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Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: Gloucester, MA
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Auto-darkening helmet question

Can't stand my regular helmet anymore. Lots of $50 auto helmets out there but they have different darkening times. I understand it must be ANSI Z87. 0.00004 (1/25000 sec) seems to be best but some of them are 0.0001 (1/10000 sec). Anyone out there use the 0.0001? Are you waking up screaming at night from eye pain?
I know Harbor F has them but I have been waiting for weeks as they backorder everything, I was thinking ebay guy "oregon tools".
Thanks
Jim
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Old 03-30-2005, 05:29 AM
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Jim

My son and I each have the inexpensive HF helmets. They are fine for MIG and my son uses his for TIG also. We have not had any eye problems. I always check mine before using it by looking at a bright light and waving my hand in front of it to trigger it. Sometimes if the wire feed rate is too slow the arc can 'flare' and cause a bright flash to come through. Usually a symptom of the welder not feeding right.
Old 03-30-2005, 05:47 AM
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I currently am using one of the Harbor Freight auto darkening/solar powered helmets along with a MIG welder. It works great. I have had no probelms with eye strain or headaches. Lyle
Old 03-30-2005, 06:31 AM
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Harbor Freight is what I use too!
Old 03-30-2005, 06:57 AM
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What about the reaction time? Anyone using the 1/10,000 or 0.0001 second reaction time? Its the slowest.
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'75 1.8 in pieces
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Old 03-30-2005, 07:29 AM
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I would get the helmet that darkens quicker especially if you do a lot of welding. I have heard that the auto darkening helmets can cause eye irritation due to the light that gets through before the helmet can fully darken.
Old 03-30-2005, 08:16 AM
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Used to use the Speedglas. This was one of the first. I have not kept up with industry, but from my very safety concious industrial environment, we never had a problem with Speedglas. If I were to get one now, I would by one of these. It is your eyes, but I only have two and at the age of 52, I have enough natural eye issues, never mind slow darkening speeds.
Just my opinion
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Old 03-30-2005, 01:52 PM
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Thanks guys.
FYI, I looked around on the net and found an article that said as long as the helmet is rated ANSI Z87.1, you're ok. It also said that slower change-over speed could cause irritation. Harbor Frt it is.
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Old 03-31-2005, 05:20 AM
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