FAQs | BTB Semi-Automatic Air-Cooled MIG Guns

Frequently Asked Questions About the New Bernard BTB Semi-Automatic Air-Cooled MIG Gun Platform

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Bernard has compiled a list of frequently asked questions about the new BTB semi-automatic air-cooled MIG gun platform:

  1. Why are you launching the Bernard® BTB semi-automatic air-cooled MIG gun platform?
  2. How is it now possible to use TOUGH LOCK®, Centerfire™ or Quik Tip™ consumables with any handle style without the use of special adaptors?
  3. How can I tell the difference between single and dual thread necks from Bernard?
  4. Can I upgrade my existing Q-Gun, S-Gun or T-Gun semi-automatic air-cooled MIG gun to use the consumables of my choice?
  5. How can I tell the difference between Centerfire and Quik Tip gas diffusers with the new internal stop (required for the QUICK LOAD liner AutoLength system) vs. the original style Centerfire and Quik Tip gas diffusers when I have both in inventory?
  6. Can I still select a nozzle for my gun during the configuration process?
  7. Will rotatable necks be configurable on straight handle guns (formerly the T-Gun semi-automatic air-cooled series)?
  8. Can I upgrade my current straight handle gun to receive rotatable necks?
  9. The neck I am used to selecting in your online configurator no longer appears there. Is it still available?
  10. Can I configure my gun with a flex neck?
  11. When will flex necks have the dual taper thread to accept all consumable styles?
  12. Has there been any change to your offering of neck insulators?
  13. Can I upgrade my legacy Q-Gun or S-Gun semi-automatic-air-cooled MIG gun so that I can use the QUICK LOAD liner AutoLength system?
  14. Can I now select my preferred liner style during the gun configuration process?
  15. Can I use a jump liner in all gun models offered through the BTB MIG gun platform?
  16. I have original style Bernard conventional liners in inventory. Are they compatible with Bernard MIG guns produced after June 2, 2014?
  17. I have original style Tregaskiss conventional liners in inventory. Are they compatible with Bernard MIG guns produced after June 2, 2014?
  18. How can I tell the difference between old style Bernard and Tregaskiss conventional liners and the new Bernard conventional liners?
  19. Which guns are the new Bernard conventional liners compatible with?
  20. What do the colors on the new Bernard conventional liners signify?
  21. How do I trim and install the new Bernard conventional liner?
  22. How do I refer to the different handles now that they are in a single configurator?
  23. Have there been any changes to the handle and trigger combinations for each handle?
  24. I notice that the cable looks different on my Bernard T series straight handle MIG gun. What’s changed?
  25. I’ve noticed that the amperage rating on all the straight handle guns has been reduced by 50 amps across the board. Why do the guns now have a lower amperage rating?
  26. How do the industrial grade and steel monocoil cables differ?
  27. Which amperages are available with the steel monocoil cable in the straight handle guns?
  28. I have a 2 piece clamshell rear strain relief. Can I reuse my current power pin with the new straight rear strain relief?
  29. If one of my customers breaks the older style black clamshell rear strain relief (on legacy Q-Gun and S-Gun semi-automatic air-cooled MIG guns), will repair parts continue to be offered?
  30. Which guns are the new Bernard power pins compatible with?
  31. Can I still take advantage of the double life MIG gun system where I flip the front and rear handles?
  32. What specifically does the lifetime warranty on the straight rear strain relief cover?
  33. Does the new 1 year warranty on Bernard BTB MIG guns apply to guns manufactured prior to June 2, 2014?
  34. Why does the Q-nut look different?
  35. What will the new gun part numbers look like?
  36. Why is the T-Gun semi-automatic air-cooled MIG gun part number changing so significantly?
  37. When do I need to update the existing gun part numbers in my system?
  38. Do I need to update the existing Bernard and Tregaskiss conventional liner part numbers in my system?
  39. What do I do with inventory of old style guns, liners, power pins, repair kits and necks?

1. Why are you launching the Bernard® BTB semi-automatic air-cooled MIG gun platform?

End User Benefits: Our BTB MIG gun platform allows us to offer our customers our most innovative and flexible product features and options across our premium Q-Gun™, S-Gun™ and T-Gun™ semi-automatic air-cooled MIG gun lines. Since MIG One  in November 2012, when the semi-automatic gun lines were consolidated under the Bernard brand name, customers have been repeatedly asking for this higher level of flexibility and configurability; e.g. rotatable necks on straight handle T-Gun semi-automatic air-cooled MIG guns, QUICK LOAD® liner AutoLength™ system on Q-Gun semi-automatic air-cooled MIG guns, and the ability to use any of our consumables with any handle size or style. We’ve listened and we’ve delivered!

