Hobart 140 MIG Welder, Go Hobart? Should you?

By Ben Norton / March 12, 2019
Hobart 140 MIG Welder

Hobart 140 MIG Welder

Hobart Handler 140

Easy to use, durable and manufactured by a much respected manufacturer the Hobart Handler 140 MIG welder is a great portable welder. Aimed at those wanting a welder to run on 120 volts.

The Hobart 140 Handler will serve both a beginner and someone more experienced, who wants a welder that is of solid construction. One that is well up to the job of light to medium welding tasks around the yard, project workspace or for those motor repairs.

​Pros

  • ​Easy to use, a beginner can easily start to earn there welding stripes with this welder
  • ​Simple to set up and work with. A durable welder from a company with a sound reputation for those light to medium DIY projects
  • ​An instruction manual that is clear and easy to understand. Not to mention Hobart's YouTube channel with videos to help you along
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    ​​Five output weld settings and the ability to use shielding gas and MIG weld or the Hobart Handler 140 flux core, makes this welder very flexible for this end of the market
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    ​​The Hobart 140 is supplied with a high quality regulator with gauges to show you where you are up to on your gas a definite plus
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    ​​Not to mention portability. Which is always convenient

​Cons

  • ​​Should you want to go into welding a lot of 1/4 inch and above gauge of metal then you should consider whether this welder is powerful enough for you
  • ​There is no Hobart 140 spool gun kit available for Aluminum welding
  • ​The five stepped Amp output settings may annoy some more experienced welders who would prefer to fine tune their weld output
  • ​You get what you pay for in this Hobart 140 MIG welder. And you'll need around $500 to buy one which my well price it out of the range of some budgets

​Verdict

So should you go Hobart?

Yes …

Why?

You'll get a really nice welder with a solid reputation from a well known brand. You have the convenience of using either flux core wire or solid wire and shielding gas should you want to MIG weld. 

Along with the Hobart 140 Handler being able to plug into a normal household socket and work on 120 volt power. A boon for those that don’t want to get or can't get a 220 volt circuit.

The Hobart Handler 140 MIG Wire Welder does reliable welds and is a good solid welder so that even someone starting out welding will be able to get some good clean welds.

YouTube Video Hobart Handler Demo

Hobart has a solid YouTube video channel and the video below describes the Hobart Handler 140 MIG Wire Welder. I thought you would enjoy watching it.

YouTube Video Hobart Handler Demo

Credit: Hobart Welding Products

Hobart Handler 140 Features versus the Lincoln Handy MIG

Comparison Chart

​Features

Hobart 140

Lincoln Handy MIG

Duty Cycle

20% at 90 Amp

​20% at 70 Amp


Max Amp Output

140 Amp

​88 Amp


Max Weld Width

1/4 inch

1/8 inch


Flux Core and MIG

Yes

Yes


​Gas Regulator

Yes, With Gas Gauge

Yes, No Gas Gauge


Warranty

​5/3/1 - 5 yrs on Transformer, 3 yrs on Electronics, 1 yr on Welding Gun

​1 year parts and labor

​It is useful to compare these two welders side by side. If your budget is stretched and you're not needing as much welding output from your welder the Lincoln Handy MIG is worth a look.


What is the Hobart 140 Handler Able to Do?

Jobs such as auto repair, maintenance around the yard, farm repairs and even those who want to produce metal sculptures.

Rated at 25 to 140 Amp welding output you will be fine for welding mild steel from 24 gauge right the way to 1/4 inch.  Some users have said that they have welded 5/16 ths with the Hobart 140 Handler, though this and 1/4 inch welds would take a few weld passes. Something someone with skill could accomplish easily.

You might like to check out where the Hobart 140 MIG welder appears on the top welder for beginners list.​

Maybe you're just wondering how to go about selecting the right MIG welder for you. I have a post that helps you think about the most important points.​

Hobart 140 vs the Hobart 130

If you're not quite sure that you have the budget or even that you need something as fully spec'd as the Hobart 140 I have done a comparison to its smaller brother the Hobart 130.

