In this guide we’ll look at the best TIG welders.
We’ve compared power, performance, design and cost
to give you our top recommendations.
What Are The Best TIG Welders?
More Detailed TIG Welders Reviews
The TIG Welder Portable Inverter 240V / 160 amp is the best TIG welder because it is portable and light, has excellent features and settings and comes with good accessories.
This TIG welder has a wide array of features to help you when TIG welding. These include auto hot start, anti-stick, arc force stabilization and thermal overload protection. It is also rated at a 60% duty cycle allowing you to weld for longer and reducing down time.
This product comes with a lot of the accessories you need to get started on TIG welding. It features an earth clamp, clipping hammer, wire brush and mask. This makes sure you can get started as soon as your TIG welder arrives.
The product is portable due to its included carry handle. It is also light, coming in at only 9kg which makes it easy to transport and store.
A combination of reasonable price, good accessories, being portable and light and including good features make this the best TIG welder for a wide array of uses.
The GYS 030077 Gysmi 160P – 160 A TIG Welder is also a good option because it has an inverter piloted microprocessor, immediate start and hot start function. It is also small and neat and comes with a carry case.
The inverter technology piloted microprocessor allows you to have fine control over the thickness of your weld by allowing you to control the bead size very precisely.
The unit features immediate start thanks to its high voltage. This is a great feature because you can get going as soon as you turn the welder on. This is good if you often use your welder for odd jobs as you can get it done straight away rather than waiting on the machine to warm up.
The unit is only 34cm tall including the carry case making it very easy to store and transport to wherever you need it.
This is a good option for if you need a portable but powerful welder that is precise and always ready for use.
The 200 Amp Inverter Welder- MMA Portable Welding Machine is very powerful, has a 60% duty cycle and comes with excellent accessories. This is powerful welder capable of working on heavy-duty metals. If you need a welder to weld thicker metals or want to work quickly this powerful welder is for you.
The 60% duty cycle will keep you welding for longer before the machine needs a cooling off period. This will keep you working efficiently. It also has a lot of other good specs like anti-stick and thermal overload protection. To reach its full potential and to become a TIG welder you will need to purchase a TIG welding torch.
The welder comes with electrode holder and lead, earth clamp and a wire brush.
This is a powerful welder that comes in at a very reasonable price.
The Sealey MW200A 200Amp TIG Welder is another good option because it is compact and lightweight, has a great build quality and offers excellent cooling.
This is an effective inverter welder that can be used with a TIG welding torch. The product has a nice sized ventilation hole cut to allow good airflow to the internal components. This allows you to keep welding for longer. The welder has a 20% duty cycle.
The product is made using high quality pressed steel, which is strong, lightweight and durable. To add to this it is finished with a very nice powder coating. This helps the product to stand up against corrosion and makes it more durable.
This option is compact and lightweight and has a carry handle that makes moving and storing the unit very easy.
This is a good option if you needs a portable welder for shorter welding jobs.
The Gomistar 200Amp TIG Welder is another good option because it has good settings and features, industrial build quality and remains lightweight and compact.
This TIG welder has good features to help you with your welding needs. It has high frequency so is ready to use as soon as you need it. It also features a 60% Duty cycle and voltage protection. The welder comes with plenty of accessories including TIG torch, ground clamp and cable, electrode holder and cable, ceramic nozzle and spanner.
The chassis of the product is made from industrial grade metal making it strong, durable and easy to maintain as well as making it easier to make modifications should you need to. Despite the sturdy build quality, this welder remains light and portable.
This is a good all round option with an excellent build quality, good % duty cycle and great accessories included.
TIG Welders Buyers guide
Below we have listed some key concepts and features that you should consider before choosing a TIG welder.
These days most TIG welders use inverter technology. Essentially inverter technology allows you to specify the size of the bead you create, thus giving you more control over your welds and making your job easier. By adjusting the weld’s bead profile you can make the bead wider or narrower, enabling you to achieve the correct size weld first-time round and eliminating under or over welding.
Under welding requires a second pass, resulting in a weaker and less tidy weld. Over welding requires more sanding/filing and more cleanup, thus adding to the time you spent on a task.
Auto hot start
TIG welders need to be warm to start welding efficiently. However, it is difficult to warm a welding torch up without welding with it. Therefore without auto hot start, you will often have to weld with scrap metal to warm up the machine. This wastes time and material. However, auto hot start enables you to start the welder with the torch hot. This leads to good welds straight away and reduces wasted time or bad welds from starting with a cold-welding torch. Welding when the torch isn’t sufficiently hot will result in weaker and messier welds that will require more clean up afterwards.
Anti-stick works by automatically adjust the voltage and or amperage to control the heat and length of the flame or arc of the welder depending on your settings.
For example, if you are using manual or programmed settings designed for specific metals the welder knows this. If it starts to stick or catch in the same spot for too long it could be because the welder is melting the electrode to what you are attempting to weld. To avoid this the anti-stick function will reduce the voltage to reduce the heat of the welder. It could also increase the amperage to reduce the length of the arc. This should free the welder from whatever it is stuck to and then the welder will resume its normal welding voltage.
