I've done a load of digging through the archives of this and other forums and I have a lot of good information. I'm looking for as much advice as possible, specifically from steel f'builders using tig. I'd like to get a tig machine to expand my own personal skillset and also to open up some additional avenues for construction methods. I've been brazing (lug and lugless) for a good few years and we currently make production fillet brazed frames in the UK.
Anyway, I'd like to get a tig machine to experiment with. I'll be building with steel, can't see me using aluminium but confess to being attracted to titanium, but that would be some way off I think.
I realise there's an inverter camp and a transformer camp and to be honest I don't really care. I have the space and power for transformer but am also attracted to the smaller inverter packages out there. They seem a little less intimidating! I have a *little* experience with tig from a few years ago but that was under instruction and have absolutely no idea about settings/pulse/flow etc. I'll likely seek some local instruction if I can find it but I'm a 'give it a go' type of guy and will probably just get stuck in after doing as much reading as I can.
Anyway, as well as specific machine recommendations (I'm in the UK), I'd like any advice anyone has to offer. Specifically, what kind of duty cycle am I looking for (I won't be doing this 10 hours per day but I'd like to get something that lets me get a bike frame done?
I know a versatile machine would be more useful around the shop but I really am looking for something solely for bike stuff so I'm assuming I only need something at the low end of the amperage scale?
Footpedal I assume is essential.
Pulser? I know some do and some don't so I'm not fussy about this unless someone has a very convincing argument one way or another for a beginner.
Water cooled v air cooled? Again, this will only be for thin wall bike stuff if that makes a difference.
Cup and torch sizes?
Waranty/build quality/Chinese machines?
Anything else I need to think about?