DIY Electric Car Forums banner

1 - 20 of 22 Posts

·
Admin: 'one of many'
Joined
·
4,838 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Having got myself a decent mig welder I am finding that my current, and very old, face shield isn't up to the job. It has two grades of glass, one dark, which is too dark and one light, which is too light.

I have been thinking of getting an auto dark shield but can't stretch to a Speedglas unit.

Any comments on this one?
http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=370282317807&ssPageName=STRK:MEWAX:IT

I figured that this may be useful as there may be more then a few DIYers who have to deal with face and eye protection while building or converting their EV.
 
G

·
Picked mine up at HomeDepot and it is a solar powered auto dark and works perfect. It is extremely fast. It uses a solar panel to power the unit and the UV from the arc powers the solar panel. It is instant on. Goes off when you stop so you can still see your piece. Was a fair price too. Don't remember the name but not super expensive. No battery power for me.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,148 Posts
No battery power for me.
You may find that even though it has a small panel and no visible battery, it might still have a battery that goes fkatafter a while, and you can get blinded (mostly temporarily, but it must have some permenent effect).

The solution seems to be to "charge it up" under a lamp for a few minutes before welding.

See for example Auto Welding Mask from AEVA.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,148 Posts
no battery
Ok, I'll take your word for it. I still haven't seen our battery; it must be hidden in the plastic surrounding the panel. We infer its existence from the fact that the mask fails to work some of the time, and seems to work perfectly after being in the sun or under a lamp for a while. It could be a small rechargeable, non-replaceable watch battery; I don't see how you can be sure unless you've taken it apart.

I'd certainly prefer a batteryless design; you can be pretty sure it will work. Ours is at the inexpensive end of the scale (though still almost 10% of the cost of the welder). I suspect that it's cheaper to add a small battery than to make the panel a little larger.
 

·
Admin: 'one of many'
Joined
·
4,838 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I think the one in my link might be ok as it has a variable darkness and it says variable sensitivity.
Mainly it is cheap, but that is not a good parameter for eye protection.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,958 Posts
Looks like a good one to me. We got some cheap ones from a local retailer a while ago and they are still doing fine even long after the labels fell off. From what I understand, the helmet will block all UV light whether it darkens automatically or not. It might be annoying that you get a flash in the eye, but it *better* not cause any eye damage. If it does, its not made according to the standard it should be. If you think about it, there will always be a tiny fraction of a second where a flash gets through just before the screen can darken. If that was causing damage, I'd be blind by now LOL:rolleyes:

Having adjustable sensitivity is also a good thing. I found that sometimes switching to different lighting or trying to Tig weld after Mig welding caused the automatic darkening to hunt between on and off (VERY annoying!). Turning the sensitivity to high eliminated that problem. On the flip side, if you have a very well lit metal piece that is reflecting a lot of overhead lighting, it may darken before you strike the arc making it hard to find your starting point (distance between the surface and your helmet will also affect this), which is where the low sensitivity comes in handy.

Once you get an auto darkening helmet, you'll wonder how you ever got by without it.
 
G

·
I purchased mine because it did not have a battery. Package said so. Don't have the package to reference but I believe the package. It was not a cheap o but not a mega expensive one either. I will see if I can find some information left behind.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,958 Posts

·
Admin: 'one of many'
Joined
·
4,838 Posts
Discussion Starter · #10 ·
* Stands up (coughs) and faces group*

Friends, my name is Woodsmith and I have a crane habit. To date I have bought eight assorted cranes, hoist and winches.:(
Just now I have managed to resist bidding on crane number nine and have, instead, bought an auto welding face shield instead.:)

I see this as a proud moment, but it is just one step in defeating my crane habit. I know that with your support I will over come it.

Thank you.

I will let you know what the welding sheild is like when it arrives.

*sits down to a round of applause*

:D
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,458 Posts
I want one but have been reluctant because of a previous experience. I tried a professional welder's (then) $500 helmet and got a horrible migraine later that night. My eyes are pretty sensitive to light, and I noticed that I felt it a little bit every time I started to burn a new weld (MIG). I get migraines from being outside too long without sunglasses on a bright sunny day, so factor that in. The sensitivity and speed were set to the highest/quickest settings. The only thing we could figure is the batteries may have been weak. It didn't get any better after about 10-15 minutes, so I switched back to the old school flip down deal - the damage was done by then though.

I still plan to try one again though.
 
G

·
This is mine: $99 bucks at Home Depot.

Tough, lightweight helmet with the convenience of an auto darkening lens. Automatically changes to shade 10 In. 0.0025 seconds at the strike of an arc. Helmet has an adjustable ratchet headgear. Lens measures 2-1/2 In. x 4-1/4 In.