Particularly if you love the Hobart brand but want to mainly flux core weld ​the Hobart Handler 130 is a flux core welder first of all yet MIG ready. A little lower in terms of overall welding output, yet you can add a hose, a regulator and a cylinder and you are ready to MIG weld whenever you want.

Take a look at the versus comparison here.​

And the full review of the Hobart 130 here. ​

What Do I Get in the Box?

Hobart 140 What's in the box

​You'll find;

  • ​your Hobart Handler 140 MIG Wire Welder
  • 2 lb sample of 0.030 inch Flux Core Wire
  • Spool adaptor for 8 inch spools
  • 2 of 0.030 inch contact tips
  • 10 foot cord to the MIG Welding gun
  • A 10 foot ground clamp cord and a heavy duty ground clamp (rated to 200 Amp)
  • Dual gauge regulator (for Argon/Carbon Dioxide)
  • Gas hose
  • Material thickness gauge. A nice touch for when you are in doubt about the thickness of the metal you're welding
  • Owners Manual and Set up Guide

You may be interested in ordering spare contact tips.

​You can take a look at the Hobart Handler contact tips here on Amazon

Features of the Hobart Handler 140 MIG Welder

Yes the Hobart 140 welder is a basic MIG with no fancy bells and whistles on it but there is no doubt that what it does it does well. This Hobart 140 wire welder was first released to the market in 2012 and has received a number of upgrades since then.

The front of the welder has a clean clear design, with the power switch and voltage control switch with 5 distinct settings.

There is also a variable wire speed dial control and an over temperature light that comes on should the duty cycle of the Hobart wire welder be exceeded.

Inside the cabinet is an Aluminum drive system, sturdy and well made, unlike some of the cheaper imported welders.

Internally, the Hobart 140 Handler is fan cooled. On the inside of the cabinet door there is a welding parameters chart to guide you in your welding settings.

The Hobart 140 Duty Cycle

The Hobart 140 duty cycle is rated at 20% at 90 Amps. This duty cycle is quite decent for a MIG at this end of the market. Some of the more entry level welders have duty cycles of only 10%.

Now what the Hobart 140 duty cycle means in practice, is that you can weld your project for 2 minutes continuously and then you must rest the welder for 8 minutes. Otherwise you will overheat your Hobart.

Should you trip the thermal cut out by exceeding the duty cycle, you will need to wait fifteen minutes for the welder to cool or risk damage to your new Hobart.

Hobart Handler 140 Settings

In its latest upgrade The Hobart 140 Handler has a knob with five positions for the output voltage.  Previously it was four.

Hobart Handler 140 Front Controls

Hobart Handler 140 Front Controls

​The dial is tapped. Meaning that the dial moves cleanly from 1 though to five.

There is no three and a half for example.

Some experienced welders may find this a nuisance, as they may want to tune the output setting more finely. Beginners will find this makes the welder easier to use.

The wire feed dial is infinitely variable and so you have some flexibility there.

Hobart Handler 140 Settings Chart

There is a welding chart on the inside of the door of the cabinet.

Hobart Handler 140 Settings Chart

Hobart Cabinet Welding Guide Chart

​The Hobart Handler 140 welding chart gives the Hobart recommendations on the metals and gauges the Hobart can weld along with;

  • The Hobart Handler 140 flux core welding settings,
  • The gas recommended for MIG welding,
  • The gas recommended for MIG welding stainless steel

The chart is also detailed in the manual that comes with the welder. (There is a pdf link to the manual later in this post)

The Hobart Handler 140 welding chart details the polarity and wire type to be used and whether to use shielding gas or no shielding gas.

You dial up the Hobart Handler 140 setting on the output voltage and the wire feed speed, making it really super for beginners to know their starting welder settings.

Though I still think for each particular circumstance you will want to do your own experimentation. Several users have reported that they think this Hobart wire welder runs hot and have dialed down the settings for their particular circumstances.

