Are you looking for the best tig torch to do your welding task easily and faster? We’ve done all we could to demystify the task for you. This guide will take you through the buying process and help you buy the best one on the market. But before going in details on all you need to know about TIG Torch , here is a quick comparison table of different products you can consider.
1. Riverweld WP-17F SR-17F TIG
The WP-17F Air-Cooled Welding torch is among the top welding torches in the market today. The manufacturer designs this product for optimal control when welding thinner gauge materials. Moreover, the 150-amp rating makes the product a good choice for light-duty home DIY projects requiring TIG welding applications. In other words, if you have been searching for a TIG torch that will enable you to get to the confined areas like oil tanks, tube clusters and to complete projects involving fine metal repairs, the product is a great choice.
If you have a TIG machine that boasts a huge bulky air-cooled TIG torch, but you need more versatility and control and you do not like water-cooled products, the WP-17F SR-17F TIG Welding Torch is a good choice. The product features the same front-end parts you expect with the WP-26 WP-18 Water-Cooled Torch. Therefore, after upgrading, the parts will interchange. This feature is there to help you save money and time.
2. CK Worldwide CK20-25
- It dissipates the heat 4X times of the actual welding surface
- It weighs only 2.95 pounds for quick carrying and adjustments
- 100% DCSP and features 250 amperages for ACHF functions.
- The head accessories are made of premium 2-series items.
- The torch wire length is 25 feet.
- The TIG torch needs water for cooling off.
Even though CK Worldwide CK 20-25 water-cooled TIG Torch is not a good option for people who work outdoors most of the time, it is among the great tools that you can keep inside your garage and work for many hours without having to stop for it to cool down. It comes with a cooling system that allows the user to ensure that the torch functions for more hours. The product comes with a smaller head that is easier to maneuver and will perfectly fit in your hand when handling longer projects. If you only weld inside your garage, the product is a perfect choice.
Just like air-cooled torches, water-cooled torches have benefits to offer. However, you should remember that water-cooled torches, like CK Worldwide CK20-25 TIG Torch,are trickier to use outdoors because of their size and the bulkiness of the water-cooling unit, which you must set up. However, you can use a water-cooled unit for more hours without having to stop for it to cool down.
Speaking of power, the CK Worldwide CK 20-25 is incredibly powerful. You will not encounter any problem when welding several types of outdoor furniture pieces. The head is small and easier to manipulate in your hand. The product is portable and very flexible. Actually, it will feel great in your hands.
On the downside, the water-cooling unit makes it hard to use the product outdoors. Overall, the product offers excellent results. It is also the best water-cooled unit you are likely to get in the market.
3. WeldingCity TIG WP-26FV SR-26FV
WeldingCity TIGWP-26FV SR-26FV TIG torch is a great addition to any modern garage if the user can meet the 200A rating. Its flex-head allows the user to access almost every area that he/she might be considering. Even more, the manufacturer offers an easier to use on/off the gas valve. The only thing that you should remember during your shopping is that this device will get hot faster. It is suitable for people in need of field expedient products to help them get started.
Air-cooled TIG torches are the standard option and most manufacturers offer them with their TIG welding machines. They are ideal when welding for short periods and at low temperatures. Even though a pair of welding gloves will help keep your hands cool and safer, you will not be able to weld for long with your air-cooled TIG torch. You can use the WeldingCity TIG both indoors and outdoors and at any time of the day. It provides adequate accuracy, comfort, and better control.
4. Weldflame WP-17FV-12R 12-ft
- The TIG torch features a 150AMP capacity.
- All the parts and consumables of the TIG torch are of the US standard.
- The power cable is 12 feet lengthy and made of premium rubber for insulation
- The product weight is 3.11 pounds, only
- The handle is ergonomic, and the head-body is flexible for easy convenience
Many buyers are also going for Weldflame WP-17FV-12R. There are many reasons behind that. The product offers 150 Amp power, a flex head, and an air-cooling unit. Overall, the product is not a bad go for, but you are likely to find some problems.
The 150 Amp power is enough to weld a number of items in your garage and outdoors. The flex head is easier to hold and maneuver and because it is air-cooled, you can use it in any place without problems.
Like any other product in the market, Weldflame WP-17FV-12R comes with several issues. For example, the flex head is likely to bulge after welding continually for hours – it will look like melting. If that happens, you will need to reduce the power. Even though the manufacturer rates the product as 150-Amp, you will need to use lesser power when running for longer periods. Use 80-90Amp for it to last longer. If you need more power, it might not be the right choice.
Power refers to the amps your TIG torch can use and more power means that you can complete bigger projects and weld bigger pipes, wires and larger furniture pieces. If your goal is to complete huge projects, go for a TIG torch with a rating above 150A. The WeldFlame WP-17FV-12R is suitable for smaller projects.
5. WeldCraft 366-WP-20-25 WP-20-25 WP-20
If you are an experienced weld operator searching for a good TIG torch to add to your stock, the WeldCraft 366-WP=20-25 Water Cooled TIG Torch is a good option. The product is well balanced and compact.
If you want to weld for long periods or at higher amperage, this is the product to go for. It rarely gets hot and provides the user with a comfortable welding experience. Any weld operator will tell you that long welding times make a huge difference, particularly when working on TIG welding projects.
