Welding Helmet Tips & Tricks

Welding Helmet


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  1. Charles Pilkinton

    October 8, 2014 at 1:56 AM

    Jody, Have you tried the ESAB 6-13 AD/Xl? I bought one when my buddy at my LWS told me about it. It is great for tig. It handles low amps good. And, the colors stay true. The lense doesn’t turn red, or green like most of the hoods I have used. When you light up-you can watch the blue arc come off the tungsten. And the aluminum stays silver. The puddle just turns shiny. I love it!

  2. I love my Jackson shadow. I started with a passive-lens type about 20 years ago finally stepped up to the NexGen in ’02 and have used it daily since. I also have the Lincoln 3350 and like everything feature wise, but I weld a lot of aluminum (all-day, every-day) and cannot fit the 3m mask under it. The mask fits great under the shadow/NexGen.

  3. Speedglass is my favorite. I use 1.50 cheeters in them and use one for mig and one for tig because my tig helmet stays clean all the time and I only replace cover lens on my mig when it is really bad.

  4. You had a Porta Band saw mounted on a stand like a cut off saw. What brand is it and where did you buy it? Thanks and keep info coming. Love you videos…….Sonny

    • Sonny, Jody’s is home built by himself. As he has mentioned and shown building in one of his videos. He also mentioned the time and materials may cost more then you are able to purchase one from Swagoffroad.com in the $100 range. I have one and it is a top of the line custom made tool, which I agree I couldn’t have built myself with the quality that Swag put into his. He offers his for the dewalt and milwaukee but you may be able to adapt it to a port a cable if that is what you have. Check it out @ Swagoffroad.com Ed

  5. Keep up the great videos!! I use a variety of hoods for different processes and positions. If I am wire or stick welding, I use my harbor freight auto hood. (Especially overhead) If I get hot slag, spatter or a drip of molten metal, I don’t destroy an expensive hood. For tig welding, I use a Miller digital elite. I also have 2 older Jackson shadows that I modified to use the new headgear. Great hoods. Also have a couple pipeliners around too. For trouble seeing, I try to block or turn off any light coming from behind me as it creates a reflection in the lens. You can also clip something on your hood to cover the back of your head while you weld too. Head and body position also aids vision. So time you just have to reposition ahead of the arc, even if it’s not the most comfortable stance. Sometimes you can’t get your head into a tight space. Use a mirror to get the angle or use just a lens without the hood. (I don’t recommend this for overhead!) and always wear your safety glasses. They have saved my eyes many times.

  6. Werner Van Calster

    September 18, 2014 at 4:21 PM

    hi Jody,
    here soms news from Belgium, First I like to say :Please keep up the good work: I love it. I’m learning stuf I never knew even when already 50.
    My welding Helmet is si some chinese stuff but for me has 1 big advantage: the autolens is Amber in stead of green or blueish. and it delivers a better licht output which with my eyesight is great. my normal helmet ( green) at work is a speed glass 90000 or 91000V which is also great because it has an 8 setting which is magnificent to TIG with, certainly the low amperages.
    my previous helmet also recent could not see the low amperages of the tig. by starting it went dark and after a few seconds it just went bright again, without even flikkering

  7. Jody, love your videos as always. I just recently obtained my CWI and started teaching welding at a local community college. All my students ask me this very question which helmet should I buy. This video was a great help and will show it in class Monday. I have 2 jackson nexgen hoods and have been using 1 of them for about 7 years and I love them. They are the lightest I have found and the lens handles low amp tig well. Some people say they are flimsy but it is really flexible to allow you to get in some areas that you won’t fit a more rigid hood. I teach by day and work at night so I wear a hood almost 12 hrs a day 5 days a week oops forgot weekends I love welding at home too. Always something to fix or make. I have been looking into a miller digital elite because of the cool band that you can get to replace the head gear. I wish jackson had something like the cool band. As always thank you for your videos and keep it up.

  8. Great job on your video. A suggestion for this topic would be to talk about where to get a cheater lens, what one looks like and how to put it in your helmet. I’m a hot rod builder and have taught myself how to weld and I’m still learning which reminds me to ask you to do a ‘thin metal’ example like how to weld in a small patch panel on car body thick metal.
    I welded for years and it was only a couple of years ago that I looked in my Jackson newgen and saw the clips that hold the cheater in. I had noticed them when I first got my helmet but never knew what it was for until I too started have problems welding along the seam of a butt joint and a buddy of mine told me I just needed to get a cheater lens for my helmet. Then the light bulb when off and I new then what those clips were for and a quick google helped me locate where to get some cheater lens. Keep up the good work.
    BTW I’m currently working on a 64 ford ranchero and patching a few rusted out spots. I’ve always used my miller 210 mig machine on ‘1’ and 25 which works fine but yesterday I decided to try doing one with my Synchrowave 180 TIG now that my TIG skills have gotten better. The TIG does the job better and I find there is less grinding of the weld when done.

