blue lens for arc welding
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    cen cal
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    114

    blue lens for arc welding

    I have a blue lens with gold coating, shade 10. Marked "T 10 H" on the gold side.

    I used it for a few days of tig welding, ~4hrs actual booth time a day. View is crystal clear, colors are very easy on my eyes. Thing makes NR232 look almost like a white led.

    After some thinking I started reading and found what seems like conflicting info.

    Some say blue lenses are strictly for O/A welding aluminum and some say they don't block the UV of an arc.

    I see the old American Optical blue lenses are highly desired for welding with no mention in those threads of O/A al use only.

    I asked the senior instructor at my welding school today and he said as long as its shade 10+ that's all that matters.

    I didn't get sore using it but I'm still worried about long term damage.

    Can somebody clarify this for me? Are the cobalt lenses for O/A different from the AO weld cool lenses? I don't think my blue lens is an AO but how do I know if this thing is safe for long term daily welding?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Posts
    602

    Re: blue lens for arc welding

    I dunno about the lens itself, but it seems that if you have a UV filtering clear lens in front of it, and you're wearing UV protective safety glasses underneath your helmet, you shouldn't have a whole lot to worry about.
    You didn't build that.

    '85 Miller AEAD-200LE

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Pacific Northwest
    Posts
    818

    Re: blue lens for arc welding

    I continue using the AO "Mirror Lens" or the Cobalt Blue as it's also known. I wouldn't use anything else. No need to go to an auto darkening hood if you have a Mirror Lens. Take care of it and it will last many years.

    Thanks,

    Hobo
    Lincoln SA200's... at least 15 - 20. They come and go. Growing partial to the "Short Hoods" in my old age. Last count on Short Hoods was 13 in possession.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    cen cal
    Posts
    114

    Re: blue lens for arc welding

    Quote Originally Posted by anickode View Post
    I dunno about the lens itself, but it seems that if you have a UV filtering clear lens in front of it, and you're wearing UV protective safety glasses underneath your helmet, you shouldn't have a whole lot to worry about.
    I wear safety glasses rated to block 99.9% of UV. Not sure about the cover plates I use.

    The comments I read saying they should only be used for O/A on al and not steel led me to think maybe there's some other danger besides UV though I'm not sure what it would be.

    I always try not to base my knowledge on internet comments but I can't find much else to go on here.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    cen cal
    Posts
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    Re: blue lens for arc welding

    Quote Originally Posted by hobohilton View Post
    I continue using the AO "Mirror Lens" or the Cobalt Blue as it's also known. I wouldn't use anything else. No need to go to an auto darkening hood if you have a Mirror Lens. Take care of it and it will last many years.

    Thanks,

    Hobo
    Are you saying the cobal lenses for O/A and the AO weld cool lenses are the same thing?

    If I can be sure that the thing is safe for daily use I'll definitely be using it a lot. My go to hood right now has a Weldmark polycarbonate gold lens and I really like it but my blue lens is even better. I quit using auto darks shortly after I started welding school.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Pacific Northwest
    Posts
    818

    Re: blue lens for arc welding

    AO = American Optical
    Lincoln SA200's... at least 15 - 20. They come and go. Growing partial to the "Short Hoods" in my old age. Last count on Short Hoods was 13 in possession.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    cen cal
    Posts
    114

    Re: blue lens for arc welding

    Quote Originally Posted by hobohilton View Post
    AO = American Optical
    What I meant to ask is if there is one type of blue lens for oxyfuel welding and a different type for arc welding and how to tell them apart. My blue lens is a shade 10.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Okanagan Valley.
    Posts
    877

    Re: blue lens for arc welding

    Your lense is a shade 10. A shade 5 is used for oxy/fuel. Any shade, 9 through 12 is used for electric arc procedures, based on circumstance and preference. Also worth noting, the use of a non-mirrored lens does not dictate the need for an auto.
    Last edited by mb_welder; 09-16-2012 at 04:20 AM.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    cen cal
    Posts
    114

    Re: blue lens for arc welding

    Quote Originally Posted by mb_welder View Post
    Your lense is a shade 10. A shade 5 is used for oxy/fuel. Any shade, 9 through 12 is used for electric arc procedures, based on circumstance and preference. Also worth noting, the use of a non-mirrored lens does not dictate the need for an auto.
    I thought the shade would imply its for arc welding but I want to be sure. Guess I'm just being overly cautious with my eyes. Thanks for the help guys.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    The Midwest
    Posts
    136

    Re: blue lens for arc welding

    Quote Originally Posted by hypothecary View Post
    Guess I'm just being overly cautious with my eyes.
    No such thing.
    Miller Performance AD Helmet - Camo Edition
    Soon to have: Jackson HSL 100 - Forest Digi Camo
    Miller Thunderbolt AC/DC
    ((Currently at welding school))

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    cen cal
    Posts
    114

    Re: blue lens for arc welding

    Quote Originally Posted by Lights View Post
    No such thing.
    I agree.

    In searching for information on blue lenses I read things like:

    They have radioactive cobalt in them
    They have non-radioactive cobalt that becomes radioactive at high temps
    They have cobalt but are not at all radioactive

    They filter UV sufficiently
    They do not filter UV sufficiently

    They filter harmful spectrums of light
    They do not filter harmful spectrums of light

    They are no longer made because they used radioactive cobalt
    They are no longer made because an ingredient caused explosions during manufacturing
    They are no longer made because a certain ingredient is no longer mined/produced
    They are no longer made because while original AO lenses used non-radioactive cobalt 87, the radioactivity of cobalt 89 led the mfg'er to worry about possible liability and they stopped production

    They cause cataracts
    They cause blindness with long term use
    They are perfectly safe and every welder should be blessed with one

    Most often there is no distinction at all as to whether the opinions given pertain to oxyfuel lenses or arc welding lenses.



    When I can't find an authoritative source of information on a given subject I need to hear opinions from a long list of different sources before I start to form my own opinion. Its part of how I keep from loosing myself in the herd.
    Miller Syncrowave 250 w/ PC-300 pulser
    Lincoln AC/DC 225/125
    Clarke TurboWeld 150EN
    Jackson Halo w/ gold lens
    Huntsman w/ blue lens
    Doing sanitary stainless tig

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    cen cal
    Posts
    114

    Re: blue lens for arc welding

    http://209.200.67.149/pdf/headnface/weldcool.pdf

    This pdf is dated 1999.
    I wonder if the new polycarbonate ones are still available.
    I'd definitely like to try one knowing they're compliant to a much more updated ANSI Z87.1
    I'll try the 1-800 tomorrow.
    Miller Syncrowave 250 w/ PC-300 pulser
    Lincoln AC/DC 225/125
    Clarke TurboWeld 150EN
    Jackson Halo w/ gold lens
    Huntsman w/ blue lens
    Doing sanitary stainless tig

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