is capable of getting into almost any small or tough to reach space, and produces less splatter than other units, making it safer. It will weld continuously for two minutes at maximum amperage to help you finish your work quickly.
  • includes brush hammer
  • good for small to medium sized jobs
  • wire doesn't feed smoothly
Brand Pro-series
Model MMIG125
Weight 42.1 pounds
Rating 4.1 / 5.0

8. Longevity Migweld

The Longevity Migweld can either operate on gas or via a flux-cycle gasless wire electrode, making it perfect for use in the home, shop, or on any professional repair call-out in the field. It has a convenient carrying handle built-in for easy lifting.
  • works on most exotic metals
  • good for beginners or professionals
  • feed roller can be inconsistent
Brand Longevity
Model 741360253087
Weight 61.9 pounds
Rating 3.8 / 5.0

7. Forney 309

The Forney 309 has a wire feeder with parts that are individually replaceable, so if anything wears down you can fix it as needed. This is a powerful little unit that will weld metal up to 1/4" thick. It has an automatic thermal overload protection for added safety.
  • large cabinet size
  • perfect for automotive projects
  • feed tube tends to kink
Brand Forney
Model 309
Weight 62.7 pounds
Rating 4.1 / 5.0

6. Lincoln Electric K2185-1

The Lincoln Electric K2185-1 is easy to use and great if you are a beginning welder, but professionals will not find its performance up to par on more difficult jobs. It conveniently plugs into any household outlet and is made in the United States.
  • one-year warranty
  • welds up to eighth-inch mild steel
  • construction feels too lightweight
Brand Lincoln Electric
Model K2185-1
Weight 51.2 pounds
Rating 4.2 / 5.0

5. Everlast Poweri 140e

The Everlast Poweri 140e features an IGBT inverter design that sends out a high-amp output with a better duty cycle when compared to transformer-based models. It allows for stepless control of both the wire speed and voltage.
  • spool gun ready
  • efficient amp draw
  • cast alloy driver roller
Brand Everlast
Model i-mig140e
Weight 37 pounds
Rating 4.2 / 5.0

4. Hobart Handler 140

With a 20% duty cycle at 90 amps, the Hobart Handler 140 is one of the more efficient units on the market. It features an industrial cast aluminum drive system for your welding wire, so the most sensitive moving part of the machine is built to last.
  • five-position voltage control
  • quick change drive roll
  • wide gauge range
Brand Hobart
Model 500559
Weight 65.4 pounds
Rating 4.5 / 5.0

3. Lotos Technology 561N

The Lotos Technology 561N is a versatile model that is designed to be plugged into your existing 220v wall outlet, and can be completely set up and ready to weld within 10 minutes of first opening the box. It comes with an aluminum spool gun and a five-foot gas hose.
  • includes a gas regulator
  • performs as good as pricier brands
  • easy for beginners to use
Brand Lotos Technology
Model BC-QJA8-561N
Weight 88.2 pounds
Rating 4.8 / 5.0

2. Goplus Wolf 30

The Goplus Wolf 30 is the ideal home DIYer model. It is extremely affordable, yet can still crank out clean and secure welds on a variety of metal types. Its small size makes it easy to transport to a buddy's house or from you garage to your backyard as needed.
  • comes with spare fuses
  • multiple wire feed speed options
  • includes a welding mask
Brand Goplus
Model pending
Weight pending
Rating 4.6 / 5.0

1. Hobart Handler 190

When you're ready to move up to a professional-grade welding powerhouse, the Hobart Handler 190 is the way to go. This potent unit has an adjustable out amperage and can tackle projects of almost any size and scope, from auto repairs to construction.
  • hub accommodates 4- or 8-inch spools
  • built-in gas solenoid valve
  • comfortable 10-foot work cable
Brand Hobart
Model 500554001
Weight 89.4 pounds
Rating 4.8 / 5.0

Go MIG Or Go Home

You may have noticed the sometimes awfully crude joints between metal pieces on the furniture you've purchased through the years. I know I've assembled a few pieces from a certain Swedish manufacturer the welds of which could be pulled apart with a little elbow grease. True craftsmanship in the age of mass production is a rare thing, but that doesn't mean it's particularly difficult for you to get the hang of it.

MIG welding is a fast, relatively easy welding method to learn, and it's pretty safe compared to other methods available. Let's break down the name before we go any further.

