One of the best options for welding aluminum is a TIG welder running on AC power, and you’ll find some of the best prices on the industry leading machines such as the Lincoln Squarewave 200 and the Miller Diversion 180. These TIG welders offer clean starts, a smooth arc, and user-friendly settings, as well as quite a few more features. Here’s a brief overview of TIG welding aluminum and how these top machines can help you get the job done.
When Do You Need a TIG Welder for Aluminum?
You absolutely need a TIG welder for working with thin gauge aluminum. It can also join thicker aluminum and steel. While some welders will choose a spool gun and a MIG welder for some projects, especially the thicker aluminum ones, a TIG welder running AC offers a clean, precise weld that, if completed by an experienced welder, can offer a tremendous finished product.
TIG welders also offer the added benefits of adjusting your heat input with a foot pedal. You have complete control of the filler rod as well, so when it comes to having control over the welding process, TIG welding may be the best option. Automotive welding, especially for customizing motorcycles and hot rods, has made TIG welding especially popular.
If you want to find the best TIG welder for the money when working on aluminum, then Miller and Lincoln’s basic TIG welders can get the job done without having to sink a ton of money into a new machine.
The Lincoln Squarewave 200 TIG/Stick Welder
Lincoln’s Squarewave 200 is one of the most affordable and effective TIG welders on the market. Welders love the smooth arc for AC TIG welding on aluminum or working on steel, stainless, or chrome-moly on the DC setting. This machine is on sale at Baker’s Gas and Welding as of this writing for under $2,500.
When you’re welding aluminum, you’ll enjoy high frequency starts and the flexibility of pulse mode for faster welding. This light machine, weighing in at 46 lbs can swap out 120V or 230V power and comes with a PTA-17 Series 150 Amp Air-cooled TIG Torch with Flexible Head and Ultra-Flex Cable Assembly.
We put together a quick video to answer some of the most frequently asked questions about the Squarewave.
The Miller Diversion AC/DC TIG Welder
Miller’s cost-effective and reliable TIG welder swaps out AC and DC power that is inverter-based so that welders have a steady welding arc while also using less power. Welders will also have less weld contamination since it offers non-contact high frequency starts.
Welds will penetrate deeper and freeze faster with its Advanced Squarewave AC. With auto-postflow, the weld receives additional protection in order to minimize contamination.
Like the Squarewave, the Diversion is reliable for most TIG welding projects since you can swap out power supplies. However, it weighs in closer to 50 pounds and adds about $500 to the overall price.
The Miller Multimatic 220 AC/DC
The most popular option on the market would have to be this Miller machine. The Multimatic 220 is the only true Multiprocess machine that has AC TIG. (meaning you can TIG aluminum) Most multiprocess machines only DC TIG making it limited on the TIG side.
For a complete overview on the 220 check out this post or the YouTube video below.
Find the Right TIG Welder for You
While you could get to work on your next aluminum project with a MIG welder, there are plenty of times when the results of a TIG welder will be hard to pass up. Whether you go with red, blue, or another leading brand from Baker’s Gas and Welding, a basic TIG welder running on AC is going to deliver.
To learn more about TIG and other welding topics check out our most recent Weld My World blog posts!