Life Choices

Discussion in 'General Chat' started by InstrumentOfPeace, Jan 13, 2020.

  1. InstrumentOfPeace

    InstrumentOfPeace Active Member
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    Jan 10, 2020
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    Do I:

    a. buy a MIG welder & accessories (helmet, clothing, fiberglass blanket, pipe bender, etc)

    b. buy a 3D Printer

    Aside from the Mini, I own a ‘92 Samurai which I hope to keep for at least another 9 years for my daughter. I recently finished an engine swap (engine, wiring harness, ECU) and plan to lift a few more inches with an eco skeleton (hence the MiG welder)
    One constant is a continuing need for either small plastics bits & clips that I could print (panels clips, gauge pods, face plates, etc)
    Sooner or later both of these will be purchased; however, it’s a matter of what I’ll learn next (i.e. spend hours upon hours learning how to do it). Opinions? Thoughts? Off-color remarks?
     
  2. MCS02

    MCS02 Moderator
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    I am would lean towards the welder, but the 3D printer may be handy.

    I know that helps
     
  3. GokartPilot

    GokartPilot Well-Known Member

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    If these are the only choices most definitely the welder
     
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  4. 00Mini

    00Mini Well-Known Member

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    My first choice would also be the welder.
     
  5. Dave.0

    Dave.0 Helix & RMW Powered
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    MIG

    3D printer prices will keep falling in price.
     
  6. old81

    old81 Club Coordinator
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    3D printers are evolving, some new models with great enhancements in 2020. My D-I-L is a designer, they just started a new company this month. So watch for new stuff ourt of Loveland.

    Go with the MIG and wait 6 to 12 months for the best in 3D.
     
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  7. Skidmarks

    Skidmarks Active Member
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    Welder, I didn't see Nik Blackhurst use a 3d printer.
     
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  8. InstrumentOfPeace

    InstrumentOfPeace Active Member
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    Hi ho, hi ho, MiG welding I shall go. Grateful for all the input.
    Great to know the printers are in a functional leap cycle too. Def need to pause on that purchase.
     
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  9. Minidave

    Minidave Well-Known Member
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    Not only that, but there are companies now that will print your stuff for you, so you don't have to learn CAD in order to print something.
    I use my MIG all the time, you just never know when you will need it for a project, big or small.
    Most of the plastic bits you need for a MINI/Mini are still available too....don't know about the Samurai....
     
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  10. InstrumentOfPeace

    InstrumentOfPeace Active Member
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    Relatively expensive at the moment but I don’t “need” anything other than a few gauge pods.

    The printer was consider because I wanted one of the wind deflectors for my R59 which price about the same as a cheap end 3D printer to be used to make a mold for acrylic casting.

    The welder is for an exoskeleton. I could either pay someone $1500 to make one or spend $2000-$3000 (welder + materials + mistakes) to learn how to myself.



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  11. Minidave

    Minidave Well-Known Member
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    Sometimes it's cheaper, better and the result comes quicker if you just hire the guy that knows how to build one, plus you'll need a big ass tubing bender and a notcher to build that...... can't wait to see the results. Good luck with the project!
     
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  12. InstrumentOfPeace

    InstrumentOfPeace Active Member
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    I know right! I may have someone build the cage to my spec but I’ll finish it off with building the roof rack.
    Having a solid project is necessary for the motivation & desire to truly learn how to weld properly.

    “Necessity is the mother of invention”


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  13. Minidave

    Minidave Well-Known Member
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    You'll also learn how to grind welds then! :)

    My first project the welds were awful, I think I ground off more than I left but I learned - as you said. Best way to learn is to stick yourself in and go, but if you have someone who knows how at your elbow, you'll learn quicker and your welds will actually be strong. Post picks of your project so we can see what you're going to do!

    One thing I really recommend - buy a Mig with gas, don't use flux core - you're welds will be better and cleaner. Oh, and cheap Harbor Freight welders may work OK, but a name brand will have a much higher duty cycle (cheap welders are usually only 20%, good ones are closer to 90% ) and give cleaner, better welds with good penetration. You can buy a Lincoln for not a whole lot more than a cheap HF....and get a good auto darkening helmet too.
     
  14. InstrumentOfPeace

    InstrumentOfPeace Active Member
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    I’m definitely going with MiG. A veteran buddy of my said I should do MiG since I’ll mostly be welding I’m the car & engine bay.

    Over the next few months I’ll be buying all the bits. I got gloves, need: {jacket, bin or shirt}, Blanket, magnets, welding table, hammer/chisel, brushes, welder (duh), etc. Then a few varying gauge steel scraps for practicing (pick a part)

    I’m thinking the Miller welding mask (not the helmet) since I’d be in the engine bay and undercarriage ... which appears to provide greater comfort and maneuverability. ... along with an acceptable welding cap for sweat (polka dots or flowers)

    I’d have purchased most of this but @MCS02 “made” me buy a Hotchkis rear sway bar for my mini.

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  15. Minidave

    Minidave Well-Known Member
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    Dec 22, 2009
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    You don't need all that, chisels and hammers not needed with Mig if you use gas, the welds will be clean, the most you'll need is a wire brush.

    f course, it never hurts to suit up properly......
     
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  16. InstrumentOfPeace

    InstrumentOfPeace Active Member
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    Humbly thank you. I hadn’t made the connection between the shielding gas & slag removal chisel/hammer.


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