TIG welding uses a much smaller torch than MIG and thus being able to manipulate the torch with your welding gloves is an important factor. So, while it is possible to use a universal glove or MIG welding gloves, this could impinge upon your hand movement / dexterity when TIG welding. When choosing a glove for TIG the choices of brand and quality are considerable. Gloves from renowned names such as miller TIG welding gloves, Black Stallion and Tillman amongst others, through to lesser known brands, but often comparable quality.
Lincoln Electric K2981-L
Close fitting goat skin grain leather which provide optimal feel for TIG welding. Split cuff and sewn with Kevlar thread.
Revco BSX BT50
Kidskin Leather + Cotton
Very comfortable premium Kidskin and cotton gloves that fit like a second skin providing great dexterity.
Miller 263354 Arc Armor
Great dexterity provided by this close fitting glove that are insulated on the inside and Kevlar stitched.
Durable TIG welding gloves with enhanced feel. Has seamless forefinger and is Kevlar stitched
The glove choice for many people who TIG weld is a glove with a goatskin exterior. This is because it helps the easy management for the precision required by the welder when using the TIG torch. This is because the TIG glove is designed for the welder to easily pick up his welding rod and hold it while doing his work and at the same time allowing his torch arm to concentrate the heat at exactly the point required. This glove does not provide a great protection against hot splatter that can occur in other welding processes.
There are various grades in these gloves and some are manufactured with extra lining material to counter more hazardous welding conditions. An example of this would be a lining of the glove to be made in a material like Kevlar to counter small cuts which can occur when the welder is handling sharp material.
Why Kevlar Thread is Important
The best welding gloves also use Kevlar as a thread. This stops the thread flaming / igniting which means the joints of the glove will hold together under extreme heat. It is important for TIG welders to wear a glove that fits the hand correctly. If one is doing a lot of welding it is quite possible to have a glove made specially for the operator by a welding glove manufacturer (Superior Gloves provide this service) as no two person’s hands of the same. If one is buying a standard stock glove, and it is slightly loose on the hand, one can purchase a nylon inner glove to take up the space.
The bottom line is for the best hand protection and ability to produce top quality work it pays to invest in the equipment which is purposefully made for the job.
Tig Welding Gloves Questions
Here are a few frequently asked questions about tig welding gloves.
What kind of gloves are best for all types of welding?
Since you are just starting, I assume you will start SMAW first. I would recommend a pair of good quality leather gloves sewn together with Kevlar. I prefer using leather mitts. Once in GMAW the leather gloves will be ok until you start FCAW. Lots of protection needed there. You would want to have a pad to prevent damaging your gloves for that process. And once you get to GTAW, You will need a lair of fine leather gloves that fit comfortable and are very clean. Because the TIG torch is much smaller and you will need to be able to manipulate the tig torch very carefully. That is why they make so many types of gloves.
Is a mig glove good enough?
The glove will be ok for tig welding and oxy fuel welding.
For stick welding you will find that the mig glove is not insulated enough from the heat stick welding produces.
There is available an aluminazed heat shield that pulls over the four fingers on any glove.
It is about 4″ by 5″ with elastic straps.
I use one of these in addition to a heavy welding glove when running a 1/16″ mig wire welder.
Another thing that works well is a regular pair of cheap cotton back leather gloves.
Smear a light coating of any kind of silicone caulking/ sealer over the top/ cotton part of the glove and let it cure over night.
The coating of silicone will prevent sparks from burning holes in the cotton.
These gloves for a dollar in bulk are great.
A heavy pair of the bulky welding gloves is something that you will find you need.
Also available is a bag of either left hand or right hand welding gloves.
Before I found this option I had 10 pair of gloves, the left hand one ruined and the right hand one like new.
I hold the stinger in my right hand and guide my right hand with my left and the left hand glove takes the most abuse.
The glove is likely to be okay for TIG but with the increased heat and splatter that MIG or High Heat welding produces it may well not be sufficient. If you feel that it is not up to the job for MIG then look for a more robut psair of gloves.