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Hobart 210 MVP MIG Welder Review

210mvp

I really like this Hobart 210 for a lot of reasons.

And we will talk about all of them

I promise I will

Why?

I really like Hobart welders.

I love all power tools too… But that’s for a different discussion

And my love of all ESAB stuff is well known too.

I disdain Blue with a passion – but that’s for another LONG rant.

 

In this Hobart 210’s Review, We’ll Discuss

 

  • Pro’s and Con’s
  • Why I love this welder
  • Other welders that are good (and why)

All welders are good.

Said no REAL welder.

Ever.

But….

There is a shred of truth to that statement.

Think about it.

But don’t let your head explode.

Different welders are good for different jobs

I swear on my stickers it’s true.

Please tell me you have awesome stickers for your hood.

Because

Your DEFINITELY not a real welder if you’re stickerless

and

You’ll never get an awesome job.

Ok, maybe I’m being mean…

But there is a lot of good to the Hobart 210 MVP

So let’s get down business.

  Hobart 210 MVP Testimonials

I usually weld aluminum but needed to weld together some heavier steel. This was a great choice. I thought of the blue machine (Miller) but the variable voltage was nice at first – However, the 7 voltage selection on the Hobart 210 MVP was more than enough to find the sweet spot.
Click here to see the original testimonial from Scott (Technogeek)

I upgraded from a 115v handler to the 210. I really am pleased with the welds. But it is heavy – you definitely need a cart for this machine. But I’ll tell you, it penetrates ¼ no problem.
Click here to see the original testimonial from Flycamp


Pro’s

  • Hobart is known for their GREAT customer service
  • The 210 adjusts to the power source provided – great feature!
  • 10 FT MIG cord and Clamp
  • 115v AND 230v – oh the penetration we will get!
  • Cast aluminum drive
  • 5/3/1 Warranty

 

Con’s

  • Portable – HOLD your horses – I’ll explain
  • Spool needs a wrench to loosen
  • Limited duty cycle
  • The power button is not smooth… Or so says this guy

 

 

I really do like this welder

It makes me smile

Under my hood of course

One of my favorite things is the MVP plug

The Multi-Voltage Plug allows you to use either 115 v OR 210 V with a simple twist and go

And that’s awesome

I can’t tell you how many times I needed some more juice at a project site

Found the 210 box and in under 5 minutes, I was good to go.

And the 115 is nice around the shop on smaller stuff.

AND

The machine autoregulates….

So it gives you the most power it can

With either source….

So you get the best weld possible with the juice you have

And I don’t have time to mess around with 1000 adjustments.

Take the plug and add in some other great features

Like

The 15 ft MIG cable and the clamp

Remember this thing is “portable” so I need all the length I can get to hit my workpiece

And

The aluminum drive – which gives me smooth wire delivery

And we have a winner.

This machine lives in my shop.

And it really shines. Nice dimes every time.

with good wire.

Oh – and the 7 voltage settings –

It’s nice to get that sweet spot…

BUT

There are some drawbacks

Hobart claims the 210 MVP is “portable”

If you believe that, then I have a bridge to sell you.

It’s about 80 pounds!!!

You are not using this as a portable welder.

Unless you have a cart.

I mean you can throw it in the back of your truck and move it to a job site.

I’ve done that.

Used the MVP plug and welded several times

It’s not fun, but it’s doable.

If you really want a portable machine it needs to be lightweight,

I’d go with a Lincoln handy MIG for really being portable.

Oh, and you need a wrench to get the spool off.

Really.

A wing nut would be perfect here.

Problem solved.

But

I don’t want to waste time

I want to weld!

I know I’m nitpicking…

But let’s be honest here

It’s a great welder

But the price is a big drawback to me

And I’ll tell you why

But first

Let me ask you

Have you ever heard of Michael Schumacher?

Stay with me

I promise I have a point about learning to weld!!

I’m a bit of an F1 nut…

( Yes I weld a lot… but I mean c’mon

What about Sunday Funday?)

Back to my story

Schumacher was one of the best racers car drivers ever

You know how he got good as a kid?

