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Light areas in Auto-dark helmet ?

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  • Light areas in Auto-dark helmet ?

    I wanted to see if any of you folks see light areas in your auto-darkening helmets.

    I have a new NexGen and its driving me nuts. No matter what the setting, for about 3/4" out from the corners, it appears to be no darker than the shade 9 setting, maybe even lighter. The manual says that the edges may be slightly lighter and that the best viewing is looking straight thru; but, shoot, that defeats the purpose of having a large window. I can't look thru the lens up or down, just straight thru (which isn't always possible).

    I'm thinking about returning my helmet for another brand. So, have you all noticed similar results in Nexgens or any other brand of helmet ?

  • #2
    I would! My Speedglas is complete edge to edge, and the hood is pliable, not rigid, makes sticking my melon inside chassis tight spots much easier! The best three I have seen in rescently are the 1}Miller big window elite, 2}Speedglas 9002x, 3}Optrel satalite.

    My advice is buy a Big window elite, can't go wrong with advice from ANDY and HAWK!!!


    • #3
      I also have a speedglass (9002x). Just like pjseaman mentioned the lens
      is dark from edge to edge. I've been real happy with this helmet.


      • #4
        I have the Miller Xlix stars and stripes and mine is the same way some spots are dark and some are lighter than others I am gonna be calling miller about it.


        • #5
          Auto Dark

          I have the same problem with my Jackson EQC helmets. The problem actaully happens at random, which is a bit scarey. I didn't realize the Speedglass helmets were flexible until I tried one...if I had only known. My next helmet will be a Speedglass without a doubt.

          Spectrum 2050
          Dynasty 200DX
          Mutiple Miller Coffee Cups!

          Dynasty SD
          Millermatic 130

          "Too Bad Those Who Know It All Can't Do it All"


          • #6

            I've had the opportunity to use and test several brands and models of auto darkening helmets: Kemper "Auto Dark 650", Optrel "Satellite", Miller "Big Window Elite", and two Jackson EQC models - a fixed shade 10 / 9-13 variable shade. All of these units I used are of fine quality and function except the Jackson EQC hoods. Both Jacksons were light around the edges as you described and the variable shade would turn dark and shut down after 5-10 minutes of arc time.

            My dealer contacted Jackson about the EQC problems and told me they (Jackson) admitted to having such problems and would replace the newer unit free of charge while a $75 exchange fee would be required for the variable shade unit since it was out of the warranty period of 12 months.

            These problems with the Jackson helmets occured several years ago and I cannot speak for their newest product line up, but it appears that quality control and or something else has not improved.

            I had the opportunity to examine PJ's Speedglass and really liked it. After a couple of failed attempts to test such a fine helmet I have resigned to be content with my two current favorites: the Optrel " Satellite" and my Miller "Big Window Elite".


            • #7
              I purchased a Jackson NexGen with the four independent sensors just over a year ago. Part # 07449468. I have just had it replaced with a new one Dec. 04 through Jackson warranty center 800-323-1742, my contact was a gentlemen by the name of Doug. The problem was it would not turn off and the LCD display just blinked with a couple arrows and the number 11. I had to remove the batteries to turn it off.

              My old one and the new one I have now do not have the problem you are experiencing. Just 10 minutes ago I stuck an arc and moved the hood from corner to corner a couple of times to make sure I did not have the same problem as you are experiencing. I did not see any difference in the arc brightness/intensity.

              I mainly purchased the Jackson over the Speedglass becase the Jackson used standard cover plates and the Speedglass used a more expensive dedicated cover plate and if I remember correctly, a cheater lens is held to the outside of the shade assembly by the cover lens. When I tried the Speedglass with a cheater, I saw a ghost image similar to the old TV’s with the antenna out of adjustment. I have enough trouble welding as it is without that distraction.

              I like the Jackson lens. I do not care for the helmet head gear and the heavy weight of the hood.

              Also I could not find in my manual anything about the edges being slightly lighter.

              I would at least call the warrantee center, and if need be return the helmet.

              Hope this helps.


