Should I buy this deal?

Gomer Pyle

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I found a used(est 2010) Lincoln MP350. He has a spool gun and tig stuff(I don’t know anything about tig), extra wire, 2 bottles, and constables. He also has a Miller 625 plasma cutter.
He’s asking $4500 for everything. Is that a good price? Any reviews/info on the 350mp?
I’m needing a new mig and will need aluminum capabilities latter on. I don’t think I want a plasma but thought I would try it and maybe recoup some of my money if I didn’t like it.
 

Dirt Guy

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Check the tanks to make sure they are private owned.The tank at the valve should not be stamped as to who owns the tanks, also check the year tanks were last tested and cert. date, good for 12 years, stamped on the side of the tank. As for plasma cutting , once you try it ,you will like it, much cleaner and a lot nicer than a torch in most cases. As for the $4500 price, I am not sure. Maybe someone else can advice on this.
 

Yomax4

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Any Gas in the bottles? The 350MP is a great welder. On E-Bay for 3K. Back then it was a 3K welder Add Spoolgun for $600, 625 is worth about $800 tops. Tanks and gas a expensive too. Wire and consumables are just a bonus. Not a Steal but condition makes a big difference too. New now @ 5K.
 

Gary Fowler

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Check with your welding supply to see if they will fill them. All my LWS requires is a statement by owner that he owns the bottles. They dont care who has a stamp on them. New bottles are minimum $300 each for 125 CF if larger much more. MY LWS wont sell 240 CF because they cost too much ($600 each) is what they would cost if they could sell them.
No idea what those welding machines cost but Yomax keeps up with all that and can give you a good idea.
You will like using a plasma cutter. There is some consumable cost but not much but you do need good clean and dry air to get the most life out of your consumables. The only downside I have found to using a plasma is that you cant cut up in a vertical wall closer than about 1/2", same with corners. For flat plate with a bit of mill scale or paint, a plasma cutter will blast right thru it where an oxy-acetylene rig will just blow out.
 

Gomer Pyle

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Wow, I did not know they lost that much value. I’m needing a new mig and the ability to do aluminum, I thought this might be better buying all new.
 

Gary Fowler

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You could negotiate a lower price with the seller. Likely he is just as ignorant of the value as you were, then again, some folks really value their stuff and think it is greater than new. I have seen lots of stuff for sale on Craigslist that is listed for more than new price.
 

CA_Bgrwldr

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$4500 seems a bit high for 10yr old machines, their new counterparts would set you back about $7k, compared to the cost of new, $3500 for all of it would be a fair price.

According to the specs for the new version of the 350, it is DC only, so if the old ones are the same, you can't TIG weld aluminum with them, you need AC polarity to TIG weld aluminum. If you are wanting to weld aluminum with both MIG and TIG, you can get new DC/AC multi-process machines from ESAB and Miller for around $3k, and non AC multi process machines starting out around $1k, or mid level duty machines starting around $2k. You can even find complete DC kits including all torches, for around $2200. The new version of the 625 plasma cutter runs about $2k, and other models start around $1500

If you don't need an industrial grade DC machine, you could likely get everything you need new for your purposes, including gas, for the same or less than what he is asking

These two sites will give you and idea of what you would likely have to pay for what you are wanting to do.
 

CB

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From the original post, it sounds like you
  • "Needing a new MIG"
  • "Will need aluminum capabilities"
  • "Don't know anything about TIG"
Therefore, it seems more likely that the aluminum capability desired would be MIG... and if that is the case, then the Lincoln 350MP is one of the best aluminum MIG welding wire feeders available, and is the most powerful power supply available on single phase.

The 350MP was designed from the ground up to MIG weld aluminum. If you don't know anything about tig, and want the speed of MIG when welding aluminum, then you picked the right machine.

When Lincoln introduced the 350MP, Lincoln originally called it the PM300, where PM stood for Power Mig. The 300 designation wasn't for peak welding output amperage... it was rather named for the production / manufacturing class duty cycle of 60%. 300 amps at 60% duty cycle at 32 volts was a huge leap in power output compared to the typical 250 amp rated wire feeder power supplies that the PM300 replaced and competed with. The PM300 has a very wide continuous current range of as low as 5 amps to as high as 350 amps peak output, with a welding voltage range between 10 and 45 volts. (Open Circuit Voltage is 67v).

Keep in mind, these power ratings are using single phase 230v input power. No other single phase input power machine existed that could output 350 amps, or 300 amps 60% duty cycle, or 230 amps at 100% duty cycle, spraying all day at 29 volts. On single phase.

It didn't matter than the PM300 was a multi-process machine. It didn't matter than it was constant current as well as constant voltage. It didn't matter that it was also a DC stick welder and a TIG welder. It didn't matter that it was a synergistic welder that can automatically index voltage to wire feed speed. It didn't matter that it also was a push-pull capable wire feeder, for using a push pull gun for the ultimate convenience and speed in welding aluminum. The fact remained, that even as just a plain old mig welder, or a plain old DC stick welder, there was no other power supply available on the market that could output the power and duty cycle numbers above on single phase, using a traditional transformer. Anything close or better was a 3 phase machine, at about 2 or 3 times the price.

