10 Best Welding Tools For Beginners

10 Best Welding Tools For Beginners

Table of Contents > 1. What Are The Welding Tools?
2. 10 Essential Welding Tools For Beginners
    2.1 Auto-darkening Welding Helmet
    2.2 Welding Gloves
    2.3 Metal Wire Brush
    2.4 Chipping Hammer
    2.5 MIG Welding Pliers
    2.6 Welding Clamps
    2.7 Angle Grinder
    2.8 Metal File
    2.9 Measuring Tools
    2.10 Marking Tools
    2.11 Bonus Recommendation: A Welding Table or Workbench
3. Conclusion
🧐10 Best Welding Tools For Beginners FAQ

When you think of welding, the first things that come to mind are the welding machine, gun or torch, and electrodes. But welding is more than just these. There are numerous practical tools that can assist you and ensure your safety during the welding operation.

In the past, welding was considered an expensive career since you had to pay quite a few bucks for all the equipment. However, as a beginner, you'll need only a few other tools besides the welder.

That's why we present a list of 10 best welding tools for beginners. Some are must-haves, while others will help you learn welding, so buckle up!

Some Common Welding Tools

Source: https://www.instructables.com/Welding-Tools-and-Materials/

What Are The Welding Tools?

First, let's briefly explain what the welding tools are. As a beginner, you should make a difference between the welding equipment and welding tools. Welding equipment represents your welder, welding torches, MIG guns, electrodes, etc. 

Manufacturers today, including YesWelder, provide you with all the welding equipment you need to weld straight out of the box. Still, there are some additions, such as a spool gun, different TIG torches, and more, which you can buy separately to improve your welding.

On the other hand, welding tools are additional tools such as pliers, grinders, or chipping hammers. Compared to essential welding equipment, you can weld without tools, but they can make your welding operation much more manageable. There are many practical welding tools today, but we will focus only on essential welding tools for beginners and new welders.

Welding tools

Credit @The Engineers Post on Pinterest

10 Essential Welding Tools For Beginners

1. Auto-darkening Welding Helmet

A welding helmet fits better into a protective welding equipment category, but this is also an additional tool every welder, including beginners, should have. We put the welding helmet on our list of welding tools since it is essential for safe welding, and you rarely get one when buying your first welder. 

The welding arc produces intense light, UV, and IR radiation that can significantly damage your eyes and burn your face if you stand too close to the weld. A welding helmet is a simple but effective solution to this. The helmet has a built-in lens that protects your eyes and covers your face to protect it from burns.

Welding arcs emit harmful radiation, risking eye and facial burns if too close.
Source: https://photonweld.com/safety-health-at-laser-welding-protection-and-regulations-at-laser-welding/protection-for-your-eyes-against-laser-light-from-laser-welding

For the new welders and beginners, we recommend an auto-darkening welding helmet, such as YesWelder M800HP. The auto-darkening function is an excellent feature for all welders, including the newbies. The helmet is initially light, which helps you center your torch and start the weld. When you start the arc, the sensors detect the arc and turn on the darkening function to protect your eyes.  

YesWelder LYG-M800HP Auto-Darkening Welding Helmet


YesWelder LYG-M800HP Auto-Darkening Welding Helmet

As a result, many welders who swapped their old helmets for auto-darkening ones say: "I was blind, and now I can see!" We strongly recommend auto-darkening helmets to all welders, including beginners. When not wearing the helmet in your workshop, at least use safety glasses to protect your eyes from grinding and cutting sparks and debris.

2. Welding Gloves

Welding gloves are also an essential part of PPE or Personal Protective Equipment, and they are certainly a helpful welding tool each beginner should have. Arc welding processes, such as MIG welding or Stick welding, use the heat of an arc to melt and fuse pieces. The emitted heat can burn your hands, and flying sparks and spatter are no joke.

Stick Welding Process

Stick Welding Process
Photo by @datboimiggz (TikTok)

That's why you should always use welding gloves during the welding. While any gloves are better than welding with bare hands, several types will make your welding easier.