Tough, lightweight helmet with the convenience of an auto darkening lens
At the strike of an arc the lens automatically adjust to shade 10 In. 0.0025 seconds
Adjustable ratchet headgear
Lightweight for a comfortable fit.
MFG Brand Name : Lincoln Electric
MFG Model # : KH605
MFG Part # : KH605

 

·
Admin: 'one of many'
Joined
·
4,838 Posts
Discussion Starter · #14 ·
I want one but have been reluctant because of a previous experience. I tried a professional welder's (then) $500 helmet and got a horrible migraine later that night. My eyes are pretty sensitive to light, and I noticed that I felt it a little bit every time I started to burn a new weld (MIG). I get migraines from being outside too long without sunglasses on a bright sunny day, so factor that in. The sensitivity and speed were set to the highest/quickest settings. The only thing we could figure is the batteries may have been weak. It didn't get any better after about 10-15 minutes, so I switched back to the old school flip down deal - the damage was done by then though.

I still plan to try one again though.
That's what I worry about too.

I should spend three times as much on a Speedglas shield but I don't know if it will 'better', in that sense, then the cheaper one and so I will spend less to find out. There is the risk that I have the same proplems as you've had with a cheap one and then never try the Speedglas for fear it is no better, when it could be.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,458 Posts
That's what I worry about too...
I was thinking about this as I was drifting off to sleep last night, and wondered if a little human proactive intervention could solve the problem for those of us with light sensitive peepers. I'm used to being behind my trusty old school helmet, wide-eyed, waiting for the arc to appear out of the darkness. What I wondered is if blinking at the very instant I pull the trigger would solve the problem. The helmets are fast so it's not like you would have to have your eyes closed and run amuck with the bead. It seems that with practice one could develop a natural timing that would eliminate the flash, and catch the arc just as the puddle started. I don't mean squeezing your eyes shut, just a normal blink with the trigger pull. Unless you're a fish, you blink as you're welding anyway with no ill effects... :)
 

·
Admin: 'one of many'
Joined
·
4,838 Posts
Discussion Starter · #16 ·
That sounds like a good idea, Todd. I will give that a try.

With my current helmet it has a full face glass at a mid shade and a smaller eye shade at a darker shade. The dark area is so dark I see little more then a tiny glow of light but the rest of the glass leaves me squinting with mig but is ok for stick welding.
I have been blinking and squinting when I prepare to pull the tigger just because I know that first flash isn't pleasent.
 
G

·
Sounds like you need a helmet upgrade. There should be no noticeable flash. If there is you are damaging your eyes. You only have one set of peepers so take care of them. Finding stupid ways to try to fix the issue is will likely not fix fix the issue. Or you could go back to the old way and use a mask that is always dark and just flip the mask down when your ready to weld and hope you don't drift off your mark before you strike. Get a good helmet. Mine works great for stick, mig, and tig.

Pete :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,458 Posts
For MIG welding, I have been using a #8 glass in my helmet, instead of the more common #10, with no ill effects - even with my sensitive eyes. With the #10 it's too hard to see the edges of the metal beginning to puddle. I think that's what leads to many people building those nice little caterpillars - they can't see that the metal is already molten and when they have added enough new metal. With my #8 it's like a nature show, watching metal melt, puddle, cool, etc. :) I can slow my wire speed down, crank the heat, and melt and fill to my heart's content.

The exception is with MIG welding stainless. I tried that with my #8 and quickly went scrambling in search of a #10! :D
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,458 Posts
Sounds like you need a helmet upgrade. There should be no noticeable flash. If there is you are damaging your eyes. You only have one set of peepers so take care of them. Finding stupid ways to try to fix the issue is will likely not fix fix the issue. Or you could go back to the old way and use a mask that is always dark and just flip the mask down when your ready to weld and hope you don't drift off your mark before you strike. Get a good helmet. Mine works great for stick, mig, and tig.

Pete :)
You didn't read well sir! :p:D I have an old helmet, so there is no flash when I weld - total darkness waiting for the arc. I am pretty good at positioning my self, and being right on the mark, when I flip the helmet down, and start the weld.

The flash I referred to was when I tried a $500 automatic helmet - it wasn't fast enough. My eyes are extremely senstive to bright light, and I got just enough flash through that helmet (even with the settings at max protection) to give me a migraine - later that night. Not the whole sand-in-the-eyes welder's flash deal, just the same type of migraine I get when I go out in bright sunlight without my sunglasses.

The blink method was an idea to give an automatic helmet time to catch up to my sensitive eyes. ;)

EDIT - Just realized you may have been talking to Woodster - if so disregard my testimony. :D
 

·
Admin: 'one of many'
Joined
·
4,838 Posts
Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Sounds like you need a helmet upgrade. There should be no noticeable flash. If there is you are damaging your eyes. You only have one set of peepers so take care of them. Finding stupid ways to try to fix the issue is will likely not fix fix the issue. Or you could go back to the old way and use a mask that is always dark and just flip the mask down when your ready to weld and hope you don't drift off your mark before you strike. Get a good helmet. Mine works great for stick, mig, and tig.

Pete :)
Yep, that's why I have decided to buy a new one before I go any further. The old sheild just wasn't cutting it and it is such an odd design, 20 years old, I can't find replacement glass for it.
If this low cost auto shield isn't good enough then I will sell it and get a Speedglas.

As I said to a friend, I'd rather be deaf and dumb and have no legs then be blind.
 
1 - 20 of 22 Posts
Top