Flux core welding is easily one of the best welding processes.
It’s not hard to see why; this technique uses a flux that causes metals of different strength and thickness to melt at varying temperatures and requires minimal cooling time. Flux core welders are versatile and suitable for a broad range of projects.
The best flux core welders are easy to use and do not pose the common problems associated with other types of welders. However, finding the right device may become a herculean task owing to the copious amount of research involved.
Fortunately, we’ve moved a step ahead to provide you with this review of the top six flux core welders available on the market today. Enjoy!
Top-rated Flux Core Welder For The Money in 2019
Advantages of The Flux Core Welding Machine
Flux core welding is a semi-automatic welding process. This process requires a continuously fed wire electrode containing flux and a steady current power supply for welding (i.e. it uses a tubular wire filled with a flux). During the entire welding process, the flux inside the electrode melts and shields the welded area.
Some of the advantages of the flux core welder include:
- Versatility: It is suitable for a variety of applications; can be used to weld steel, stainless steel, copper and aluminum etc. This machine also works perfectly on painted, dirty or rusty materials
- Flux core welders can be used under windy weather conditions
- The Continuous wire feed technology makes the flux core welding machines easy to operate, simplifies training and supervisions
- Flux core welding has a relatively high metal deposition rate.
- It also provides you with deeper penetrations for welding relatively thick sections.
Disadvantages of the Flux Core Welding Machine
Even though the advantages of the flux core welding machine cannot be overemphasized, and just like all other electrical devices, the flux core welding machine has its own disadvantages. Some of them include:
- During the welding process, a lot of spatter is produced and this needs to be cleaned up regularly
- Require slag removal after welding
- Inappropriate selection of consumables and parameters leads to a reduced weld toughness
Best Flux Core Welder Reviews For 2019
1. Hobart Handler 140 MIG Welder – Top Choice
This market dominating brand (Hobart Handler 140) comes with a couple of new innovative features and superior designs. Versatile with industrial performance capacity for your professional projects.
The Handler-140 is also a suitable machine for your automotive jobs, household repairs and/or farm projects requiring extra welding power. It operates smoothly on 115V household current, but a 20A circuit is most recommended.
The five positions tapped voltage controls allow users to easily fine-tune the voltage and hence gives a smooth-stable arc on all thicknesses. This welder is built with an industrial aluminum cast drive system and a heavy-duty work clamp. Very easy to set up and use; within a few minutes, you can have it all set-up and ready to use. Even a first-time welder will find this machine amazing and easy to use as the weld set up guide is right there to help.
For your DIY Welding Projects, this machine is simply the best. The Handler 140 best flux core wire welder is ideal for welding; exhaust systems, auto body panels, mower decks, tool carts, bow racks, trailer frames, metal sculpture, lawn and garden equipment etc.
Packaged within the box are; The Handler-140 with built-in gas valve, dual voltage regulator and gas hose, 10ft MIG gun with liner, 8-inch spool adapter, 10ft power cord, 10ft Work cable and clamp, an extra sample spool of 0.030 flux cored wire,0.030 contact tips, owners manual and set up guide.
- Easy to set-up
- Great for DIY (do-it-yourself) welding projects
- Easy to use
- Durable feed head
- Great quality
- Limited manufacturer’s warranty
- Hammer/Brush Is Not Very Sturdy
2. Forney 140-Amp MIG Welder -best for the money
This machine operates with full efficiency at 125A. The plug-play mechanism makes the whole operation processes effortless and effective.
There is no need for any gas setting. The Forney 309-MIG welder has a 120V and a 140A max output. This machine is great for automotive, farms and small repair welding. Its welding processes are GMAW and FCAW. A multi-step transformer-based technology with four taps makes it one of the best flux core welder for the money.
The Forney 140-MIG is a complete upgrade from the former Forney MIG welders. This machine has a higher duty cycle, a quick euro style disconnect torch, longer torch with common consumables, cable wrap, upgraded de-spooler with a larger cabinet, HD cast aluminum and easier spool access.
Some of its important features include; 115V, DC/CV, 140 Amp maximum output, 10ft MIG gun /torch, standard US gas hose set up. Compact and lightweight, this workhorse weighs only 56 Lbs. It also comes with an advanced replacement warranties
- Great quality and durability
- Easy to set up
- Great for beginners
- Excellent duty cycle
- Welds great
- Argon/CO2 regulator not included
- Doesn’t allow the use of a pool gun
- Only Two Power Settings
3. LONGEVITY Migweld 140 Amp – best for beginners
If you are new in the welding sector, you definitely need a user-friendly machine. Longevity is truly an efficient learning device and many refer to it as the best flux core welder for beginners. Its fluxibility, smooth operation processes, and easy maintenance are its core features.