You will also be able to take your welding to a higher level by using the higher quality TIG welding accessories WeldCraft offers such as TIG cup, which makes the overhead welding easier. A TIG cup allows the user to make cleaner controlled welds.
Careful control of heat is important in metalwork. A lot of heat can distort the material, burn through or wreck your metals and little heat will not get enough material into your weld joint. The product allows for careful control of heat input and the finger control makes that easier.
How To Choose The Best TIG Torch
The process of selecting a new TIG torch can be time-consuming. Therefore, before you start your shopping, you have to understand the difference between the available brands and the features to look for. Actually, manufacturers produce their TIG torches in a unique way and, therefore, the quality of the used materials and the manufacturing process will highly differ from one product to the other. If you are not careful, you are likely to buy a product that will only last for a few months or weeks.
Properly engineered torches provide better performance. When checking the hoses and cables, think beyond braided versus vinyl and rubber. The appearance of tubing does not change, but if the manufacturer has not created the inside to spec, the power flow will be inefficient. Rubber is recommendable, unlike vinyl, which is another word for plastic - the combination of heat and plastic is not good. Here are the other features to consider during your shopping for a TIG torch.
The power of TIG torch is among the important elements to consider during your shopping. Even though most home appliances do not require current above 200A, you should have this option, particularly when trying new projects. You will be not in the danger of low rating torch failing to run. The price point is actually the main determining factor. When shopping for a torch to run in your garage, go for one with a rating higher than 250A. That way, you will be able to handle anything that comes your way.
The Cooling System
Generally, when shopping for a TIG torch, you will have to choose between air-cooled or water-cooled torch. Even though water-cooled torches are complicated to run, they maintain lower heat in cases of prolonged use and last for a longer time. Even more, the consumable parts you will be using with them will last for a longer time too.
Counter-intuitively, water-cooled torches are more maneuverable because they rely on small gauge wires due to their fast cooling nature. Most people prefer air-cooled torches because they can easily take care of the parts when in the field without stopping to look for the water outlet. Depending on your work, that might range from an absolute necessity to more convenience.
Light gauge wires are more maneuverable in all cases, but you should expect trade-offs. A thin wire will get hot faster and consume several parts of the TIG torch at a very high rate due to increased heat. For example, when welding a thicker fencing, you will have to consider something big to ensure that nothing will overheat when completing the project. And for the fine tasks, thin is better because a thin metal will generally take lesser time.
The value of the built-in gas valve
Built-in gas valves come in handy for most individuals, but others prefer buying separate ones so that they can be able to place them where they want in their system. Some TIG torches feature on/off valves and therefore the user has to control the gas they need for the welding at its source. That is majorly a personal preference case. If you are a beginner welder, go for one with two setting valves. You will then upgrade later if a need arises or after you have known what you need.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. What are the most common TIG torch sizes?
The air cooled or gas TIG torches are mostly available in four sizes. These are the A#24, A#9, A#17 and A#26. The smallest torch is the A#24 with 50 Amps capacity only. The largest A#26 has a power of at least 200Amps or above. You can interchange the gas threads input between A#17 and A#9 air cooled or gas TIG torches. The water cooled TIG torches have only two size variations. These are the A#20 and A#18. The former has 250Amps capacity while the later can generate up to 350Amps.
2. Are the TIG torches specific or universal?
Most standard TIG torches offer a universal size. Their size measurement refers to their Amp generating capacity mostly. However, you can’t interchange between all the parts or TIG torch sizes during the welding procedure. You can interchange between the A#9 and A#17 gas or air-cooled TIG torches gas thread. Also, you can change the wires of torches in between them. Also, if you use a stubby gas lens, you can interchange between a few more sizes. It lets you change the 20and 9 sized torch cups with the 26, 17 and 18 cups to downsize them.
3. Why is my TIG torch getting so hot?
The TIG torch might get hot due to several reasons, including broken frayed internally or cuts. If the TIG torch gets heated shortly, you will have to enhance the Argon to 20ci/min to cool down the TIG torch into its optimal condition. If you don’t use water for the cool-off process, you will need more Argon.
4. Can I use an air cooled or water cooled TIG torch only?
Well, the air cooled and water cooled TIG torches are related to their size. First, you will have to decide which size and Amp output is essential to complete your projects. Then, you will have to choose between the air cooled or gas and water cooled torches. The largest TIG torch sizes will ask for a water cooling process since these generate more heat. The smaller sized TIG torches will cool down using the air only.
5. How hot can a TIG torch get?
The GTAW and TIG welding uses a metal base and non-consumable tungsten electrode to produce the necessary heat to accomplish the welding jobs. The TIG torch is used to generate heat through the electrodes. It can easily reach up to an unthinkable 11,000°F. Hence, it is recommended that you always use hand gloves, knee pads and a welding helmet to protect yourself from such intense heating as you weld any material.
With the best TIG torch, your welding tasks will be easier and you will weld more alloys and metals than you can with other processes. TIG welders come in handy when welding steel, Chromoly, stainless steel, nickel alloys, brass, copper, gold, bronze, and magnesium. If you mostly weld bike frames, wagons, door handles, lawn mowers, and fenders, a TIG torch is a good choice. With weld puddle control and superior arc, you will make clean welds if the appearance is important. Moreover, you will only add filler metal of the right content to welding puddles and there will be no produced sparks or spatter produced – you will need clean metal to achieve that.