330 Club Springs Road
Elmwood, TN 38560
Phone: (615) 897-2011
Fax: (615) 897-2023


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What is high-frequency DC? I thought that DC meant unchanging voltage (like a battery)?

Your understanding of what is meant by the term DC is not correct. There seems to be a lot of confusion about just what the terms AC and DC mean. In electronics,

Direct current flow can have a number of forms:

It is still Direct Current as long as the electrical current flow is in a single direction. Such current can vary in an infinite number of ways and still be DC as long as current flow in held to a single direction within the electrical circuit.

High frequency DC is a term used to describe a condition where the direct current flow in a circuit (in this case a welding circuit) is caused to vary at a very high speed so as to produce greatly improved welding characteristics when compared to a system in which the supply voltage to the welding circuit is unvarying.


What is the benefit of ZENA's high frequency DC to a weldor? Is it some sort of square wave?

Our proprietary method of welding enhancement (which we often refer to as high frequency DC -- US & foreign patents pending) is based on controlled variations in the wave form and very high speed variations in current flow rather than a system of intermittent DC current flow (i.e., a square wave which can increase weld impurities and result in other electrical effects which are undesirable).

Bottom line is that we produce an improved welding current, coupled with the ability of the operator to instantaneously control/adjust welding current while working (the operator is still a key element in the process) to yield an excellent weld with deep penetration and few impurities -- even in a remote area or in poor conditions.


I don't understand what you mean when you refer to "controlled variations" in welding current. Is this a TIG welder?

Our welding generator is a constant (average) current device, with the output current flow electronically controlled. The frequency of our proprietary weld quality enhancing variations (US & foreign patents pending) is not regular, but a portion of the wave form is based on the speed at which the power generator generator turns -- other variations are cued and produced based on conditions of output current demand and arc condition.

Our output current and voltage variations typically occur at a rate that is so rapid that these variations are not noticeable by the operator except by an audible harmonic produced from within the weld arc/puddle and by what is described by people who have used the ZENA system as "a very smooth feel" when welding.

Other user noticeable benefits reported by users are that the system is very tolerant of arc length variations (ideal working arc length for many rods is equal to approximately the rod diameter -- the ZENA system produces good results with working arc lengths from 0 to two times the rod diameter). Further, when using some types of welding rod with the ZENA system, the rod tip can be immersed in the puddle and or “dragged” along the work piece surface without loosing an arc. (With this said, we still recommend that our less experienced customers follow the welding rod manufacturer's specifications for guidance when using a specific rod.)


I am curious if your 150A welder can be used as a TIG welding power source? Since it is 100% duty cycle, and high frequency, I figure it can.

It's possible to do so, but we don't make a TIG attachment at this time. We've had a number of inquires about making a foot control mechanism for TIG.

Note however, that the ZENA welder does not include a sparking system to facilitate TIG arc starting and your TIG arc would have to be started by scratching. Normal care not to stick the TIG electrode to the material and contaminate your weld joint would be required.


Does the unit require a certain rpm range from the host motor? I figure they might require at least 3000 rpm or so.

Yes, it needs to operate at (at least) a minimum motor speed -- more speed is OK but not necessary for proper welder operation. The minimum speed required varies from installation to installation depending on how the unit will be driven by the motor.

Most autos/trucks need to run from about 2000 to 2500 rpm to weld. Many people purchase our automatic speed control which works with our welders electronic controls increasing engine speed only when welding power is on, reducing speed to an idle when welding is not taking place. (This speed control is included in our truck installation kits or it can be purchased separately)


I currently own a "red" 225 amp welder, and was amazed when I saw your product. I couldn't believe how small it was, and what it put out!

Had a 225 myself -- sold it. The ZENA welder outperforms it to such a degree (considering weld quality, feel, etc.) that there is really no comparison.


Why do you so stridently recommend AC power supplies? What about using the DC output of you ZENA welder to directly power tools and lights? I heard that this can be done. Wouldn't this be cheaper/easier?

