Best Pancake Welding Hood Reviews In 2022 – Top Picks

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Welding is a complicated activity. There are many varieties of welding processes, welding machines, and accessories that make welding easier and safer to do. The pancake welding hood is one of the accessories that is designed to make the process of welding safer to do.

We asked our panel of experts what they knew about this variety of welding hood, so that we might educate our readers on the purpose and usefulness of these helmets.

Best Pancake Welding Hood

The experts told us that the main purpose of a welding helmet in this style is to provide protection to the eyes of the welder. They told us that the following four hoods are all excellent examples of this style, and they all serve their purpose perfectly.

Comparison Chart





Sarge's Pancake Black Welding Hood

Accommodates standard lens and cheater

Wendy's Pancake Welding Hood

Lightweight balsa wood eyepiece with face shield

Original Pancake Welding Hood Right Hand

The hood covers the left side of face

Wendy's Pancake Right Handed Hood

Lens holder has a pocket depth of 5/8 inch

Best Pancake Welding Hood Reviews - 2022

1. Wendy's Pancake Welding Hood Helmet w/Strap - Left Handed


  • Weight: 1.25 pounds
  • Dimensions: 10.5 x 10.5 x 7.25"
  • Material: Fiberglass
  • Size: Left Hand
  • Lens holder has a pocket depth of 5/8 inch
Wendy's Pancake Welding Hood Helmet w/Strap - Left Handed

Wendy's hoods have been a pleasure for welders as they are always made well. This left-handed one does not disappoint as it is a lightweight one. The balsa wood is responsible for it being so light.

Not only is the wood strong and great for a hood like this, but also it gives a proper fitting and more comfort than usual cheaply-made welding hoods. When it comes to comfort and quality, spending on Wendy's hood is worth it.

The hood is good for almost all standard lenses that welders use and recommend. We suggest using a good Miller electronic lens that will fit nicely to the hood. In fact, it gives one of the best fits due to the 5/8" pocket depth allowing lenses to be in a deeper position and not fall off.

For better comfort, you can use the sandpaper provided with the hood for custom-fitting.


  • 5/8" pocket depth allows electronic welding lenses to fit perfectly and not fall off.
  • Suitable for any standard lens or a quality Miller lens.
  • Comes with an elastic headband that is adjustable for any head size.
  • The balsa wood makes it very lightweight for prolonged usage.


  • Not the cheapest welding hood.

2. Sarge Pancake Welding Hood - Left and Right Hand


  • Weight: 5 pounds
  • Dimensions: 12 x 5 x 12 inches
  • Color: Black or Tan
  • Size: Right and Left Hand
  • Face shield: 10.5"
Sarge Pancake Welding Hood

Sarge pancake hoods come in both right and left-handed models. Whichever you get, the balsa wood-built is quite durable, and the hood will last a long time. Moreover, for a quality face shield, it only weighs around 12 ounces. Working with it doesn't feel too heavy, and that's what makes the Sarge suitable for long works.

The 10.5" face shield and 5.8" x8" side shield covers your face properly and ensures no spark and fume get direct contact. It is slightly larger than most similar hoods, meaning more protection. Since it is a handcrafted one, the quality is seemingly better than cheap factory-made hoods.

Any standard lens will be a good fit for the Sarge hood. You can also use auto-darkening lenses with a cheater without any issues. It does not come with sandpaper, so make sure you get that if you want a better fit.


  • 10.5" face shield covers your face properly while welding.
  • The balsa wood used is stronger than oak, pine, and most woods you will find.
  • 12.5 oz only; very lightweight and comfortable for prolonged tasks.
  • Able to hold an auto lens with cheater.


  • The headband is comfortable but has a cheap feel to it.

3. Sarge's Pancake Black Welding Hood Helmet Left Handed


  • Weight: 1.65 pounds
  • Dimensions: 12.8 x 12.5 x 7.9 inches
  • Part number: PRN2001W253
  • Size: Right Hand
  • Viewing Area: 2"x4.25"
Sarge's Pancake Black Welding Hood Helmet Left Handed

Similar to the tan hood by Sarge, this black one has the same specification, size, and weight. The black color is preferred by a lot of welders not because of its work advantages, but for its looks. Overall, this one also features a quality built as most Sarge items do. It is made of Balsa wood and phenolic Formica, which gives it durability.

The side shield has a large dimension of 5.8" x8". It covers your face and head on the side from fume and sparks. The front shield is big enough to protect your entire face as it has a 10.5" diameter. And weighing 12.5 ounces, even if you are working all day, this hood hardly causes any fatigue.

