In fact, finding the right welding jacket might just be one of the most important part of your welding so let’s show you some great protective clothing and then we’ll get into what makes each uniquely suited for the people who might choose them. So . . .
Here are our reviews of the 4 best welding jackets on the market:
BLACK STALLION BSX® FR Welding Jacket
If you’re a light duty welder, then this budget option is probably exactly what you’re looking for. It’s light and breezy compared to most outer PPE and as long as you keep it all the way zipped it’ll protect from medium sparks and UV exposure.
The main draw of this one is the low price, but it’s the full package deal for the right person. The collar comes up tightly, it fits true, and it doesn’t look half bad when all is said and done. If you’re going to be spending the entire day doing heavy welding, however, it may be better to invest some more money in a slightly stronger option. Still, it remains one of the best welding jackets for the money.
Miller Welding Jacket, Navy, Cotton/Nylon, XL Welding Jacket
There’s a lot to be said for these cheaper cotton/nylon blended jackets. They protect quite well and they’re super easy to move in. This one is available for the larger people (medium-sized folks can find it here), but for those it’ll fit you’re in good hands. The extra tight fitted sleeves are a nice touch, although some may find that the collar is a little bit loose.
It holds up well enough for the occasional spark, but without spending three times the cost on a truly expensive coat you’re still not going to want to catch slag. UV burns shouldn’t be a problem, however, so if you want something for all day but light duty welding then you’ll be in good hands with this coat. It’ll give you the right welding protection that you’ll need.
Black Stallion 220CS Cowhide Welding Jacket Bib Combo
There’s no need to kid yourself, if you’re going to be doing serious, heavy duty welding then you’re going to be spending some serious money. But what you get with this Black Stallion is definitely worth it, and the included bib is just a bonus. UV burns aren’t even a concern no matter how long you’re at it and you’ll be protected from all but the nastiest of molten metal problems while wearing it.
The only problem with it seems to be that the cuff buttons don’t fit quite right on smaller arms, but chances are if you’re investing in a jacket of this caliber you’ll be able to find the right gloves to make everything work out just right. If you’re in industrial welding and can’t quite afford top tier gear yet, make this your first welding jacket and you won’t regret it. Hands down, it’s among the best welding jackets out there.
Caiman Black Boarhide – 30″Jacket, Welding Jacket
Unlike cowhide, boarhide offers an amazing amount of protection while still letting you move freely. This jacket will protect you from slag, UV radiation, and just about anything else you might encounter during a normal day while looking stylish enough to be worn just about anywhere.
The cost is up there, but that’s for a reason: it’s a flexible, powerfully protective jacket that won’t have you overheating or worrying about the slings and arrows of your job. Give it a shot—you won’t be disappointed.
The Welding Jacket—Cornerstone of Welding Protection Clothing
Gloves and masks are pretty much a given, but more than one individual has made the mistake of trying to weld in just a shirt. This might be fine for brazing a joint, but if your job has you running a welder all day then you need more protection than you might think.
Welding Jacket Material Matters
Cotton/Nylon blends offer a lot of protection from sparks. What they don’t do is make sure that you’re truly protected from slagor UV radiation. Except for jackets that cost just as much as the generally superior leather ones, you’ll find out something surprising: long term exposure to UV radiation over the course of a day can still give you a mild burn through these lighter materials.
It’s not much of a concern for those who are only occasionally welding, but it can be a serious concern for some welders.
Leather is a great material for protection. You won’t get a UV burn through it and it will definitely keep you protected from sparks and often even sizable chunks of slag. The problem with it is that it gets hot and it’s relatively stiff, which makes things a little bit harder on the welder.
It’s pretty much the bare minimum you should aim for if you’re working in an industrial environment however and it can be relied on.
Of more interest to most career welders, however, is boarhide, which offers nearly one hundred percent of the protective qualities of leather while still being lightweight. This is the material of choice for those who can afford it. It’s a great material although it gets very expensive if you’re looking at truly industrial set ups.
Welding Jacket Fitting Concerns
Fit is also important. High collars can keep a hot spark from going down your shirt, and close fitting buttons are super important as a protective measure.
Cuffs are another thing which need to be held together super well, but these can be mitigated to some extent by having the correct gloves.
If this is your first case of buying PPE for welding, just make sure that any disadvantages offered by the items you go with can be mitigated by the rest of your gear.
Sadly, welding is inherently a dangerous profession, but you can reduce most of the risk to yourself with the right choice of gear. Finding the best welding jacket around is one of the best ways to begin with this, so make sure that you make the right choice and you’ll be much happier once you get on the job. Good luck!