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View Full Version : flash burn what am i doing wrong



crnix
01-04-2009, 12:10 PM
good morning everyone. i got flash burn bad last week and tried to take extra caution this time and didnt remove my sheild til i was done but still kinda gt flash burn in 1 eye but this time it is not as bad i can keep my eye open. my question is what am i doing wrong am i getting my sheild to close to the arc or what . im using a mig welder 140hd please any advise would be gr8

farmersamm
01-04-2009, 12:29 PM
Seems like a strange question, but........

#10 lens, and don't wear light colored shirts when welding(reflects light back up under the hood)

Hammer
01-04-2009, 12:31 PM
Could be as simple as a reflective surface behind ya. Plus, if you just injured your eyes last week and your back at it, it could be your eyes just arent used to the bright light. Some peoples eyes just arent strong enough for this kind of abuse. A natural tear type eye drop everyday and less TV/monitor time until youre healed will help.

tresi
01-04-2009, 12:38 PM
First of all what # of shade are you using? You should be using a # 10. Is the lens fitting in the helmet correctly ? It is easy to check,just hold it up to a light and check for light leaks. If you're using a auto darkening lens is it working? even if the helmet is inopertive you shouldn't get a real flash burn but you'll see spots. Some of the entry level welders come with a hand held sheild rather than a helmet ,if this is the case it should be held close to your face rather than at arms lentgh. While these sheilds meet the spec for required protection get a helmet your welding will be much better when you have both hands to work with.

Black Wolf
01-04-2009, 12:52 PM
It is a good practice to wear safety glasses as well.

If taken to the extreme, you CAN walk through a shop full of people welding and not get "Flashed" as long as you have some sort of glasses on.

Keep in mind that I am not endorsing that you stop and stare at any Bright Lights.

enlpck
01-04-2009, 03:26 PM
A few tips:

Check your shield for light leaks. Hold it up to a 500W halogen or equivelent (I use the sun if it is out, but you need to be careful... hte sun will quickly cause a lot of damage to your eyes) and look for anywhere aorund the edge of the lens or in the body of the shield where you see a hint of light. Don't wear it while doing this, as you want to vary the angle. Any leaks need to be fixed (edge of lens: check the gasket. Elsewhere, cover with black electrical tape, opaque epoxy, whatever)

As mentioned, don't let light from your shirt reflect in. The 'brighteners' in detergents reflect UV fairly well.

Wear safety glasses under the hood. Wear them all the time in the shop. Get so used to them that when you leave the shop, you forget to take them off and get laughed at when you walk into the bar. Most glasses block UV pretty well (99+ percent) and if they fit right, they will reduce exposure from reflections. You can get safety glasses that have additional UV and IR protection.

Watch for light from your BACK (reflections, another welder, whatever) as it can reflect from the inside of the lens and hurt you.

Blink. When you focus on welding, you may not blink enough and your eyes dry out. As mentioned, moisturizing drops may be of help.

Keep your face away from the fumes. They are irritating, even with fluxless processes (like TIG and MIG) as there can be fumes from the metal, and there is ozone generated in the vicinity of the arc. A light airflow from the side or behind you to keep the fumes away is a good idea.

Google "welding hazard index'. Read about it. Modern welding lenses (auto dark in particular) provide full UV and IR protection all of the time (typically shade 14 or higher), regardless of the shade number for visible light.

flatbustedbroke
01-04-2009, 03:42 PM
Your doing this at home right? Are the walls of your garage/shop painted? If so you may be getting a reflection from behind.

jotram
01-07-2009, 08:38 PM
the other day i saw a guy stick welding with a pair of cutting goggles on instead of a helmit...he did have a shade ten though

William McCormick Jr
01-07-2009, 09:04 PM
good morning everyone. i got flash burn bad last week and tried to take extra caution this time and didnt remove my sheild til i was done but still kinda gt flash burn in 1 eye but this time it is not as bad i can keep my eye open. my question is what am i doing wrong am i getting my sheild to close to the arc or what . im using a mig welder 140hd please any advise would be gr8

I use a #11 or #12 for MIG, and I use a #10 for TIG low amperage. And a #11 for high amperage TIG. Or when I use helium.

To be honest though I have been welding in other peoples shops to find that their auto darkening lens is not even working. And I still was able to weld a small part without getting flashed.

Are you looking at the weld without the mask at all. Even a single start without the mask can do it.

One other thing. Is your lens sealed to the helmet? Does your helmet have cracks in it.

I have used a helmet without a good seal to the lens, and gotten sick to my stomach from welding with it. Even if a mask does not come with a rubber seal I put one in. Those fumes can mess you up. And burn your eyes. Especially if you are not used to it.

