Welding is not just a matter of joining rails or shipbuilding. It can be as simple as repairing a broken window frame. But, the kind of welders used in shipbuilding and bridge construction is far bulkier and more potent than what you need at home. If you are a professional welder, you need large welding equipment, but that doesn’t rule out the compact one too! No doubt, everyone- from homeowners to expert full-time welders- requires the best portable welder! Not only does this tool help you join small pieces of metal, but also weld successfully in tight spaces. This review teaches you how to buy the top portable welding machines.
1. HITBOX ARC Welder 200A Stick
Heavy duty portable welders are ideal for building ships and repairing railways. But, when you need a powerful home welding appliance, you should consider versatility. HITBOX ARC 200A is one of the top transportable welders for home use. It’s an ideal tool for repairing broken doors, window frames or any other home installations. It comes in handy when you have home projects to carry out.
HITBOX ARC 200A is a powerful machine capable of running for half an hour at 150amp, but it peaks at 190A. With a rating of 10-190A welding range, the welder also has 40% of the duty cycle. It runs on a 220 DC power, but there is an inverter machine MMA200 ZX7 as part of the package. With such high performance, it can work with ratings such as 7018 1/8* as well as 6013 and even 7018 3/32*. Thus, it can join metals with up to 8.0mm thickness.
Despite the considerable power potential, the HITBOX ARC 200A is quite lightweight and versatile. It weighs just about 2.85 kilos (6.3lb) which is ideal for carrying along to tight spaces. It is far lighter than a grown chicken or a pumpkin.
And yes- it is ergonomic too. It comes with an earth electrode and a plug. You do not need any special assembly skills as it is often ready to use. Yes- you can start using it immediately you buy it. The mini portable welder also comes with a distinctive green fashion handbag.
Are you looking a great performing ergonomic portable welder for home use? If yes, you might want to add HITBOX ARC 200A to your cart.
2. ARC WELDER ARC120 DC Stick
Are you looking for the best cheap portable welder? If yes, you may want to try the ARC WELDER ARC120. This welding machine is not only economical but also lightweight and sturdy. As long as you are not going it to try and repair broken rails, you will be fine working with it at home. As you’ll see, ARC WELDER ARC120 rightfully earns its spot on our rankings of the best light welding machines.
Portability has a lot to do with the weight, size, and design of a welder. A machine earns the versatility by being lightweight and compact. ARC WELDER ARC120 only weights 6.3lb (2.8kg). Such weight feels like a school bag with a laptop and lunch box in it. The welder measures 8.66” by 3.74” by 5.9” (220*150*95mm), which is ideal for tight spaces.
Arc120 has a power rating of 220 volts (50/60 Hz). The machine gives you an output of up to 120A on DC power with a 60% duty cycle. It’s a welder which comes with a dedicated AC to DC converter so you shouldn’t worry. Such ability allows it to handle various metal sizes. The shipping package also includes a plug and earth clamp electrode.
ARC WELDER ARC120 is also versatile and ergonomic. When you open the free unique handbag in the package, you can start using the welder immediately. You need no special skills to operate. Then, the output current is stable, and the machine produces minimal spatter. Thus, the welder is safe to use. This tool is ideal for indoor use including repairs and decorations.
3. Portable IGBT ARC MMA
High performing portable welders do not always cost a pound of gold. Some of them, like the Portable IGBT ARC MMA, is available at a low price for anyone who wants a home welding machine. In the package, Shui-Hui includes an Allen wrench, welding mask, 2M earth clamp cable, and a two-meter welding holder.
The Shui Hui ZX7-200 IGBT has a high amperage of about 200. The inverter runs well on a 220V, 50/60 Hz. The machine produces enough power to solder 2.0-6.0mm thick metals. The high frequency of the inverter makes it more efficient and thus, it saves energy. The earth cable protects you from any environmental shock or lightning.
Shui Hui ZX7-200 IGBT also has an active ventilation system continually cools interior components. Remember, it’s crucial that the machine keeps cold to protect delicate internal systems from melting. The coolers add to the welder’s durability.
