Lincoln Electric K2185-1 Handy MIG Welder Review

Are you looking for the most affordable and lightweight MIG-cum-Flux-cored welding device that can weld a thin sheet or a thicker metal? For me, no welding device can beat Lincoln Electric K2185-1 MIG welder for fulfilling this requirement.

If you are not going to use the equipment frequently or are new to welding, it makes no sense in buying a big industrial machine that makes you spend thousands of dollars.

This Lincoln model is easy to use, affordable, and a versatile option for beginners who are on strict budget. It is a full pack of quality and power at the most competitive price.

It is lightweight, compact, and fairly portable unit that can handle both thin and thick materials, including steel. Most users recommend it for hobby tasks and home repairs involving light gauge mild steel.

If you wish a model without much adjustments, this one is simply made for you.

Lincoln Electric K2185-1 Handy MIG Welder

What Did I Like In Lincoln Electric K2185-1

UserFriendly and Versatile from Different Angles

Well, this is the biggest draw of this unit! It is simple to set and use, as it comes with all the essentials of MIG welding. Further, it easily handles not only carbon steel but also 1/8-inch mild steel and aluminum with different thickness levels on input power of just 76v.

You can actually view your work without slag. The structure is also durable and strong. It is lightweight but with 49 pounds of weight it might not be the most portable one. Yet, it facilitates easy movement from one site to another.

With this unit, you can perform both flux core and MIG welding processes. For MIG welding, you need to invest in shielding gas separately but at a reasonable price. For gasless welding, you need to invest in the right consumables.

Multiple Voltage Settings and Faster Welding Speed

There are four voltage settings that give more control over the output as well as contribute to the versatility. This is something that both beginners and experts tend to commend.

Another praiseworthy feature is the adjustable wire speed control due to which it becomes possible to weld through a mild steel thickness of 24 gauge to 1/8 inches.

The wire feed is adjustable from 0 to 300 Inches Per Minute (IPM) countlessly. This means the unit can adapt to any small flux wire or MIG feed required for small projects.

The feature enables the wire to be fed incessantly with good control for easier, quicker, and more precise welding. The most astonishing fact is that the unit is significantly speedy. It welds four times faster than other models in the same category.

Cold Contactor

This is a must have safety feature for keeping overheating at bay. It is not a good sign if a welding device gets too hot, as it can result in ruining itself, user, and/or the environment. To avoid this risk, this Lincoln model has a cold contactor that does not allow the switches inside the unit to get overheated.

In simple terms, the welding wire remains cold until the gun is activated. Another benefit is that the power can switch over safely as well as swiftly. This happens by halting all jobs via a heat-censored closure.

In short, you no longer have to bother about the unit blowing up or triggering a fire due to overheating. You are fully safe!

Cooling Fan

Even this feature keeps overheating at bay. At the same time, it increases the lifespan of the unit as well as adds to its durability aspect.

What I Feel as Limitations in Lincoln Electric K2185-1

  • Not for heavy-duty or industrial tasks
  • Not for steel thickness over 1/8 inches
  • Not so portable if you include accessories
  • Not for sites having no power outlet or generators
  • Low duty cycle (20%)


Buying this welding device from Lincoln is like gaining a safe, affordable, and quality deal. It is a single model reliable for all simple DIY jobs, including custom fabrication and body panel replacement.

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Lincoln Electric K2185-1 MIG Welder Review
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