              • #8
                I had a Jackson EQC Master HTLS some time ago and had problems with light areas, and also the battery box was so tight that the battries would move and stick so that the thing would not work until the batteries were moved back into contact. For the past year I have had a Optrel Satilite and it has always been just right. I have a cheater installed in it, and it works great, I like the fact that there is no on/off switch and no auto turn off feature (?) either. You just put it on and start welding, I store in in an dark garage and have had no problems that might be caused by lack of light charging it. The headgear is first class also. Before I purchased it, I tested the speedglas 9000X and the latest Miller (the elite was not out then), I liked the speedglas and could have lived with it no problem but I didn't like the Miller's headgear. I have since tested the Miller Elite and IMO it is much improved over the old one and I could live it one also with no problem.
                Regards, George

                Hobart Handler 210 w/DP3035 - Great 240V small Mig
                Hobart Handler 140 - Great 120V Mig
                Hobart Handler EZ125 - IMO the best 120V Flux Core only machine

                Miller Dynasty 200DX with cooler of my design, works for me
                Miller Spectrum 375 - Nice Cutter


                • #9
                  I'll chime in about the Jackson hoods and the problems i have had. I have the executive EQC, and am on my third lense. Each time the lense went bad it started out by not getting completely dark, the 12 shade was more of a 9. Not long after i noticed that the lense just quit. Both times i had been welding in my garage in cooler temperatures, around 40 degrees, and twice the lense went bad.

                  Jackson replaced the lens under warranty, but i would rather not have to deal with replacing it. Now i know better than to use the jackson in the garage in the winter, or late fall or early spring... Too bad Miller doens't have a competitor trade-in program, i sure would like to swap it out for a BWE.


                  • #10
                    are other helmets light in this way . . .

                    I appreciate everyone's comments. I got the lens replaced and the same thing is happening. grrrr.

                    When I look straight thru the center of my NexGen, I can see light coming thru the bottom corners at a much lighter shade. If I take the helmet off and look straight thru the corners then they appear dark. I can understand that LCD screens have limited viewing angles; but, I don't haven't seen this problem even in cheap-o helmets.

                    So just to be sure, do you folks ever notice light spots in the lens when welding with your Miller Big Window Elite, SpeedGlas, or Optrels?


                    • #11
                      Neither of my auto hoods do what you describe, talk to the dealer maybe they will help you out.



                      • #12
                        No problems yet like that with my xlix...Had battery problems w/brand new batteries. Good luck....
                        Wheat Stalker

                        Millermatic 210
                        Dynasty 200DX
                        Fisher CZ-5...CZ-3D..
                        Trek 5500
                        1966 Amphicar


                        • #13
                          sticking up for my jackson

                          i started my auto lens experience with a huntsman auto view and it worked great for a few months before i started having problems with i delt with that for awhile until i got my first jackson eqc witch the only real problem i had was the battery compartment.then i got rich and bought my current nex gen.i also bought a miller elite stars and stripes and then the speedglass.both of witch are great lens's but niether of them fit as well as the for the light spots around the edges dose that really effect your vision to the point of it being a problem.i weld almost all day every day and have had no ill effects from this.
                          clifford welding & steel fabrication


                          • #14
                            I have a newer NexGen (~4 months old) and have not had any problems with it. I have been welding out in my garage where the temperature is cold to very cold, and have not noticed any ill effects. Not to say that you are mistreating it, but has it been dropped or anything? How well do these hold up to a drop? I treat mine like it is a Starret mic, or other fine piece of equipment.


                            • #15
                              While I don't disagree with you Joshua, I don't treat mine quite that sweet. I stick my melon in some inhospitable places and rattle my head pretty bad some times. Working on race cars and such can be tough to get around inside of. I have had my Speedglas 9000x for about 3 years and not so much as a hint of trouble{knock on wood}, it hasn't had an easy life and it works which is the mark I measure all things by. Find something that works and stick with it until it lets you down then try something else! My eyes are my windows to the world and I protect them with all I have, whatever it costs it is worth it.