His dad was broke as a joke

And couldn’t afford kart racing equipment

So

They would take good parts out of the dumpster

And make beat up parts work

And Michael would build his kart

While rich kids just bought the best of everything

But Schumacher had to learn everything he could

About making the little bit he had work the best way possible

And what happened?

Schumacher got good

Really good.

And he could beat the rich kids

With better cars

Better parts

And deep pockets

No problem.

Welding is a lot like that.

Yep. I just compared welding to racing.

Really!

I swear.

I had the ugliest craigslist welder ever.

It barely worked

It shocked me.

I kicked it…several times.

OK fine!… everyday.

But

I got better.

And knew how to repair my stupid cheap 3rd hand welder

And I got even better…

Listen

You will outgrow a cheap welder.

No doubt about it.

A good welder will grow with you.

Like this 210 MVP.

But I think of it in steps.

Buy a cheap one.

Learn….

Curse at the welder a bit; Because it sucks…

Then weld some more.

Get better….

Maybe get a welding job or two.

Then realize how bad that welder is.

Throw it in a river

And UPGRADE.

The Hobart 210 MVP  is a great upgrade welder.

And this is a really great upgraded welder.

It’s not 100% professional because the duty cycle is limited.

And when you are in the field you can’t rest

And neither can your welder.

So if you want to buy a really nice welder, this is top shelf.

Well,

More like mid shelf to be honest.

But it is a solid welder overall that will make you happy.

I have it.

I love it.
And in my shop stays the “portable” machine.

Hobart 210 MVP Video Review

Conclusion

I like the Hobart 210 a lot. It’s solid,

Hobart has great customer service.

And the machine is durable.

I just don’t see it as a portable machine.

If you have a fabrication shop or do a lot of home welding, great.

Buy this now.

But it is expensive.

And that’s my main concern.

I’d rather step up to a better machine for more money

Or

Step down to a cheaper machine.

So if you want a portable MIG, buy the Lincoln.

It’s cheaper and a light lighter.

Your arms with thank you.

Or really step up and buy the ESAB for your shop.

Hobart 210 MVP vs Ironman 230

Hobart 210 VS Hobart Ironman 230

 

 

It’s a hot day.

I mean sweat – dripping-in -yoursafety glasses hot.

So hot you see the sweat drops collect in your hood.

And what’s the best thing to do after a day like that?

Cool down with an adult beverage.

And that’s where I unwind…

And talk shop with my fellow welders, fabricators

And metalworkers.

And

That’s where the gear’s turn.

And give me ideas for research.

My buddy knows I love the 210 MVP

In fact…

It’s my backup welder.

And it lives in the back of my shop…

Just in case my main welder goes down.

But…

He is new to the welding thing…

And wanted to know what are the main differences between my back up…

And my main welder… the Hobart 230 MIG welder.

Not my ESAB.. which I love.

However…

When I really need to power through some mild steel

I use my 230.

So in this article, you’ll learn :

  • Highlighted specifications of both welders
  • Major differences of these welders
  • Similarities of both welders
  • What welder I would pick and why

And always keep in mind…

A welder that is good for me may not be good for the next guy.

And I’ll explain that a bit more below.

And I think your biggest question is…

Which welder is the better choice?

That’s a pretty big question to answer..

And to have a clear winner we need to have some more information first…

So let’s start off by looking over a few things…

Top specifications of the 230 and the Hobart 210 MVP:

In case you’re not familiar with these welders on their own…

Let’s get a high-level overview.

Ironman 230 MIG Specifications:

  • 12 tap settings for voltage
  • Spool gun ready
  • Spool hub accommodates 10/33/45 lb rolls of wire
  • Welds up to ½ of 24 gauge material
  • 30-250 peak AMPS
  • 200+ lbs

Right away you can just look at these specs.

And you know…

This welder is meant to be a workhorse.

BAM.

Welding steel all day long.

And it does a fantastic job.

The 12 steps of voltage really help you find your sweet spot …

And get that perfect bead …

So you have x-ray quality welds.

But…

I’m getting excited and ahead of myself.

Let’s talk about the 210 MVP.