Sincerely,


William McCormick

tx_swordguy
01-12-2009, 04:49 PM
I had purchased several yrs ago a mig welder and about the same time a lincoln auto helmet shade 10. Prior to that I had always stick welded outdoors with a fixed shade helmet. I immediately started getting flash burns with the new equipment. In my research (even called lincoln about their helmets-sent a replacement immediately) what I found is people with blue eyes (me) are more suseptable to flash burns. Also you MUST block as much reflected light as possible. I now wear a black long sleeve shirt when I am welding inside, because black absorbs light rays instead of reflecting them. I went as far as covering my head with a towel,or hat to try to stop reflective light, but in the end I found I didn't need to do that. You may not be doing anything wrong per say, just not taking enough precautions. Try blocking the reflective light and see if that helps.
Mark

Gypsy
11-21-2011, 11:55 PM
My husband just started a new welding job and also "keeps" getting flash burn. He is doing flux welding on trains at 250hd (I think I got that right). He has welded for years at another job but working on trains is all new and apparently complicated. He is wearing his helmet, however, this has been a weekly occurance now. He just came home from work again with it and can't see right now so I was hoping that someone can tell me what he may be doing wrong. My grandfather welded his entire life and used to use tea bags or potatoe slices for this. Should he just be using a #10 lense for this? Thanks for any help.

shovelon
11-22-2011, 01:46 AM
My husband just started a new welding job and also "keeps" getting flash burn. He is doing flux welding on trains at 250hd (I think I got that right). He has welded for years at another job but working on trains is all new and apparently complicated. He is wearing his helmet, however, this has been a weekly occurance now. He just came home from work again with it and can't see right now so I was hoping that someone can tell me what he may be doing wrong. My grandfather welded his entire life and used to use tea bags or potatoe slices for this. Should he just be using a #10 lense for this? Thanks for any help.

#10 shade seems light to me. He could be getting side flash or reflecting under the hood.

He could try wearing some wrap around tinted safety glasses to cut down on errant flash. I like the amber color and they are dirt cheap.
http://www.airgas.com/CachedImages/0000007/t047_r16958_v-2.jpg http://www.airgas.com/browse/productDetail.aspx?Category=155&product=CAS11545-00000

con_fuse9
11-22-2011, 09:40 AM
One thing that could be different is where he is welding. If he used to weld outdoors, and now is indoors, there could be more objects behind him to reflect the light back into the helmet.

There are some here that have modified thier helmet to include a thin back cover - basicaly a leather cover that covers the back side.

Note: white shirts could also allow reflection back up under the helmet. They make a 'bib' for some helmets to cover that as well.

There are also all kinds of helmets. If its an older helmet, make sure its put together right with all the seals in place - no cracks in the seals around the edges. If its a really old auto-darkening helmet, consider buying a new one. The new ones darken faster than the 1st generation helmets and I can attest that eye fatigue is much much better with say my Miller Elite vs. an older 'DQF' helmet.

Properly configured, an autodarkening helmet should protect from UV light even when the lens is in the light mode. I'm not so sure that is true from my 20 year old helmet.

I'd ask around what other welders in the same area are using for hoods.

The issue should be very solvable. Someone else could chime in on this, but can't someone at the job help diagnose what is going on? If he is working for a big company, don't they have safety person? Technically speaking this is an on-the-job injury.

lotechman
11-22-2011, 01:11 PM
It is extremely important that safety glasses be worn at ALL times. When companies enforce this single policy there are no compensation claims for flashes saving the company with lower rates and saving employee's eyes. Anyone not wearing safety glasses in a steel shop should be shown the door.

ccawgc
11-22-2011, 10:31 PM
There are some safety glasses that have arc flash filter built in. A set of these might help.

02powerstroke
11-22-2011, 10:55 PM
Had this happen to me last week turned out my cheap auto darking helmet had a dead spot on the left side....

con_fuse9
11-23-2011, 09:51 AM
There are some safety glasses that have arc flash filter built in. A set of these might help.

http://www.envirosafetyproducts.com/ztek-arc-safety-glasses-pyramex-clear-mirror-lens.html Looks like cheap insurance.

lotechman
11-23-2011, 10:07 AM
All industrial approved safety glasses filter out harmful rays to your eyes. They do not have be shaded. side shields are included otherwise they would not be safety glasses. I have had people under me refuse to wear them because they didn't look cool. My response is "Gee maybe if you wear cooler glasses then one of the guys might date you??"
Sheesh it is so simple.. wear safety glasses. Its like ear protection, hard toes, hard hats, and fall protection. Wear the damn things and stop whining.