Integral Thermostatic Protection

Integral thermostatic protection means that should you exceed the Hobart Handler 140 duty cycle, the this protection will trip and shut off the welder. There is a light on the front of the Hobart 140 welder which will come on should the thermostatic protection kick in.

The fan continues to cool the welder to a temperature where you can start welding again.

The reset button is on the back of the unit.

Note - the thermostatic protection may reset and you think you are ready to start welding again but Hobart states at least 15 minutes must pass before you should weld again or risk terminal damage to your welder.

Is the Hobart 140 a 115 Volt MIG Welder?

Yes.

The Hobart is convenient to use in that it will weld flux core and will work as a true MIG welder that takes 115 volt input voltage. It uses a normal 120 volt household power socket.

What it does need is to be on a circuit fused to 20 Amps that has a good earth. And it would be best for it to be the only thing you are using on that circuit, if you are to get the best out of this Hobart wire welder.

Having other items plugged in on the same circuit and working, particularly if they draw any significant electricity will reduce the welding output available for your welds.

Hobart Handler 140 Wire Size

Flexible, this Hobart wire welder is designed to use welding wire sizes of;

To use 0.035 inch flux core wire you will need to get 0.035 contact tips as these are not supplied in the box.

The Hobart 140 MIG welder can take either 2 lb. spools or 10 lb. spools (4 inch or 8 inch spools).  It comes supplied with an 8 inch spool adaptor.

Being able to use 8 inch spools means you can have the cheaper cost per pound and the convenience of using larger spools.

Just be sure that you position the size of wire into the right groove on the drive roll.

The wire speed is variable between 40 and 700 IPM (inches per minute) on a dial that goes from one to ten.

Can the Hobart 140 Weld Aluminum?

Some would say yes, using solid Aluminum wire and Argon shielding gas. You will also need to change the polarity to DCEP (the cable to the MIG gun connected to the positive terminal)

Changing polarity between Flux Core wire and gas welding is very easy on this model.

You would need to put in a Teflon liner and hold the hose as level as possible when feeding the Aluminum wire up to the torch head.

This will take skill to achieve, as Aluminum wire is soft and difficult to feed without a spool gun.

And you would need to use 100% Argon gas.

If you like to find out more about Argon tanks you can check out my article here on the site. ​

This option, should you manage to set it up, would be for the occasional Aluminum welding task.

Should you want to learn more about MIG welding Aluminum take a look at a document I have that is all about it.

If you're planning on doing a lot of Aluminum welding, save yourself the frustration of trying to run Aluminum wire up a MIG gun hose. Get yourself a spool gun to feed the Aluminum welding wire from. Unfortunately there is no spool gun option on this welder.

You would be better off with one of the larger MIGs with a spool gun option from Hobart.

Hobart 140 Shielding Gasses Used

In addition to welding with flux core welding wire the Hobart Handler is able to weld with shielding gas making the welder a true MIG.

The Hobart Handler 140 MIG Wire Welder is able to use the normal 75% Argon / 25% Carbon Dioxide Gas mix. 

It can also use 100% Argon gas.

Along with 100% Carbon Dioxide for welding Steel (will need a different gas regulator to the one supplied)

In addition the Hobart 140 welder can use Tri-Mix (90% Helium/7.5% Argon/ 2.5% Carbon Dioxide) for welding stainless steel.

Consult the Welding Guide Chart on the inside of the welder cabinet door (there is a picture of the chart above) if you are unsure of the gas type you need to use for the metal you want to weld.

Hobart Handler 140 Gas Setup

Installing the shielding gas is easy to do. (the Hobart Handler 140 gas setup details are also in the manual provided with the welder - a link to the manual is below)

Safety first and secure your chosen gas cylinder to the cart or other support so there is no danger of the cylinder accidentally falling.

You will need a wrench size 5/8 of an inch 1 - 1/8th of an inch to adjust the bolts on the Hobart.

1. Take off your cylinder's safety cap and open the valve a tiny bit to blow any accumulated dirt out of the valve.  Close the valve.

