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October 16, 2018

ESAB, a world leader in welding and cutting technologies, has been promoting its recently launched Rebel as a 'weld anything anywhere' machine, and this versatility and capability have been demonstrated admirably by Bob Evans of RW Evans Welding Services, who has used it for a broad spectrum of tasks on a farm owned by another member of his family. In a matter of months the Rebel has been used with stick electrodes for repairing damaged components, hard-facing and general fabrication; it has also been used in sMIG (smart MIG) mode for fabrication and repairs, the machine's Tig capability has been employed for root welds and building-up worn components, and MIG brazing has also been performed.

Bob Evans has 40 years' experience in welding and he also works as a welding co-ordinator, carries out inspections, and provides welding training and approvals services. Prior to purchasing the Rebel 215ic, Bob Evans had spent 10 years carrying out machinery repairs at Argoed Edwin Farm with an ESAB Aristo Tig 220i, mainly with OK 48.00 low-hydrogen electrodes. This is a highly capable set-up but the welding power source is relatively large and, therefore, was only suitable for equipment that could be brought into or very close to the farm's workshop. In contrast, the Rebel is extremely portable and highly versatile, yet it is still powerful enough for most tasks, even when running off a 240V 13A mains electricity supply.

Speaking about the new machine, Bob Evans comments: "The ESAB Rebel is very, very versatile, you really can take it anywhere – I have even used it on top of barns. I am currently making a small trailer using the Rebel with ESAB Aristorod 12.50 Mig wire and CO2/Argon shielding gas – a combination that produces virtually no spatter – and I recently repaired some gates on bull pens with the Rebel and Coreshield 15 all-position self-shielded flux-cored wire. On a silage grab the Rebel was great in Tig mode for reaching an inaccessible area and building-up a worn linkage hook, and I have used hard-facing electrodes to repair farm buckets. On other occasions the Rebel has worked extremely well with cellulosic electrodes for root welds in piping – the hot start and adjustable arc force allow any electrode to be used. In fact the Rebel has been so versatile and capable that I would certainly not want to be without it now."

Other jobs on the farm for the Rebel have included repairing a new hay tedder that suffered extensive cracking at welds that had been badly made during manufacture. Bob Evans has also fabricated a new pallet forklift frame from box section steel, with frame corner joints Tig root welded with Filarc PZ6500 2.4mm wire, then filled and capped with OK 48.00. Following an attempted break-in, a storage container has been fitted with a security beam, for which the Rebel's ability to operate off a long extension lead proved invaluable. A poorly designed bale grab has been repaired with OK 48.00 3.2mm electrodes and improved by fitting strengthening webs, and cast iron repairs have been carried out using OK 92.18 nickel-cored electrodes. For less demanding applications, such as sheet metal and storage racks, the Rebel's sMIG mode and Coreshield 15 welding wire are a faster alternative to MMA welding.

Bob Evans concludes: "I am looking forward to trying the Rebel's programmes for aluminium and stainless steel because so far the Rebel has taken everything in its stride. Running off an electricity supply with a 16A fuse I can use electrodes such as OK 43.60 4mm with a welding current of 165 amps. So far the thermal cutout has not tripped, so the Rebel enables high levels of productivity to be maintained. All in all, it is a remarkable machine."

Welded FrameRebel