3M Speedglas 9100FX Review
3M makes some of the best welding helmets in the world and the 3M Speedglas 9100FX is no exception. Designed with the professional welder in mind, this hood is so feature-packed it comes with a DVD to help explain everything. What other company can say that? One of the most impressive features are the fixed-shade side windows that allow you to see more than 180 degrees around you. Complete with a flip-up front face shield to allow for quick switching between tasks this is one hood that wont disappoint.
- Huge viewing area (9100X lens)
- Redesigned flip-up shield geometry
- Superior optical performance
- Front and side air exhaust vents
- Highly adjustable headgear
- Spark and spatter resistant fabric head cover
- Respirator ready
Huge Viewing Area
Having a large viewing area is vital in producing your best quality work. The 3M Speedglas 9100FX not only has a huge auto darkening lens but is equipped with fixed shade side windows to give you unparalleled views if your work area. The side windows, which are shade 5, allow you to see more than 180 degrees with your peripheral vision keeping you safe from unexpected hazards that you might otherwise not see.
Redesigned Flip-Up Face Shield
Just one of the many features that make the 3M Speedglas 9100FX great is the flip-up face shield. It allows you to position the mask down for welding and flip it up for other tasks, eliminating the need to take off the helmet. The clear protective visor underneath will keep you safe from other workplace hazards while saving you time and effort from constantly switching.
Front and Side Air Exhaust Vents
Depending on where you work it can get pretty steamy under that helmet. Fogging and gas buildup is a real problem and if it’s constantly happening you wont get much work done. Fortunately 3M has a solution. Featuring air exhaust vents on the front and side, it allows exhaled air to quickly leave the helmet and lets fresh air in, preventing lens fogging. The aerodynamic shell is designed to channel gas and toxic fumes away from the face.
Highly Adjustable Headgear
3M Speedglas headgear is extremely comfortable and highly adjustable to give you a perfect fit. The 9100FX features a swivel mounted smooth ratchet system to give you the ergonomic fit you need when welding all day. The large side knobs make keeping the front of the hood up easy even with gloves on.
Spark and Spatter Resistant Fabric Head Cover
This is an important feature if you plan on doing overhead welding. The head cover prevents sparks and spatter from burning your scalp so you can go home at the end of the day without burns.
The aerodynamic face shield design does a great job at deflecting fumes away from your face but it doesn’t prevent everything. More and more welders are choosing to use a respirator these days and the 3M Speedglas 9100FX is capable of just that. While it is expensive, your long-term health is more important than money.
With all the features the 3M Speedglas 9100FX has, the weight adds up quickly. At round 24 oz (683 g) it’s not the lightest hood around but it’s still light enough to use all day. Plus your neck muscles will strengthen the more you use it.
Again, the myriad of features this hood has means the price is quite high but your buying one of the best helmets on the market and it will last a long time if cared for properly.
Another home run for 3M. The Speedglas 9100FX is an incredible hood that outperforms almost all others out there. It has everything a professional welder could want, comfort, versatility, superior optical performance with an unmatched viewing field and more. The only real drawback is the price but for the amount of features you get and 3M’s dedication to quality, its more of an afterthought. This helmet is meant for the serious professional welder.
Specs and Features
Auto Darkening: Yes
Viewing Field: Width 4.2″ x Height 2.1″
Shade Range: 5, 8 – 13
Reaction Time: 0.001 seconds
Weight: 24.1 oz (683.1 g)
Power Source: Cr2030 3V lithium batteries (2)
Warranty: 2 years