Lincoln Electric K2185-1 Handy MIG Review

Last updated on December 23rd, 2020 at 01:18 pm

Lincoln Electric K2185-1 Handy MIG welder review

Lincoln Electric is a trusted name that has been around on the market for over 120 years. They pride themselves in producing high quality machines and this welder is no exception. In this Lincoln Electric Handy MIG welder review you will find further information about this portable and good value pack. It offers everything one needs in a welder and comes with everything to get you started. This welder is capable of using MIG and flux core processes. Giving you plenty of versatility to experiment. This also makes it a great choice for beginners who are looking to upgrade to MIG welding eventually.

It weighs just 46 pounds and has a carrying handle that allows for easy moving around the shop. This being said the light weight does come at a cost in power. It is rated for maximum 88 amp output which means it can achieve quality welds but only for thin metals. It is designed for hobby work and light gauge repairs. Such as custom fabrication or body panel replacement on vehicles. It’s easy to use interface also makes it easy for everyone to practice their skills. Finally, Lincoln Electric welders are built in the US and their products are backed by good customer service. Read on to learn more.


Lincoln Electric Handy MIG control panel
  • The Lincoln Electric K2185-1 Handy MIG is strong in structure and has a useful indoor chart to help you in the settings.
  • It plugs into 115V, 20A outlets which is compatible with the standard household plug ins at home workshops.
  • It has a welding amperage range of 35 to 88 amps. This makes it capable of welding thicknesses of 24-gauge and up to ⅛ inch mild steel.
  • Carries a duty cycle of 20% when running at 70 amps. It’s designed for light gauge steel tasks which is ideal for hobby projects and home repairs.
  • It is easy to use with a simple interface containing the voltage settings knob and the wire feed speed knob for adjusting the power and the wire speed.
  • Has four voltage settings to let you fine tune the voltage to mach the thickness of the materials you are welding.
  • Further, the continuous wire feed speed adjustments gives you better control over the weld, more accurately and quickly from 0 to 300 IPM.
  • Capable of handling self-shielded flux-core and MIG welding, you only need to get the shielding gas.
  • The Handy MIG is very portable, it’s only 46 pounds and has a handle on top that makes it easy to carry where you need.
  • It has an integrated cooling fan design to prevent the unit from overheating during operation.
  • It also comes with a cold contactor safety feature to prevent electricity from flowing to the welding wire when trigger is not engaged.
  • The welder comes with solid and flux cored wire spools to allow the user to start working quickly. It also comes with a handheld mask with filter plate and lens.
  • Great value considering the accessories included with this kit and it comes with a one year limited warranty.
Lincoln Electric K2185-1 wire feed welder


Input: 115V, 1-Ph, 60Hz
Mild Steel Welding Thickness: 24 gauge – ⅛ inch
Rated Output: 70A @ 20% Duty Cycle
Max. Open-Circuit Voltage: 29V
Weight: 46 pounds
Current Type: DC
Amperage Range: 35A – 88A
Wire Feed Speed: 0 – 300 IPM
Welding Output: CV
Dimensions (LxWxH): 18 x 8.8 x 12.8 inches

Possible Concerns

Handy MIG welder chart
  • The Handy MIG K2185-1 is not suitable for industrial or heavy duty applications.
  • It has only 4 voltage settings. While this will work for some users it can be limiting for others.
  • The maximum output of 88 amps will prevent you from working on materials thicker than ⅛ inch. If you foresee yourself having to work with thicker materials then we recommend you to check out the Hobart Handler 140 MIG.
  • It does not come with a gauge for you to monitor if you are running low on gas.
  • Lastly, the mask that comes with the kit is very poorly made and it is used handheld which can be really unpractical. If you will be welding very often or need to have two hands free an upgraded mask will be helpful.

What’s Included in the Box

In the box you will find a Lincoln Handy MIG wire feed welder with 6 feet power cord. Gun with assembly, clamp and 8 feet work cable. There is also a shade #10 handheld mask and chipping brush. To get you started quickly, it comes with .025 solid MIG wire spool with contact tips. And another self-shielded .035 flux-cored wire spool with contact tips. Finally, there is a gas-less nozzle for flux-core welding and for MIG conversion there is a hose, nozzle, and gas regulator.

Additionally, as in this specification sheet, there is an optional utility cart which allows for even easier transportation; as well as, convenient storage for other welder pieces.

Lincoln Electric Handy MIG Review – Conclusion

Lincoln Electric K2185-1 welder

The Lincoln Electric K2185-1 welder is an exceptional little machine. It performs well and it’s sufficient for a lot of people. However, if you are hoping to weld anything over ⅛ inch mild steel then this is not the welder for you. The 88 amp output is limiting in the work that can be done. This being said if you are looking for an affordable welder that does a phenomenal job on small pieces then look no further. It produces quality and strong welds on thin materials.

This top rated MIG welder pack also comes with everything to get you started on your first welding project. In addition, the fact that it is ready for MIG welding, after adding shielding gas, is a worthwhile upgrade if you plan on welding often. Not to mention, a new face shield would also be a nice upgrade to this ready pack. Overall, it’s a capable welder and a worthy addition to small shops. From the Lincoln Electric K2185-1 Handy MIG welder review we see that it’s an exceptional value and is great for beginners and pros alike. With a few simple upgrades it can be quiet satisfying to work with and will deliver nice results for light welding tasks. Check our homepage for more details about different types of welding and metal fabrication equipment.

  • Performance - 7.8/10
  • Durability - 8.8/10
  • Good Value - 8.8/10
  • Ease of Use - 8/10
  • Warranty - 7.7/10

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