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MIG welder not feeding wire

Discussion in 'The Pub' at netrider.net.au started by MV, Jun 18, 2010.

  1. Hi All,

    I've recently picked a MIG welder on eBay for a song, the only trouble is it doesn't feed the wire properly.

    I've never welded before, apart from some arc & gas stuff years ago, so I'm hoping to learn on this machine, but it's a bit without the feed being steady...

    I got rid of some wire off the spool that was a bit corroded & changed the tip, that got it feeding a lot better, but the feed is still not constant. It's ok as long as you keep the torch cable fairly straight.

    The tension adjuster for the tension on the roller is at full adjustment already, I have tried bending it slightly, but to no avail.

    I've been doing some research & apparently you can get replacement liners for the gun, but in the meantime is there anything else I should check?

    I suppose a dry lube like graphite would be a bad idea, given that it's conductive right?

    The welder is an SIP Migmate 100 if that helps.

    Thanks in advance!

    (Should this be in off topic? Or tech & troubleshooting? Ah, Rob's gunna kill me!)
  2. It's possible that the feed roller is wrong for the wire (eg 1.2mm roller on 0.9mm wire) or that the feed roller is worn out. Rusty wire will lead to jerky feed. I'd spring for a new roll and try that.

    It's unlikely that an amateur machine like the MigMate would have seen enough use to wear out the handpiece, although I wouldn't totally rule out the possibility.
  3. Being a mig welder, and if it's anything like mine, there is a chance that the trigger lead has been laying on the ground, and something has dropped on it.
    This would then cause maybe a slight kink, compression in the liner, making the wire tight, and not feed correctly.
    Buy the new liner and see how you go, other than changing the tips, and making sure that the feed rollers turn, not much more you can do....
  4. Cool, thanks for the help guys.

    I've checked the roller, it's on the .6 setting & the wire is .6, so it should be ok, but I guess it could be worn out.

    So: New liner, new roller, new wire!

    Still be a cheap welder, as long as the liner & roller aren't too expensive...

    I should be able to pick them up at pretty much any welding shop, right?
  5. Not sure if they're universal or specific to the SIP. I'm also not sure how common the SIPs are here. They were common as muck in the UK but I've not seen many in Oz, although that could just be a reflection on the circles I tend to move in these days.

    Have you checked that the feed roller is being driven smoothly and consistently. It's unlikely to be the problem but it's worth a check.

    Good luck with it. The ability to stick bits of metal together is fantastically useful. I've had plenty of value out of my toy MIG and I haven't even used it that much. I don't do enough welding to justify the rent on a bottle so I pay through the nose for flux cored wire but it's still brilliant. I sprang for an auto-darkening mask a couple of months ago too, which I'm also finding tremendously useful, although it's got a couple of quirks that are annoying and could, possibly, be dangerous if not recognised and compensated for.