Miller 252 vs. Hobart Ironman 230 Welder


In Brief: Miller 252 vs Hobart Ironman 230

Both welders can be used for the same purposes, mainly for medium-duty weld jobs. The 252 is heavier but also provides more welding power as it has a higher output and a greater weld thickness capacity. The Ironman 230 is more portable and lightweight but still need to be carried from a running gear. Both the welders can be used through 230 V sources and can be used for various applications like maintenance, domestic jobs, and even light fabrication.

The category of welders in the discussion is mainly used for medium-duty applications and is a significant upgrade from the starter range of welders.

These welders are often used in applications like light industrial jobs, shop fabrication, maintenance or repair work, metal fabrication and auto body or farm work.

These welders can be used for light industrial operations too but are usually built for demanding domestic jobs.

These welders have a high output and can handle medium to heavy-duty household jobs pretty easily.

The welders, however, can sometimes require a generator because they cannot be run through residential inputs.

The following sections will provide essential information on both the products.

Overview of Miller 252

Miller Millermatic 252 MIG Welder, 200 V 200 Amps At 28 Volt At 60% Duty Cycle Single Phase 207 lb,

The Miller 252 falls in the higher end of welders, the welder can be used for light to medium duty applications.

It can perform both MIG and flux-cored welding processes and can be used to weld steel as well as aluminum.

The welder has infinite voltage control and a fan-cooled system.

The product is manufactured by Miller Electric, a company headquartered in Appleton, Wisconsin.

Founded in 1929, today Miller Electric is one of the largest producers of welding equipment all over the world.

The 252 has a high output of 300 Amperes which is the best in its class.

The welder also can be run through two types of inputs, although neither of them is household, a generator can be paired with the welder.

Key Specs Summary – 

Parameters Details
Flux-cored (FCAW)
Product Weight207 lbs.
Input Voltage200/ 208 / 230 V
230 / 460 / 575 V
Input PhaseSingle-phase
Input Frequency60 Hz
Weld ThicknessMild Steel - 24 Gauge to 0.5 in
Aluminum - 18 Gauge to 0.5 in
Rated Output200 Amps at 28 VDC, 60% duty cycle
250 Amps at 28 VDC, 40% duty cycle
Wire Speed Range50 IPM - 700 IPM
Maximum Open Circuit Voltage38 V DC
Welding Wire Diameter0.023 - 0.045 inches, Solid Steel
0.023 - 0.045 inches, Stainless Steel
0.030 - 0.045 inches, Flux-Cored
Output Range30 A - 300 A
Dimensions (L x W x H45 x 34 x 20 in3

With a maximum open-circuit voltage of 38 V DC, the welder can be used to weld up to 0.5 inches of material in a single pass.

The following video gives a brief overview of the welder:

The Millermatic 252 features an EZX-Change low cylinder rack to roll the cylinders on and off the machine, this feature eliminates the need to lift the cylinders, hence maximizing maneuverability.

The welder features a large digital front panel with a digital timer. This interface lets the user adjust a pre-set voltage and wire feed speed.

There are specific controls for the standard run-in, pre/post flow, burn-back, and a spot/delay timer menu.

The automatic gun detection system allows the operator to turn the machine on or off by pulling the trigger on the MIG gun, spool gun, or push/pull a gun.

The welder automatically detects and recalls the voltage, wire feed speed, and timer of the active gun making the processes simpler.


  • Ease of use
  • Automatic gun detects
  • No wire tangling
  • Easily accessible interface
  • High output
  • Stable and forgiving arc
  • Smooth wire feed
  • Fan-cooled
  • Light for its category


  • Accessories not included

Overview of Hobart Ironman 230

Hobart 500536 Ironman 230 MIG Welder With Wheel Kit & Cylinder Rack The Hobart Ironman 230 is a modern welding machine which facilitates MIG as well as flux-core processes by Hobart Welding

The welder can be run from a 230 V power source and can be used to weld steel and aluminum.

It is used in Maintenance, repair, auto-body works, manufacturing, construction, farm, ranch, and metal art.

Hobart also provides the standard 5/3/1 warranty on the welder.

This welder is capable of welding mild steel, aluminum and stainless steel up to ½ inch thickness in a single phase.

The Ironman’s dual-geared wire drive system with aluminum housing delivers up to 700 inches per minute of wire feed speed.

The welder has an output of 250 Amperes and a maximum open-circuit voltage of 38 Volts.

The following video gives a brief overview of the welder:

The welder can be moved conveniently through the use of a running gear that can be bought separately. It also has 12 voltage settings which allow for maximum control and a smooth arc.

The Ironman’s infinite wire feed speed control is designed for precise weld bead shapes and penetration of materials.

A hinged door offers an easy path for the wire drive structure which makes spool changes easier.

Key Specs Summary – 

TypeMIG, Flux-core
Product Weight185 lbs.
Input Voltage230 V
Input PhaseSingle Phase
Input Frequency60 Hz
Weld Thickness24 Gauge – 1/2 in.
Rated Output175 A at 25.5 VDC,
60% duty cycle
Maximum Open Circuit Voltage38 V DC
Wire Speed Range0 – 700 IPM
Output Range30 – 250 A
Dimensions (L x W x H)36.5 x 18.875 x 31.5 in3

The drive rolls also facilitate automatic alignment of the wire which removes tangling and leads to better wire management.

The system is also fan-cooled and is thermally protected to cater to the overheating of the welder.


  • Ease of use and installation
  • Lightweight and portable
  • Infinite wire feed speed control
  • Automatic wire alignment
  • Multi-process capability
  • High Output
  • Can weld thicker materials
  • Durable
  • Thermal overload protection
  • Fan-cooled


  • More expensive than some of its competitors

Key Differences between Miller 252 vs Hobart Ironman 230

Here is a summary of the key differences –

ParametersMiller 252Hobart Ironman 230
Product Weight207 lbs.
185 lbs.
Output Range30 - 300 A30 – 250 A
Weld ThicknessMild Steel - 24
Gauge to 1/2 in
Aluminum - 18 Gauge to 1/2 in
24 Gauge – 1/2 in.
Wire Speed Range50 - 700 IPM0 - 700 IPM
TypeMIG. Flux-coredMIG. Flux-cored
Input Voltage208 V
220 / 230 / 240 V
230 V

The Ironman 230 is much lighter than the Miller 252, 22 pounds to be specific, this makes it easier to transport.

However, due to its weight, the Miller 252 is more durable and rugged. Miller 252 also boasts a larger output which extends to 300 Amperes.

The welders can operate on the same types of materials and can be used to weld up to ½ inches of steel and aluminum.


The welders are very close in applications and capacity, but they can still be separated on the basis of many characteristics and requirements.

Neither of the welders can be used from household power sources but if a user has access to a 230 V source through a garage or a workshop, both these machines can be run without any issues.

The Ironman 230 requires the input power of 230 Volts to operate, therefore it is more suited for the user if they are operating from a garage or large workshop, due to the absence of a household input option.

The Miller 252 can be easily implemented for various heavy-duty industrial or manufacturing jobs due to its rugged built and high welding capacities.

The welder is recommended for more commercial and heavier jobs due to its superior welding capacity which translates to better weld qualities.

About Anthony White

Anthony has vast experience in critically analyzing and writing on products and gadgets. He spends a lot of his time over internet tracking the latest tech developments. When he is not doing that, he can be found pursuing his love of gardening.