  • MIG Welding Gloves: MIG welding is typically carried out at moderate amperage (140-200 amps), so it produces a moderate amount of heat. As a result, MIG welding gloves don't need any special features or protection, so you can use universal welding gloves such as YesWelder AP-1201.


YesWelder AP-1201 Welding Gloves


 YesWelder AP-1201 Welding Gloves 

  • Stick Welding Gloves: Stick welding is known for its penetration and performance on thicker metals. This is a cheap and quick process, but it can be messy and hot. Therefore, stick welding gloves must be made of thicker, heat-resistant leather. Thick gloves protect your hands from intense heat, sparks, and spatter, and we recommend YesWelder AP-1166.
YesWelder AP-1166 Welding Gloves

YesWelder AP-1166  Welding Gloves 

  • TIG Welding Gloves: TIG welding is the preferred method for thin and delicate metals, performed at lower amperages. As a result, GTAW welding gloves don't need to be thick. Quite the opposite, TIG gloves should be thinner to promote manual dexterity, which is required to deal with the high skill requirements of this welding technique.

The rest of the protective equipment includes welding boots, welding sleeves, and a welding jacket. While these are essential parts of PPE, using long sleeves and any closed boots will do just fine for you as a beginner.

Wearing PPE during Welding
Wearing PPE during Welding 
Photo by@arc_addicts (TikTok)

3. Metal Wire Brush

A wire brush is a simple welding tool that can significantly improve your welds. You will need it during weld preparation and post-weld cleaning.

A wire brush

During the preparation, use a brush to remove light contamination, paint, or surface rust from the base metal surface. A clean surface before welding equals clean welds and less time in post-weld cleaning.

In post-weld cleaning, a wire brush can remove light spatter, char, and slag from the base metal and weld. As a result, it's a multi-purpose tool that can greatly help you achieve clean welds.

A welding wire brush cleaning up the metal surface after welding.
A welding wire brush cleaning up the metal surface after welding.

When buying a wire brush, consider the type of metal you are welding. A simple metal wire brush is suitable for mild steel or carbon steel. However, always use a stainless steel brush if you are welding stainless steel or aluminum. If you plan on welding both aluminum and stainless steel, use two separate stainless steel brushes to prevent contamination.

4. Chipping Hammer

A chipping hammer is a practical welding tool used to remove slag in processes such as Stick welding or Flux-cored Arc welding. The slag is formed once the self-shielded wire or electrode flux solidifies on top of the weld. While this layer protects the molten metal from atmospheric contamination, you should remove it after welding, especially in multi-pass welding.

A Chipping Hammer
A Chipping Hammer 
Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZDH4qp7FULQ

The slag is easily removed by a chipping hammer, which typically has a flat and pointed side. Each side is dedicated to a different type of slag, and a couple of strikes will usually do the trick. 

Use chipping hammer to remove the welding slag.
Use chipping hammer to remove the welding slag.
Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZDH4qp7FULQ

The handle of the chipping hammer can be flat or shock absorbent. If you do a lot of chipping, choose the one with shock absorbent to avoid repetitive overuse injuries.

5. MIG Welding Pliers

MIG pliers are one of the welding tools you often see in hardware stores, but you never thought how useful they can be in welding, especially GMAW. These pliers have several circular clamps, a wire-cutting part, and a pointy tip that will help you with the following things in MIG welding:

