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If you have a need to weld in the field, away from a power source, you need a welding generator. Don't mistake a normal gas generator for a welding generator. They are not anywhere near the same. Welding generators are built with welding in mind. Welding takes such a large power load, that it would be nearly impossible anyway to run a welder without one.
Why a welding generator? Welding needs high current. For that, you need a dedicated welding generator. That is, a generator that is running a welder.
Choosing a welding generator
Welding comes in all forms, so assuming you know what type of welding you will do, this will dictate what kind of welding generator to get. Even small repairs and spot welds require quite a lot of amperes, uwards of 12,000.
If you are a professional welder and do professional jobs, choosing the largest, dedicated welding generator would be prudent.For people who are not professional welders...
This would include farmers, ranchers, and the like. If you are a person that just needs to do welding repairs in farm or ranch vehicles in the field, here are some things you should know.
Welding generators are really one man machines. That is, the person doing the welding. Since many welding generators can be used as stand alone generators as well, be warned. Multiple things running at the same time will zap the energy. You will not be able to weld if other people are running lights, power tools, etc. at the same time.
You also need to be able to set the welder easily and in a short time. Choose a generator that has big, easily accessible controls, and very easy to set for each job. Most farmers and ranchers are not professional welders, nor do they need to be.
If you are planning to run extra equipment at the same time, choose a welding generator that comes complete with a dedicated welding generator, as well as a stand alone generator. You don't want to leave yourself underpowered. But if you are a one man operation, you should be able to get by with just a welding generator made for one job.
Farm and ranch equipment comes under a lot of stress and breakdowns can occur anywhere. Having a portable dedicated welding generator that can be readily moved to any part of your acreage definitely can make life easier.