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:welcome:Had an occasion the other day to try my friends mig, self adjusting welding helmet and found the following. I can see through his helmet and actually see the welding!!!!:D I have the same type of helmet, although a different manufacturer, and find that my glass is a lot darker than his. Both helmet settings are on #9 (lowest it can go) and the time and sensitivity are both set at maximum. Why the difference? I was under the impression that #9 shade is the lowest you can go and yet there is a difference. You can actually see the difference even when not welding. Has he the wrong glass or do I?
 

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Brian Martin,Freelance adviser
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:welcome:Had an occasion the other day to try my friends mig, self adjusting welding helmet and found the following. I can see through his helmet and actually see the welding!!!!:D I have the same type of helmet, although a different manufacturer, and find that my glass is a lot darker than his. Both helmet settings are on #9 (lowest it can go) and the time and sensitivity are both set at maximum. Why the difference? I was under the impression that #9 shade is the lowest you can go and yet there is a difference. You can actually see the difference even when not welding. Has he the wrong glass or do I?
Ayuh,.... I've got a few of those type helmets,...

My 1st, was a cheap import, that worked for awhile,...
Once I bought the 2nd, I punched out the glass with a chippin' hammer, before somebodyelse hurt their eyes...

My 2nd, was a cheaper Linclon that I still have, 'n still use,...
It's not a variable shade, 'n is alittle darker than I like, but it's Ok...
probably an 11 shade,...
It's just gettin' old, 'n dirty, 'n.....

My 3rd, came with a welder I bought at auction,... almost brand new,..
Don't remember the name on it, but it works fine, 'n has the variable shades,...
I run it on 10 or 11 most of the time, 9 is to light/ bright...

Point of the story is, no 2 helmets are alike,...
Muchless, from 2 different Oem's...
 

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auto darking

i also have 2 auto darking helmets.. one harbor freight and a good one that i can't think of the name.. both have a low setting of 9 and the good one i can see better.. but they do make helmets of a 8 setting..
 

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The newer Miller hoods turn down to 8
The top of the line Lincoln 3350 hoods turn down to 6, up to 13, and also has a grind mode.

I had been hoping Santa would bring me a new Miller hood, but I told Santa if she was getting me a new hood I want the Lincoln 3350 with the 3.7"x3.3" viewing area.
Santa rolled her eyes.
 

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Brian Martin,Freelance adviser
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I don't like how they aren't clear when you start, you MUST have some light on your subject. I don't like the strange feeling of striking an arc while you are looking at it. I don't like how you can ONLY use it as a welding helmet. The chin operated flip up lid offers a much larger lens, YOU have complete control over what you are seeing. You can quickly pop it up and grind, you can see exactly what you are doing because it's perfectly clear.

Like I said, I have tried a number of different autodarks going up to pretty nice ones and still have never thought for a second of replacing my accustrike.

Brian
 

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I know the feeling I had the same problem switching to those new fangled spray guns with the cup on top...But I had dragged the cup in the wet roof for the last time with that old gun and finally got a gravity gun...I think I was one of the last holdouts, but I love it now same with the auto hood
 

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this in one place you spend money, being cheap will not be good..

as far as Brians ,pev.. I can't see it.. maybe with the cheap ones with a 1"x4" slice for you to look through.
lifting the autodark to grind isn't a big deal as you have to drop the welder and grab the grinder anyways..
my auto isn't clear when no ark.. it's more like light sunglasses.. so your eyes don't have to adjust as much fom daylight to dark
Brians type your eyes have to adjust a ton.. the older you get the slower your eyes are..
I like the auto dark , mines got a 3x4" lens.. but I only ever used an autodark.. unless you call the torches dark goggles.. ole school..
now that be way kool if they made those in auto dark.
 

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static smoke ?

I have a few helmets on the shelf, I don't like the one that is battery powered, I have to remember to turn the switch on, , I like a lighter shade for Tig, I still have a couple old style. when welding outside on farm repair work , where I strike the arc doesn't matter and I like my old style best. I have found that smoke gets inside on the lens and safety glass on the auto dark ones . It needs to be taken apart and cleaned every once and a while.
 