Welding Pliers
Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G_c2tIdCIWc
  • Wire cutting: use the cutter to trim the stick-out after installing a new spool of MIG wire.
Use pliers to cut wire.
Use pliers to cut wire.
Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_5yeJl8vPVQ
  • Nozzle changing: circular clamps will help you grip and unscrew the clogged or damaged MIG nozzle. This is particularly helpful if the nozzle is too tight or still hot from welding.
Use pliers to change nozzle.
Use pliers to change nozzle.
Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G_c2tIdCIWc
  • Managing MIG contact tip: circular clamps will also help you tighten or loosen the contact tip, providing the best wire feed and current transfer to your wire.
Use pliers to change contact tip.
Use pliers to change contact tip.
Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G_c2tIdCIWc
  • Removing spatter from nozzle: A spatter can build up in the nozzle if you are holding a MIG gun too close to the weld, which is typical for beginners who are still learning how to weld. You can use pliers to remove light slag from the nozzle.
Use pliers to remove spatter from nozzle.
Use pliers to remove spatter from nozzle.
Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_5yeJl8vPVQ

6. Welding Clamps

Welding clamps are valuable tools that will significantly help you keep your welding pieces in place. Clamping everything down before welding will greatly improve your welding precision, which is crucial when welding as a beginner.

Welding Clamps

Depending on the project, you will need several clamps, and there are various types. However, the most commonly used clamp is the well-known C-Clamp. It is unparalleled in terms of accessibility and simplicity, and it is beneficial if you have a welding table. Besides welding, this clamp is used in many other metal fabrication applications due to its exerted pressure from above and below, which tightly holds the welded pieces in place.

Welding magnets are not typical clamps that will fixate the base pieces to the surface. They will allow you to align and fixate two or more pieces you are about to weld. Magnets are handy when aiming to weld pieces at an angle that requires support. Generally, magnets will help you weld the metal pieces in ways that clamps would not allow. 

Welding magnets
Source: https://www.magnetsource.com/blogs/news/new-welding-mag-pr

7. Angle Grinder

An angle grinder is a multi-purpose tool that might be harder to use than some of the welding tools above. However, once you master everything this tool can do, it will become a valuable part of your welding arsenal.

Firstly, you can use an angle grinder to cut metal before welding. Many welders preferred angle grinders to cut metal before plasma cutting became a widely spread and cheap option in metal fabrication.

Use an angle grinder to cut metal before welding.
Use an angle grinder to cut metal before welding.
Source: https://admin.shopify.com/store/yeswelder/articles/558961066093

Similar to a wire brush, you can use an angle grinder in metal preparation and post-weld cleaning. In weld preparation, grinders are also used to clean and prepare surfaces before welding. However, due to their power, you can use them to grind much thicker layers of contamination, such as rust, paint, or any imperfections.

Use an angle grinder to clean the metal surface.
Use an angle grinder to clean the metal surface.
Source: https://admin.shopify.com/store/yeswelder/articles/558961066093

In post-weld cleaning, you can use an angle grinder to grind thick and hard spatter that sticks to the base metal. You can also use it to remove slag that doesn't come out with a chipping hammer. Finally, you can use the grinder to polish the surfaces of your newly formed weldment.

8. Metal File

A metal file is an alternative to an angle grinder, but it is much more beginner-friendly. A metal file will allow you to work on smaller pieces and smooth the finer details more precisely, and they are very cheap. Although it will take you some time and energy to remove burrs and jagged edges, many beginners find it easier to use than a grinder. 

However, many will agree that files are much more suitable for post-weld cleaning and achieving a pleasing appearance. Compared to grinders, files are unsuitable for smooth weld preparation and thicker contamination removal.

Files for Post-weld Cleaning
Files for Post-weld Cleaning
Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jmN49Z-jvPk

9. Measuring Tools

Metalworking and metal fabrication, including welding, is all about precision, so you will also need measuring tools. There are many necessary measuring devices when it comes to welding and working with steel.

Some Common Welding Measuring Tools
Some Common Welding Measuring Tools
Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1Ci9-Mp2KVg

Levels, tape measures, metal rulers, or digital calipers are general measuring tools that will help you precisely measure the metal pieces. However, there are also some specific measuring tools specified for weldings, such as fillet gages, sheet metal gages, speed squares, or hi-lo gages.

A sheet metal gauge is a pretty helpful welding tool for both beginners and experienced welders. This gauge has openings that will help you measure the thickness of the metal you are about to weld. Just slide the metal into an opening that fits perfectly and read the value.