Handler 210 MVP Specifications:

  • Switches easily between 115v and 230v – different power receptacles are included and switch without tools.
  • Welds up to ⅜” thick 24 gauge
  • 7 steps of voltage
  • 30-150 peak amps
  • 87 lbs

You can really see why the Hobart 210 MVP is a good machine too…

It almost feels like a professional duty welder

Or

More like a DIYers welder on steroids.

And that’s why I have both welders …

They are great and both useful in their own unique ways.

Similarities between Hobart 210 MVP and 230

Yes, these are both Hobart welders.

And that means they are going to share a lot of the same characteristics.

LIke the aluminum drive system.

Which Hobart has spent a lot of time perfecting…

Since the drive is well made…

You’re not going to have your wire kink up on you.

And that can be super frustrating….

And a big problem with cheaper welders…

Like this one

Or this one

And these welders are not bad per se…

But they are not good either.

If you choose one…

Be sure to grab some earplugs

Because they are usually noisy!

Both of these welders share another great feature…

Build quality.

Yup.

Hobart does not skip on fit and finish…

And you can tell these welders will last…

And last…

And last through many hard years of work.

Also, both come with a printed shop manual…

Which is great for answering any technical question you have…

Without calling their customer service (which is also another great feature).

And the last noteworthy similarity is…

Their 5/3/1 warranty.

I’ve used their warranty before…

And it’s rock solid.

It’s always worth having peace of mind on your equipment.

 

Biggest differences between the 210 and the 230

 

First, let’s talk about the stepped voltage…

The Hobart 230 has 12 steps of voltage…

Compared to the Hobart 210 MVP’s 7 steps.

Now that means with the 230 you have more options…

Wait!

I know what your thinking…

Voltage = heat = penetration.

STOP right there…

And reach this article.

And the interesting thing is …

Your penetration will only increase or decrease slightly with voltage change…

I know..

Your mind is melting…

My brain oozed out of my ears,…

But hey…

We are always learning and getting better each day.

Back to our discussion…

So more voltage taps mean…

You can change the profile of your bead.

Based on what your welding you may want..

Thinner, ropier welds

Or

Flatter, fatter welds.

And the more taps you have.. Or voltage choices…

The more types of weld profiles you can create.

Now…

Let’s talk AMP’s

With the 210 your going to have 150 peak amps…

And the 230 will give you 250 peak amps.

More amps = more penetration.

And that translates to thicker materials you can weld.

And the more stuff you can weld….

Well…

The more projects you can bid on …

To make money.

Or

Drive your wife crazy with all the BBQ’s you’ve made.

Finally…

Let’s quickly talk about the weight.

We have about a 120 lb difference between the machines.

The Hobart 210 MVP comes in at under 100 lbs.

And the 230 is much heavier… 200+ lbs.

In fact the 230 lives on a built-in cart.

That’s how heavy this bad boy is.

Now…

This is the point where we...

look at everything together…

The weight…

The amps…

The Voltage…

and….

The choice for me is clear.

 

Conclusion

For me, there is one clear winner.

And that’s the Hobart 230.

Why?

Well, I’m a professional fabricator with my own shop.

I need a  machine that can live in my shop…

Have a wide range of amps for different types of materials…

And different thicknesses…

And can accommodate a lot of wire.

So the 230 fits the bill on all these levels.

The only negative is its heavy!

So….

You’re not moving this bad boy.

Unless it’s rolling it around your shop.

However…

I own the Hobart 210 MVP as well.

And it’s a great machine.

It’s more suited to the DIY’er

Or for mobile repairs…

Or a lighter fabrication.

In other words a semi-pro.

I think this guy summed up the 210 accurately

And this brings up one negative for both machines…

You’ll definitely want to upgrade the ground clamp.

To something beefier like this one

Because for some reason they supply crappy clamps.

And they are light and flimsy.

And…

You definitely want a solid clamp to ground out your machine.

Overall…

The Hobart 210 MVP  is…

a lighter machine,

so you can transport it easily.

But with reduced amps and voltage choices…

The amount of material you can weld will be limited when compared to the 230.

So when faced with this choice I chose the 230…

So buy it now!

I know it’s a great machine that I use every day.

Without worry.

Without any issues.

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