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  1. #1
    lewis is offline Aluminum
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    Default Miller Vintage Wire Welder won't weld

    My Miller Vintage MIG welder quit welding this afternoon. It was doing fine, but after I stopped and turned it off and then 10 minutes later when I turned it on, it will feed the wire but no weld. I have gas. I read the Miller manual and it said this was a ground problem. I checked the ground and even tried to strike an arc directly to the ground. The other solution from Miller was replace the contact tip. I did this and still no weld.

    Any suggestions?

    Thanks,
    Lewis

  2. #2
    FlatBeltBob is offline Stainless
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    Default how vintage ?

    It would help a lot if you can be more specific about model numbers .
    What might be vintage to you , might be the same machine some of us have been using for years .
    I have a Shopmaster that I took 60 miles to get serviced , only to find a small limit switch out of adjustment .
    Sometimes a small thing can be the big problem .
    When you pull the trigger , the wire feeds right ?
    but do you also hear the internal contactor clicking to send current to the gun ?
    FBBob

  3. #3
    macona's Avatar
    macona is offline Diamond
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    Try a different weld range on the big switch.

    If that dont make a difference listen for a clunking that the contactor should make.

    If you hear it take a volt meter and check the voltage on the two power studs in the wire cabinet with the trigger pulled. Open circuit should be around 25 to 30v depending on your range switch setting.


    Bob, the Miller Vintage is a model. It was a modern version of the old MM35/135.

  4. #4
    lewis is offline Aluminum
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    It is a Miller called a Vintage. Miller quit making I think the Millermatic 250 and people did not like the new digital machine they brought out to replace the Millermatic. Miller then brought out a new, old design machine and called it a Vintage. Yes, when I pull the trigger the wire feeds and the internal contactors click but nothing happens other than the wire feeds out.
    Lewis

  5. #5
    toadjammer is offline Hot Rolled
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    Default

    I had some similar problems with a millermatic of similar vintage. I checked the contactor and relays and cleaned and filed arcing contacts accordingly. Work fine after that.

  6. #6
    lazarus is offline Hot Rolled
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    Have you checked the clamp for the outside coil wire in the lead. If it isn't burnt, check continuity between clamp and contact tip(with machine off).

  7. #7
    macona's Avatar
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    It is probably a bad contactor or a bad selector switch. You will have to open the machine to find out.

    Dont file contactor contacts they will fail again and if you went through the silver layer they could arc closed. Replace the contacts if you can get them or replace the contactor. They are not that expensive and can be found either on ebay or grainger. I think it has 40A contacts with a 24v coil. 3 pole, screw lug.

  8. #8
    FlatBeltBob is offline Stainless
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    Cool Vintage Miller

    Sorry , I did not know that was a Miller trade name .
    I guess its kinda like Classic Coke .
    But I think it is a dumb word to use .
    Would you go out and buy a 2009 "Old Chevy " truck ?
    I stand corrected
    FBBob

  9. #9
    lewis is offline Aluminum
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    Default

    I checked this morning and I'm getting 16-18 volts at the power studs with the thickness selector on 1 or 2 and the machine welds. I get no volts when the selector is on 3,4,5,or6. I assume from this that the selector switch suddenly went bad on 66% of the settings. Is there anything I can do to check to make sure it is just the selector switch? How could a selector switch just go bad? What is there to wear out?
    Thanks,
    Lewis

  10. #10
    bjorn toulouse's Avatar
    bjorn toulouse is offline Stainless
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    You should be able to verify the condition of the switch with an Ohmmeter.
    EDIT: I looked on Miller's web site, but no listing for a "Vintage".

    Rex

  11. #11
    macona's Avatar
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    Well, its either the selector or the transformer. Open the machine up and take loose the switch. There is a torx in the handle to hold it on and three that hold it to the front panel.


    You have to look under Millermatic Vintage:

    http://www.millerwelds.com/om/o1311aa_mil.pdf

  12. #12
    piniongear's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lewis View Post
    I checked this morning and I'm getting 16-18 volts at the power studs with the thickness selector on 1 or 2 and the machine welds. I get no volts when the selector is on 3,4,5,or6. I assume from this that the selector switch suddenly went bad on 66% of the settings. Is there anything I can do to check to make sure it is just the selector switch? How could a selector switch just go bad? What is there to wear out?
    Thanks,
    Lewis
    I suggest you just pick up the phone tomorrow and call Miller Welding in Appleton WI. They have tech help available who can answer your questions directly.
    Miller Electric Manufacturing Co.
    1635 W. Spencer St.
    P.O. Box 1079
    Appleton, WI 54912-1079
    Phone: 920-734-9821
    pg

  13. #13
    macona's Avatar
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    FWIW, I am a Certified Miller tech.

    Direct number to miller tech is 920-735-4505

  14. #14
    lewis is offline Aluminum
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    Thanks Macona for your expert advise. It was the selector switch. I pulled it out, cleaned the contact points, and now everything works. I really appreciate your excellent advice. We don't need the Miller people when we have someone like you that has actually worked on Miller equipment. Keep up the good advise.
    Lewis

  15. #15
    crawler is offline Plastic
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by macona View Post
    Bob, the Miller Vintage is a model. It was a modern version of the old MM35/135.
    The Millermatic Vintage is the "modern" version of the legendary Millermatic 200.

  16. #16
    macona's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lewis View Post
    Thanks Macona for your expert advise. It was the selector switch. I pulled it out, cleaned the contact points, and now everything works. I really appreciate your excellent advice. We don't need the Miller people when we have someone like you that has actually worked on Miller equipment. Keep up the good advise.
    Lewis
    Well, I wouldnt go that far! Miller has some excellent techs along with Esab and Hypertherm. The others have been so-so...

    After the vintage was discontinued the MM210 replaced it. Problem is the dielectric grease collected dust and built up. There is a plastic ring available that seals the switch to the panel to keep the dust out that solves this issue.

    But for the life of me I cant find the part number for it. Miller tech could give it to you.

  17. #17
    JacobS is offline Cast Iron
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    Default

    I also have the Millermatic Vintage. It's the same class/size range as the 200, 250, 251, etc. It just has lots of copper instead of the new digital controls. I think they were made until 2003 or so.

    I haven't put many hours on it, yet. However, macona's first comment is what has always worked for me. If it stops welding, change settings, then change back. Is there an overload or short circuit switch inside?

    Post here or let me know if you follow up on the switch seal. If it's a good value, I'll check it out, too. The coal forge in my shop isn't running yet, but it will drive up the airborne grit quantity by a lot.

    Any other interesting tips or facts on this model?

  18. #18
    lewis is offline Aluminum
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    The switch seal is Miller part # 186058 @ $7.05 each. You need two-one for each switch. The repair tech that waited on me at the welding supply place said he had one last week that had the same problem-dirty switch. I had to order it since they don't stock very much anymore.
    Lewis

  19. #19
    macona's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JacobS View Post
    I also have the Millermatic Vintage. It's the same class/size range as the 200, 250, 251, etc. It just has lots of copper instead of the new digital controls. I think they were made until 2003 or so.

    I haven't put many hours on it, yet. However, macona's first comment is what has always worked for me. If it stops welding, change settings, then change back. Is there an overload or short circuit switch inside?

    Post here or let me know if you follow up on the switch seal. If it's a good value, I'll check it out, too. The coal forge in my shop isn't running yet, but it will drive up the airborne grit quantity by a lot.

    Any other interesting tips or facts on this model?
    Dust mixed with the dielectric grease causes the problem you have. The only overload is temp sensor that will stop the main contactor from closing.

    As far as I know these machines have aluminum windings. The varnish makes them look copper. Nothing wrong with aluminum though. The resistance coefficient is so little between copper and aluminum it really dosnt have an effect.

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