MIG stands for Metal Inert Gas, and it refers to the inert gas that flows from a tank separate from the welder, through the welding hose, and out the tip of a welding gun into the immediate vicinity of your weld. The presence of the gas–usually argon or a mixture of argon and carbon dioxide–keeps other gasses in the space like oxygen or water vapor from getting into the weld area, gasses that would reduce the quality of the weld.

Also sticking out of the end of the welding gun, at the end of the hose is the tip of a long wire, the material of which will change with whatever metal you intend to weld. That wire acts as a positively charged anode, and if you follow it back through the hose and into the welder housing, you'll find a big replaceable spool of it there.

Running out the other end of the welder housing is a clamp that greatly resembles the clamps you use to give your car a jump start off another car's battery. This clamp acts as the negatively charge cathode, and in order for your weld to work you have to either clamp it to the piece you intend to weld or to the table on which you're welding.

When you fire up the welder and bring the tip of the anode wire as close to the metal joint as possible, an electric arc forms the completion of the short circuit. The tremendous heat that this arc creates melts the intended metal, which immediately cools into its new shape and fusion when you let go of the trigger on the welding gun.

Power And Flux

Selecting from among the MIG welders on our list has as much to do with your experience level as a welder as it does with what materials you intend to weld. Since you're investigating MIG welders, it's safe to assume you have a shop or a garage in which you plan to work.

Some of the welders on this list operate from a standard 110V outlet, while others require a 220V connection. The 110V options are less powerful, to be sure, but for light work and a new welder these might be your best bet. There are other models on our list that actually have built-in transformers to take your 110V outlet and upcharge it to 220V.

If you're just getting started, but you know you want to be in it for the long haul, a transformer-based model will allow you to learn without changing anything about the electrical layout of your home. It's also a good idea, if you're just starting out, to see which welders on our list come with complete kits, including wire options, a shield, and a gas hook-up.

Speaking of gas, there's an option in MIG welding that bypasses the need to connect your welder to a tank of inert gas, an option that some of the welders on our list can handle. It's called flux core, and it's a bit of a double-edged sword. Flux core is essentially a hollow wire with a flux running through its center. When exposed to the heat of the weld, this flux converts into the shielding gas required to keep the weld clean.

The upside to flux core welding is that you don't need to lug around a big tank full of argon to get a job done, and it allows you to work outdoors in settings that otherwise would have necessitated a more traditional arc weld. The downside is that it can be a little smoky to operate, and the gas created by the flux doesn't keep the weld as clean as the flow from a tank will.

A Historical Arc

Early developments in arc welding corresponded to early developments in electricity. It seems as though, while men like Thomas Edison and Nikola Tesla were trying to make electricity safer and safer, other scientists and engineers, like Nikolay Slavyanov were busy finding ways to use the dangerous aspects of electricity to an industrial advantage.

In 1920, arc welding methods began to gain some popularity thanks to the efforts of P.O. Nobel of General Electric, who used a direct current through a bare electrode to produce a weld in the absence of any shielding gas.

The use of inert gasses to curate a more conducive welding atmosphere wouldn't enter the picture until 1948, when the Battelle Memorial Institute, an Ohio-based charitable trust funding developments in the sciences, put forth the technology. The use of the inert gasses of the day was cost-prohibitive, however, so it failed to catch on an industrial scale.

In 1953, welders began to use carbon dioxide as the gas for their welding atmospheres, and since that development very little has changed in the methodology, with the notable exception of the development of flux core wire.



Statistics and Editorial Log

0
Paid Placements
5
Editors
39
Hours
51,360
Users
30
Revisions

Wiki Granular Update & Revision Log


help support our research


Patreonlogoorange psj5g7Wiki ezvid low poly earth xdypeb

Last updated on January 05, 2018 by Brett Dvoretz

A wandering writer who spends as much time on the road as behind the computer screen, Brett can either be found hacking furiously away at the keyboard or perhaps enjoying a whiskey and coke on some exotic beach, sometimes both simultaneously, usually with a four-legged companion by his side. He hopes to one day become a modern day renaissance man.


Thanks for reading the fine print. About the Wiki: We don't accept sponsorships, free goods, samples, promotional products, or other benefits from any of the product brands featured on this page, except in cases where those brands are manufactured by the retailer to which we are linking. For our full ranking methodology, please read about us, linked below. The Wiki is a participant in associate programs from Amazon, Walmart, Ebay, Target, and others, and may earn advertising fees when you use our links to these websites. These fees will not increase your purchase price, which will be the same as any direct visitor to the merchant’s website. If you believe that your product should be included in this review, you may contact us, but we cannot guarantee a response, even if you send us flowers.