Distributor Benefits: Our new BTB MIG gun platform provides you with a deeper set of choices and features to offer customers while allowing you to reduce your SKU numbers of consumables and parts at the same time; e.g. you can now stock a single line of Bernard conventional liners instead of the legacy Bernard and Tregaskiss conventional liners. Since the BTB MIG gun platform also uses common power cables and a new common straight rear strain relief on all models, this also helps to reduce repair part numbers and inventory. Over time, you may also experience a reduced need to carry all three kinds of consumables since all handles now support any of our consumable sets.

2. How is it now possible to use TOUGH LOCK®, Centerfire™ or Quik Tip™ consumables with any handle style without the use of special adaptors?

As part of bringing our three gun lines together, we will be implementing a new dual thread on the front of our necks that allows you to use your choice of TOUGH LOCK, Centerfire or Quik Tip consumables. Please note that necks manufactured prior to 2014 only have a single thread that mates with either TOUGH LOCK or Centerfire and Quik Tip consumables.

3. How can I tell the difference between single and dual thread necks from Bernard?

There is a subtle difference to the appearance of the threads on the necks as shown below:
Comparison showing necks with single vs. dual threads
Figure 1

4. Can I upgrade my existing Q-Gun, S-Gun or T-Gun semi-automatic air-cooled MIG gun to use the consumables of my choice?

If you are using a legacy Q-Gun, S-Gun or T-Gun semi-automatic air-cooled MIG gun purchased before June 2, 2014, you will require a replacement neck with the new style dual threads to be compatible with the consumables of your choice.

5. How can I tell the difference between Centerfire and Quik Tip gas diffusers with the new internal stop (required for the QUICK LOAD liner AutoLength system) vs. the original style Centerfire and Quik Tip gas diffusers when I have both in inventory?

To help distinguish Centerfire diffusers with the new internal stop, users can check the orientation of the roll mark. In original style diffusers, the roll mark is readable when the tip end is at the top. In diffusers with the new internal stop, the roll mark will be readable when the neck end is at the top.

Group of two Centerfire diffusers, highlighting the roll mark
Figure 2

To help distinguish Quik Tip diffusers with the new internal stop, users can check the roll mark. In the original style diffusers, the roll mark has one Bernard starburst stamped before the part number. In diffusers with the new internal stop, the roll mark will have a Bernard starburst stamped before AND after the part number.

Group of two Quik Tip diffusers, highlighting the roll mark
Figure 3

For both Centerfire and Quik Tip diffusers
, a second simple method to check for an internal stop would be to insert a liner into the diffuser. If the liner will not pass all the way through the diffuser, then an internal stop is present. These internal stops have been added to allow for the use of a QUICK LOAD liner AutoLength system with all consumables and handle styles in the BTB MIG gun platform.

Please note that regardless of whether you are using the QUICK LOAD liner AutoLength system or not, it is still important to understand which diffuser you are using as this affects liner trim length during replacement. Please refer to the insert inside your diffuser bag for liner replacement and trim length details.

6. Can I still select a nozzle for my gun during the configuration process?

No, nozzles cannot be selected in our Bernard BTB semi-automatic air-cooled MIG gun configurator. If you require a different nozzle than the standard one, you will need to purchase it separately. After reviewing our sales records, we determined that very few nozzles have historically been configured and that the standard ones we include satisfy the vast majority of our customers. Nozzle selections will continue to be offered in Tregaskiss® MIG gun configurators.

7. Will rotatable necks be configurable on straight handle guns (formerly the T-Gun semi-automatic air-cooled series)?

Yes, with the exception of the T series small straight handle model. Any Q-neck will be compatible with the T series straight handle that has the rotating neck adaptor installed.

8. Can I upgrade my current straight handle gun to receive rotatable necks?

Yes, you can upgrade your gun using a rotatable neck upgrade kit. Please be sure to order a new rotatable neck for your gun at the same time.

9. The neck I am used to selecting in your online configurator no longer appears there. Is it still available?

Please contact Customer Service to determine the availability of your preferred neck.

10. Can I configure my gun with a flex neck?

No. Flex necks are still available but must be ordered separately.

11. When will flex necks have the dual taper thread to accept all consumable styles?

The timing of this has yet to be determined.

12. Has there been any change to your offering of neck insulators?

No new neck insulators are being introduced due to implementation of the BTB MIG gun platform.

13. Can I upgrade my legacy Q-Gun or S-Gun semi-automatic-air-cooled MIG gun so that I can use the QUICK LOAD liner AutoLength system?