The PM300 shook the market at the turn of the last century, and woke Miller up to scramble to produce the Miller 350P, that wasn't quite the same machine, but was close enough to motivate Lincoln to rename the PM300 to the 350MP. No difference in input or output power specifications between the two Lincoln product designations, but the 350MP included more features, like a 115V receptacle to plug in a grinder, and dual gas input solenoids. Miller's initial 350P was at one time 3 phase only, but later versions were made compatible with 1 and 3 phase input power.

So be careful in your search for reviews... as the 350MP or MP350 or PM350 or P350 are often conflated and confused by reviewers and readers who may not pay as much attention to detail. Always include the brand name in your searches, along with the correct model number. In the case of this proposed purchase, Lincoln 350MP, and in the case of wanting to compare competition, Miller 350P.

@CA_Bgrwldr mentioned Lincoln's newest/current revision of this machine, called the 360MP. The 360MP is an entirely different execution of this wire feeder welder, and is made in Mexico, not the United States. The 350MP is manufactured in Ohio... even the circuit boards to the 350MP are made in the Lincoln Electric manufacturing plant in Ohio. My understanding is that the circuit boards of the newest Lincoln machines manufactured in Mexico are sourced from China. So there is that to consider. The new 360MP is too new to get a sense of how reliable the whole 7" touch screen interface is.

The older 350MP has two big fat encoder knobs that can easily be grasped by welding gloves, even those big fat gloves that took half a cow each to make that @MC , founder of WeldingSite.com, gave away as prizes in the membership point contribution contest held back in May 2020. Those gloves make the NASA gloves that astronauts wear for spacewalks seem small. And yet there is enough knob, and enough room between the knobs, to grapple the dial for tweaking a setting, without taking the gloves off. Something to think about with those new fancy new touch screens found on machines today.

I'm not going to talk about how the machine welds, because that more depends on how the weldor welds with it. Unless the specific used machine you are considering is broken, there are not going to be any issues with how the machine welds. And there are at least 40 wave forms in the software to choose from, on top of the synergistic and full manual control options available. How it welds isn't the question on the table here. The question "should I buy this deal" is a question that boils down to determining value.

So let's get back to talking value, circling back to available power to mig weld aluminum masses that love to wick away the heat that was introduced and intended to fuse a joint. If you've only got single phase to work with, I challenge anyone to find a single phase machine that can put out more power, at as high or as long of a duty cycle, for under $5,000. What $2,200 machine out there can produce the juice?

I hear that there are a lot of new inverter welding machines from China on the global market now, and I have no idea what they are called or what their specs are, but even if they advertise the capability of producing 300 amps of welding current... is that at 10% duty cycle? 20%? When comparing the dollar cost per welding amp, don't forget to look at that duty cycle, especially with heat sinking aluminum. And if spraying 3/8" steel plate, check what the voltage is at the rated current.

Alright already, enough about power. There are two major parts of an all in one cabinet MIG welding machine, and moving beyond the power supply, the second major part is the built in wire feeder.

The Max Trac 2 roll wire drive system in the 350MP is the same as what can be found in Lincoln's rugged LN-25 PRO suitcase wire feeder. That's a $3,000 (but supply your own DC power) suitcase that's been a commercial construction and pipeline industry standard for decades. I opened the cabinet lid to the PM300 / 350MP and took one look at that wire feeder that comes with the machine and was sold. It's like getting an LN-25 PRO feeder on top of a CC/CV 350 peak amp transformer power supply, extended by a Chopper assembly to provide inverter like performance, with Power Wave Software and wave form controls to boot, all in one machine, for less than $5,000, and it runs on single phase.

Oh, and it does Pulse MIG too? And even has Pulse on Pulse for MIG like TIG stacked dime bead appearance? Aw heck and it does TIG anyway? And SMAW too? Both soft and crisp? And Push Pull? Let's talk about push pull for a second, as it relates to that Max Trac 2 roll wire drive system.

When Miller came out with their first version of their 350P, it had a four roll wire drive system, and was advertised as a "multi process" machine with the capability to run push pull torches to keep from birdnesting soft wire like aluminum. Miller's early four roll wire drive systems didn't play very well with push pull torches. So Miller eventually made a another 350P optimized for aluminum push pull guns. with a tiny torque feed two roll wire non gear driven wire drive mechanism. After seeing how Miller saw fit to move away from their 4 roll wire drive system for dedicated aluminum push pull mig rigs, I felt like I dodged a bullet going with the 2 roll Max Trac on Lincoln's 350MP. The entire point of having a multi-process machine is to reduce the number of machines in the shop, without stepping over $10K+

It almost looks like I'm turning this into a red vs blue debate, and I don't mean to. I am just recalling some of the forks in the road where I stood 18 years ago, when I bought my Power Mig 300, which is the same machine that eventually became called the Power Mig 350MP, once Miller introduced their 350P. Since these two machines were quite a leap ahead of any similar class machine that preceded them, I ended up comparing them quite a bit, and not only found the Lincoln PM300 to be a more versatile value back then, I continue to find it to have been the right choice for me, even in retrospect, and even with Miller revamping their 350P to include the improvements it needed over the introductory version. I had to make these comparisons without benefit of any forums, because the two most populated forums online 20 years ago were owned by ITW (Miller), and thus curated an almost cult like Miller following (which appeared to help sell a lot of Miller products).

