When looking for a welder, you want something that can give you a lot of power in a strong package. The Hobart Stickmate lx is a great example of that.
This machine is one of the best ways to complete various tasks, which makes it an incredibly useful device for any welder.
This transformer-based stick welder is one of the best out there. It has a range of different features, including two different output capabilities, easy-to-use controls, a great Accu-Set amp control that allows you to adjust the output in the way that you want.
For these reasons, if you want to get a versatile welder that is jam-packed with many top of the line traits, this is the best choice around.
Read: Best Stick Welders 2018
AC and DC Capable
There are many draws to the Hobart Stickmate lx, but one of the most prominent is its versatility.
Welders, by their nature, should be able to handle various tasks in various ways.
You don't buy a machine for just one job or expect your device to only complete one task. You want something that you can take out on several occasions.
This Hobart model gives you such options because you can use it with either Alternating Current (AC) or Direct Current (DC). Choices are always great to have, and the ability to switch between two different currents allows you to adapt to any situation depending on what you need.
That is one of the most important parts of the machine because more options mean you will always be able to get the exact amount of heat you need.
Though some people may shy away from one current type, the Hobart Stickmate lx is a transformer-based welder, which means it can put out a ton of power for each current. It is capable of 225 amps for AC and 150 amps for DC so you'll never have to worry about the device not being up to task.
Uses for an Alternating Current
Having two different currents is important, but it only matters if you properly understand how each one works.
When using the AC output, the current will switch between a positive and negative flow 60 times a second. Though this can lead to wasted energy every once in a while, it is important because it gives you extra utility on many tasks.
The Hobart Stickmate lx comes with two different AC output ranges.
The machine enables you to have complete and total control over the amount of power being used at any one time. This switching is useful in various situations, but it is particularly helpful for any project where you need to constantly move between high amp to low amp output.
Normally, to do that, you would have to spend time moving the dial through the entire 40- to 235-range to get it exactly where you want it.
With the Hobart current features, all you have to do is turn the knob from high to low. That feature may not be the biggest draw, but it is just one of the many ways the device can make your life easier.
Reasons to Use a Direct Current
In direct contrast to Alternating Current, Direct Current is the most common method used in modern stick welding. This output comes with many advantages, including fewer arc outages, better bead control, less sticking, and significantly reduced splatter.
All of those features work together to create a much smoother weld overall.
There is no struggling with the welder to get it to do what you want.
You simply turn it on and go.
With both current types at your disposal, you will be able to handle any task that comes your way. AC and DC reveal why the Hobart Stickmate lx is a great device for all welders, and the versatility they offer gives you a machine that can do the job of multiple.
When it comes to setting the AC/DC polarity, you have four different options. You can choose high power AC, low power DC, DC negative, and DC positive. The one you choose will always shift depending on the type of material you're welding or working with.
Even so, there is no doubt the Stickmate lx is perfect for any welding, hard surfacing, or cutting job.
Accu-set Control and a Large Hand Crank
Another great feature of the Hobart Stickmate LX is its fantastic control layout. Rather than providing a complicated or convoluted system, the device comes with several features that anyone can use to great effect.
One example of this is the device's uniquely designed Accu-Set infinite amperage control. This amp controller is incredibly convenient and helps create a great user experience for anyone, experienced or not, who decides to purchase the welder.
Many modern welders – even ones that are considered to be top of the line – come with knobs or buttons that are hard to use.
Tiny controls are not just incredibly annoying from a physical use standpoint, they can also make it difficult to accurately use your machine. This model gets around that problem with a large, chunky hand crank. It’s a fantastic feature because it ensures you will always be able to easily adjust your amperage output while wearing gloves.
It is easy to overlook aspects like a large hand crank when choosing a welder, but being able to stay on a project for extended periods of time without needing to take your gloves off every few minutes limits a large amount of hassle.
It is not something you'd think of, but you'll soon wonder how you worked without it.
Naturally Intuitive Interface
In addition, the welder's infinite control feature allows the user to adjust the output by amp increments of 1. Such small shift capabilities mean you can always set the device to your exact specifications.
