A stick welder is the most widely used, especially to fix heavy-duty farm machinery. This mini-sized welder uses an electrode or welding rod to join and melt ferrous metals and other metal types as well.
If you are looking for the best stick welder for farm use, you should explore the 7 following welders.
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Top 7 Best Stick Welder for Farm Use 2022
In-depth 7 Top Rated Stick Welder for Farm Use Reviews
1. Hobart 500570 Stickmate 160i – Best Farm ARC Welder
- Input power: 120/240V
- Weight: 15 pounds
- Power cord: 6.5 ft
- Weld up to: 5/32” mild steel
- Dimensions: 13.38 x 7.13 x 10.5 inches
Hobart 500570 Stickmate is the best stick welder for farm use. It is lightweight, efficient, and easy to use, making it the top-rated welding machine among Hobart welders. This machine can weld mild steel up to 5/32 inches.
Compatibility is a crucial feature of a stick welder when compared to a full-sized welder. This stick welder from Hobart weighs only 15 pounds and has a compact dimension of 13.38 x 7.13 x 10.5 inches. You can carry it on the farm using its 6.5-feet power cord for minor fixes on any areas when you are too far from electrical sockets.
Another strong plus of Hobart Stickmate is that it is easy to start with the innovative Hot Start technology. You can connect this welding machine to a 120V or 240V power source without tools.
Besides, it uses DC output, which professional welders prefer. DC output means there will be less spatter, fewer outages, best arc control. You can use this stick welder with DC output for overhead welding jobs.
But if you need to work on metal parts that have been magnetized from friction, a welder using AC output might be a better alternative.
This ARC welder has an amperage of 20-600amp and a 30% duty cycle, meaning that it can operate at an amperage from 20 amps to 600 amps for 3 minutes, then it must cool down for 7 minutes to avoid overheating. If you have a lot of work to be done, you will have to waste a long waiting time.
2. Forney Easy Weld 100ST 298 Arc Welder – Best Stick Welder for Beginners
- Input power: 120V
- Output: 90amp
- Dimensions: 16.25 x 8 x 12.5 inches
- Weight: ~13 pounds
- Cord length: 6 ft
If you don’t often have to weld, you have zero experience in welding, or you have a limited budget for a welding machine, Forney Easy Weld 100ST might be an ideal choice for you. This portable welder allows you to take it anywhere you need to weld.
The main reason why this Forney SMAW is rated as the best basic welding for farms and ranch is that it is super easy to use. Thanks to its Easy Start technology, the integrated welding torch starts in just a few seconds, and it works like a charm.
In addition, it weighs only 13.74 pounds and has a 6-feet power cord, which is easy to carry with you when you are on the move or far away from the main electrical sockets or fuel cans of your farm.
It has a voltage input of 120 Volts and an output of 90 amps. This amperage is appropriate and cost-efficient for small DIY tasks or quick welding jobs. This stick welder is ‘TIG capable’ meaning that you can utilize this machine for stick welding and TIG welding. You can easily switch between these two modes by turning the knob.
TIG capable also means that you can weld various types of metal, such as plain and stainless steel, aluminum alloys, brass, copper, cast iron, and so on.
3. YESWELDER Digital Inverter IGBT ARC Welder – Best Portable
- Input power: 110/220V
- Output: 205amp
- Weight: ~13 pounds
YesWelder 205DS is an affordable yet efficient stick welder for beginners. Purchasing this portable welding machine means that you can benefit from its build quality and affordability. It can handle any garage work or DIY projects and a must-have welding alternative even when you have a full-sized powerful welder.
What amazed me first in this welder model is that its digital control screen lets you adjust the diameters of welding electrodes. With this digital control provided, this machine can deliver desired welding results.
This YesWelder IGBT inverter welder allows you to do stick welding on various electrodes, including 6011, 6013, 7018, etc. Moreover, it runs on a dual voltage of 110V/220V with a simple voltage switch, meaning that there will be less chance to damage the machine when plugging it into the wrong electricity source.
Don’t let its compact size fool you! This tiny welder can perform at its maximum amperage of 205 amps at a 60% duty cycle with Hot Start and Arc force support. Thus, you can easily weld thin steel pieces of ¼ inches at 220V current and 5.32 inches at 110V current.
The only disadvantage of this stick welder is that there is no TIG torch along with the package, even though it is TIG capable.
4. Amico Professional Stick Arc DC Welder
- Input power: 100~250V
- Output: 200amp
- Cord length: 7 ft (can be extended up to 700 ft)
- Weight: 17 pounds
- Dimensions: 15.75 x 6.2 x 11.3 inches
Amico ARC-200 is the best welder for home and farm use. It has high adaptation to various working environments and premium build quality.
First, this Amico stick welder has a wide voltage input range of 100V ~ 250V/50-60Hz with automatic detection. Hence, you can connect this machine through any power supply, giving this machine a full range of control in any working conditions.
Depending on the job requirements, you can modify the system between 20-200 amps with the red analog dial on the machine’s body. The 80% duty cycle at 200amps ensures a long working time with high efficiency.