Upgrading your gun would require a significant amount of rework and a complete replacement of the gun’s back end. Our recommendation would be to purchase a new gun configured with the QUICK LOAD liner AutoLength system.

14. Can I now select my preferred liner style during the gun configuration process?

Yes, the liner type is selected during the last step of the configuration process for all handle styles. Available selections include the Bernard conventional liner, the QUICK LOAD liner and the QUICK LOAD liner AutoLength system. Because this is an additional selection character compared to the former Q-Gun and S-Gun semi-automatic air-cooled MIG guns, all prior Q-Gun and S-Gun semi-automatic air-cooled MIG gun part numbers will be one character longer going forward.

15. Can I use a jump liner in all gun models offered through the BTB MIG gun platform?

No. Jump liners can be used with almost all neck / handle combinations EXCEPT for the T series and T series small straight handles when configured with a fixed neck. A free jump liner will also still be automatically provided with every gun configured with a rotatable neck and a conventional liner (guns ordered with QUICK LOAD liners will not include a free jump liner).

16. I have original style Bernard conventional liners in inventory. Are they compatible with Bernard MIG guns produced after June 2, 2014?

No, these liners will only be compatible with Bernard curved handle guns produced prior to June 2, 2014 with the black clamshell style rear strain relief. They will also be compatible with guns with the Bernard Euro or Bernard style feeder connection regardless of production date, as these guns will continue to use the black clamshell style rear strain relief. You can easily identify compatible guns by the black clamshell style rear strain relief as shown below:

Comparison showing new vs. old rear strain relief
Figure 4

17. I have original style Tregaskiss conventional liners in inventory. Are they compatible with Bernard MIG guns produced after June 2, 2014?

The Tregaskiss conventional liners will continue to be compatible with all Bernard straight handle guns. They will not be compatible with any curved handle guns.

18. How can I tell the difference between old style Bernard and Tregaskiss conventional liners and the new Bernard conventional liners?

The new Bernard conventional liners can be differentiated from older Bernard conventional liners by the thread at the back end. When compared to the older Tregaskiss conventional liners, the hex is significantly wider than the threaded section of the back end. Further, the new Bernard conventional liners will come with a wide array of colored shrink wrap that signify various wire sizes.

19. Which guns are the new Bernard conventional liners compatible with?

The new Bernard conventional liners are compatible with all Q-Gun, S-Gun and T-Gun semi-automatic air-cooled MIG guns purchased before and after June 2, 2014.

Old style Bernard conventional liners are compatible with curved handle guns produced prior to June 2, 2014 and all Bernard guns with Euro or Bernard style connections regardless of production date. You can easily identify compatible guns by the black clamshell style rear strain relief.

20. What do the colors on the new Bernard conventional liners signify?

The colors used on the new Bernard conventional liners denote wire size compatibility as follows:
• Yellow: 0.023″-0.030″
• Green: 0.030″-0.035″
• White: 0.035″-0.045″
• Red: 0.045″-1/16″
• Blue: 5/64″
• Grey: 3/32″
• Black: 7/64″-1/8″

21. How do I trim and install the new Bernard conventional liner?

The new Bernard conventional liner is installed in the same way as the older style conventional liner. Please be sure to note the proper trim length which will vary based on your choice of diffuser or retaining head. Further, Centerfire and Quik Tip gas diffusers have new internal stops in them; this means that trimming will now require the removal of the retaining head and trim lengths will be different.

22. How do I refer to the different handles now that they are in a single configurator?

Since we now have multiple handle styles within a single configurator, we have developed the following naming scheme for our handles:
• B series curved handle
• B series small curved handle
• O series curved handle
• O series small curved handle
• T series straight handle
• T series small straight handle

23. Have there been any changes to the handle and trigger combinations for each handle?

No. Please see our BTB MIG gun configurator or our Bernard product catalog for a complete list of options available after June 2, 2014.

24. I notice that the cable looks different on my Bernard T series straight handle MIG gun. What’s changed?

The straight handle gun will now use the same proven industrial-grade cable as curved handle guns which features cotton wrapped copper and improved trigger leads.

25. I’ve noticed that the amperage rating on all the straight handle guns has been reduced by 50 amps across the board. Why do the guns now have a lower amperage rating?

In order to bring the three gun lines together into a single platform, it was also necessary to create consistency across the gun amperage ratings. Bernard Q-Gun and S-Gun semi-automatic air-cooled MIG guns have traditionally been rated in multiples of 100, whereas the former Tregaskiss semi-automatic air-cooled MIG guns have traditionally been rated 250, 350, 450, etc. The straight handle guns’ overall design and components are the same quality or better under the BTB MIG gun platform; this means that although they are now rated on paper as 300, 400, 500, 600 amp, they will continue to outperform this rating as they always have.

