Welders use lenses to protect their eyes from the intense light and sparks that are created when welding. There are many different types of lenses available, so it can be difficult to know which one is the best option for you.
In this blog post, we will discuss what shade lens for MIG welding and help decide which one is right for you. Shade lenses are an important part of MIG welding safety, and it’s important to choose the right one for your circumstances. So, let’s get started!
The Dangers of Ultraviolet and Infrared Light
There are two main types of harmful rays that welding produces: ultraviolet (UV) rays and infrared (IR) rays. UV rays are invisible to the naked eye but can be very harmful. They can cause burns to the cornea and damage the retina. IR rays are also invisible to the naked eye but can cause damage to the tissue behind the eye.
The best way to protect your eyes from these harmful rays is to wear shade lenses. Shade lenses are designed to block out both UV and IR light. There are many different types of shade lenses available, so it is important to choose the right one for you.
Passive vs Variable Shade Lens
There are two main types of shade lenses: passive lenses and variable shade lenses. Passive lenses have a permanent tint that cannot be changed. Variable shade lenses have a tint that can be changed depending on the welding conditions.
- Cannot be adjusted
- Might not be suitable for all welding conditions
- Are less expensive than variable shade lenses
Variable Shade Lenses:
- Can be adjusted to different tints
- Are more expensive than fixed shade lenses
- Might be more comfortable to wear because they
What shade lens is suitable for MIG welding?
There are a few factors to consider when choosing the right shade lens for MIG weldings, such as the intensity of the light and the type of metal being welded.
The most important factor is your comfort level. If you feel comfortable welding with a certain shade lens, then that is probably the best option for you.
Some welders prefer to use a #11 or #12 shade lens for MIG welding, while others find that a #14 shade lens works better for them. It depends on your personal preference and what you are most comfortable with.
A #16 shade lens is typically the darkest shade lens that is available for MIG welding.
When welding indoors, you can usually get away with using a lighter shade lens. A #11 or #12 shade lens should be sufficient for most indoor welding applications.
Ultimately, it is up to you to decide what shade lens works best for you and your particular welding needs. Experiment with different shades until you find the one that feels right for you.
How to Choose the Right Lens Shade?
The first step is to identify the welder’s amperage range and the welding process is used most often. With that information, you can find the correct lens shade number by using this simple formula:
Process Number = (Welder’s Amperage Range x 0.25) + Lens Shade Number
Therefore, the recommended lens shade for this welder would be #14. Remember, the higher the number, the darker the lens.
For Mild steel MIG welding
For Mild steel MIG welding, the recommended Lens Shade is between a #11 and #13. If you are welding outdoors you will want to go with a darker shade like a #14 or #15. If you are using gasless MIG wire the recommended Lens Shade is between a #12 and #14.
For aluminum MIG welding
The American Welding Society (AWS) recommends using a #14 shade lens when welding aluminum. Aluminum reflects more light than other metals, so it is important to use a darker lens to protect your eyes. If you are welding in an area with poor ventilation, it is important to use a respirator in addition to your welding helmet.
A #11 shade is the minimum recommendation for most applications, however, some welders prefer a darker shade for better visibility.
Factors to Consider When Choosing a Lens Shade
The three main factors you’ll want to consider when choosing a lens shade are the welding process, the amperage, and the material being welded.
- The Welding Process. MIG welding can be performed with either a short arc or a spray transfer. A short arc uses less heat and is ideal for thinner materials. A spray transfer requires more heat and is best for thicker materials.
- The Amperage. The higher the amperage, the brighter the arc will be. If you’re welding at low amperage, you won’t need as dark of a lens.
- The Material Being Welded. If you’re welding stainless steel or aluminum, you’ll need a lens that’s darker than if you were welding mild steel. These materials reflect more light, so a darker lens is necessary to protect your eyes.
The Lens Reaction Time
Another factor to consider is the lens reaction time.
If you’re welding at high amperage, you’ll need a lens with a fast reaction time so that your eyes are protected from the bright light immediately.
Many welding helmets now come equipped with arc sensors. These sensors detect the light from the arc and automatically adjust the shade of the lens to the appropriate level. This is a great feature to have if you’re doing a lot of different types of welding, as it takes the guesswork out of choosing the right shade.
If you’re looking for a helmet with an arc sensor, make sure to do your research and read reviews. Some sensors are more sensitive than others, and you want to make sure that you choose one that will work well for the type of welding you’ll be doing.
Fixed or Variable Shade of Lens
Once you’ve decided on the right shade, you’ll need to choose between a fixed shade and a variable shade. A fixed shade can’t be adjusted. This is the most common type of lens, as it’s less expensive and easier to use.
