Increasing the efficiency of welding machines is not only associated with the expansion of their functionality. Manufacturers strive to make the devices as accessible as possible for non-specialists who can perform welding operations at home. This is also responsible for the development of protective equipment. Household models of such devices give intensive ultraviolet radiation, in the process of work the appearance of a spark is inevitable, and the most dangerous side effect is the spray of molten metal. Accordingly, before the future user the question arises: "How to choose a welder's mask that can reliably protect against unpleasant consequences during the performance of work?" To do this, you need to familiarize yourself with the proposals of the modern market.
Shield for welding
The most simple and affordable version of the welding mask, which, incidentally, provides a minimum level of protection and functionality. The device of such a device includes a shield equipped with a light filter with blackout, and a special handle for holding. This is the most common option that comes with inexpensive home appliances. Despite obvious drawbacks, such a welder mask has one weighty positive quality - pushing it away from the face, the master will be able to directly inspect the resulting seam. But this plus is crossed out by the need to hold the mask in his hand. And this despite the fact that the second hand should be occupied by the welding apparatus itself.
Models of this type were recently considered the optimal solution for a welder. From the previous version, it is distinguished by the possibility of fixation on the head by attachment. Also, the master can evaluate the result in the process of work by lifting the mask. After that, she drops her head with a simple nod. Among the advantages that a welder's mask of this type possesses is ease of handling with it during the working process and an unoccupied second hand. But there is also a minus, expressed in the absence of protection for the eyes when lifting the mask.
Masks with lifting filters
Such models can be considered as the last modification of traditional masks with light filters. Their fundamental difference is the presence in the design of the plastic shield, which protects the eyes even when the filter is raised. This innovation allowed the operators to perform and related operations, among which cutting the Bulgarian and slag chipping. At the same time, the protective filter, which, in addition to the darkened glass, also included a cover layer and plexiglass as a substrate. With the development of technology and this model has receded into the background. It was moved by the mask of the welder "Chameleon", reviews of which are noted for its convenience, high degree of safety and functionality.
Features and the device of the mask "Chameleon"
In the light filters of such masks, the technology of polarization of liquid crystals is used. The protective screen device assumes the presence of a liquid crystal interlayer between the polarization films. In the welding process, the active voltage corrects the parameters of the LC layer, preventing the passage of unwanted light fluxes. In modern filters, a different number of liquid crystal layers can be used. In addition, the screen includes a filter designed to work with ultraviolet and infrared spectra. Its function is in no way connected with the LCD layers and operates autonomously. Also, the mask of the welder "Chameleon" is supplied with sensors that recognize the arc, electronic regulating devices, and also is equipped with batteries in the form of batteries and batteries.
Characteristics of the "Chameleon" light filter
The key operating parameter of the "Chameleon" is the period of operation to ensure reliable protection of the eyes. In modern models, this time is less than 1 millisecond, which is one of the best indicators against the background of masks-competitors. But also this time is relatively, because it depends on the characteristics of the environment. For example, the mask of the welder "Chameleon" in conditions of negative temperature will not be able to provide sufficient darkening speed. The lower temperature limit for the operation of such filters is -50 degrees. But for the sake of justice it is worth noting that in the course of working in the frost, the inside of the mask still provides tangible heat, provided by a filter heated from the welding arc.
First of all, modern welding requires the ability to adjust the dimming. The arc can have a different level of brightness - it depends on the strength of the current and, in general, on the parameters of the working process. In the standard version, the glass for the welder mask provides a darkening of the filter within 9-13 DIN. In non-darkened state, the filter has a level of 3-4 DIN.
Equally important are the sensitivity characteristics, from the settings of which the operation of the device will depend. The master adjusts the sensitivity of switching on and off, focusing on the radiation of heated material and the same brightness of the arc. This option can be useful in the process of welding in the sun - in this case it helps to eliminate the risk of untimely switching on the filter.
More advanced models provide other adjustment possibilities, including a change in the angle of the sensory perception of the arc. By the way, the number of sensors can vary, which directly affects the quality of work. For example, the welder mask "Chameleon FUBAG" in the series 992450 has four sensors, through which you can more accurately monitor the state of the arc.
The quality of optical performance, perhaps, is one of the main criteria for choosing a filter. The model may well have a whole set of options and adjusting capabilities, but if the optics itself is implemented poorly, even a wide functional will be useless. Therefore, the protective mask of a welder with a reliable and durable light filter is more effective than its analog with a mass of settings and several layers of attractive externally but not always useful replacement glasses.
Pay attention to the following characteristics:
- Class of optics. Depends on the clarity of the image. For example, in models of the first class, distortion of objects is excluded;
- Light scattering. This parameter determines the transparency level of the light filter;
- Homogeneity. The adjustment of the darkening of the light filter largely depends on the uniformity of the radiation - this is the homogeneity of the optics;
- Degree of angular dimming. This indicator determines the dependence of the depth of obscuration on the angle at which viewing is performed.
All listed properties can belong to one of three classes. Manufacturers label their models with parameter designation, which is the specific mask of the welder "Chameleon". User feedback and expert opinions confirm the undoubted advantage of optics, which has light scattering, homogeneity and degree of angular dimming of the first class.
Other selection criteria
Before buying it is necessary to take into account the parameters of the visible area, which will allow us to evaluate the quality of work more reliably. There is an opinion that the vastness of the visible zone is an advantage of the mask. This is in part true, but it is important to understand that a large area affects the strength of the light filter - the smaller it is, the more reliable. It is also necessary to relate the type of welding operations and the conditions of their conduct with the characteristics that the welder's mask and filter have. Modern models are often developed as universal. For example, a model with a specific light filter can be used both in work with argon arc welding, and in automatic welding operations, and will successfully cope with piece electrodes. But there are exceptions, so you should pay attention to the marking.
Of course, the technical parameters and functionality of the welding masks are the primary selection criteria. But if the mask does not correspond to the elementary dimensions under the head, then its use will bring to nothing all the advantages of adaptation. For this reason, the welder's mask should be chosen taking into account the overall dimensions, the overall design of the head restraint, the mass, the attachment methods and the adjustment possibilities for the dimensions. Particular attention is paid to the depth of landing and the angle of inclination. It will be nice if the mask also allows you to adjust the interval between the light filter and the head. The adjustment system must be strong, reliable and at the same time ergonomic. Sometimes it makes sense to provide and additional opportunities, such as the presence of a place under the respirator.
Reviews about masks "Chameleon"
Light filters of this type have undoubtedly advanced the masks for welding in terms of safety and manufacturability in general. In comparison with traditional models, they win in all respects. For example, owners note that hands can remain free from the beginning to the end of the working process, additional heating is provided in the cold, and radiation and speech are not affected - the filters cope with their function perfectly.
But there are also disadvantages, which also has a welder's mask. Feedback from users who regularly deal with welding work, criticize the glass for the appearance of scratches and rapid discharge of the battery. On the other hand, such phenomena can be insured even at the stage of selection of the device. The problem with batteries should be solved by optimal selection of the capacity of the power supply in a particular model. The magnitude of the charge can be quite high, so this minus rather should be attributed to an oversight in the buying process. The situation is more complicated with the formation of scratches. As a rule, they arise on the protective surfaces of plexiglas, and the only way out can be the rejection of this material.