YesWelder LG-03 Stainless Steel Welding Gauge

A speed square is another beneficial measuring tool shaped like a right triangle. This is an angular measuring device that will help you measure a piece perpendicular to another for a 90-degree cut or any other angle.

Fillet gages and hi-lo gages are more advanced tools that will help you measure throat thickness, leg length, angle of preparation, or excess weld metal. These are used to determine if the weld meets the required specifications, and you don't have to worry too much about them as a beginner.

10. Marking Tools

Once you measure your parts, you want to mark them for cutting or welding. To do so, you will need marking tools, and there are several specifically designed for metal, but you can always use regular markers.

Some Welding Marking Tools
Some Welding Marking Tools
Source: https://garagehobbyist.com/must-have-metal-marking-tools/

Permanent markers are a good choice for whitish metals as long as they stick properly. The biggest advantage of markers is the fact they are cheap, and they will do the job. However, they can leave a mark after fine cuts, and they don't stick well to darker metals.

Soapstone is very useful (and dirt cheap) for laying out cut lines on carbon steel. While these markers are not made of soap, they leave similar consistency marks that are distinct and easily removed after the application.

Soapstone for Marking Steel
Soapstone for Marking Steel
Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4cCWSwvykzM

With talc and varying amounts of chlorite and amphiboles, many consider soapstone welding markers as special chalk designed for metal. They are cheap and reasonably easy to use; just sharpen them and leave perfect marks on the metal you are about to weld or cut. You can easily remove the marks after the procedure if you aim for the overall aesthetics.

Bonus Recommendation: A Welding Table or Workbench

A welding table or workbench is not a typical welding tool, and it is not a must-have piece of equipment. However, having a dedicated and stable metal surface to weld on is something that will help any beginner develop skills and master technique. That's why we suggest it as a bonus recommendation for any beginner.

What is excellent about welding tables is the fact they have dedicated holes that will help you clamp your pieces and work metal perfectly. Some models have extra attachments that will help you store your torch or consumables so you avoid extra clutter in your workspace, which is essential for safe and precise welding. A table will also help you develop a habit of keeping your workplace organized and tied to a dedicated place.

Welding on Welding Table
Welding on Welding Table
Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9WvrJPn713Y&t=26s

Another good part about welding tables is that you can build one yourself as you master the welding technique. By using the welding tools mentioned above, you can measure, mark, and cut the pieces, weld them, and get a perfect welding table tailored to fit your needs perfectly. 

Welding tables are often paired with welding carts. A welding cart will help you store your welder and gas cylinder with essential accessories and consumables. These are also optional at the start, but later on, you might find them practical. You can also build a DIY welding cart once you perfect your welding skills.

A DIY Welding Cart
A DIY Welding Cart
Credit to Dave Mayer on Facebook


Whether you are a beginner or a seasoned welder, welding tools are something that will make your welding development and operation much more straightforward. As a beginner, stick to the simple and essential welding tools and learn how to use them properly.

You don't need everything at the start. Focus on your welding techniques and essential tools. As you advance, you'll see the need for more evolved tools, and at that point, you will know how to use the best of them.


🧐10 Best Welding Tools For Beginners FAQ

1. Why is a welding helmet crucial for every welder, especially beginners?

A welding helmet is essential for safe welding, as it shields your eyes and face from the intense light, UV, and IR radiation emitted by the welding arc.

Opting for an auto-darkening helmet is highly recommended for new welders. This feature ensures your eyes are protected from the moment you strike the arc, making it easier to start and maintain precise welds. Make sure to wear safety glasses when not using the helmet to safeguard your eyes from sparks and debris.

2. What are the main functions of pliers in MIG welding?

MIG pliers are versatile tools with circular clamps, a wire cutter, and a pointy tip. They aid in wire cutting, nozzle changing, managing MIG contact tips, and removing spatter from the nozzle in MIG welding.



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