10 Best Stick Welders – Reviews & Buying Guide

One of the most popular types of welding is what’s commonly referred to as Stick welding. The full name is shielded metal arc welding and is used by beginners and experts alike. Whether you need to weld at home, outdoors or as a profession, you need a Stick welder you can rely on.

Both brick-and-mortar and online stores offer a plethora of these products. That’s why finding the best Stick welder for you represents an adventure all on its own. When you add the various sizes, features, price tags, shapes, and more, it’s enough to make your head spin.

However, you shouldn’t worry. We’re here today to present you the ten best Stick welders at the moment, including pros, cons, and specifications, together with FAQs and a buying guide.

Reviews Of The 10 Best Stick Welders That Are Worth Checking Out

Numerous aspects differentiate Stick welders between themselves. They have different input power capabilities. Some are even dual-voltage models. DC, AC, and AC/DC options also have their advantages and disadvantages that may influence the welders’ performance. And not to mention the size and shape which mean a lot for the portability and storage. In the following paragraphs, you can take a look at models with the best of these abilities.

1. Everlast PowerPro 164 – Best Stick Welder For Farm House

This is the first one on our list for various reasons. Firstly, as a premium model, it’s very versatile. Its numerous options enable users to perform more different tasks efficiently. With the help of a single switch, they can select whether they prefer TIG, plasma, or stick cutting. Not to mention that the supported power goes to both 110 and 220 volts. This is accompanied by the machine’s requirement of at least 10.000 watts of continuous ‘clean power’.

Another detail that comes in handy is the ability to weld almost any metal. However, we should mention some cons users reported. The main one is related to the slightly increased weight. Because of it, the machine isn’t among the most portable ones.

More specifications and features are:

  • Weight: 60 pounds
  • Low power consumption
  • IGBT modules and inverter technology
  • 30 days money-back guarantee and a 5-year warranty for the parts and labor
  • Color: green
  • Dimensions: 20 x 12.5 x 13.5 inches


Is it possible to switch between 2T and 4T?

Yes. This model has options for 2T/pedal switch to 4T.

What’s this machine’s requirement regarding the size breaker?

To run, this machine needs 40a for 220 volts and 30a for 110 volts.

2. Amico SF-160A

As a dual-voltage model, this welder works on both 120 and 240 volts. It’s made to weld cellulose electrode. Therefore, buyers can utilize all types of electrodes from E6010 to E7018. Its advanced IGBT inverter technology contributes to its efficiency together with the fan for automatic control of the temperature.

Regardless of all the features, it’s a portable model. And it’s affordable when compared to the others. What users report as an issue though is the quality of the electrode holder. It’s presumably low.

More detailed features and specifications are as follows:

  • Weight: 16 pounds
  • Dimensions: 14.2 x 7.1 x 11.1 inches
  • Electrode holder: 300A
  • Frequency: 60Hz/50Hz
  • Duty cycle: at 60% 160A and at 100% 124A


What material is this welder made of?

It’s entirely made of metal.

What do you get with the machine?

Together with it, there are an 8-feet power cord, plug of 6-50P, a cable of 10 feet, a work clamp, power adapter from 230 volts to 110 volts, and a 3/32-inch pieces electrode.

3. Lotos LTPDC2000D – Best For 3 In 1

What makes this welder truly special is its non-touch plasma cutter. It enables users to cut metal with a thickness of up to ½ inches. Aside from this, the machine can be used for stick and TIG welding.

After people buy a pigtail separately, they can take advantage of the dual voltage. Moreover, the welder works on 220 volts and 110 volts. And its range for welding is wide. Aside from this, there are an air filter regulator and a D plug, which are previously installed. Thanks to them, setting up the machine is quick and simple.

As a possible con of this model, people state the fact that the foot pedal isn’t included in the package. So, users should purchase it separately.

Some other specifications and details are:

  • Warranty: 3 years
  • Amps welding range: 10-200 amps
  • Weight: 42.3 pounds
  • Dimensions: 17 x 8 x 12.5 inches


Does this model have a compressor that’s built-in?

No. But it still works perfectly fine both for professionals and beginners.

Which metals can you weld with this machine?

Cast iron and stainless steel can be welded without any issues.

Can this welder work with a 5/32 electrode?