Then, it is easy to start and operate the Shui Hui ZX7-200 IGBT. No special aptitude is necessary as everything is self-explanatory. Then, you can always read the manual for details. The machine’s power-off protective feature not only protects you and the device but also saves energy.
The welding machine works best with a 2.5 to 3.2-millimeter welding rods. It weighs 11.03lbs and measures 7.1 by 12.6 by 16.34 inches. The tool is, therefore, both lightweight and compact, which are ideal for portability. While the lightweight nature of the welder makes it easy to transport, the small size keeps it versatile and useful in tight spaces.
4. Goplus MIG 130
A portable welder is the best tool to use when fixing stuff at home. The uses of a welder at home include handling decorations and repairing doors, roofs or windows. Also, if you have an indoor metalwork project, get yourself Grade-A home welders. And, it is impossible to speak about small home welding machines without mentioning Goplus MIG 130.
The Goplus-made machine is both compact and elegant. It is a MIG gas welder. The stainless steel construction makes it not only durable but also sturdy. You see, portable tools are likely to break when they fall. Stainless steel withstands all that.
Regarding versatility, Goplus MIG 130 weighs 35lbs and measures 7.5” by 11.5” by 13.5”. It may be bulkier than other brands reviewed in this post, but the weight is bearable. The compact size makes it an excellent tool for tight spaces.
Goplus MIG 130 performance is smooth. Adjust the settings to any of the four levels of current flow using simple buttons. Again, there are ten levels of speeds for you to feed wires using the adjustment rotary knob.
The welding machine is also ergonomic. It is lightweight and features a comfortable carrying handle. Plus, it is compact enough which allows you to use anywhere. The device has two air vents to cool it down. The welding gun is simple to use plus it comes with the best welding chipping hammer and protective mask. The gas produced is inert on metals which prevents oxidation. Goplus MIG 130 is ideal for welding thin bars of iron and steel.
5. Amico Power - DC Inverter Welder
The editor and thousands of users of the Amico Power welder cannot be wrong that it’s the best there is! This welder is exquisite, compact, ergonomic and lightweight. All these explain why it deserves the glory. Elegance, performance and sturdy construction characterize the Amico Welder. Put all these features together and get the reason why Amico Power welding machine stays at the top of the list.
First, it comes with a modern power usage technology. The welder inverts AC to DC then steps down the current into what is enough for the machine. The step-down transformer ensures that the current flow is even and the systems do not receive more power than they need. The transformer protects the little tool.
Second, the Amico welder has a unique compact and elegant design. The blue casing looks sleek, but it’s strong enough to protect the welder. The welder weighs 18lbs and measures 12.5 by 22 by 9 inches. These specifications give it a right to be ‘portable.’
Third, Amico Power Welder has an amperage of 160Amp. It runs on a voltage between 115V and 230v at 60 Hz. It has an output voltage of about 23V, all which adds up to a 60% duty cycle. In short, the welding machine is not only a performer but also an energy saver.
Finally, the device is ergonomic and convenient. That’s why it’s easy to use and comes with an electrode holder plus a 10-foot cable. The inverter can also support a standard household voltage of 110V.
How to Choose the Best Portable Welder?Buiying Guides
It is no doubt that every homeowner, repairer or maintenance service person should get a welder. You see, a welder is a solution to the majority of breakages we face every day. For instance, if the door hinge dislocates, you should weld it back. Welding is not for professionals alone- even a teenager can do it. The good thing is that the welder doesn’t have to be bulky. Instead, a small portable welder will do the job right.
Even after admitting that the machine is worth buying, the most significant task is in scouring the market. Many buyers often get lost for choice. Choosing the perfect welder for their needs looks difficult. So, we have a guide lined up for you. Here’s what to consider when buying the most convenient welders.
Size Plus Design
Portability has to do with the size, design, and weight of the machine. Welding machines range from a few ounces to a ton. It’s easy to tell that heavy welding machines are not ideal for versatility. The best portable welding machine should be light, small and easy to operate. A compact design should however not compromise the power. Good performance is inalienable in welding tough metals.
