8 Easy Steps To Paint Welding Helmets

As bizarre as it sounds, painting helmets isn’t very uncommon nowadays. What strikes me as a bit odd is how someone would go through the fuss of painting a welding helmet when it’s going to get scratched anyway.

Trust me, it’s weird to me as it is to you. However, I’ve met a few people who somehow felt the need to do so and got something pretty good out of it.

Interestingly enough, the thought of it bugged me for a few days. I was hesitant to try it but I caved and I’m glad I did because it’s easy as one, two, or three.

Do you want to try to paint your welding helmet yourself? In this article, I will walk you through its eight (8) easy steps.

How To Paint Welding Helmets: Follow the Steps

Below are the steps that you need to follow to make sure that you’re doing it the right way.

Gather Your Materials

Prepare everything that you will need and place them within your arm’s reach. All the essentials must be in one place. The materials needed to paint your welding helmet are:

1.  The welding helmet that will be painted

2. Fire-resistant primer

3. Cloth and water for cleaning

4. A brush, wheel, or Scotch Brite to clean and roughen up the helmet

5. Newspaper for the interior

6. Spray paint in the color of your choosing

7. Duct tape to add designs

Remove the Lens and Headgear

You may find this unnecessary but the paint and primer can leak or seep into your lens and headgear when your tape isn’t well intact. To avoid this from happening, remove your lens and headgear from your helmet. 

It’s quick and easy. Simply pop them both out and set them aside. If you’re afraid of causing any damage, double-check its user manual. It doesn’t hurt to go by the book sometimes.

Not all helmets are the same so you might as well check and then risk it together. Once removed, place them somewhere safe to keep them from getting any splashes of paint or primer that may potentially ruin them.

Clean and Roughen Up the Helmet

Who wants a helmet with blotches on them? I’m 100% sure that I don’t so if you feel the same way, be sure that your helmet is clean before applying anything to it. Not only is this hygienic, but it also gives you a smooth and professional finish.

To wipe away the dirt and grime, use a cloth and water. For the ones that don’t come off, use a soft-bristled brush, sponge, or another abrasive product to make sure that the surface is totally clean. These products may also roughen the helmet up a bit which allows the paint and primer to stick better.

Tape Newspaper to the Inside of the Helmet

When painting your helmet, it’s not just the lens and headgear that you need to consider. You also have to make sure that you don’t get any paint or primer on its interior. Although it doesn’t cause a safety hazard, getting any paint or primer on the inside won’t look good. 

How do we keep the interior from getting anything leaked in it? Tape some newspaper to the inside of the helmet. Stick the tape somewhere that doesn’t get in the way of the exterior paint job. Cover the entire surface of the interior to avoid any unwanted slip-ups. 

Apply Primer

For some people, applying primer is a step that can be skipped. The paint does stick without it but there’s a huge difference in the outcome of using a primer beforehand than painting the surface directly. The same is true when painting a house, fence, etc.

The initial coating ensures better adhesion. What’s holding others back from painting helmets is the fear of having to redo it over time or spending more on paint for multiple coatings. 

Using a primer saves you from all of that. It makes paint stick better leaving the surface smooth and glossy. Also, it increases the durability of the paint so you no longer have to worry about it getting scratched or chipped easily. 

Furthermore, primers give your welding helmet extra protection from cracks, dents, and scratches.

Apply a Few Layers of Filler Paint

If you’re not familiar with filler paints then we are on the same page. This is probably why this step is often overlooked. Filler paint, as its name suggests, fills the tiny nicks in the welding helmet.

Although this is not a solution to dents and cracks, this lets you use your welding helmet safely for as long as these nicks are minimal and are not on the lens.

Another great thing about using fillers is that it’s rust-resistant. It helps your helmet last longer without looking older. 

Spray Paint with Desired Color

When the filler has finally dried, it’s time to get down to business. Unleash the artist within! There are two options to choose from when it comes to painting your helmet: using a paintbrush and paint bottle or spray paint.  

Ideally, using spray paint is the way to go. It’s easier and faster, you only need 5-10 minutes and you’re done.

However, if you’re leaning towards a more artistic approach, using a paintbrush allows you to play around with your imagination. Either way, just be sure to apply enough coats of paint for bolder color and a longer-lasting effect.

Let it Dry

I understand how the waiting game can frustrate us more than the whole process itself. Having a newly painted helmet just makes us want to try it on right away to see how well it fits. However, if we don’t let it dry properly, we may find ourselves back in square one.

For the last step, we have to remember how far we’ve come and that giving it several hours to dry is nothing compared to starting all over again. Let’s not kid ourselves, patience is indeed a virtue. 

Once it has completely dried up, carefully place the lens and headgear back. Double-check to make sure that it’s been attached properly so as not to put yourself in harm’s way when welding. 

Steps to paint welding helmet

Safety Check

As per OSHA, it is likely safe to paint your welding helmets given that you do it under the recommended steps and following precautionary measures. Below are the things that must be remembered once you decide to paint your welding helmet:

• Always use fire-resistant paints and primers. This must be strictly observed to avoid the risk of catching on fire while welding and can cause a burn.

• Do not prime or paint helmets with dents and cracks. Helmets are protective gear which is why it is important to make sure that they are in perfect working condition. How ironic would it be if the thing that’s supposed to keep us safe is the same thing that puts us in danger?

• Do not let the paint affect your welding helmet in any way. The painting job must not jeopardize the safety that your helmet is supposed to provide. Do not let any paint stain the lens or any part of the helmet that may affect its efficacy as a protective gear.

Do you know? Usage of a proper helmet not only minimizes the risk of accidents but also helps in preventing undercutting.

Final Words

While painting welding helmets aren’t as posh as motorcycles and bicycles, it does give off quite satisfaction to those who share the same fascination

With the help of this article, free yourself from the worries of doing something out of the ordinary. There’s nothing wrong with giving it a try, nothing gets old if there isn’t anything new.

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