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How To Pick a Welding Mask

Protect your eyes from those flying flames with the right equipment. Find out how using these tips.


  • Step 1: Find a mask that is comfortable and lightweight. Remember you may be wearing it for hours at a time.
  • Step 2: Shop around. Ask for opinions from stores that sell welding masks. Choose one that will suit all your needs and is in your price range. Now suit up and light that torch.
  • FACT: In 1969, Russian cosmonauts were the first to attempt welding in space.
  • Step 3: Choose between battery- and solar-powered masks. Battery-operated masks will shut off automatically when still for some time. Always make sure the mask is ready to operate when you are.
  • TIP: When choosing a variable shade mask, select a helmet that has an auto-darkening of 4/10ths of a millisecond.
  • Step 4: Decide on a shade that aids your ability to see your project the best.
  • TIP: The lense shade number refers to the darkness of the mask, not the protection level. All reputable masks will protect you 100 percent.
  • Step 5: Choose between a fixed or auto-darkening shade. The auto-darkening shade helmets are more versatile. Fixed shades are good only when using the same material with the same welding process time after time.
  • Step 6: Check the information that came with your welder to determine the type of radiation you will be exposed to: ultraviolet, infrared, or high-intensity visible light.

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