So, the ideal portable welder has a compact design. It combines the aspects of ergonomics, lightweight and performance. In most cases, such a machine is useful in tight locations. Imagine, for instance, that you are fixing the knobs in the bathroom. The room is too small to bring on a heavy-duty railway-gas-powered-type welder. Instead, you need a little machine. Whether the device runs on gas or electricity, it still needs to be versatile.
Choosing a versatile machine means you must have one that is user-friendly. By this, I mean it should neither require complicated skills to operate nor hurt you when using it. For a welding machine to be portable, it needs to have the right design and must be ergonomic too. It makes sense if the tool is easy to operate and not trying to fix, in case a problem occurs.
If you want the best performance, find a model that comes with ergonomic handles. A machine becomes user-friendly when the designers use the buyer’s health and welfare as the sources of inspiration. So, ensure that you are using models that come with a complete guide about operating it. But, the guide manual is not enough. The machine should also have ergonomic features such as cushioned handles and easy switches. Remember, ergonomic welders are easy to use, and they allow you to work for long without fatigue.
Power and Performance
Performance is the strength and efficiency of a welding machine. Undoubtedly, the top welders should match the performance you need. Choose the tool whose power best suits your work needs. The varieties of welders range from lightweight to heavy-duty equipment. Homeowners would go for the basic units; professional welders may want to work with the heavy duty machines.
For homeowners, a power output of about 100 is enough. Remember, homeowners, are not using the welder for fixing any broken bridges or for ship construction. Instead, it is a broken window frame, doors, and such minor welding applications. So, you only need welders that can do that. Large machines may be a waste in such a scenario unless you probably want to pursue professional welding too.
However, professionals must have heavy-duty welders. There exists portable professional welding equipment that with high power output. Heavy-duty models are ideal for the installation of foundations and structures.
Probably, the most crucial part of any purchase is the price. Working from a budget means you should buy machines that are within your workable price range. The good thing about welding equipment is that it comes at myriad prices. Pricing depends on the brand itself and its performance. Consequently, if you want heavy duty portable welders, you should be ready with a chunk of dollars. But the lightweight, small-scale welding equipment is far cheaper than the heavy-duty type. As you notice in our review, there are still cheap good performing welders.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. AC and DC welder, which is better?
Ac welder and DC welder both have a unique way of working under different circumstance. DC welder, however, offers smoother welding than the AC welder. Also, it has less spatter and more stability during welding jobs. An AC welder, on the contrary, provides steadier arc and is much cheaper than the DC welders.
2. What is the most appropriate all-purpose welding rod for the portable welder?
Several rods are usable with the portable welder. But when it comes to an all-round rod for welding jobs, 6011 will stand apart from others. It gets the majority of the welding jobs done with the 1/18 and 3/32 size rods available in your hand. It is usable with both AC and DC welder. Also, the rod features fast-fill freezing and tackles the dirtiest welding jobs with perfection.
3. Which welder type do I need to use for stainless steel?
You need to use TIG or gas tungsten ARC welder to weld stainless steel. TIG is famous for its longevity and versatility at work. Also, TIG welding generates less heat which is ideal for working on thin and mild stainless steel without damaging the core component.
4. What are the most recommendable brands for a portable welder?
Almost all manufacturers produce various portable welders that will suit your purpose. However, according to our research and experts’ view, Amico, Sungold Power, Lincoln, Goplus and Hitbox produce the most popular models of the welder with portability in mind. We have reviewed five portable welders here that will surely meet your necessity.
Both professional and beginners welders need portable equipment for a couple of reason. One, the tool helps navigate tight spaces. Then, it is useful for people who want to make precise welds. Again, whenever you want to join small pieces of steel or iron, you are going to require a small welder.
However, the compact size and low price do not rule out the need for power. No doubt, the best portable welding machine is reliable and efficient. Since it is lightweight, it can solve the majority of breakages or repair needs at home.
There are tools for this out there in the market. If you want the number one portable welder, then you have to consider their performance, construction, design as well as size. In my view, Goplus MIG 130 tops the list. Which is your favorite?
Important safety tips
An accident is the cry of the whole life. So, Please always wear these safety equipment before welding to avoid any unwanted dangers.