Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Albuquerque, NM, USA
I was a welder thirty years ago, so my knowledge is dated. My recollection is that while each type mentioned above can be used on almost all metals, they each have there pros/cons.
MIG was the easiest for me to perfect, it's a one handed operation, but it produces a lot of splatter.
Arc welding takes some practice to see the puddle through the burning flux (that coats the rods), it can be used for light or heavy jobs by selecting various rods, it's a one-handed operation, and it will support aluminum welding (but most welders would use TIG).
TIG is the cleanest of these three types - no splatter. It is a two-handed operation that requires more practice to get good looking beads.
If I were to buy a home shop unit, it would be TIG because it's clean. The local highschool probably teaches all three, so I concur with judgment that you should try all before choosing. Good luck.
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2000 K1200 LTC - Canyon Red