The choice of a welding glove for hand protection when welding depends on multiple factors. The factors themselves such as heat, temperature, flexibility, and comfort get determined by the type of welding you are doing. The main types of welding are MIG, STICK, and TIG.
MIG (Metal Inert Gas)
This welding method uses electricity to join metals by forming an arc between the metal and electrode. The electrode is consumed and is covered by metal inert gas. This welding method is preferred for long runs, but it is less precise. When grinding the weld, there is usually a lot cleaner. A lot of sparks are created when using MIG welding.
STICK (Shielded Metal Arc Welding)
Stick is the methods preferred when welding steel structures in building constructions. This method also uses electricity to create an arc that fuses two metals together. This method also generates a lot of heat and sparks. The electrode is consumable, and it is covered with flux.
TIG (Tungsten Inert Gas)
Tungsten Inert Gas welding uses a tungsten electrode to heat up a metal joint and fuse it. The tungsten electrode is not consumed because the b inert gas used to surround it displaces oxygen to prevent burning. This Tungsten does not melt because it has a higher melting point than the metals being welded. A lot of practice is required to master this welding technique.
Welding Glove Materials
There are different types of hides used for making welding gloves for hand protections. Each one of the hides has its advantage and disadvantage.
This hide offers high tensile strength and abrasion resistance characteristics. It is soft and supple and is proffered in TIG welding where dexterity is required to get the perfect weld.
This hide is rarely for making gloves, but it is tough and durable. Most gloves made of horse skin are used for TIG welding where dexterity is required. It is comfortable to wear under lower welding temperatures.
Pigskin is tough and performs very well in humid conditions. If you are ready to wear it continuously even when taking a break, it will serve you well in oily and wet conditions. It is ideal for TIG, Stick, and MIG welding.
Cowhide is durable and comfortable even though it is a little bit bulky. It has a variety of quality and uses as a welding glove material. It is commonly used in MIG and Stick welding.
This hide has one feature that is loved by all. It is soft and supple. It is great when dexterity is required and will not fatigue your hands. It is mostly preferred in TIG welding.
This hide does not harden as fast as cow hide when exposed to high heat during welding. That makes it suitable for prolonged welding when you want to avoid hand fatigue. It is a suitable material for welding gloves used in MIG and Stick because of it heat tolerance characteristic.
In welding, you first look at heat protection when choosing gloves. After that, you can consider hand movement for dexterity. That is because the high temperature experienced in MIG or Stick welding will affect the feel of the glove and by extension your comfort and safety of your skin. When choosing gloves, you are safer going by the type of animal hide used to make them than with the sewing technique used or inner lining used. The basic protection will come from the hide used to make the glove.
Gloves are everywhere you go. You will find them in almost any chain hardware store you go to in the country. Most gloves on display will be cheap in the range of $5. However, you should not be quick to buy them based on their price tag. Those wear off very fast and the low quality of the fabric used to make them is the reason behind the low price. The first step to take before looking at the price should be to find the glove made of the hide you want, then compare prices.
All types of animal hides get their characteristics from the split and grain. The split is the side that faces the flesh while the grain is the side that grows hair. Some hides have thicker splits than others while others have thicker grains than others. These differences will be evident in the comfort you feel when working with them.
Just like any other item you buy, always find out as much as you can from user reviews before purchasing a glove for hand protection when welding.