Yes. This size of the rod is supported.

4. Century Inverter Arc 120

When it comes to affordable yet efficient models, this one fits the category. It’s an easy machine that can be carried around thanks to the provided shoulder strap. What strikes users as positive is the fact that it offers a smooth arc. Moreover, sheet metal between 18 gauge and ¼ inch steel can be welded without any troubles.

Aside from this, there is a setting for the temperature. This enables consistent welding. To accompany this, the machine can be on for 2 minutes every 10 minutes and not overheat or damage itself. More precisely, it works on 120 volts.

As some downsides, people mention the limited duty cycle and the welding range. But this isn’t anything serious, especially if you aren’t welding professionally.

Here are some more specifications and features:

  • Welding range: from 10 to 90 amps
  • Weight: 14 pound
  • Duty cycle: 20% at 70 amps
  • Dimensions: 7.5 x 5.25 x 11.5 inches


What comes in the package?

Together with the welder, you receive a shoulder strap, electrode holder, work cable, input cable with a plug, and a work clamp.

Which electrode and size are the most suitable for this welder?

It works great with 3/32 inches 6013 and 7014.

Does it work with a generator?

Yes, of course, if the generator offers enough power.

5. Forney Easy Weld 298 100ST – Best For Beginners

Considering its cheap price, this welder possesses some really useful features. This is, especially, the case for beginners. Firstly, there is a simple switch for choosing between stick and TIG welding.

It’s very convenient for transportation because it’s compact and light. Plus, it supports versatile welding tasks and at different distances.

As a downside, some customer weren’t fans of the fact that a TIG torch doesn’t come with the purchase. Take a peek at the highlight aspects and specifications:

  • Output: 90 amps
  • Input: 120V
  • Weight: around 7.5 pounds
  • Inverter power system
  • Color: green
  • Comes with a 6-foot cord


Do I need to wire a breaker?

Due to the corded-electric power, users only have to plug it in and start working.

Is there a gas hookup somewhere on the back of the model?

No, it doesn’t.

6. AHP Alpha-160ST

Due to the size of a toolbox and lightness, you can carry it almost everywhere with you. It’s made for lighter welding tasks as it’s of the DC type.

Nevertheless, it works extremely well with materials like iron, steel, and more. Furthermore, it’s a dual-voltage machine of 120 and 240V. That’s why plenty of welders consider it to be among the best Stick welders under five hundred bucks.

Something that can be improved in the words of a minority of reviewers is the clarity of the manual and TIG capabilities which presently don’t exist. Check out the following features and specifications:

  • Duty cycle: 60% at 40C
  • Weight: 13 pounds
  • Dimensions: 13 x 6 x 10 inches
  • Color: yellow


Is a TIG torch included in the purchase?

No, you have to buy it separately.

Is the machine capable of AC welding?

It’s just a DC welder.

Where is it made?

It’s an imported product. The country of origin is China.

7. LONGEVITY 721405557523

The dual voltage of 110 and 220V at 140 amps is ones its main features. It’s small yet very efficient for welding jobs at home and even for professionals who want a slightly cheaper machine. Having said that, it has additional protection against overheating, then, voltage switching capabilities, amperage modifications, and more.

It’s easy to transport, but not so easy to store as it’s a bit bulkier, according to some buyers. Other than that, they say the information booklet was a bit incomprehensible. Let’s move on to the most notable specifications:

  • Weight: 13 pounds
  • Color: black
  • Supports Lift TIG
  • Material: metal
  • Amperage adjustment: from 30 to 140 amps


Can I weld aluminum with it?

That’s a no. However, on account of that, it’s very suitable for home projects.

Is the frequency power50 or 60Hz?

Actually, it’s both.

8. PrimeWeld Ct520d Welder

Generally, it’s regarded as the welding machine of the farm. That’s because it’s very suitable for these types of surroundings. Plus, it can come in handy for all the small and big tasks there.

The fact that it’s pretty light, less bulky than other models help in that direction. Plus, it’s very affordable. It has a plasma cutter feature which is useful in some distinct situations. The show-stealers are the Stick and TIG welding options.