The Longevity MIGWELD 140A is a versatile welding machine which can weld aluminum with the optional spool-gun in addition to other common metals types and it works perfectly with your 110V wall outlet. Very easy to Set-up, this machine can be set up within a few minutes and you are ready to weld.
This device can also deliver industrial quality performance. the LONGEVITY MIGWELD 140 is great not just for beginners but professional users as well. Its portability (weighing only 14lbs) and capacity make it a wonderful on-the-go welding machine.
This device will help weld tight spaces plus it works excellently without gas for automotive repair and other off the grid jobs.
- Very powerful
- Easy to learn and operates
- can be used anywhere whether home, shop or garage
- The consumables are easy to get
- A couple of complaints about the efficiency of the gas regulator
- Pressure gauge reading problems
4. Goplus MIG Welder Flux Core Welding Machine -best flux core welder under 200
Fourth on the list is our Wolf MIG Welder (the Goplus), a flux core welder under 200 that will enable you to get a professional finish in welding all kinds of metals. With this powerful welder, you will be experiencing all the great advantages of flux core welding.
Featuring a compact and exquisite body design, the Goplus MIG Welder is made with heavy duty stainless steel materials and finely painted to ensure a long last serving life-span. Uses a convenient non-hazardous Flux Core wire, and a self release metal inert gas to prevent the oxidation of the welded area.
Featuring four levels of adjustable welding speed (i.e. current flow settings) and a rotary knob for adjusting the wire feeding speed. This device is perfect for welding thin steel and iron; it is one of the best for your DIY home projects and general repairing work.
It’s quite small but practically exceptional when it comes to welding. The compact and lightweight construction, and easy carrying handle makes it convenient and easy to move around. Other amazing features you will love include; two air-vent that help prevents overheating, On/Off Safety control and automatic thermal safety protection.
- Perfect for welding steel
- Automated thermal safety protection
- Protection mask
- Compact design
- Easy carrying handle
- Two different air-vents
- You may experience some troubles with the wire feed
- Not great for automotive applications
5. Lotos MIG 140 Amp Flux Core Welder – best for the money
This Lotos MIG140 Is fully upgraded featuring 2T/4T switch and a digital display to help you adjust the welding voltage and the wire feeder speed more precisely.
The newly redesigned ground cable connector allows easy switching between the +/-. For fine finish quality and industrial performance at affordable price, you can find no other better than the Lotos MIG140. This is a versatile welder for your DIY home projects and professional applications. Capable of welding aluminum, stainless steel, copper and brass.
The Lotos MIG140 can easily be connected to your 110V outlet and in less than 10 minutes you are done with the setup and the machine is ready for welding. The machine is able handles the industrial standard 4″ and 8″ wire spools.
Incorporated is a thermal overload protection technology to help regulate the excess heat generated. Highly reliable and durable; made of high-class aluminum wire feeder for stable and better user experience.
Featuring a new transformer technology that has been proven to be reliable. The 2T/4T switch allows you to adjust the wire feeder speed much more precisely. The precision full adjustment drive system and wire speed display help reduce the probability of wire tangling and crushing.
- Reliable and durable
- Transformer technology
- Ground cable quick connector
- A full adjustment drive system
- Stable and better user experience
- 2T/4T switch
- One year warranty on consumables
- The penetration isn’t so great
- Torch trigger problems
6. Super Deal MIG 130 AC Flux Core Wire Automatic Feed Welder – Best for Cheap
The Super Deal-140 is indisputably one of the best AC Flux core automatic wire feed welders. Operate smoothly to common household current between 25-140 amp. Powerful, lightweight, and intuitive, top-of-the-line for household repairs and fabrications.
Made of high-quality PCV materials to allow easy operation, comfortable grip and high precision. The soft key (digital) control panel is easy to understand and gives a clear overview all the times.
This machine also comes with a range of temperature and wire feed controls to allow one weld on different metals with various thicknesses. Uses a flux core wire and self-release inert gas to prevent the oxidation of the welded area.
The user-friendly interface simplifies the setup processes plus easy to access advanced options. With this workhorse welder, you will be tackling the biggest jobs with ease, confidence and full precision. Equipped with a metal tip (cupper tip) to prevent slags from piling as you weld. Featuring a variable feed speed controls, wire feed controls and thermal safety controls. Powerful and compact; weighing less than 40bs. This is particularly Ideal for general use. Perfect for welding stainless steel, mild steel, brass and copper.
