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You may notice that my Hobart welding gloves, pictured above, look like they’ve been through hell. That’s because that’s exactly where I put them (instead of my bare hands) damn near every time I use ’em. I’ve burned ’em, ground ’em, scuffed ’em, and otherwise treated ’em like crap for a year now, and they’re still just as protective and comfy as the second week I wore ’em. Read on past the jump to find out why they’re one of our favorite tools of 2007.

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Hobart just launched their new, redesigned website. Their press release says, “The re-design improves navigation, offers enhanced product information and enables viewing in a wide-screen format with resolutions of 1024 X 768, presenting more information with less scrolling.” Which means Hobart has managed to arrive in the 21st century and realized people would like to know more about their products than just the name, rank, and serial number the old site listed.

We’re glad to see the improvement. They make some great products, and their old web presence didn’t reflect the thought and quality they put into their welding units and gear.

Hobart Welders [Official Website]

 
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The newest model in Hobart’s ever-bigger Handler line, the 210 plugs into a standard 230V outlet and delivers up to 210A of power — enough to successfully weld 3/8″ mild steel and up to 1/4″ thick aluminum.  Hobart claims that with the right wire, it offers enough control to join 24-gauge material without burning through.

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We’ve written quite a bit about Hobart’s AirForce 250, and it’s a formidable addition to any shop.  But this week Hobart announced its new replacement — the AirForce 250ci — that weighs half as much and includes some exciting new features.

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If you picked up one of Hobart’s portable “Handler” series welders a while back to try some projects of your own, you might want to consider protecting it with a custom-fitted cover.  Sawdust, bugs, and shop grunge don’t make for a well-functioning welder.

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So you’ve set up shop at home, but for some reason the home owners association won’t let you keep a tank of acetylene (next to a big tank of oxygen) big enough to turn the neighborhood into a crater.

This may be the one time the HOA is right, but don’t tell ’em I said so.

What you really need is a plasma cutter.  Yeah, they’re a little expensive, but once you see what you can do with one, you’ll be ready to raid the kids’ college money.  We tried out Hobart’s entry level AirForce 250A, and we’d have a hard time without one now.  Thankfully, it’s part of our long-term test group, so you’ll see lots more about it in future posts.

Read past the jump to find out more about our experiences with the 250A along with lots of pictures.

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When it comes to welding helmet decorations, we live by a simple credo: flames = good.  So when we heard about Hobart’s XTV-series auto-darkening helmets, our first question was, “Do they come in flames?”

Yes.  Yes, they do.

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Most starter MIG rigs offer tapped voltage settings instead of continuous adjustment, both because it’s less expensive and because it simplifies things for beginner and intermediate welders.  But while most units offer a five-tap system, Hobart’s new Handler 187 has seven settings, which gives you better control.

Hobart also says the 187’s improved inductor keeps a tighter reign on amperage, which in turn “smoothes out the arc” and improves metal flow.

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Back when we originally wrote about them, we promised to check in with Hobart and let you know where you can find these great gloves.  Well, we’re a bit late in doing so, but here ’tis:

You can buy these gloves at most farm supply stores, such as Northern Tool and Tractor Supply, as well as through a variety of other retailers.  We didn’t see them listed online, but Hobart assures us that they carry them.  If you aboslutely, positively can’t find them locally, try giving Hobart a call at 1-800-626-9420 (their customer service line) for help locating them.

 
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It’s rare that we really gush about a product, but this is going to be one of those times.  We’ll probably be embarassed about it in the morning, but tonight we’re gonna unabashedly tell you: these gloves rock the house.  They’re easily the most comfortable and useful welding gloves we’ve ever used.  We think our name (in the post title) is better, but Hobart calls them their “Premium Form-Fitted Welding Gloves.”

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