In addition, this welding machine is compatible with all common electrodes – E6010, E6011, E6013, E7014, E7018, etc., allowing you to meet your farm welding needs.
The ARC-200 is a mixture of lightweight aluminum and solid ABS plastic, with a dimension of 16.6 x 11.8 x 7.5 inches. It is pretty compact compared to similar TIG welders on the market.
Every tool has its drawbacks, and Amico ARC-200 is not an exception. Even though this welder has enough raw force to cut through ½-inch copper, stainless steel, alloy steel, chrome, and cast iron, it can’t be used to work with aluminum. And you can’t attach a remote pedal control onto it.
5. PRIMEWELD TIG225X IGBT AC DC Tig/Stick Welder
- Input power: 110/220V
- Output: 225amp
- Work: 1/4″ aluminum, 3/8″ mild steel
- Weight: 90 pounds
- Dimensions: 24 x 19 x 12 inches
PrimeWeld TIG225X with an amperage of 10-225 amps has almost all highlighted features of the above items like AC/DC output, dual voltage input (110/220V), high-quality foot pedal, etc. So if you have a big farm, too many jobs to be achieved, or money doesn’t matter to you, this TIG welder is a serious long-term investment for you.
The PrimeWeld TIG225X has a robust design, making it an excellent pick for professional welders. All of its parts, including the pipes, the CK flex tubing, CK Dinse connector, and the CK17 flex head torches, are assembled in the USA with high-quality standards.
The controls of this TIG welder might be a bit daunting. There are 10 control dials and pulse settings up to 200Hz for precise welding results. But if you are new to welding, you will find it challenging to know what you need to do.
6. SUNGOLDPOWER 200Amp Stick DC Welder
- Input power: 110/220V
- Output: 200amp
- Weight: 33 pounds
- Dimensions: 19.6 x 9.4 x 14.9 inches
This dual-voltage Sungoldpower MIG200 welder is built with IGBT inverter technology. There are several strong pluses of this technology.
First, it helps lessen the weight and size of the machine. The MIG200 weighs 33 pounds and has a dimension of 19.6 x 9.4 x 14.9 inches. Second, it has a higher efficiency of 80-90% than other conventional models with 50%. In other words, it helps deliver a high welding accuracy and removes the guesswork.
Another notable point of this IGBT-based ranch welder is that you can use gas or electricity to perform your welding jobs. This welding machine can perform up to 200amps for high welding demands.
Besides, its dual voltage input of 100/220V empowers it to perform both light and heavy-duty welding tasks. The MIG-200 is suitable for numerous materials like stainless steel, mild steel, aluminum, etc.
Moreover, this IGBT stick welder can perform various welding processes, including MIG, MAG, ARC, MMA. Professionals or beginners can master this machine with no difficulty like the PrimeWeld TIG225X.
7. Miller 215 Multimatic Electric Multiprocess Welder – Best Multiprocess Welder
- Input power: 120/240V
- Output range: 20 to 230A DC
- Weight: 38 pounds
- Dimensions: 20.5 x 11.25 x 12.5 inches
The Miller Multimatic 215 is appropriate to use for both beginners and professionals. This versatile welder can perform Stick, TIG, or MIG welding. It can connect to either 120V or 240V power input to weld mild steel of 3/8 inches and comes with a full TIG kit.
For beginners, this farm shop MIG welder is a great tool to help you learn TIG, MIG, Stick welding. This welder can add a new level of flexibility to your workshop without making a serious upgrade for professionals.
Its lightweight feature and the availability of the two ergonomic handles make your welding job more convenient and portable.
How To Choose The Best Stick Welder For Farm Use?
Your intended jobs
Stick welders (or shielded metal arc welding – SMAW) are great tools to use when the welding job doesn’t require the parts to look aesthetically pleasing. For example, when you’re welding metal pipes for your house’s water system, a nice, seamless look at the welded spots isn’t a high priority. In that case, a stick welder will work just fine.
Aside from installing pipelines, SMAW welders are also popular in the construction sector, maintenance and repair works, industrial fabrication, and farming.
On the other hand, if you’re looking for something that can repair your car’s frame, a MIG welder (gas metal arc welding – GMAW) will be a better choice overall.
We also recommend using a stick welder if you’re working with thick metal sheets around 18-gauge and up. Thin sheets will work better with either MIG or TIG (Gas Tungsten arc welding – GTAW) welders.
Last but just as important: if you’re a beginner at welding, start with a stick welder. Compared to all other types of welders on the market, this is the easiest and most forgiving to use.
You can flexibly change out the electrodes to suit the type of metal that you’re working on. There’s no need to use shielding gas, so you can weld even when you’re outdoors on a breezy day.
Stick welders also don’t discriminate between “clean” and “dirty” metals. You can weld rusty iron pipes together with a stick welder without any problem at all so long that you use the right electrode. E6011 electrodes, for example, can be used if you ever find yourself having to work with rusty metals.
AC or DC
Depending on the model and the manufacturer, a stick welder can be made to work on AC, DC, or both AC/DC currents. The type of current that the welder uses can noticeably impact its performance.