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I don't like how they aren't clear when you start, you MUST have some light on your subject. I don't like the strange feeling of striking an arc while you are looking at it. I don't like how you can ONLY use it as a welding helmet. The chin operated flip up lid offers a much larger lens, YOU have complete control over what you are seeing. You can quickly pop it up and grind, you can see exactly what you are doing because it's perfectly clear.

Like I said, I have tried a number of different autodarks going up to pretty nice ones and still have never thought for a second of replacing my accustrike.

Brian
I do agree it would be nice if the auto darken helmets would go clear, but I assume with today's technology that isn't possible at least at the consumer price level.

I could never get used to using your preferred helmet as I have been a pipe fitter / welder/millwright for near 40 years.
My trade often required me to be able to yell to my partner while welding and many other times it had to be hood down to fit one's head into a tight location to even get a sight line on the weld.

Another benefit when working as a team is when you are hood down,the welder cant flash you when he strikes an accidental arc, or you just aren't paying attention.

I have found level 4 in grind mode is adequate to see with in normal lighting conditions. IF it was too dark the fitter should have his flashlight shining on the weld zone for the welder (or the grind zone for the fitter).A bit different than auto body work,lol.

As with most everything there is no single perfect solution.

I guess when I get really good with the MIG I won't need any helmet - I'll be able to do it like the guys on American Chopper. :pain:

Happy New Year To All you guys :thumbup:
 

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Brian Martin,Freelance adviser
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You are very right, there are times when under a car or in a tight area the opening of the lid doesn't work perfect, especially for inverted welds.

I may just get an autodark for those times and see how it works for me. Can't have too many tools! :mwink:

Brian
 

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The light green layer in an autodark is the UV layer that protects your eyes. The dark makes it so you can see what your doing, Some go darker than others, some are better than others. I personally use a $59.95 Neiko tools helmet. Nice viewing size, but I do have to pull it up to do anything else. More often than not, I'm also using an Arc welder so I gotta shut down the welder too. I never leave it live/ open circuit for very long
 

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I've got a cheap HF auto darkening helmet, and a really nice Speedglass AD helmet. I have a heck of a time trying to see when welding with the Speedglass, but the cheap HF works wondeful!
Unfortunately when I got the Speedglass I gave the cheap HF helmet to my son in law to use, and now I can't get him to swap with me! I really need to figure out how to get more light with the Speedglass, so I can see what I'm welding on!
 

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UV filtering does not have to have any color to it. there are many clear lens safety glasses that are 100% UV filtered. They are awesome to wear when working around welding, even if you get flashed your eyes don't get burned.
 

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bobs77vet
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I have two and my newest one is a tweco 4 sensor one that has a grinder setting also....I really like them only when i am working in shadows do i have to have a flash light shining on where i want to weld in order to see it.
 

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I have an Earlier version of that Helmet and it is just the standard shade of green but I checked out one at a welding supply recently that must be the same as what you are describing, definitely a huge improvement! As has been pointed out the tint in the lightened stage is to protect from flash (from the intense brightness not IR/UV which is filtered the same regardless of shade level). Back not long after these things first hit the market there was a lot of complaints about the fact the lens would not go clear and the Jackson rep explained they actually had field trials of a clear version that got more complaints than the shade level they finally settled on. While the clear version would offer full protection from the eye burning IR/UV rays the intense brightness that the user was exposed to when the lens failed to go dark for various reasons was not only extremely uncomfortable it could also damage the eyes after repeated exposure just from brightness alone, totally different from the usual "flashburn" we are so well familiar with. It's an unfortunate fact that these lens do not always work properly for whatever reasons, blockage of the sensors, dirty cover plate, low batteries or other power source, etc so the protection in the lightened phase is necessary even if it may be annoying sometimes, I doubt there's a welder here that has not had their lens fail to switch on numerous occasions so just imagine that happening without that shade!


BTW, as a side note I have the Jackson NexGen (older version) and a Hobart "The Hood" (also an older version, heck I retired several years ago almost EVERYTHING I have is an older version! :thumbup:) but I do have a HF helmet I picked up last year at a HF parking lot sale. Honestly that thing is the clearest lens I have used and were it not for the cheap head gear I would declare it the best helmet I have!
 
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