Time to upgrade my welding helmet?

DavidR8

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I think my new ESAB A40 for $155 CDN so pretty cheap for such clarity.
 

DAT510

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Good Auto Darkening Welding Helmets should carry an Optical Classification rating.
There are 4 Characteristics Measured each from 1 to 3, (One being the best).

My helmet has a 1/1/1/2 rating. It's so much easier to see through, than my older Hobart AD Lens. No more green tint, Real Colors and Clarity.

I'd say any helmet with a 1/1/1/1 or 1/1/1/2 rating would be a nice improvement over your older Lens.

Here's an article about each of the Characteristics Measured:

 
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DavidR8

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The ESAB A40 also has a 1/1/1/2 rating. Somewhere on the web is are photos I took through the lenses of my old and new ESABs.
The difference is truly astonishing.
 

MikeInOr

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The Harbor Freight Vulcan ARCSAFE Auto Darkening Welding Helmet that ErichKeane mentioned has a rating of 1/1/1/2 for $160. It is getting excellent reviews. It looks like the hood portion is a softer rubbery material like the Lincoln helmets. Has anyone actually tried one of the Vulcan helmets?

Now that I know about the Clarity rating I will have a good way to compare different helmets.

I appreciate all the responses. I have a lot of research and comparisons to do now!
 

silence dogood

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Have the batteries ever been replaced in your helmet? There are sites that show you how. However, in this case, I'd replace the helmet with a newer, better one. Your eyes are worth far more than $100.
 

Liljoebrshooter

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I wear a Speedglas 9100x ay work everyday and really like it. I had the older model 9100 before that but the headgear is much better in the newer version.
The shop is now buying the Lincoln ones and several guy's have had issues with the auto lens not working.

Joe
 

addertooth

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I have a Hobart Inventor I am happy with. When it's performance declines, I change the battery in it.
I also run the cheater magnifying lenses in mine, as I need it for closer work.

Hobart inventor hood Hobart gloves.jpg
 

wachuko

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Great thread as I need to replace my Harbor Freight auto darkening helmet (bought some 15 years ago) with something a bit better... but no way I am spending 200+ on something I seldom use...

Interesting that some auto darkening helmets would not work with TIG on DC or this and that... something I was not aware of. I have an old Lincoln stick welder, a HF Mig, a friend's Hobart 110 v Mig with gas tank (that I use the most)... the Eastwood Tig is new and has never been used... waiting for me to get a 100% argon gas tank... some day. So I need the helmet to work with all types of these welders.

So @MikeInOr , have you decided on which one you are going with???

 

MikeInOr

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I figured out what a cheater magnifier is... I will make sure what ever helmet I get can take a standard magnifier. (A cheater is a pair of magnifying lenses, two lenses formed together, available in different magnifications that snap into the inside of the helmet... in case someone else doesn't know)

The Lincoln 3350 seems like a pretty solid mask against which other masks are judged. $250-$400 is a bit out of my price range.

The YesWeld masks seem to be getting really good reviews. This one is the one I am currently thinking of buying: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B...title_srh_1?ie=UTF8&psc=1&smid=A1PRJVQ6PVSF2D
It is rated 1/1/1/1 with a large viewing window, will take standard cheater lenses and has external controls which I kind of like.

I have come across some "panoramic" helmets with two extra windows on the sides to allow for better prereferral viewing. I am thinking this might be really helpful in case I get into a ninja fight in the middle of a welding shop. Seriously, I don't understand a use for the side windows in a hobby shop.

It sounds like most welding helmets use interchangeable head gear??? So when the tightening knob on the back of the dead gear strips the head gear can be replaced with fancy Lincoln head gear for $25 - $45.
 
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