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Welding Helmets - Help

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  • Welding Helmets - Help


    I am new to this board and new to welding. In fact, I am starting a welding course at my local junior college in February. Currently, I am looking to purchase a welding helmet and could use some direction. I have tried to conduct some searches on welding helmet comparisons on Google, but have not had much luck. Three of the helmets I am currently considering are the following:

    Fibre-Metal Tigerhood 906
    Fibre-Metal Pipeliner 110
    Sellstrom 280 Series

    Any insight from you experienced and well-seasoned welders would be greatly appreciated.

    Thank you.

  • #2
    I don't know what the requirements of your class are, but I imagine most of us here used auto-darkening helmets.

    If you are in the US, you can get one from Harbor Freight for $50. Amazon and ebay are good sources for these masks. The Miller helmets start at about $250, but any old auto-darkening is a good choice.


    • #3

      pipeliner is good had one for years i have autos now they help alot dont get a solar only they blind you off the bat till they charge


      • #4
        Originally posted by wiliamsonswelding View Post
        pipeliner is good had one for years i have autos now they help alot dont get a solar only they blind you off the bat till they charge
        Yeah, I was going to mention, the one's that have a battery backup system have a faster response time. They can be more expensive, but I have seen a few at the $50 mark.


        • #5
          kinda depends on the process I suppose, why buy an expensive auto if you're gonna stick or wire with it? I use an old manual Jackson Shadow full size view for TIG (Gotta be 10 years old and the thing looks like new), no pitting or melts. I've spent more $$ on outside cover plates than the helmet is worth. Personally, since you're new to welding, I'd opt for a small window, flip up shade helmet. Fibre-Metal Pipeliner 110 looks like a good starter helmet.
          Last edited by TIGweldr; 01-04-2008, 01:44 AM.


          • #6
            Miller Pro-hobby

            I got through a MIG class with a flip-up shade helmet that was around $20. But, no matter how careful you are at flipping down the helmet or flipping down the shade, you'll have cases where you move off target. So, auto-darkening becomes attractive.

            tasslehawf: The Miller helmets start at about $250
            Not so. The Pro-hobby in black can be had for under $120 via Indiana Oxygen - IOC on Ebay buy-it-now. This is variable shade with battery and solar cell.

            Using this helmet is a real relief over the flip-up. I'll note, though, that Miller helmets use proprietary cover lenses and cheater lenses. I had planned on using my old cheater, but had to place a second order for a Miller lens.


            • #7
              weld helmet for new welders

              I teach welding at a pipefitters training school, I recomend for a beginer a auto hood or drop in auto lens for the style hood that fits you best. the auto lens for the beginer really helps with starting the arc and seeing where to start welding, it cuts down the learning and frustration curve from sticking the rod. there was a article in the American Welding Society Magazine a year or so about auto hoods, the off brands like harbor freight and other cheap knock off brands do not have the optical quality that a name brand does in short they could damage your eyes. also most of the knock offs dont use they standard size clear cover plates so you will need to purchase a bunch when you buy the hood. my experience with students using the knock off auto lens hoods is that we spend more time trouble shooting them then welding, you get what you pay for. the name brands jackson, miller, lincoln and so on are trouble free.A pipe liner is a good starter hood. i have been using one for 30 years out on the job and in the classroom, but a welding hood is like a pair of boots, what is comfortable for you might not be for me my welding partner at my day job uses a tiger hood and i use a pipeliner we both use huntsman auto lenses in those hoods. when you go to pick out a hood try several on and pick one that fits you the best, some things to look for are does the style you like cover your neck effectivly, for example i have a short fat neck so the pipeliner with its curved bottom works great, the tiger hood has a straight bottom and it hits my chest when i look down for flat welding and screws up how my bifocals work.These are just my observations and opinions after 20 years of teaching welding, there are a lot of smart and experienced people on this forum and they will also offer you very good insite and options from a great range of experience and knowledge, sort thru it and find the one that works for you. hope this helps.
              Last edited by weldckr; 01-04-2008, 06:18 AM. Reason: spelling error


              • #8
                When I learned to weld back in the day, I used a cheap'ol flip up lense.

                When I got over those, I used a cheap'ol Jackson fixed lense.

                Because a company payed for it, I used an Optrel Satellite at one point.

                Currently, I use a fixed wide lense Superglas Fibre-Metal (model 680). I've never looked back. Once you get used too the "yes man," it's not too bad!

                The problem with autotints, and I'm sure it varries from make to make, is that a lot of the time the lense isn't a steady shade. It'll be lighter on the edges and darker in the center. Though it depends what you're doing, for fitting or stitch welding or tight places, an autotint is the cat's meow. Not so much if you're doing longer welds.
                Last edited by Mat_Billings; 01-04-2008, 06:59 AM.


                • #9
                  My Miller Elite mask came with 3 sets of replacement lenses, but I'm not sure about the less expensive Millers.

                  As far as the inexpensive autos: I had a generic one I got off ebay in 2001 when I was first learning. If worked fine for me. It did fail over time.

                  Having done a good amount of stick as well as tig, I think an auto for stick is just-as if not more useful than tig is far as starting an arc and not sticking. But then again, I have very little formal training (I couldn't get an arc started when I was learning in school).

                  It sounds like a good bet might be to get a mask that can take a standard size shade. That way you can replace a non-auto with an auto eventually and you can get a good auto-darkening mechanism.


                  • #10

                    go to millers web site and watch the vids on there helmets
                    i got the elite s. and love it jackson makes a goob one to


                    • #11
                      imm using a jackson journeyman eqc fixed shade 10 auto darkening hood love it its awesome.


                      • #12
                        Thank You!!

                        I just wanted to thank you all for taking the time to respond to my question. You have all given some good things to consider. I really appreciate your response.

                        Take care.


                        • #13
                          i have a Sellstrom29301-10 Super Slim helmet for a back up but used for 3 years strait dropped it ran it over and its still good. but now it seems to collect dust right now. i love the 3m speed glass helmets. about the half the weight of the old sellstrom one. good quality for a front flip but go to ur local welding store and see what they got and try some on.....!!!(very important)!!!


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by arc View Post
                            i love the 3m speed glass helmets. about the half the weight of the old sellstrom one. good quality for a front flip but go to ur local welding store and see what they got and try some on.....!!!(very important)!!!
                            I agree it's a very good idea to try different ones on. Headgear can fit different from one brand to the next, as well as the weight and other dimensions. Have you thought much about wearing a respirator? Some helmets don't have clearance inside of them for respirators with the cartriges attached to the nose piece.
                            weldckr also made some good points about using a helmet that has traditional sized lenses and the ablility use an auto darkening lense.


                            • #15
                              Get auto darkening for learning. Then pick what you want and what works for you.
                              I personally use a Huntsman 411p with a Gold #12 lens. I can't stand auto darkening lenses I'm to set in my way's of flipping the hood down. And a $400 helmet doesn't turn me on either. If I screw up my Huntsman I can have a brand new one in about an hour and it won't have to wait till next payday or piss me off because I shelled out a gazillion dollars for a fancy painted hood that is now in pieces.
                              Custom paint jobs belong at home or on the wall not at work.


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