It comes with 100 cm sandpaper, which is not too significant but saves you the trouble of getting one if the eyepiece needs a bit of adjustment. The eyepiece is strong and fits almost all standard lenses you can find.


  • A lightweight one; weighs only 12.5 ounces in total.
  • Comes with sandpaper for adjusting the wood according to the eyepiece.
  • Balsa wood eyepiece and phenolic Formica shield are a great combination for making the hood suitable for heavy-duty usage.
  • 10.5" front shield and 8" side shield gives you overall protection.


  • The black color can absorb heat and make it slightly hot compared to other colors.

4. Sarge Pancake Welding Hood - Black


  • Weight: 1.65 pounds
  • Dimensions: 12.8 x 12.5 x 7.9 inches
  • Part number: PRN2001W253
  • Size: Right Hand
  • Viewing Area: 2"x4.25"
Sarge's Pancake Black Welding Hood

The face and side shield of this pancake hood are crafted from Formica. Formica is lightweight and the hood is made lighter with the use of this product instead of many of the woods. The eyepiece of the hood is pure balsa wood which is also light and will not create as much strain on the helmet wearer.

The face shield of this hood measures 10.5 inches. The side shield measures 5.8 inches x 8 inches. The entire unit weighs 12.5 ounces. It comes with a 1.5 inch headband that is made from elastic and is easily adjusted to create the perfect fit for your face and head.

You will also receive a piece of sandpaper that you can use to smooth out sections of the balsa wood to make the helmet fit better and be more comfortable for you to wear.

The lens dimension on this welding hood is 2” x 4.25”. You can buy the lenses to fit this hood from a wide variety of vendors. You can even use an auto-darkening lens if you prefer that variety.


  • Has a metal lens retainer clip that is more durable and quite better than plastic ones.
  • Easily fits multiple different types of lenses, including auto-darkening ones.
  • Lightweight and quite comfortable for wearing a long time and great for pipeline welding tasks.
  • 2" x4.25" viewing area provides a good view without making it claustrophobic.


  • The strap isn't the best as it occasionally slips off from the screw mount.

5. Wendy's Pancake Welding Hood Helmet w/Strap - Right Handed - White 


  • Weight: 1.95 pounds
  • Dimensions: 12.2 x 12.2 x 7.7 inches
  • Model number: RH WHITE
  • Material: Plastic
  • Right Handed White
Wendy's Pancake Welding Hood

This is an amazing right-hand user welding hood. It has features and the side pieces are positioned properly for someone who writes and uses their right hand. It is critical that you buy a pancake welding hood that is designed to fit according to the dominant hand you use while you are working.

This hood accommodates the traditional 2” x 4” welding lenses. You can buy these lenses from a variety of lens suppliers. You can also use the auto-darkening lenses in your hood if you prefer.

The eyepiece of the welding hood is made from balsa wood. Balsa wood is ideal because it is very light and very easy to manipulate. You will be given a piece of fine sandpaper that you can use to make the eyepiece fit you without applying to undo pressure on any area around your eye.

Your hood will also come with an adjustable strap that will make it fit your head perfectly. That will allow you to bend and move without fear that your hood will slip and your protection will be compromised.


  • 5/8" depth of the lens holder facilitates perfect fitting of any lens and doesn't let it come out while you work.
  • Made of composite materials, making it lightweight and durable.
  • Proper fitting is certain; however, you can still adjust the fitting with the help of sandpaper and headband that are provided with the hood.
  • The eyepiece is made of balsa wood, which is good against impact.


  • Not for you if you wear 7 ¾ hats or above.

6. Wendy's Pancake Welding Hood Helmet w/Strap - Right Handed - White FLIP UP Lens


  • Manufacturer: Wendy's
  • Material: Plastic
  • Batteries Required: No
  • Lens Size: 2 X 4
  • Weight: Heavy
Wendy's Pancake Welding Hood

This is a flip-up style welding pancake hood. That means the balsa wood eyepiece flips up. The helmet not only has a balsa wood eyepiece it also has a face and side shield. It comes with an adjustable strap made of elastic material.

This strap allows you to make the hood fit your head shape and circumference perfectly so the hood will not slip or move while you are actively engaged in the welding process.

Your balsa wood eyepiece is designed to be light and to accommodate a standard size welding lend. It will also accommodate a Miller fixed shade electronic welding lens. The hood comes with a piece of sandpaper that you can use to smooth or shape the balsa wood so you have enhanced visual abilities and enhanced comfort levels.