Arc force stabilization
Arc force is the correlation between amperage and voltage. Arc force stabilization allows these two variables to remain consistent by stabilizing them. For example, when using a shorter arc length in your setting the voltage will drop. With arc force stabilization the machine will increase the amperage to maintain a consistent weld that is clean and strong. If the voltage and or amperage fluctuate the heat and length of your flame are going to fluctuate with it, leading to inconsistent, weaker welds.
Thermal overload protection
Thermal overload protection is linked to the machine’s fan cooling system (see below) and the % duty cycle (again see below) of your machine.
When the machine gets too hot the thermal overload protection kicks in, turning the machine off so that is can cool down.
In addition, if when you have welding for a certain amount of time and have reached the % duty cycle of your machine, the thermal overload protection will again kick in, allowing the machine the required downtime it needs to cool down and be ready to weld again.
Fan cooling system
A fan cooling system is very important in a TIG welder as a cooler TIG welder will enable you to continue welding for longer. Without an adequate cooling system your welding tasks will take longer to complete.
% Duty cycle
The % duty cycle of your TIG welder also affects how long you can continue welding before the machine requires a “cooling off period”. The higher the per cent cycle the longer you can remain welding. If your welder has a 60% duty cycle you can weld for 60% of the time and have a down time of 40%, so over a period of 10-minutes, the machine must not be used for 4 minutes.
You will on occasion have to reposition your TIG welder, especially when working on large projects. In this situation a lightweight and compact TIG welder will make your job much easier, as well as making the machine easier to store.
Accessories are an important part of welding. If you are buying a welder for the first time you might not have any accessories, so buying one that comes with the more important ones will not only save you the hassle of finding them but also ensure that you can start welding straight away.
The accessories you need will vary depending on the materials you are welding so it’s advisable to research and source gasses and rods upfront. However you will definitely need a torch, welding gloves, earth clamp and welding mask, so look for a welder that already comes with these accessories in order to save time and money.
A warranty demonstrates that the manufacturer is confident in their product. And if anything goes wrong they can repair or replace it for you. Always buy a TIG welder with at least a 1-year warranty.
What is a TIG welder?
TIG stand for Tungsten Inert Gas. For TIG welding you don’t have an automatic wire as with MIG welding. Instead, as you are welding you use a metal rod that you manually position into the spot where you require the filler material to be placed.
While you are using a TIG welder, tungsten gas is blown out of the torch. Tungsten gas is an inert gas that has two purposes. Firstly, it protects the weld from the atmosphere, therefore stopping any reaction taking place and ensuring the weld is strong and clean. Secondly, the gas helps to cool the weld down, so it sets properly and creates a strong bond.
What is a TIG welder used for?
TIG welders are good for most metal welding providing you use the correct rod. They are particularly good for welding two different metals together whereas other welders can only work with the same metal. You can weld most metals with a TIG welder, but it is worth double checking your metal before you start.
TIG welders shine when you have a difficult or awkward weld such as a curved weld or a weld that involves an awkward angle. The TIG welder allows you to be very precise yet at the same time quite free-flowing, allowing you to complete difficult welds more easily.
How do I use a TIG welder?
To begin with you need to ensure you have the correct rod for the material you are working with. If you are new to welding it’s advisable to start with some scrap material and just practice joining it together. A good starter material is aluminium, and to weld it you should use a pure tungsten rod. This rod will need to be sanded / ground to a point.
The rod will need to be placed inside a collet. This is the tool you hold in the other hand to the torch. You will want about ¼” of the rod to be protruding from the end of the collet.
Your TIG welder should have preset options of AC, DCEP and DCEN. Use the AC setting if you are practising on aluminium. You should then select the settings for cleaning / penetrating, air and amps. Look online to find tables that will help you select the correct settings for each of these.
Prepare your pieces on a welding table. Clamp your pieces so they stay securely in place while you weld.
Don your protective equipment. This should comprise a boiler suit, face and eye protection and thick welding gloves.
Your first job is to tack the two pieces of metal together in order to get the clamps out of the way. To do this create a few points between the clamps. Start at one edge and when a pool has formed, touch the rod in. Once this is completed you can remove the clamps.
You are then ready to start welding. Hold the torch in one hand and use it to melt the metal rod fitted into the collet that you are holding with the other hand. When welding work slowly and carefully. Your aim is to melt the tungsten rod to bridge the gap between your two pieces of metal.
How does a TIG welder work?
TIG welders work by melting a metal bar or rod into the gap between two pieces of metal. The metal then cools and hardens, joining the two pieces of metal together.
How to convert an Arc welder to a TIG?
Arc welders use a different kind of torch to a TIG welder. To perform this conversion you need to purchase a TIG Welding Torch Kit for Arc Inverters. Then by attaching a TIG welding torch to the arc welder’s negative socket and using argon gas you effectively turn your arc welder into a TIG welder.