Optrel e680 Auto-Darkening Welding Helmet Review
A vast improvement over the previous Optrel Satellite, the Optrel e680 welding helmet outperforms its predecessor in just about every field. From the auto-darkening lens to the highly adjustable hood, the Optrel e680 provides comfort as well and convenience for all welding jobs, including TIG, MIG, Stick welding and a whole lot more.
Once worn, there is no need to remove the helmet until the job’s done, as the controls on the outer shell of the helmet, along with the external remote provide all the adjustability you might need without removing the mask or your gloves. Also, the true-color filter offers a crisp, bright view, allowing you to see the weld puddle with ease in all lighting conditions.
The Good: External remote and helmet controls for quick adjustments
The external remote includes an adjustable sensitivity slider, time delay, grinding mode, and a whole lot more without the need to remove your helmet. The helmet itself is also built with controls for fine adjustments to the auto-darkening shade (from 5-13 DIN), and all changes can be made without removing the mask or gloves, enabling maximum efficiency and convenience.
Not often will you encounter a helmet with such a high-quality true-color display. The Optrel e680 provides a bright, detailed view of the weld puddle and machine controls, and red LEDs on the welding machine, notoriously difficult to read with your welding helmet on, can be easily understood without removing the mask.
Multi-use due to grinding mode and shade levels from 5-13 DIN
The Optrel e680 can be used for just about any job you can throw at it, from stick welding, MIG, TIG, GMAW, Flux Cored Wire Welding, Plasma Arc Welding, Micro Plasma Arc Welding, Plasma cutting, Gas welding and it even has a Grinding mode. This indeed is one of the most versatile welding helmets on the market today.
UV and IR protection with every shade level setting
The safety of your face and eyes are a priority for the Optrel e680 mask. The hood protects from all forms of radiation you would encounter in a welding environment, including heat, UV, IR, sparks, and debris.
The Bad: Not suitable for laser welding
Despite being suitable for just about any job you might imagine, the Optrel e680 has one flaw, and that is that it should not be used for laser welding. So, if laser welding is something you will need to do, make sure you have an alternate helmet suitable to the task, or skip the Optrel e680 altogether.
10 seconds to “wake up.”
As per the user manual, the helmet needs around 10 seconds to power upon first use. This might not be suitable for all situations, for example, if you tend to weld in a dimly-lit environment where you need the helmet to be fully functional immediately. Despite this slight inconvenience, there are very few cases where this is an issue.
Features and Specifications:
Viewing Area: 2x4in (50x100mm)
Filter Shades: 4, 5-13 DIN
Arc Sensors: 2
Power: Solar cells with replaceable lithium batteries
Battery life: 2500h
Warranty: 3 years (except batteries)
Grinding mode supported
Included With Helmet:
Protective lens cover
Perfect for expert welders, the Optra e680 brings a lot of bang for your buck. Its a versatile helmet suitable for almost any function, includes ground support, a true-color filter, auto-darkening filter with adjustable sensitivity and delayed response, and many more features. Although it takes a few seconds to power up, once it has, it’s ready for anything.
With a focus on safety, comfort, and versatility, the Optra e680 does a great job of being the multi-use helmet it was always meant to be.
Jimmy Diresta is one of the most skilled and riveting DIYers around with projects on his YouTube channel that range from a steel and wood bench seat to an aluminum ax. His 10 DIY bottle openers remain one of our all-time favorites.
Diresta is an expert working with any type of material, but it’s his metalworking prowess that’s the most compelling. He makes cutting, carving, and welding look so easy—even though its something that only comes after years working with steel.
So we reached out to Jimmy to get his opinion on what you should have in your workshop if you want to hack up sheets of steel like the best of them. Here are his five must-have metalworking tools to get started.
First and foremost, you’ll want to invest in a proper bandsaw for cutting metal. It’s much more effective and safer than a cut off wheel, or any handheld saw. It doesn’t matter if it’s new, used, cheap, or expensive. Just always remember to use oil! If you can get your hands on a Delta Rockwell 14″ bandsaw, you’re golden.
On top of what he told us, Diresta shares his favorite bandsaw tips in this helpful video for folks who are just getting started. It covers everything from adjusting and changing the blade, to learning how to use it.
When it comes to grinding, Diresta recommends a 1/4-inch die grinder and selection of burrs. Solid carbide will make any weld look beautiful if appropriately grounded. Choose an electric or air die grinder, either works great.
Nibblers’ have got a goofy name, but that doesn’t make them any less valuable in the metalworking trade. Nibblers are effective at cutting shapes in steel and can be used as a standalone tool, a drill attachment, or an air nibbler.
At the heart of metalworking is welding. Diresta recommends starting with a flux core welder which is simple and easy to understand. No gas is required, and the flux core in the middle of the wire acts as the “shielding.” Our welding guide will take you through the first steps.
Last but not least, a press brake is a useful tool for when you want to bend sheet metal. You’ll need some room in your shop to keep one and a friend to help you move it, but there’s no better way to shape metal as you see fit.
A similar blog post we wrote Welding Terminology and Abbreviations
Australian General Engineering is a Melbourne based General Engineering business that provides a comprehensive range of complete sheet metal fabrication Services