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9/16/2019 10:09:13 PM
Posted: 6/17/2014 6:33:40 AM EDT
I'm looking to start a new project and it will require lots of welding. Can anyone tell me what qualities/specs I should be looking for in a good welding helmet? More importantly, what should I avoid?

Link Posted: 6/17/2014 6:36:43 AM EDT
Miller.

Large viewing window. Auto dark, adjustable tint and delay. I have been using an older Miller for quite a few years. They are great equipment.
Link Posted: 6/17/2014 6:37:29 AM EDT
I'm not sure what qualifies as a "good" helmet but we do a decent amount of welding on all kinds of stuff and I bought one of those cheap auto helmets off eBay and it's been working great for 5-6 years and I don't have a single complaint. I think it was about $60.
Link Posted: 6/17/2014 6:45:38 AM EDT
It'll have Miller on it.
Link Posted: 6/17/2014 6:56:26 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 6/17/2014 6:57:44 AM EDT by ultramagbrion]
I still use the Jackson hood I bought off of the Matco truck back in the 90's with a small, 10 shade auto-dark screen .

I keep meaning to pick up a new one with a full-size screen , but something more important always pops up .
Link Posted: 6/17/2014 7:07:53 AM EDT
Optrel Satellite buy once cry once

I have been using one for years now and I have nothing but good things to say the only problem I have ever had is the headgear broke once (Snapon dealer warranteed it for me)

It is really versatile and super sensitive, grind mode is another nice feature. I have not worked in shop in a few years so now it is relagated to home use but if it broke I would get another


Link Posted: 6/17/2014 7:13:22 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 6/17/2014 7:14:54 AM EDT by bluduk15]
I'll try to zero in on qualities of a good helmet first, then the good brands.

1. Auto-darkening. Not all AD is the same. On the advanced helmets, there are more sensors. More sensors, the less chance that they will be blocked when you are out of position or welding tight area (eg roll cage, industrial piping). The higher end AD also have other sensors that operate on the arc's electromagnetic field instead of light for the same reason.

2. Viewing area. The more the better, but the more viewing area, the more expensive.

3. Helmet coverage. I know someone will say that their HF or ebay AD helmet works perfectly, but look closely at the size of those helmets. They are smaller and reflected arclight will be more of a problem. Expect to add a leather neck shield at a minimium.

4. Suspension and other controls. This matters if you are going to use this helmet for more than 15 min at a time. I like a good leather forehead band, but some prefer the terry cloth style. The suspension needs to be well padded if you are doing anything except sitting at a welding table.

Miller, Jackson, Lincoln, 3M Speedglas are a good start. There are tons more quality helmets.

Also, this is one of the most asked questions at weldingweb.com

It's a very good resource. So are the company forums at Miller, Lincoln, etc.
Link Posted: 6/17/2014 7:17:08 AM EDT
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By wildearp:
Miller.

Large viewing window. Auto dark, adjustable tint and delay. I have been using an older Miller for quite a few years. They are great equipment.
View Quote

This.

Cool graphics are a plus, but it's also a good place to park your unused stickers.

Farm stores have them for an ok price.
Link Posted: 6/17/2014 7:17:14 AM EDT
Lots of good info! Thanks.

I'll check out welding web and do some more research but it seems like I'm on the right path now. Much appreciated.
Link Posted: 6/17/2014 7:23:04 AM EDT
Lincoln Viking 3350 owner here and it is fantastic. 3.74in x 3.34in viewing area and never misses a beat.
Link Posted: 6/17/2014 7:33:42 AM EDT
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By wildearp:
Miller.

Large viewing window. Auto dark, adjustable tint and delay. I have been using an older Miller for quite a few years. They are great equipment.
View Quote


Suspension. Solar auto charge.
Link Posted: 6/17/2014 7:38:51 AM EDT
I bought a Hobart one for 30$ Iits been good to me for 3 years now
Link Posted: 6/17/2014 8:24:13 AM EDT
Originally Posted By Layer60:
I'm looking to start a new project and it will require lots of welding. Can anyone tell me what qualities/specs I should be looking for in a good welding helmet? More importantly, what should I avoid?

View Quote


Depends on what you are welding but I like my Miller Digital

If you TIG the Harbor freight one simply won't cut it. the Miller is good with TIG down to 5 amps.

If you pipeline a regular old Jackson Fibersteel will do quite well.
Link Posted: 6/17/2014 10:30:28 AM EDT
I used a Harbor freight auto darkening for about 3 years before it died. Replaced it with another one. When/if it dies, I'm going to spring for a good one.

For a single project, or if you are a hobbyist like me, the Harbor Freight or similar Chinese brands would probably do the trick. If you are a hardcore welder, one with a larger viewing window and adjustable darkening capabilities would be well worth the money.

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