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  1. #1
    TehNam's Avatar
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    Default Would this be safe?



    Would it be safe to make a solar filter for my ETX 90 using #14 welders glass?

    I have been looking for a solar filter but seems every place I look is out, back ordered or will otherwise not be able to ship until after the transit of Venus.

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    No it wouldn't. You could look at the sun WEARING those goggles but I wouldn't attempt to make a filter from them. And most definitely DO NOT look through a telescope that is pointed at the sun with those goggles on.
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  4. #3
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    Default

    Unsure why it wouldn't be safe to look at the image formed on the filter through a telescope if it is safe to look at the sun through the glass without telescope.

    I'm pretty sure the OP wasn't suggesting looking though his EP wearing welding goggles, but rather covering his objective with a piece of welding glass.

    If there is a reason that covering the objective with #14 welding glass isn't good enough, please explain. I had intended to observe the transit of Venus with the same method, via binoculars.

  5. #4
    TehNam's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by OneGear View Post
    ...

    I'm pretty sure the OP wasn't suggesting looking though his EP wearing welding goggles, but rather covering his objective with a piece of welding glass.

    If there is a reason that covering the objective with #14 welding glass isn't good enough, please explain. I had intended to observe the transit of Venus with the same method, via binoculars.

    Exactly right. I am talking about making a filter to cover the objective, not the eye piece.

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    If you are using the glass to cover the objective, seems like it would be safe from a visible light intensity perspective.

    But I would be concerned about transmission in non-visible wavelengths. Infrared and especially ultraviolet light can damage the retina if concentrated (just like visible light). If welders glass is transparent to infrared, for example, then you could still do damage to your eyes even though the visible light image looks fine.

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    I don't know if it would be unsafe or not but why risk it? My advice would be to buy a proper solar filter for your scope.

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    If you don't want to heed my advice that is your choice. I don't think placing the goggles over the objective is a good idea. Standard solar filters are made to to filter the concentrated light going into your eyepiece. #14 goggles are not made to filter concentrated sunlight going into your eyepiece.
    I'm not familiar with the properties of standard solar filters or #14 welder's goggles. But I do know that the manufacturers of the solar filters are making a product that will be used for viewing the sun under magnification. The manufacturers of the welder's goggles have no such intention. If you think your eyesight is worth that risk, by all means try your method.
    Last edited by Cladinator; 05-28-2012 at 03:06 PM.
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    Default

    A good solar filer blocks 99.99% of the light so even focused and magnified it's safe. The goggles do not block that much. Enough to make it safe for direct viewing but not if focused and magnified.
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  11. #9
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    Of course welder's shades block IR and UV light.

    THAT is exactly what they are designed and held in compliance to do. (at shade five{5} only one 3millionths of all IR is allowed to pass thru the filter-this level decreases as the shade level goes up. UV is a near total block)

    I would posit that the standards IMPOSED on manufacturers of welding shades are stricter, and that the potential liability issues from workplace injury are a far more serious concern to said manufacturers than it is for small scale producers of 'solar filters'-who always have the argument that the use of their product was ENTIRELY voluntary.


    there are days when I have stared straight at a high intensity arc for literally hours and hours. With the right shade, there isn't even an afterimage seen.

    Pre-magnification, SECURELY fastened, I say go ahead. I'm gonna on my little scope. The only reason I won't on my big one is that I can't get a filter plate(shade) large enough.
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    Quote Originally Posted by reelrazor View Post
    Of course welder's shades block IR and UV light.
    THAT is exactly what they are designed and held in compliance to do. (at shade five{5} only one 3millionths of all IR is allowed to pass thru the filter-this level decreases as the shade level goes up. UV is a near total block)
    If that's the case, then I'm in agreement -- sounds safe to me. I was basing my concerns based on my experience on "smoked" glass used in A/V cabinets and stuff. That glass is definitely transparent to IR, but is dark to visible light...

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