2. Attach the Regulator/flowmeter to that the face is upright and can be clearly seen.

3. Attach one end of the gas hose to the back of your Hobart 140 and connect the other end to the regulator.

4. To adjust the flow rate open the feed head pressure assembly.

Hobart 140 Feed head Pressure Assemply

​This will stop the wire feeding. Press the trigger on the welding gun to start gas flow and adjust the gas flow accordingly.

Typically the flow rate to use is around 20-30 cubic feet per hour. But depending on the welding wire you are using, the manufacturer of that wire may have their own recommendations for gas flow rate.

5. Once the flow rate is correctly set, close the feed head pressure assembly and then the Hobart 140 gas setup is done and you are ready to weld.

Do check the Hobart 140 Owners Manual below for illustrations.

The Hobart Handler 140 Manual

The Hobart 140 manual like the clean lines of the welder is straight forward to read and takes you through the different options and settings for this welder.

Here is a link to the Hobart 140 Manual to take a look at.

Hobart Handler 140 Owners Manual

PDF Credit: Hobart Welding Products

What do Users of the Hobart 140 Handler Think?

The vast majority love this wire welder. I've provided a link so that you can see just what the users on Amazon think of the Hobart 140.

View the Hobart 140 MIG Welder Sales Page on Amazon

Visit the Amazon sales page via the link above and scroll down to the bottom where you'll find the user reviews.

YouTube Video on Setting up the Hobart 140 Handler

Want a peek at how easy it is to set up your Hobart Handler 140 flux core? Have a look at this YouTube video.

​Setting up your Hobart Handler

Credit: Hobart Welding Products

Is the Hobart 140 MIG Welder Portable?

Measuring 19.5 L by 11 W by 12 H inches. At 57 pounds this Hobart wire welder shows its study construction. Yes portable, but it will take some hauling around. You may want to consider the optional Hobart 140 cart to go with it.

View the Hobart 140 cart on Amazon ​

​Who Makes the Hobart 140 MIG Welder?

A true stars and stripes company Hobart Welding Products is based in the USA. They have designed and manufactured welding products and cutting tools since 1917.

The Hobart 140 welder is designed and manufactured at their location in Troy, Ohio. Hobart Welding Products are now owned by ITW (Illinois Tool Works) who bought the company in 1996. ITW also owns Miller Electric Mfg Co, another great name in the US who are known for their great MIGs.

There seems to be a lot of cross fertilization of components as this Hobart wire welder sports many Miller parts, which is a definite plus point as it makes the parts easier to source.

Warranty  

There is the Hobart 5/3/1 warranty. Five year warranty on the transformer. Three years on Electronics (the drive motors, rectifiers) and one year on the welding gun. The regulator is limited to 90 days warranty.

Options for the Hobart 140 Welder

Hobart Welding Products also produces welding helmets and tools for the welder. You can order the Hobart 140 welder as a welder on its own or with some of Hobart's own brand options.

​When you buy your Hobart 140 you may want to get a pot of Hobart MIG Nozzle Gel. This gel stops weld splatter sticking to your MIG nozzle when used. Non toxic, odorless, non flammable, doesn't cause porosity and is silicon free.  It is available in a 16oz Jar.

or

​Some Hobart Pliers. They are universal multi function welding pliers designed with a comfort grip and a spring loaded handle. A quality tool that you will need if you don't already own a pair.

Of course if you are a beginner a good helmet, gloves and apron are also must haves.

Last Words

Flexible this Hobart wire welder is able to use solid wire with shielding gas or flux core wire. Sturdy and solidly constructed the Hobart 140 welder is for those who plan to do light to medium welding jobs.

Skilled welders purchase the Hobart wire welder when they want a reliable portable welding set.

Beginner welders who can stretch their budget buy this Hobart Handler 140 MIG Wire Welder because they know it will help them weld rather than hinder them while they are learning. Should you go Hobart and get the Hobart 140 MIG welder? My answer is that if you have the budget you should.

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