There’s customer service all days of the week. The warranty period is pretty lengthy. It’s worth addressing the small complaint made by a minority of reviewers about the leads and the length of some of them. What follows is the part dedicated to the machine’s major specifications:

  • Input power frequency: 50/60Hz
  • Material: steel
  • Warranty: 3 years
  • Weight: 32 pounds
  • Power efficiency: 85%
  • Duty cycle: 60% at maximum amps


Is the pilot arc available in cut mode?

No, it isn’t.

Is an air compressor needed?

Yes, because it isn’t built-in. Don’t worry because there is an air inlet. You just need an air supply for the plasma cutter.

9. Thermal W1003203

It’s one of those machines which are great for beginners and enthusiastic welders. Whether it’s at home, the garage or a remote job, this welder will perform the task the way it’s expected of it. Some of the tasks it’s great at are lighting maintenance, DIY projects, repairs, and such.

Moreover, it’s very mobile due to its weight. Besides Stick, it supports Lift TIG welding, too. A testament of its versatility is the fact that 95 amps of power are delivered on circuits of 115V.

As a small con, some buyers point their fingers towards the Argon Bottle. Also, there’s the fact, that large and complicated welding tasks will take time with this welder.

Here are some of the features and specifications:

  • Weight: 20 pounds
  • Warranty: 1 year
  • Negative and positive weld output 25-millimeter Dinse receptacle


What’s the duty cycle?

Some say that it’s around 20% at 90 amps.

Can I weld aluminum with it?

Unfortunately not because it’s a DC welder.


Thanks to the inverter technology, this welder is exceedingly versatile and mobile. It being pretty lightweight helps in that direction, too. The welder has a fan which is fully integrated into the design. That influences in a way that it improves the duty cycle. The current control system is easy to modify. In return, it enables the user to change the amps slowly.

A few customers thought that the puddle wasn’t as smooth as in other models as a slight drawback. Anyway, let’s take a look at the signature specifications:

  • Input voltage: 110/220V
  • Weight: 14.99 pounds
  • Duty cycle: 60%
  • Frequency: 50/60Hz
  • Dimensions: 13.6 x 5.5 x 10.4 inches


Is it compatible with 1/8 rods?

Yes, you can use 1/8 rods without a problem.

What is the warranty period?

It’s a year. If there’s something wrong with the Stick welder in the first three months, the brand will refund you.

Buying Guide

Duty Cycle

When we talk about a duty cycle, we mean the amount of time it takes for the welder to perform its task without any break and before you need to let it cool off. Know that a full duty cycle represents ten minutes. The cycle is measured in percent. So, if it’s 30%, it means that it will weld for 3 minutes nonstop, after which you’ll have to stop.

If you plan not to use the welder regularly, a shorter cycle may do just fine. For welders who do it professionally, the longer the duty cycle – the better.


As the number of welders who don’t have a permanent and static workplace increases, mobility is another important category. If this is what you want in your Stick welder, then you can check out inverter welders. When compared to transformers, they weigh way less and are very compact.

Output Current

You have three options:

  • AC – It’s usually considered to be meant for beginners. It’s a bit cheaper, too. This type is used in the case of magnetization caused by friction.
  • DC – This is the most popular current type. Efficiency, as well as versatility, are its strong assets. Also, users can choose between positive and negative polarity. You can use DC for almost every welding task.
  • AC/DC –The type combines the best from the two. That’s why it’s a bit more expensive than the previous two.

User-Friendly Control System

When it comes to welding, things can sometimes be overcomplicated. That shouldn’t be the case of the controls. They should be easy to find and big so that you can even manage them with gloves on.

Usually, most elementary Stick welders have few controls. There is a display for the power, a switch for turning it on and off, and controls for modifying the amps. The advanced models have plenty of extra controls.


There are so many Stick welders for every budget and preference. Where some are more suitable for home use and DIY projects, some perform well in farm settings and even in the cases of industrial welding. Most frequently, users look for models that are portable, durable, have a longer duty cycle, and similar. The output current system is also another category to consider. Also, TIG capabilities besides Stick welding are important to some. There’s the price, too. Every user has a different budget. So, users should prioritize what matters to them the most and choose a welder according to that.

What do you think? Have you picked the best Stick welder for you? We’d like to hear your opinions and picks!


Edward, a seasoned welding expert, shares his extensive knowledge and insights on Welderit.com to help you enhance your welding skills.

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