Huntsman W20 490P Welding Helmet Review
Carbon fiber body
10% of this welding helmet is made from recycled carbon fiber, which makes it both environmentally friendly and extremely durable. This strength means that it will resist everyday wear and tear for decades, so you won’t have to worry about spending out on a new helmet anytime soon.
Many professional welding helmets can be very heavy to wear for long periods of time, but the carbon fiber content makes this one a little lighter. It weighs just 2.3 lbs, making welding much more comfortable and pleasant than if you chose to wear another heavier helmet. This is something your neck will really notice at the end of a long day!
Fit into tight spaces
Huntsman have made this helmet to include a quick-slide filter plate holder, which makes it smaller and sleeker than many other models. As a result, it’s perfect for small or narrow working environments, where space is at a premium. Although its carbon fiber content makes this helmet much more resilient than others, bumping and scuffing it in tight spaces isn’t something that you’ll have to worry about anymore!
This helmet is really impressive in terms of comfort while you’re actually working. It deflects heat, smoke and particles, which keeps you remarkably cool and fresh, even after a long day’s welding. It’s fantastic to find a welding helmet that’s cool, comfortable and lightweight, at the same time as being protective!
Easy switching between lenses
You don’t even have to take off your gloves to switch between the dark welding lens and the clear face shield with this helmet! The welding lens is set to dark shade 10, which gives plenty of protection for the eyes. To return to the clear lens for grinding, there’s a lever on top of the helmet that needs to be swiped, and it’s as simple as that! Your helmet can stay in place the whole time, which will save you lots of time.
Some welding helmets don’t stand up to high temperatures or heavy-duty welding, but this helmet is far sturdier than you might think. It is suitable for heavy-duty welding, withstanding years’ worth of work, which makes it ideal for professional welders who are looking for a long-term helmet that won’t need replacing anytime soon.
Although this welding helmet is made with a fixed shade lens, it is possible to adapt it to become an auto-darkening helmet if you wish. This can be done by adding an auto-darkening insert, which performs the same job as a regular auto-darkening lens would – except that it’s not permanently fitted to the helmet. You should be aware that this insert would add considerable extra bulk and weight to the helmet, but it’s a great option to have if you don’t mind strengthening your neck muscles a little more!
One of the best parts about this helmet is that it doesn’t cost the Earth! Being priced very reasonably, it offers great quality at an affordable price for beginners, while being excellent value for money for professionals.
Not suitable for overhead working
Caution should be taken if you attempt to wear this helmet while doing overhead welding. It hasn’t been designed with that purpose in mind, which leaves you exposed to burns and splashes. However, some users have reported that it is possible, so it does just require some care and common sense!
Not suitable for damp environments
If you do a lot of outdoor welding, then you’ll know how important it is to have a welding helmet that can withstand all the elements. Sadly, this helmet isn’t really suitable for use in damp or wet environments. That said, this will be a triviality for many people, as it’s difficult to get a lot of welding done in the wet anyway!
With so many auto-darkening helmets available on the market, it might seem like a step backwards for Huntsman to have made a helmet without this feature. However, in doing so, they have dramatically reduced the price, making it much more affordable. With the option to add an auto-darkening insert if required, this problem can easily be overcome, giving you the same effect as a more expensive auto-darkening helmet but without the hefty price tag.
Doesn’t flip up
This helmet isn’t fitted with a flip-up lens, which means it just takes that little bit longer to inspect your work each time. Over the course of a day or a week, those few extra seconds quickly add up, costing you valuable time. However, on the flip side (pun fully intended!) this design feature has made the helmet much smaller and more compact than others which do have flip-up lenses.
Prone to breaking
Some users have noticed that the quick-slide filter plate holder is prone to breaking relatively easily – withstanding far less wear and tear than you’d expect. At first this might be frustrating and disappointing, but if you’re willing to put in a small amount of effort, this can be fixed very easily, greatly increasing the lifespan of your helmet.
No magnifying lens
The fixed shade lens that comes as standard on this helmet is pretty basic; it does what it says on the tin, and that’s about it. If you want to try some close-up welding, then you’ll need to pick up a magnifying lens separately. This is an extra hassle that you could really do without, but these lenses aren’t particularly expensive or difficult to find.
Some people have suggested that this isn’t the most appealing helmet to look at. It doesn’t come with a glossy finish or a range of colour choices. However, functionality is more important than looks – and ultimately its appearance is a matter of personal preference anyway!
- Weight: 2.3 lbs (1 kg)
- Dark shade 10
- Material: 10% recycled carbon fiber
- Lens size: 2″ x 4.25″ (5.1 cm x 10.8 cm)
- Color: black
- Fixed front mounting
- Made in the USA
All things considered, this is a fairly basic model with a range of traditional features. It doesn’t come with all the bells and whistles that you might be familiar with in newer designs, but sometimes something simple and straightforward is all you need.
Regardless of whether you find this helmet adequate in terms of features or not, one thing’s guaranteed: with a name like Huntsman, you’re going to get good quality. It’s stood the test of time, so although it might be prone to everyday wear and tear (what helmet isn’t?) it’s very durable overall.
Being so inexpensive, this helmet offers great value for money, especially in terms of quality and the fact that it’s designed for heavy-duty welding. Finding such a tough, resilient helmet for such a low price is very rare, which makes it a worthy purchase if you’re able to overlook its lack of top-of-the-market technology!