You may be able to find a solid single process welder for $650 or a used multi-process on its last legs for $650, but this month Baker’s Gas and Welding is offering the Thermal Arc 161 STL Portable DC Welder at the unbelievably low price of $640. This is the ideal welder for touch DC stick welding projects and Lift TIG applications, and it can operate at either 115 volts or up to 230 volts, providing excellent versatility in a high quality welder at an extremely low price. Not sure if this Thermal Arc Welder is for you? Here is a break down of what this machine offers:
Improved Control for TIG Welding
The 161 STL includes a trigger hold function (2T/4T), down slope timer, a gas solenoid for flow through gas, and the ability to use a torch switch or foot control accessories—though only a torch is included with this welding package. With these options and accessories, you’ll be freed up to focus more on your technique, whether you’re stick or TIG welding.
A Variety of Power settings for Stick and TIG Welding
The STL 161 is capable of delivering up to 125 Amps on 115 volt circuits for Stick welding projects that don’t require a lot of power. When used on 208-230 Volt circuits, maximum output is 160 Amps for either welding process.
Arc Starts and Arc Control for Stick Welding
You’ll start working right away since the 161 STL offers optimized hot starts for stick welding as well as user adjustable arc-force circuits that provide superior control when stick welding. The Lift TIG feature lets you strike an arc easily and quickly, resulting in fewer wrecked electrodes and far less time grinding fresh tips on your wheel. Lift TIG is a far better way to strike an arc when compared to scratch starts where the electrode could become contaminated.
Useful TIG Welding Controls
If you need to adjust your settings while on the job, the 161 STL provides torch switches that you can simply rotate into position without having to leave your work piece, walking back and forth to your welding machine. In addition, although the STL 161 doesn’t come with a foot pedal, online reviewers find that they enjoy this welder even more when they add the control and convenience of a foot pedal for their TIG welding projects.
Portable TIG Welding
This particular Thermal Arc welder is on the lighter side, weighing in at about 21 lbs. This is particularly helpful since stick welding projects can take place in a variety of locations. This places the 161 STL in the same weight range as many other portable welders by leading brands.
Duty Cycle for Welders
While welding on lower power settings with 115 volts or 230 volts, your duty cycle will range between 30% and 35%. This means you’ll be able to weld for roughly three consecutive minutes before the machine needs to cool for another seven minutes. Welders on the lighter weight range tend to have shorter duty cycles, but 30% will ensure you’ll have enough power to get most projects done.
Skill Level for Welders
The beauty of this Thermal Arc 161 STL welder is that it offers both stick and TIG welding options. You can easily get started with a stick project, but more advanced users can also take advantage of the additional TIG settings for projects where a stick welder won’t provide the control and precision that TIG welding affords.
Not Sure if This Is The Welder for You?
Here is a link to a video showing the STL 161 in action for a wide variety of applications, as well as a link to its manual so you can review its specific features: