Review of the Hobart 500551 Inverter-based Welder

When it comes to welding, expectations differ from person to person. And that’s why investing in a welding machine is all about efficient research and doing one’s homework. The Hobart 500551, apart from being one of the best value for money welders around, is also extremely durable. While the market is saturated with what manufacturers claim to be the best welders, this review tries to give a clear insight into what Hobart EZ 165i is capable of.

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Features in a Nutshell

The immense popularity of the Hobart EZ 165i can be attributed to the unique features the device is equipped with. It is not the quantity, but the quality of features Hobart has fixated its focus upon. These features give the device, the decisive edge over its competitors. Let’s have a quick look at them:

  •    The dual power output enables a varied range of welding options. AC outputs can be used for aluminum welding and DC output for welding stainless steel.
  •    An attachable fan which can be purchased separately enables a reduction of debris by pulling the particles back to the welding area.
  •    The device is enabled with a user interface that allows you to operate with a single knob and a switch.
  •    Added safety features including an automatic high-temperature shutdown allow the device to switch off when the temperature crosses the safety limit.
  •    The amperage of the device can be varied as per user requirements, thus allowing a wider range of welding operations.
  •    The inverter based variant of the device consumes less power and also provides a consistent welding.

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Ease of Use

Those who are new to welding or need it for casual artwork will greatly benefit from its simplicity of use. It is portable, pocket-friendly and above all, allows a single-knob control. If you’re just learning to weld mild steel, you can achieve perfect welds with just a little bit of practice.

Perfect for Newbies

To be honest, I wasn’t expecting features like auto-post flow, auto overheating shutdown to work as advertised in an expensive welder like them. Quite gladly, it proved me wrong. Getting started with this model was a lovely experience. Just pick the right material type and thickness, and it will figure out the appropriate current type and shielding on its own. Regulating the amperage using the foot control takes the least amount of effort.

Versatility

I am a hobbyist who welds frequently. I did a lot of thick aluminum welding with this device. In my opinion, this is nowhere near the heavy-duty welding machines of Hobart or Miller in terms of finesse. But if you are not into high-density, industry-level welding projects, this one will do you just fine. It can go up to 165 amps, but I found it welding thick materials efficiently at 130 amps.

High Safety Standard

Another aspect that took me by a pleasant surprise is the safety measurements it comes with. The fan on-demand prevents overheating which would be a big advantage for people not much familiar with welding machines. It also keeps the debris off from clogging the core unit.

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The Cullet body comes in only one size- 3/312 inches. If you require other commonly used sizes like 1/16 inches, 0.040 inches or 0.020 inches, you will have to procure them separately.

The Bottom Line

The best part about the Hobart EZ 165i is its effortless versatility. It can be used for industrial applications as well as small workshop tasks. This makes it extremely suitable for people like me who take up welding as a hobby or for those interested in metal construction art. Although no machine can ever be perfect for all users, the Hobart EZ 165i tries hard to live up to its reputation of catering to all.

  • October 8, 2016
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