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Welding With Helmet Turned Off

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Welding With Helmet Turned Off

Postby Chips O'Toole » Wed Apr 26, 2017 12:37 pm

Last night I practice my MIG welding, lap-welding two pieces of 1/8" Home Depot (only the finest) steel. While I was doing the first weld, I realized I did not remember turning the helmet on. When I flipped the metal over to weld the other side, I stopped and turned the shade on.

The weird thing is that I saw at least as well as I ever do. The weld was great, by my standards.

My understanding is that the base shade on auto helmets is around 5. Does ANYONE do MIG with the shade that low?

I'm starting to think I'm so old I need more light than other people, but I never heard of anyone welding with the helmet turned off.
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Re: Welding With Helmet Turned Off

Postby ldbtx » Wed Apr 26, 2017 1:32 pm

You sure your's doesn't auto-turn-on when there's an arc struck, even though it's turned off at the time? My Miller does that.
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Re: Welding With Helmet Turned Off

Postby Farmwelding » Wed Apr 26, 2017 1:47 pm

I know all the helmets I've used have shade 3 as background when not welding. I have welded with it on grind mode-shade 3 and couldn't see crap. It was far too bright. I believe I have welded in cut mode too-shade 5-8(usually 5) and I still had kind of rough time seeing and was seeing some stars after. Like he said up there, It may be always on and you think you have to turn it on. My miller digital infinity darkens without anything from me, but if I want to adjust it, then I have to turn it on.
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Re: Welding With Helmet Turned Off

Postby Olivero » Thu Apr 27, 2017 11:28 pm

Most helmets darken out automatically, hence the auto darkening. I have never seen one that didnn't turn on as soon as the arc was struck unless your blocking the sensors or the battery is dead or the helmets just plain dead OR the sensitivity is set way too low.
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Re: Welding With Helmet Turned Off

Postby Poland308 » Thu Apr 27, 2017 11:53 pm

Old speedglass helmets were about a 5 shade and wouldn't go dark unless you turned them on. Worked with a guy who had bad eyesight. He forgot to turn his on one day and burned his eyes. Said he was wondering why he could see so well that day. Then missed a week of work because of it.
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Re: Welding With Helmet Turned Off

Postby Chips O'Toole » Fri Apr 28, 2017 1:32 pm

My helmet has an "ON" switch. If you don't turn it on, nothing happens. It also turns off by itself after a certain length of time (thanks, Al Gore), so you have to push the button every time you put it down for a few minutes.
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Re: Welding With Helmet Turned Off

Postby PeteM » Fri Apr 28, 2017 2:03 pm

I always check auto darks by striking a lighter in front of it. Seems to work.

Just a little tip/trick. I have cheapo harbor freight ones, and they are always charging as long as they are near a light source, but if you leave them under a bench or in the trunk too long, they go dead, so it's always nice to be able to give them a little test before sparking up.
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