AC welders tend to be on the lower end on the performance scale. As a result, these are often popular purchases in DIY circles. For professionals and those who need some extra power, a DC welder is preferable.
You may even choose an AC/DC stick welder if versatility is what you’re going for. With a push of a button, the welder can be made to work on either AC or DC. No need to hook the welder up to a transformer.
One more thing that you have to take into consideration when you buy: ask yourself whether you would need to weld magnetized parts. Say, a steel plate that’s gone through a lot of friction from water or hay at the farm and becomes magnetized. In this scenario, the best stick welder for farm use is going to be an AC-running model.
A DC welder won’t work on magnetized metal due to arc blow. Welding with AC power is going to be your only option.
A stick welder can be rated for various amperage settings. Depending on the kind of electrode you use, amperage has to be changed accordingly. A ⅛-inch 6010 welding rod pairs well with 75 to 125-amp welders. A larger 5/32-inch 7081 electrode will need up to 220 amps of power to run properly.
Because of this, we recommend picking SMAW welders that are rated beyond 140 amps. They will give you a lot more flexibility.
The duty cycle can tell you how many minutes a welder can operate for every 10-minute cycle.
So, let’s say we have a stick welder that outputs 250-amp DC welding power at 25% duty cycle. You can weld at 250-amp power for 2.5 minutes before you need to stop for 7.5 minutes and allow the welder to cool down. If you don’t, the welder could overheat.
The higher the amperage setting, the lower the duty cycle. Most stick welders on the market have a duty cycle of around 30%.
There are many SMAW welders out there that can operate at 100% duty cycle at low amperage settings (around 75-100 amps). Basically, you can weld continuously without having to stop.
Among the many benefits of owning a stick welder is that you can adapt it to weld whatever material that you want. Just change out the electrode and fit in the right type. In a few quick moments, you can adapt your SMAW welder from cutting stainless steel to being able to work with nickel.
It’s possible to adapt a stick welder into other welding styles, too. You can find a few SMAW welders out there that can be converted into a TIG welder when needed.
Compared to other types of welders like TIG and MIG, stick welders are highly portable. There are models that you can carry around by hand, which is perfect for mobile welding jobs around the house, the shop, or the job site.
That’s not the rule, unfortunately. There are plenty of bulky stick welders, too. You can mount them on a welding cart to make transportation easier.
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How To Use A Stick Welder?
One of the key advantages to stick welders is that they’re very easy to use. Thus, they’re recommended for beginners who are new to the art of metal welding.
Here are the proper steps to start one up and begin working with a SMAW welder.
Step 1: Plug in the Welder
Plug in the welder, but don’t turn it on just yet. Don’t turn on power. Wait until you’ve worn all safety gears and are ready to begin welding.
Take the cable with the DINSE connector and plug it into the socket with the “+” icon on the welder. Ensure that the cable has been snugly fitted before moving on.
Attach the ground clamp to your workpiece. Take the other end of the cable and seat the DINSE plug into the “-” socket.
Step 2: Wear Your Safety Gears
A welding helmet with a shaded visor is a must. Next, wear your leather apron and leather welding gloves. Never work without being fully kitted up, no matter how experienced you are. All of this hassle is well worth being injured.
Step 3: Power On
You’re now ready to begin.
Switch on the power. The light on the welder should light up and the internal fan will run.
Seat the proper welding rod into the electrode holder. When you do, sparks are going to literally fly along with some noises as an arc strikes. This can be a bit off-putting to beginners.
Step 4: Weld
Place the welding rod on the metal joint and run it down. Sparks will fly and molten metal will form a puddle on the metal’s surface, forming a welded joint.
When you’re finished with the welding job, pull the rod away and place the welder on a non-grounded, insulated surface. You can touch up the welded spot with a chipping hammer or a wire brush to clean up the welding slag (a byproduct of the welding process).
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1. How thick can a stick welder weld?
Commercial-size stick welders (225 to 300-amp) can work with metal sheets up to ⅜-inch thick. Beyond that point, you can make several passes with the welder. Though simple, this technique has been used by professionals to weld materials like 1-inch structural steel.
2. How many amps does it take to weld ½ steel?
A 250-amp welder is recommended for welding ½-inch steel plates.
3. What happens if too small welding cables are used?
This is a dangerous situation that you don’t want to be in. If the welding cable’s gauge is too small for the currents passing through it, the cable will overheat.
The best case scenario is that the cable breaks and fails to deliver power. Worse case scenario is an electrical fire could be started by the hot cable.
4. Is AC or DC better for stick welding?
Both are good and have their usages. AC is preferred for low-power welding and for working with magnetized materials. DC is better for jobs that require a lot of welding power.
If you don’t know what to choose, you should get an AC/DC welder. This type can work with both kinds of currents. You can switch back and forth between them at any time, typically with only the push of a button.
My Top Pick
Choosing the best stick welder for farm use is not easy. You should pick up a model that is sturdy, easy to use, and has high performance.
A welder like Hobart 500570 is an excellent pick for both beginners and experts. This welding machine is a perfect combination of all crucial criteria of a good welder, including its high versatility, extreme durability, and ease of use.