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.
The key features
- 150-Amp DCSP maximum – 60 percent duty cycle
- Air-cooled body 700 head
- 0.020” electrode capacity
- The torch body weighs 6 oz (170g)
- The length stands at 7 3/4 “ (196.8mm)
- The handle diameter stands at 7/8” (22.2mm)
- Excellent power output
- Offers great results when welding thin gauge materials
- Easier to control
- Lightweight torch body
- You will need more accessories to complete the TIG torch
2. CK Worldwide CK20-25
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.
- The head is easier to maneuver and hold on the hand
- The water-cooling unit allows long time usage
- The 250A allows production of more power and facilitates easier welding
- The product is hard to use indoors
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.
The key features
- Premium quality head body
- Interchangeable with most WeldCraft TIG torches
- Flexible head body featuring a gas valve and handle
- Weighs 7.2 ounces
- 200-Amp power output
- Air cooled
- The torch body head is long lasting
- The product is more flexible
- The grip is comfortable
- It is light
- More affordable
- You will need more parts to have the complete TIG torch system
- The head is not flexible and might break if bent hard
4. Weldflame WP-17FV-12R 12-ft
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.
- The flex head is easier to move around
- The product works perfectly for smaller jobs
- You cannot use the 150Amp rating for long
- The flex head is likely to melt at a higher power output
- May not work as advertised
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.
The key features
- The product’s design is compact and properly balanced
- It features an efficient water cooling system
- All parts are exchangeable with those of WP-9P, WP-9 and WP-25 models
- Flexible head
- The gas valve features a metallic ball valve
- The TIG torch maintains lower heat profile, including during extended use
- The air-cooling system is effective
- It is very affordable
- To have a complete TIG torch system, you will need several pieces
- Features a head that is not very flexible and might break if you bend it too hard
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.
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.