  9. I am now retired but was a heavy equipment mechanic/welder for 40 plus years mainly in the agg. and asphalt business.[Proud Life member of the Operating Engineers Local 18] Lots of wet, dirty, sandy hot environments. My go to helmet was a basic light weight fibermetal one with a cheater lens once I got into my 40’s and needed vision correction, but they sucked, and so did glasses. Went to the eye doctor and decided to go with contacts and they work great to this day. Throw aways every 3-4 weeks and it’s like a new pair of glasses every month.The key was mono contacts, right primary eye prescription for distance and the left for close up.I adapted to it immediately and also wear them all the time,no fogging or constant pushing glasses up my nose. Always use them even for swimming and water skiing. Now with my inverter 250EX and mig welders at home I found the HF blue flame auto $40 helmet believe it or not to be my goto helmet. Just my opinion on what works for me.I watch and learn from all your videos and look forward to every one. Thank you. And remember “Love your job and you’ll never work a day in your life”. Ed K. Cleve. Oh.

  10. Hey Jody
    Always good to watch your videos. Company I work for supplies Miller Digital Elite hoods. The electronics are great and being an old timer I like the “cheater” holder built in.Have to be careful welding overhead as there is a small ledge that collects fire. Being older I do find I need extra light to see the weld area before I light up in tight areas. Back in the 70’s it was Fibermetal and Jackson and real glass clear glass. Glad those days are over. I like your Lincoln hood. 7 gallons of milk a week? damn!
    Take care, Shamy

  11. Frank R. Koerbacher

    September 17, 2014 at 10:34 PM

    Jody I love your videos, a good friend of mine is a welding instructor at a junior college in the Dallas Texas area and has all his students watch your videos, says it’s the best training for his students. Pertaining to your helmet video I have noticed that I try to keep my glasses parallel to the lens if I don ‘t I don’t get as clear a view, I think it’s has to do with the lens reflecting at a different plane. Thank’s keep up the good work Frank

  12. Sarges pancake hood with arc-one auto lens works excellent for pipeline and any other outdoor welding. Keeps the sun/ wind out of your eyes and really light weight.

  13. Like you, I have several different hoods: Miller Elite, Miller Pro-Hobby, Speedglas, and two Pipeliners. Thinking that more $ = better, I kept buying more expensive hoods. Funny thing is that I keep grabbing my $31 Pipeliner with after-market auto lens. I have one at home, the other at work, and swear by them. Light weight and durable beyond belief. I did modify the chin/neck area so they don’t thump me in the chest, also ground out around the auto-lens sensor area to cut down on “flashing” issues.
    One trick handed down while in welding school was to use RainX on the cover plates, it helps keep them from scratching. And, lets be honest, none of us change cover plates as often as we should. They won’t be totally scratch “proof”, just resistant.
    Your videos are gold, just need more tricks for us stick welders

  14. Hi Jodi

    Thanks for the great videos. I watch them all the time. I am priviliged to be able to learn from you. I am the guy who complained a while back that you don’t cater to PhD’s. Well I am Phd College Professor and I worked my way through college for 12 years through 3 universities working as an auto mechanic. I am not a professional welder but I enjoy welding. I use a Lincoln Dual 180 mig and a Lincoln Invertec V160T for stick and tig. I also have a gas system. I have found the Miller Titanium 9400i helmet to work really well for all four systems. I liked it so much I bought a second one for my wife to use so we can both watch when welding. She likes to use the mig and Tig welders for art projects. I built a welding cart with both Lincolns installed, a Craftsman tool chest and two argon bottles mounted. The table top is 2′ by 4′ steel and is the work surface. We sometimes work together on a project and she really likes the flip up faceplate with the grinding shield. Don’t know if you reviewed welding jackets but she likes my old school full leather welding jacket while I use my light weight Miller welding shirt. I suspect she feels safer with the heavy leather jacket.

    By the way, my college has a welding certification program. I have taken several of their courses myself.

    Hope you can keep up the good work and looking forward to more videos.

    Don Piche
    Professor Behavioral Sciences
    Palomar College
    San Marcos California

  15. I use a Miller Elite helmet, not cheap but I like it. My old helmet was auto but it didn’t go down low enough for my Dynasty 200DX and I just couldn’t seem to get a good view of the plume and that’s everything in TIG.

    I tried a cheater lens (1.5 and 2.5) but I prefer cheater glasses. They work better for me and I can see around them when I need to. When my helmet is off I keep them on to sharpen and load tungsten. I figure I need them anyway for close up, not just for welding.

    Thanks for the video.


  16. you should check out the EFP series of helmets by Snap On Tools. It has the best view I have ever seen in a welding helmet.

  17. have used pretty much all those helmets and still have many of them now my standard is speedglass especially for my dynasty use chalk to show the start and stop of weldsa and keep alittle flashlight on the bench for starts and dollarv dstore glasses

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