Because, in our opinion, AC power supplies are much safer (though all high voltage sources of electricity are potentially dangerous). A high current, high voltage DC power supply is an extraordinarily dangerous thing -- literally a fatal accident waiting to happen.

A few simple facts prove the point:

By the way, our opinion of the relative safety of the two forms of electrical power is shared by every electrical safety and certification body in the world -- and by our lawyers and product liability consultants. For example, in the USA, OSHA regulations would prohibit the use of a pure high voltage DC power source to operate tools which are designed for use with AC current without a number of extra safety devices in place, such as automatic ground fault interrupters, and/or other special fail safe devices designed to insure safety under all possible conditions

Yes it certainly would be easier and cheaper to produce DC power for tools -- but we will not do so. WE SIMPLY WILL NOT KNOWINGLY MANUFACTURE OR SELL ANY DEVICE WHICH IN OUR OPINION IS INHERENTLY UNSAFE. This is also why we developed our unique welder control system, and why all ZENA welders send no power to the electrode holder until the operator chooses to start welding, and why we make the safest welder in the world.

As to lights, there are many very efficient low cost 12V DC light sources on the market. From spotlights to trouble lamps -- even low current fluorescent types. In a pinch, you can even remove a headlight and use some jumper cables to hook it to the battery to make an emergency work light!


Do you have information regarding using the ZENA welder as a MIG or TIG power source?

The ZENA system can produce acceptable power for either MIG or TIG welding. However, we do not sell a MIG spool gun or TIG torch accessory at this time.

Some of our customers have used the ZENA system with commercially available portable MIG spool guns (like the one made by HTP) -- connecting the spool gun to the ZENA system with a special interface accessory that we built for them so that ON/OFF control of welder power was coordinated with the switch on the spool gun.

We have also have had a customer set a system up to work as a supply for a TIG torch. Though, as with the spool gun, some extra electronic switching was necessary (in this case to handle gas flow). And, since the ZENA system does not supply a high voltage starting spark, the TIG arc must be started by "scratching".

With this said, you should also consider that welding, particularly with TIG, in windy or wet or dirty conditions is usually difficult -- with possibly poor results. Welding in these conditions is better accomplished with a stick welder -- a key reason (along with simplicity/reliability) why the ZENA welding system is a DC stick welder.


Can the ZENA 150A welder be hooked up to an electric start 5hp motor (with a 12v starting battery and a small motorcycle alternator for charging and power for welder control circuits) -- and become a portable welder? Do you have plans & kit to assemble this setup?

Yes, ZENA welders can be attached to any suitable free standing engine. However, a 5hp motor is not powerful enough for a 150A welder.

A minimum of 7hp is required to drive the 150A ZENA power generator. Note that 7hp is a minimum requirement and assumes that the engine in question is either electrical or a gas/diesel unit equipped with a large enough flywheel to insure smooth operation under heavy load.

More typically, our customers find that the 14-18hp gas engines (which are usually equipped with electric start with built-in alternators) of the type often found on riding mowers make good welder engines. The Kohler engines reportedly do particularly well since they are frequently equipped with heavy flywheels. Small 7-10hp diesel engines also work quite well.

Customers tell us that there are may used riding mowers on the market which have worn out mowing equipment, but which have good engines and often good transmissions. They also report that a "riding welder" is an extraordinarily useful configuration.

We do not have formal plans for this type of installation, though we do have pictures and descriptions of such installations on our web site:
Click HERE for pictures or a riding welder

Click HERE for pictures of a free standing engine used to drive a ZENA welder


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The ZENA mobile welding system is manufactured in the USA by ZENA, Incorporated and is sold with a 36 month limited warranty.

You have no risk if you buy on-line, all units are sold with a 60-day money back guarantee of satisfaction.

ZENA is a trademark owned by ZENA, Inc. for its welding systems and related products.

US & Foreign Patents Pending

© Copyright 1998,1999, 2000 by ZENA, Incorporated. All rights reserved.

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