- Compact design
- User-friendly interface
- Very powerful
- Auto MIG control panel
- Comfortable grip
- Easy operation and high precision
- Wire feed system problem
- Not so great for heavy projects
MIG Welder VS Flux Cored Welder
Talking about the comparisons between the MIG welder and the Flux Core Welder, a lot of people are of the opinion that the two is similar. This is true in terms of the welding procedures but the truth of the matter is that they are two different things. A MIG Welder can be said to be another flux-core welding machine. There is hardly any change on the machine except the filler wire that is used. The energy found in both these machines is generally consistent voltage and the electrode is fed by a wire feed system.
The main line differences between these welders are the filler wire and the gasses used. For a MIG Welder, the welding electrode used is with no doubt a good wire that requires a shielding gas to shield the welded area.
On the other hand, the flux-cored wire used in flux core welder is tubular and has a ‘T’ about the designation. Whenever you view a ‘T’ around the filler designation the first thing that will come to your mind is that this is a flux-cored wire.
One important thing about this tubular wire is that it incorporates a flux center that will shield the weld without the need to add any filler metal. The flux core electrodes may be used for welding heavy plate for its deeper penetration ability.
Factors Consideration For Flux Core Welding Machines-Buyer’s Guide
Flux Core Welding is not a new thing, being dated as far back as the 1920s. You may already have a clue on how versatile a flux core welder is, but finding the right machine that will serve your needs can be a tough task. And of course, choosing anyone you come across is not the best decision to make. Below are some of the factors you need to put into consideration when buying the best flux core welder.
Understand your needs
First of all, you need to keep in mind exactly what you need to use the welder for. Whether for small domestic use or for small repairs in the garage. Whether for use in a small fabrication shop or for heavy duty applications. I believe you do not want to buy a welder that has either less power than you need or more power than you surely require.
The cost is by far beyond the price, but what you get from the money you invest. There are welders that are versatile and performs excellently great costing less than the half the cost of a unit with a number of issues here and there. A manufacturer may wish to slash down the price of their product and even give a guarantee. But if the machine doesn’t perform consistently, it will be difficult for you to use it and all you end up having is a cheap guaranteed piece of trash.
I believe the last you would want to observe is seeing your newly bought machine fails or its part breaking during normal use. Some of the times manufacturers choose to take shortcut routes to make their products lightweight or to add to its performance. But as it is with shortcuts, they are only good at falling short but not great. A plastic casing may make the machine easier to carry but will not stand a normal wear-and-tear or a rough use as the case may be.
Power and duty-cycle
A good flux core welder should have a higher duty cycle and a good power rating. The duty cycle determines how efficient the machine will be, and the machine will be great if you have different power options
Whether as a beginner or a professional, performance is very important. It will be a wise decision to practice before tackling the main job. Amidst all circumstances, the welder should perform perfectly as advertised. There reports here and there were some welders had to work with a particular gage of wire to get a consistent good flux core welds, and this is mostly against the actual instructions from the manufacturer.
There are two types of shielding options. One is self-shielding and another is gas shielding. In gas shielding, one will need an extra gas bottle. While in the self-shielding option, one will not need any gas bottle rather an additional jack. This jack is simple to move. For simple mechanism and conveniences, most people prefer self-shielding.
The overheating proof
Overheating is a serious threat and can ultimately cause tremendous damages to the material. Hence, this is a very important factor to consider.
Repair, maintenance and easy to get spare parts
This may seem unimportant but really very crucial. Welding Machine does need repair and maintenance from time to time. Make sure the spare parts of the brand you are going for is easy to get in the market. If not we suggest you go for another MIG welder. Nevertheless, choose the best.
Portability, weight, and size
What you intend to use the machine for determines the size of the machine you need to buy, be it a mobile or a stationary. For a mobile workshop, you will definitely have to consider portability for the purpose of transportation. Amidst all circumstances, the first factor to consider is the quality of the machine then the size and weight. The size is so important for you wouldn’t want to be moving around with such a voluminous welding machine.
From what you have read above I believe you have the basic knowledge on the flux core welders. You have also read the reviews of the six best flux core welders. By this time, you should know exactly what you need.
We hope this review will make it easy for you to make the right decision when choosing the best flux core welder for your needs. For best results, we recommend you try the Hobart Handler 140-MIG Welder. You sure won’t regret your decision.