This type of control is not something often seen in modern welders. Lining up the arrow is easy to do, which means you can always weld in exactly the way you want.
Another bonus of the Hobart Stickmate lx's controls is that they are easy to understand.
As mentioned, new machines can be overwhelming or they come with too many options. The Hobart Stickmate lx does not have such problems. The intuitive interface is incredibly simple to get the hang of and makes it so that any welder can use the machine in a matter of minutes.
That is one of the biggest reasons the Hobart is a great choice for new welders.
A Powerful Duty Cycle
As with so many other of its features, the Stickmate lx's duty cycle is top of the line. Cycles are important because they show how much time a device can weld before it needs to cool down and resist overheating.
Duty cycles widely vary throughout different welder brands. Some can work in short bursts, while some can go a long while. However, most machines have a duty cycle where, at some point, they need to take a break. That is not necessarily the case with the Hobart Stickmate lx.
Though this welder, which comes with a 20 percent duty cycle at 225 amps AC and a 20 percent duty cycle at 150 amps DC, does need to rest if you want to use it at full power. It has a 100 percent duty cycle at 100 amps AC and 100 percent at 65 amps DC.
Those numbers mean that if you use the device at half power you can weld without ever taking a break. That essentially limits cool down time, and helps you stay in the zone much longer than you would be able to when using other models.
The welder is built in a way where weld time increases as amperage decreases. It also allows higher duty cycle as the amperage goes down.
This benefit, which is absent in other brands, is a key feature of the Stickmate's duty cycle.
Electrode Holder and Replaceable Cables
As with so many premium welders, the Hobart Stickmate lx is full of great traits and amazing characteristics. In fact, just about every feature on this machine is developed in a way that makes your welding experience much more streamlined.
One example of this is the 15-foot electrode holder that comes with the equipment. Many welders on the market only provide short leads, which can be a big problem.
Movement is often necessary when welding, and the Hobart meets you on that front to ensure you can easily shift around as much as you need. The holder also features industrial strength, which is a necessary feature when dealing with a heavy welder.
However, you may not always want a cable that is 15 feet. There are times or tasks where you need to go far beyond that. Luckily, Hobart also understands that issue and provides you with the option to replace or switch out the different cables as you see fit.
When using the Stickmake lx, you can easily switch out both the work clamp cable and electrode holder to get any extra room or distance for your project. Then, if you need to work on something that is closer or that does not require extra cable, you can simply switch back.
All you need to do to is to unscrew the front panel where the cables are attached to the welder.
From there, you remove the old one and plug the new ones in – an easy change and one that can give you a lot of extra options.
Cooling, Coils and a Long Life Expectancy
Welders, regardless of their make and model, get extremely hot. It’s a fact many people know, but it is not something all companies take steps to work around.
Hobart understands not just the heat, but the problems this can bring.
As a result, they provide forced-draft cooling, a system that works to actively fight and prevent overheating.
The cooling works through using a fan that continuously runs while the welder is on. The interior blades push a stream of cool air through the device and over the internal components. Not only does that help in terms of safety, but it also means your Stickmate lx is going to last.
On that note, this Hobart model is a welder that will last you a long time.
Welders are incredibly useful machines, but they are often quite expensive as well.
Do not think that you are buying a Hobart Stickmate lx to get use out of it for a few months or a year. This device can go much longer than that (as it should).
Not only is the device created from a range of strong and durable materials, but it has many internal features that naturally lengthen its life expectancy.The cooling system is one example of such features, as are the Stickmate lx's fully varnished magnetic coils. Such additions are naturally reliable, adding yet another trait to help further extend its life.
Hobart Stickmate lx: A Welder for Every Job
There is no doubt the Hobart Stickmate lx is a great piece of machinery.
It is large, strong, and, most of all, able to handle or meet any task you could throw at it. It has a ton of power and more than a few impressive features packed into its powerful frame.
Finding a modern welder is not just about price points or even durability.
While those are important (and both on full display here), you need a machine that is able to go above and beyond the norm to keep you satisfied for extended periods of time.
When purchasing the Stickmate lx, you get that guarantee.
This is not just another welder.
It is a versatile machine with so many traits you'll never have to buy another model.