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Your welding hood will be your most prized possession and i strongly recommend buying a nice one the first time around. Hood prices can very quiet a bit but for a quality hood i would expect to pay $200+. For more information on welding hoods check out my post "Welding Hood Selection".
Welding gloves come in all sorts of varieties, some providing more heat protection while other off more dexterity. I recommend going to a local welding or hardware store to try on different gloves. Depending on the type of Welding you do you may need more heat protection than others. For a quick example, if your doing more TIG Welding than you want Gloves that have good dexterity so you can feel the filler rod when feeding the front edge of the puddle.
Check out the affiliate links below to see the different welding gloves i have personally put to the test over the past 4 years.
TIG Welding Gloves: John Tillman TruFit
MIG / STICK Welding Gloves: Lincoln Electric Heat Resistant
Another needed Welding tool is safety glasses. Not much to say here but buy a pair you would wear out to dinner because you want to be wearing them a majority of your time in this type of work. Some way, some how, a little piece of metal always finds its way into the majority of eyes and getting them removed is not fun.
KleenGuard Maverick Safety Glasses
Leathers are always a great thing to have, they are especially common in Stick Welding and MIG welding. These two processes tend to be hot and cause a lot of sparks so having extra layer of leather or cape sleeves will keep you protected from dancing around when that molten puddle comes after you.
Now there are a few names for this tool but i always called them "Welpers" other wise known as "Welder Helpers". These are specific welding pliers that work as a tool for all welding processes and welding equipment.
I recommended a Nicer set down below because i have bought the cheap ones and they tend to break and lose their spring.
Having a solid steel 65 pound gate post come smashing down on your toes does not feel good, please go shopping and try on boots until you are satisfied because smashing your toe or foot can be painful and have a long recovery process depending on the severity. (Take it from me)
A squaring tool is an important beginner tool because it allows you to become familiar with triangulation and measurements, a common overlooked Skill to this trade.
There are many different types online so i will put an affiliate link below to show you the style i use.
Sharpies are great for writing on metal when measuring for cutting, bending, and drilling holes. I always have at least two on me at all times and they always come in handy. Drawing sketches on your welding table can help get you a better vision of parts you may be fabricating or designing.
Another measuring tool that you must always have handy is a Taper Measure. No, not that old one you found in your garage. The reason i say this is because tape measure's can actually "Go Bad". After while the measurements tend to lose accuracy and could be off by over 1/8" ! So with that being said go get a quality tape measure Like Stanley FatMax.
Welding itself isn't necessarily a loud process, although welding on AC in certain situations can be loud, grinding metal and shop machinery can be very hard on your hearing so in order to save your ears from possible damage, i strongly recommend getting the 3m Ear-defender or something similar.
Yes a little cliche, but so true! Knowledge is only power if properly learned and applied. You cant just expect to be a good welder because you have the gear, this trade can be dangerous if you lack the education to safely operate welders and other machinery in this industry. Take the initiative and always strive to learn more about this trade and all related so that you can be skilled both physically and mentally.
Leathers / Cape Sleeves: $30-75
Safety Glasses: $7-20
Steel Toes Boots: $80-200
Tape Measure: $20
This is an average price you can expect to pay for all this gear expecting you buy in the price ranges given above. Comment below other essential tools i left out that you use.
Keep on welding Addicts!