This helmet is made in the United States of America. It is white, and it provides maximum protection to the wearer. This hood is designed specifically for outdoor welding processes like the ones performed by pipeline welders.


  • Flip up style for providing a clear view of the welds whenever necessary.
  • Comes with sandpaper and an elastic headband that will allow you to adjust the hood according to your head's size and the proper fitting of the eyepiece.
  • Works with any standard lens or any Miller lens.
  • 2" x 4" viewing area is good for a proper view.


  • Cannot wear glasses under the hood.
  • It is heavy.

7. Original Pancake Hood Right Hand 


  • Weight: 12 Oz.
  • Dimensions: 9.2 x 8.2 x 11.8 inches
  • Part number: 900
  • Z-87.1 ANSI Approved
  • OSHA Accepted
Original Pancake Welding Hood Right Hand

This is a bright yellow right-handed welding hood. It is designed to provide the most security comfort and protection while you are welding. This hood is really fantastic for outdoor welding projects that require you to lie on your back facing upwards to create the weld.

The flat shield protects your face and makes any hot sparks that might fall roll away from your body and where you are lying on the ground.

The hood has an adjustable strap made from elastic. The strap holds the hood in position on your head while you are actively working, welding, moving, bending and more. The strap can be adjusted to that it has the proper amount of tightness no matter what size or shape your head is.

The eyepiece is made from lightweight balsa wood. You will get a piece of sandpaper with the helmet so you can sand the balsa wood eyepiece and make it perfect for your eyes.

You want the wood to be smooth and do not apply too much pressure to anyone spot around your eyes. The balsa wood is soft and easy to sand so sand a small amount off at a time and then try the helmet to see if the fit is right.


  • Accepts any 2" x 4 ½" lens easily, making it suitable for almost all standard lenses.
  • Includes a head strap for proper fitting.
  • The design is excellent and stops fumes.
  • Very lightweight and compact design for easy outdoor welding tasks.


  • Changing the eyebox is hard, and if you break it, it is best to send it to the manufacturer for a repair.

Pancake Welding Hood Buying Guide

There are a few things you should consider when you are comparing pancake welding hoods.

Left or Right Handed Hood

The pancake welding hoods come in a left-handed or right-handed version. The hoods are specifically designed to provide the best coverage and protection according to the dominant hand the welder will be using.

If you buy a hood designed for someone who has an opposite dominant hand from you then you will struggle to see what you are working on and you will not be protected from the arc or the heat of the welding process.

The Balsa Box

The balsa box is a handmade section of the pancake hood that should custom fit the welder so it provides the ultimate amount of protection. It should follow the contours of your face.

The materials the hood and the balsa box are crafted from are crucial. Balsa is a light wood and it is most commonly used for creating the balsa box, and that is how the little box got its name. Other woods can be used, like pine variations, but the heavier wood varieties will make the hood difficult to wear and will cause neck strain, headaches, and increased fatigue.

The adjustments

You should note whether or not the hood comes with an adjustable elastic band that you can use to customize the fit of the hood to your unique head shape.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q. What is the purpose of a pancake welding hood?

The main purpose of a pancake welding hood is to hold the lens of the welding helmet in perfect placement so that it provides the ultimate protection for the eyes of the welder. The balsa box allows the lens and the eyes to come into contact so that the eyes have the best protection and retain the most vision possible.

Q. Why do pipeliners use pancake hoods?

Pancake hoods have a flat front to them. The metal is thin and the helmets do not weigh as much as other welding helmets do. They provide the wearer with the protection they need, but they also provide the wearer with better visualization of the items they are working on. These flat hoods are better suited to outdoor welding activities and most pipeline welding is performed outdoors.

Final Note 

If you are looking for a right handed pancake welding hood you should check out the Original Pancake Welding Hood Right Hand. This hood has the balsa wood eyepiece, it holds standard size lenses, and it is made specifically for people who have a right dominant hand.

If you are looking to buy a lightweight pancake welding hood the Sarge's Pancake Black Welding Hood may be the best choice for you. This hood has a front and side panel crafted from Formica. The Formica is lighter than most woods and most materials used to build this type of protection device.

Last Updated on 2 years by Richard Boyer

  • June 28, 2022
Richard Boyer

Richard Boyer has been a professional welder for over 27 years of his life, and now he is a trainer and blogger providing critical information to anyone interested in welding. He is helping out both hobbyists, novice and professional welders to learn newer and better techniques. Read more about me

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