Notice to all Welders & Plasma users - PPE provisions

All welders and plasma users!

Metal shop will not be providing the majority of PPE when we reopen for the time being. I’ve removed the gloves and jackets for the time being (going to wash and repair them whilst I’m at it).

You will still need head-to-toe coverage in natural fibers or FR material as before, but you will need to bring your own.

There will be a couple of helmets available, but it is strongly encouraged that you procure your own. Your own PPE will usually be a better choice anyway; you’ll always know what condition it’s in, find something that fits better for your needs, and will be.

For the general Metal Shop safety glasses, you will need to bring your own. ANSI z87+U arcflash rated to be in the room, whether you are welding or not.



So, would a rating of Z87+U6 L3 be appropriate for the metal shop? That is what my 3m safety sunglasses are rated at and they are on my head basically all day just to use as sunglasses at minimum.
Other then the wearing sunglasses indoors look, would they be acceptable and if not, do you have a recommendation as to what you would prefer?
Thanks for all that you do!

Those would be fine for metal shop, only note is that as sunglasses you’re responsible to ensure that for what you doing you would have adequate lighting.

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Is this just because of COVID or intended to be permanent? Like, how nice of stuff do I need to worry about. Short term I wouldn’t be above just wearing my welding helmet

These are the same PPE requirements we’ve always had, we’re just not providing anything except a couple of hoods now and you will need a skullcap or similar on top of cleaning them.

just a helmet alone is not permitted; the same PPE requirements for welding, plasma, and working in the metal shop stand.

I know we have always required them. I meant the not providing them part

I guess I’m confused by what’s meant in this statement then

I think she means, Long Term wise. Should she get a nicer helmet for herself.
Am I correct @MrsMoose?


Lol yes! Sorry doing too many things at once

long term is yet to be determined, though covid is the reason for pulling it currently. We’ll see how things go.

However it’s always advisable to have one’s own PPE regardless.


I am uncertain as to what to buy to meet the safety glasses requirement. If I search Amazon for “ANSI z87+U arcflash” lots of results are returned but none seem to have that exact phrasing. I seeing results that say “ANSI Z87+ with Uv Protection”. Is that what you are looking for? Could you perhaps elaborate a little bit because I am confused? Thanks


Right there with you I have spent a couple of hours trying to figure this out. It is confusing there is a uv scale of 1-6. I cannot find anywhere that’s explains which scale number is for arc flash. I do not want to spend $60 on the ANSI standard. I have found these U6 glasses that block 99.9 of UV radiation would they be ok.

The safety class powerpoint does not specify the level of UV shading either it just says arc flash as well.

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If I remember correctly shade #5 and up should be fine.
@hon1nbo, please correct me if I’m wrong.

[quote=“MadScists, post:13, topic:71424, full:true”]

These would not be recommended for use with a cutting/plasma torch and definitely not for use as your only protection for welding. My earlier question was really directed towards the specifics of the mentioned arcflash wording in reference to the safety glasses requirement.

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can you provide link for that?
The one I’m familiar with does not use the phrase “arcflash” (nor the more common spelling of what I assume is the same concept “arc flash”, nor the other name, per wikipedia, of “flashover”)…

Shading is only specified for plasma cutting, for which shade 5 is our suggestion for the minimum. AWS and OSHA recommend darker for plasma operators, but they are intended to be exposed 8hrs/day, whereas our members are more likely to need slightly lighter to be able to see what’s happening better, and less likely to be exposed for such periods of time. However, as dark as you can use and still see the work is best/least likely to have complications. Less than shade 5 is not recommended at all for plasma.
Welding: you can use shaded if you like, but the primary shade is intended to be the helmet; safety glasses of Z87+U are not optional for welding, but if you use shaded, what you need in a helmet may change.
All other operations: Safety glasses of Z87+U are not optional and shading is not recommended, but not specifically forbidden to my knowledge.

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I was actually only speaking for using the dynatorch, of course you don’t want to use Z87 shaded safety glasses for welding.
I’m pretty sure I didn’t even imply that.
If you’re talkin about welding, you definitely don’t want to go with anything less than an actual welding mask…

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@jast Sorry I meant to reply to you.

You are correct it does not include arc flash my fault. But it does not give the necessary level of 1-6 required. So can we buy whatever level we want or do we have to worry about the arcflash requirement from the original post for this thread from @hon1nbo See above for where the arc flash came from.

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What are some general welding helmet recommendations? Like a preferred brand/model.

To the best of my knowledge, this is akin to asking what religion we recommend; you’ll get a dozen “answers” in any group of 10 questioned.
You’ll need one that can shade 9-13 (or greater) for MIG, TIG, Stick, and Flux-core (all of the types of welding we offer; oxy-acetylene requrie darker, but we don’t offer that).

You can spend $35 @ Harbor Freight, which some people are fine with for the entire hobby “career”. Others will go more professional ($1200 Lincoln example). It kind of depends on your budget, dedication, use case, etc.

Most folks like an auto-darkening because this makes it easier for (esp. the beginner) to see what they’re doing to line up the weld, and strike the arc without having to move the helmet into position.

Veterans in the field will have a preference; it’ll almost always be “brand” specific and probably Miller or Lincoln or maybe Hobart, but there are others; given enough time and money, you too can develop a taste…

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AWS recommendation for Plasma is shade 8.

Just about every professional welder I know uses a fixed shade Jackson Fibre-metal Pipeliner hood

Myself I used a Northern Tool Auto-darkening hood for a long time. I went through 2 of them over the years. The only reason I went through them is I lost the lens covers & I wanted something a little better. So I bought this one a couple years ago.

My next helmet will be this one, since I saw @malcolmputer’s helmet.