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welding safety question

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  • welding safety question

    I just tried out my new autodarkening helmet, with my new mig welder.

    (Off topic, I didn't know it was POSSIBLE to mangle a weld that badly! - practice better make perfect!)

    I ran a quick line, about four inches. When I was done, I had a bright afterimage in my eyes, that lasted over 1/2 hour. (It obviously dimmed over that half hour, but was pretty bright in the first few minutes.)

    I have no experience at all with welders. Is this normal, or are my panic insticts correct, and this is very bad?? How do you know if the helmet is working properly?

    Thanks in advance for answers. I just think there are more fun ways to go blind...

  • #2
    I welded for a few hours the other night with my HF auto dark hood and didn't have any problems. I had the shade set on "10" and it set to "fast".

    Mine goes from 9-12.

    That doesn't sound good...


    • #3
      I'm a novice welder using a MIG machine and a cheap auto darkening hood. I have never had that experience. Scares me.


      • #4
        There should be a spot to adjust the shade, I would think for mig work you would want a minimum of 9 or 10, going up to 12 even if running heavy current. One of the things about using auto darkening helmets is that I tend to set them darker than I would if using a comparable 'normal' helmet, because I'm not trying to hold everything 'just so' when I flip the helmet down.



        • #5
          Ben...if it is new..and if it's solar, was it charged? If it's not set out in the light it won't have a charge and the lens won't darken.
          The way I check mine is flick a striker or even shine a bright light in front of it. It should darken immediately.
          I have tools I don't even know I own...


          • #6
            Make sure that the helment is working.Dimming when it is supposed to. Have some one that is experienced check it out.

            A bright afterimage is not good I don't think.
            I have never had a problem with my Auto darking helment. Better not have as it was 286 dollars.
            Don\'t ask me to do a dam thing, I\'m retired.


            • #7

              definitely get the helmet checked out. you should NEVER see a bright after-image like that while welding. if you do, STOP and see what is causing the problem.

              it sounds like you are going to be okay, but BE CAREFUL!

              andy b.
              The danger is not that computers will come to think like men - but that men will come to think like computers. - some guy on another forum not dedicated to machining


              • #8
                Yes, I charged it. Yes, that's what I thought.


                It's getting returned immediately - it was a home depot $99 special...

                It was supposed to be a 10.5, and it WAS darkening... but clearly not enough.

                I appreciate it, guys.


                • #9
                  If your seeing a ghost image the shade is not dark enough. For stick welding it needs to be 12/13 for mig/tig 10/11. You should get a variable shade 9-13.
                  Wow... where did the time go. I could of swore I was only out there for an hour.


                  • #10
                    Not sure if I understood your posting but -IF- you fried your eyes, you'll know about bed time tonight.



                    • #11
                      Don't sweat damaging your eyes. Contrary to internet voodoo, a non-functioning auto-dark helmet still blocks the UV light, so you won't burn your corneas. However, the bright visible light can't be good for your eyes, long-term.


                      • #12
                        David is correct. Here is an excerpt from the specs for a Miller helmet:

                        "Light State #4, provides continuous UV an IR protection"

                        Free software for calculating bolt circles and similar: Click Here


                        • #13
                          Ben, once the arc is started all I see is the weldment puddle because the shade darkens down. Mine goes from 9 to 12 and when Mig welding I set it at around 11 because I'm still learning and want to actually see the molten metal in the bead.

                          Sounds to me like your's isn't charged up or may be defective but you shouldn't have an after-image like you do.
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                          Thank you to our families of soldiers, many of whom have given so much more then the rest of us for the Freedom we enjoy.

                          It is true, there is nothing free about freedom, don't be so quick to give it away.


                          • #14
                            I belong to a much older generation than most. Before returning the mask to the dealer have it checked but more importantly, have your eyes checked for corneal burns.

                            The latter was what WW2 troops in the Western Desert got from using binoculars.



                            • #15
                              Norman knows. He polished Monty's knob at El Alamein.