Attached photos are of the ad the OP is looking at:

350MPovercart1.jpg

350MPovercart2.jpg
 

CB

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I had to split my post up, as I exceeded the 10,000 character limit. (Which brings up a fundamental forum question... how can in depth content be provided to promote discussion on the forum, when the post character limit is throttled?)

Anyway, continuing, the post above, out of original order, since the text had to be recused and then rescued once again with Notepad...

So is this a good deal?
  • Add up the cost of the Tig Torch and consumables. No version of Power Mig ships with a Tig Torch. All of that is extra cost.
  • Does it also come with a spool gun? That would be a big value add right there. $1,200 to $1,700?
  • I saw that nice brass Tweco ground clamp in one of the photos... did he ever set it up for stick welding? If so, are those leads included? Big copper adds value.
  • Does the Mag 300 Mig gun have a push on or screw on gas cup? Lincoln changed the cup / diffuser / insulator design somewhere along the way, and value depends on what style you prefer.
  • The Dual Cylinder Cart is an extra cost option. I think I paid $350 for the dual cylinder cart. Ridiculous I agree, but I would not have thought of spacing the cylinders away from the fan like Lincoln did with their dual cylinder cart design. Air can wrap around a single cylinder, but two cylinders side by side make a wall, and that wall would have interfered with the cooling fan without the spacer.

On the other hand,
  • The machine is dirty on the outside, clearly not kept covered when not in use. So how dirty is it on the inside? The boards are potted, but you could point out machine maintenance needed.
  • The two gas bottles included are small to my eyes... maybe 125's? I have six 300's, because the cost of gas per cu ft is so much cheaper with a big bottle, and I hate running out mid project
  • There is no warranty, so best to ask that the machine be put through it's paces before payment.. by the owner of the machine, so if it dies in his hands, the problem is in his hands, not yours.
  • You can still buy an American manufactured PM350MP brand new with 3 year warranty for about $5,349 MSRP, rigged for mig steel, and some discount might be available from local welding supply if you regularly buy your gas there, or from one of the popular welding online retailers who carry Lincoln products and sometimes offer free shipping. It won't include all the extras though.

The capabilities (and reliability, as I've had mine nearly 2 decades now, problem free) of the Power Mig 350MP tends to get less attention, as there are fewer forum types talking about it, and thus fewer bandwagoneers following suit, and thus fewer reviews to surmise a majority opinion from. Lincoln sells this machine to boat building operations, manufacturing plants, job shops, industrial customers... not consumers. But this best kept secret of a machine is a very worthy mig welder, complete with adjustable shielding gas pre/post flow, adjustable wire run in speed, separate start procedure and end procedures, adjustable inductance (Lincoln calls this Arc Control), crater and burnback adjustments (that I previously called end procedure... just so that it is clear that I'm not adding capabilities) , and spot timer. It also has a self monitoring Power Mode, that compensates for inconsistencies in CTWD with high speed dynamic regulation of the arc... useful on thin materials to prevent burn through.
 

Gary Fowler

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The only way those type machines would be acceptable is if you plan to open up a fabrication shop and use them 8 hours a day, 5-7 days a week. For a homeowner, way too much power and money to be practical. Lots of cheaper IGBT inverter technology available for much less money.
 

Yomax4

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It's a Great machine but you can start over new for less than that and enjoy New
 

welding seabee

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I found a used(est 2010) Lincoln MP350. He has a spool gun and tig stuff(I don’t know anything about tig), extra wire, 2 bottles, and constables. He also has a Miller 625 plasma cutter.
He’s asking $4500 for everything. Is that a good price? Any reviews/info on the 350mp?
I’m needing a new mig and will need aluminum capabilities latter on. I don’t think I want a plasma but thought I would try it and maybe recoup some of my money if I didn’t like it.
Do you really need that much amperage? The MP350 is a production machine hence the cost/value. New they cost $5100 + $250+/- EA for the bottles. I do not add value for accessories and consumables. I always start at 1/2 price on used and work up/down based on age and condition. I buy and sell used welding equipment as a little old age sideline. Do OK usually, some deals are 100%+ profit. My source is usually CL, auctions, and estate sales. I always clean, adjust,a nd prove operation prior to selling. LOL, Ron
 

Gary Fowler

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I think that price is way above 50% of new . Need to be 3500 for a deal. I really dont need any thing that big for my needs. Might be ok for resell if you can get him down a bit in price.
 
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