A variable shade allows you to adjust the darkness of the lens.
However, variable shades are more expensive and can be more difficult to use.
No matter which type of shade you choose, make sure that it’s comfortable for you to wear and that it provides enough protection for your eyes.
The Level of Amperage
The level of amperage is one of the main factors to consider when choosing a lens shade for MIG welding. The higher the amperage, the brighter the arc will be. If you’re welding at low amperage, you won’t need as dark of a lens.
The Shade Number
The shade number is the measure of how dark the lens is. The higher the number, the darker the lens will be.
When choosing a shade number, you’ll need to take into account the amperage and the type of welding you’ll be doing. If you’re welding at high amperage or outdoors, you’ll need a darker lens.
A good rule of thumb is to choose a shade that’s two shades darker than what you would use for low-amperage welding. So, if you normally use a Shade 11 for low-amperage welding, you would use a Shade 13 for high
Now that you know the main factors to consider when choosing a shade lens for MIG welding, you can make an informed decision about which shade is best for you. Keep these factors in mind, and you’ll be able to find the perfect lens shade for your next welding project.
Factors to Consider when Determining the Best Shade Number
There are a few factors that you need to consider when determining the best shade number for your MIG welding lens. These include:
- The type of metal you’re welding
- The thickness of the metal
- The welding current
- Your personal preference
Each of these factors will be discussed in more detail below.
The Type of Metal
The type of metal you’re welding will play a big role in deciding what shade number lens you should use.
The thickness of the Metal
The thickness of the metal you’re welding will also play a role in deciding what shade number to use. If you’re welding thick metal, you’ll want to use a higher shade number than if you were welding thin metal.
This is because thicker metal reflects more light than thinner metal, so a higher shade number will provide more protection from the bright light.
The welding current you’re using will also play a role in deciding what shade number to use. If you’re using a high welding current, you’ll want to use a higher shade number than if you were using a low welding current.
Lastly, your personal preference will also play a role in deciding what shade number to use. If you’re sensitive to light, you may want to use a higher shade number than someone who isn’t as sensitive. This is because higher shade numbers provide more protection from the bright light.
So, what shade number should you use for your MIG welding lens? The answer depends on a few factors, including the type of metal you’re welding, the thickness of the metal, the welding current, and your personal preference. Consider all of these factors when making your decision to ensure that you choose the best option for you.
How to Choose the Right Lens Shade?
When choosing a lens shade for MIG welding, it is important to consider the type of materials you will be welding. Thin metals such as aluminum or stainless steel can be welded with a lens shade that is lighter than the shade recommended for welding thicker metals.
The best way to determine which shade lens is right for you is to experiment with different shades while welding different types of materials. This will help you find the right balance between brightness and protection.
Interpreting Welding Lens’ Shade Number
When you’re ready to buy a welding helmet, you should first understand how to interpret the shade number.
Most welders use a shade 11 helmet, which provides good protection against UV and infrared radiation. However, if you’re working in a very bright environment, you might need to switch to a shade of 15 or 16 helmets. Conversely, if you’re working in a low-light environment, you might need to switch to a shade of 9 or 10 helmets.
It’s important to choose the right shade number for your environment to ensure your safety. Make sure to always read the manufacturer’s instructions to determine which shade number is best for you.
So, what’s the best shade number for MIG welding? The answer depends on a few factors, but we generally recommend using a shade number of 12 or higher. But if you’re Welding in low light, we recommend using a shade number of 11. And if you’re Welding outdoors in bright sunlight, we recommend using a shade number of 16.
What are the symptoms of “Arc Eye”?
While the severity of “Arc Eye” can vary depending on exposure, some of the most common symptoms include:
- Inflammation of the cornea
- Severe pain in and around the eyes
- Sensitivity to light
- Blurry vision
If you experience any of these symptoms after welding, it’s important to seek medical attention right away.
Need a good, reliable helmet for hobby MIG welding?
If you’re new to MIG welding, you might be wondering what shade lens is best for protecting your eyes while you work. Every welder’s needs are different, and the right shade lens for you will depend on several factors.
If you’re looking for a good, reliable helmet for hobby MIG welding, then a shade 10 lens may be the best option for you. It will provide you with good visibility and protection against the bright light of the welding arc.
So, what’s the best shade lens for MIG welding? The answer may vary depending on your specific needs, but we hope this guide has helped you narrow down the options. As always, be sure to consult with a certified welding professional before making any decisions about your safety gear. Thank you for reading!
Make sure to follow all safety precautions when welding to protect yourself and those around you. If you have any questions about What Shade Lens for MIG Welding, please contact us. Weigh in below! And be sure to check back soon for more welding tips and tricks. Happy welding!