26. How do the industrial grade and steel monocoil cables differ?

The key differences between the two cables are material (either a Hytrel® tube or steel monocoil is used at the center of the cable to allow passage of the gun liner, the wire and the shielding gas flow) and price (the steel monocoil cable is more expensive due to the use of steel monocoil at the center of the cable).

The steel monocoil provides extra structural integrity to the cable giving it superior pinch resistance which helps to ensure good gas flow and wire feedability. Users in certain industries or welding applications that require longer gun cables that may frequently be looped or stretched around corners to the point of pinching are the ones who should consider upgrading their welding guns to our specialty steel monocoil cable. The majority of our welding gun users never experience these issues and enjoy long, dependable product performance with our heavy-duty industrial grade cable.

27. Which amperages are available with the steel monocoil cable in the straight handle guns?

300 and 400 amp T series straight handle guns (excluding the T series small handle) are compatible with steel monocoil cable.

28. I have a 2 piece clamshell rear strain relief. Can I reuse my current power pin with the new straight rear strain relief?

No. You will require a new Bernard power pin.

29. If one of my customers breaks the older style black clamshell rear strain relief (on legacy Q-Gun and S-Gun semi-automatic air-cooled MIG guns), will repair parts continue to be offered?

Yes, repair kits will continue to be offered for a period of time.

30. Which guns are the new Bernard power pins compatible with?

The new Bernard power pins are compatible with all Bernard guns that incorporate the straight handle rear strain relief with lifetime warranty.

31. Can I still take advantage of the double life MIG gun system where I flip the front and rear handles?

Yes, this will still be possible on Bernard guns with straight handles at both the front and rear of the gun. This will not be possible with guns that have a curved front handle.

32. What specifically does the lifetime warranty on the straight rear strain relief cover?

The lifetime warranty on the straight rear strain relief covers replacement of the rear handle and spring.

33. Does the new 1 year warranty on Bernard BTB MIG guns apply to guns manufactured prior to June 2, 2014?

No. This improved warranty is available only on Bernard BTB MIG guns manufactured on or after June 2, 2014.

34. Why does the Q-nut look different?

The Q-nut has been completely redesigned to offer a significant increase in durability. Please note that the new silicone ring, Q-nut cover and silicone insulator are now installed from the back of the neck instead of the front. Refer to the detailed instructions on how to install the new Q-nut cover for more information.

35. What will the new gun part numbers look like?

The new format will follow the legacy Q-Gun and S-Gun semi-automatic air-cooled MIG gun part number format, but with an extra character at the end to accommodate our expanded liner selection. As an example, Q4015AE8CM will become Q4015AE8CMC (where C indicates conventional liner selection).

36. Why is the T-Gun semi-automatic air-cooled MIG gun part number changing so significantly?

We chose to adopt the Q-Gun MIG gun part numbering style for all of the guns configured under the new BTB MIG gun platform. This had to occur to support the use of a single configurator and to simplify and ensure consistent semi-automatic gun part numbering going forward.

37. When do I need to update the existing gun part numbers in my system?

Although all legacy Q-Gun, S-Gun and T-Gun semi-automatic air-cooled MIG gun part numbers will be affected, you will still be able to place orders using the current part numbering system until August 1, 2014. We will support both styles of part numbering for that period of time only, so we strongly encourage you to begin converting the gun part numbers in your system for the June 2 launch as soon as possible. If you place an order with an old gun part number, we will provide a new number to you via your order confirmation, invoicing and packing slip. We do not anticipate any delays in ordering or shipping products due to this part numbering change.

38. Do I need to update the existing Bernard and Tregaskiss conventional liner part numbers in my system?

Older style Bernard conventional liner part numbers will be replaced with part numbers for the new Bernard conventional liners; e.g. 44115 will become L3A-15. Further, if you order using an older style Bernard conventional liner part number after June 2, 2014, we will automatically convert that and provide the new part number to you via your order confirmation, invoicing and packing slip. No orders will be held up due to this part numbering change. Please note that Tregaskiss conventional liner part numbers which can be used in Bernard semi-automatic or Tregaskiss robotic MIG guns will be unaffected by this change.

39. What do I do with inventory of old style guns, liners, power pins, repair kits and necks?

As a manufacturer that is continuously innovating in order to bring value added solutions to our customers, we are not in a position to take back older versions of product when we bring new products to market. All older style welding guns are still highly durable, industrial duty welding tools. As for liners, power pins, repair kits and necks, this inventory can be used to support legacy guns that are currently in use.