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I finally got everything out of my engine compartment this past weekend and found a cancer hole underneath the battery tray. Common spot I understand.



As I looked it appears that it is a very easy panel to replace. Drill out the spot welds and plug weld the new panel in place.

My problem is I don't have a welder.

I thought about going down to Harbor Freight and picking up their cheepo 110v flux core for $89. If this was the only panel I would need to weld I would do that in a heartbeat.

But, knowing that there are probably several other places i will need to weld (passenger floorboard, rear lower quarters) I think this will give me more problems than I need.

So, because I can't afford $1000 for a nice MIG setup, can I get by with the Flux Core from HF and grind the crap out of the welds to smooth them. Or can I rent a mig for a weekend for a reasonable price.

I have also been watching Craigslist for used machines.

Ideas???
 

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Typically, those flux core welders support MIG as well. You just have to hook up a gas bottle and use the right wire. That said, I don't know why flux core wouldn't work for your purposes. It's very similar to MIG, you just end up with some slag. I have also rented a 110v MIG setup. The problem with this is, they aren't always as well maintained as they should be so it's hard to run a smooth bead.
 

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I typically rent a welder for small jobs. I've rented it about 6 times and cost me about $40-60 depending where I get it from. I'll eventually buy a good lincoln or Miller.
 

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I found that renting at places like Ace hardware are a little cheaper than from welding shops. I would just call around in your area and ask. Make sure you reserve it because they tend to be rented quite often. At least when I want it and don't plan on it in advance.
 

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You will have better success with solid wire and gas for thin metal. Flux core welds a bit hotter. If a $1000 mig is out of your range, consider one of those small 110v units like they have at home depot. One with gas a gas hook up of course. I have welded with them before and they actually work pretty well.
 

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I agree. Flux runs too hot and it splatters and is messier to clean up. The easy way would be to flange two of the longer sides of your patch, drill/punch your holes and plug weld it in. If you get flux that's the only way I'd try it due to heat. If you butt weld it with flux it will be harder to get good penetration without burning thru so what you'll end up with is what I like to call "boogers". Those would be your high mounds that don't penetrate the backside but are a pain to grind off and with boogers you can't even really grind it all the way down without losing your bond. go gas for sure.
 

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Don't buy the hf cheapie... I had one and it's junk. Blow-thru was quite common. I finally invested in a good 130v mig with gas. Daylight and dark difference. A cheap auto-darkening helmet will help you hone your skills. I'm not a welder, but I can see myself improving after getting decent equipment.
Bill
 
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