Cepro - Protecting people at work

by Admin 8. January 2020 11:20

Rapid Welding are official distributors for Cepro safety products. Cepro develops safe setups for welding and grinding facilities to effectively protect people and the surrounding facilities from danger. Site safety is an indispensable part of any workshop operation to provide a safe working environment.

With over 30 years’ experience, Cepro have designed and developed a number of Welding Safety products to offer the ultimate protection, giving them the position of International market leader. Their product range consists of welding curtains, blankets, screens and booths. All their products are certified and meet the required standard. 



Kemppi Gamma GTH3 XFA Auto Darkening Welding Helmet & PFU 210E PAPR System

by Admin 8. January 2020 11:04

The Kemppi Gamma range is built to provide outstanding levels of personal protections for all kind of professional welders and fabricators. The Gamma GTH3 model meet the highest possible standard of EU classification in terms of respiratory TH3 performance with its levels of protection, removing 99.8% of workshops fumes and particles.

This welding helmet was constructed from a user’s perspective and, because of this, the Gamma GTH3 model includes optimum vision through the lenses thanks to state-of-the-art features such as Axis regulation and the GapView function. In low light working conditions, the XFA line optimises 70 lumen LED lights to provide the best of welder safety and maximum comfort.


  • Able to filter more than 99.8% of airborne particles
  • Helmet pressure design makes breathing easy and effortless
  • Clarity of visions improved thanks to LiFE+ Colour ADF Technology
  • ADF adjustment made easy, even with the helmet still on
  • XFA models exclusive with integrated LED work lights
  • Designed for all welding procedures

This ready to weld package includes everything you need for the ultimate protection: 

  • GAMMA GTH3 welding helmet with an auto darkening XA 47 welding filter and a shade range of 5, 8, 9-15
  • PFU 210e powered air purifying respirator system including battery, battery charger, filter and flow meter  
  • Kemppi carrier tool bag 
  • Kemppi 2 year parts and labour warranty

 For more information on this helmet, or any others, don’t hesitate to contact the Rapid Team! Either call +44 (0)23 92 214 214, email webenquiries@rapidwelding.com or ask Andy through the Rapid Website.


Christmas Opening

by Admin 12. December 2019 11:45

 Rapid will be closed from 12.30pm Tuesday 24th December until 8am Thursday 2nd January 2020. 

The last day for us to despatch goods will be Monday 23rd December 2019 and we will recommence on 2nd January 2020.

Our Webshop will be open as normal, 24 hours a day, over the Christmas and New Year period with any orders received being despatched from 2nd January 2020.

May we take this opportunity to wish our past, present and future customers seasons greetings from the Rapid Team.



Meet the team - Stuart

by Admin 10. December 2019 10:09

 Stuart has been part of the Rapid team for over 18 years starting as a stores person and gradually working his way through the ranks up to Operations Director.

The best part of Stuart's job is watching his team excel and being part of a growing company. He gets to work on customer projects making sure their needs are met. Stuart is not scared about getting his hands dirty and can often be found “helping out down stairs”.

Fun fact about Stuart, he’s never missed a Christmas party in fact any Rapid do and never drove.


World's First - Bluetooth Welding Helmet - Fronius's New Visor Connect

by Admin 4. December 2019 11:25


Throughout a 6-8 hour day of welding, a welder can ignite the arc more than a hundred times. Every time the arc is ignited, there is a split-second delay before an automatic auto-darkening filter cartridge reacts and closes. The new, Fronius Vizor connect uses Bluetooth technology, to auto darken the lens eradicating the delay.

  New technology from Fronius reduces the delay in the time from the arc igniting and the filter reacting.  The Visor Connect Helmet is connected to the welding machine via a Bluetooth connection, this enables the helmet to be darkened before the arc is even ignited.  The auto-darkening filter cartridge remains reliably darkened even at extremely low currents and during out-of-position welding. 

This works particularly well for low amp TIG welding and even considers the pre and post flow gas to ensure the lens works in conjunction with the arc.

The autopilot feature works with the Bluetooth connectivity and automatically adjusts the lens to correct level of protection required. The auto-darkening filter cartridge darkens automatically and regulates the level of protection according to the arc intensity.

The Visor Connect features a specially designed shaped filter cartridge, which gives the wearer six times the field of vision of conventional welding helmets. With a brightness level of 2.5 when open, the Visor Connect is ideal for pre-fabrication and rework tasks, as the welder will no longer need continually take the helmet on and off.The Visor connect can also be used with all conventional welding systems as it hosts all the advantages of a high-quality automatic welding helmet.

The Visor Connect is compatible with the Fronius MagicWave 230i, TransTig 230i and TPS/I models.  These are the three Bluetooth enabled Fronius welding systems, in which the Visor can offer the welder complete protection.The Visor Connect is available as a conventional mask as well as well as an air fed version. The air fed version can be used with Optrels E3000 and E3000x PAPR systems.

These helmets are available to buy from Rapid Welding and can be found here on our website. For more information, don't hesitate to contact us. 


Meet the team - Karen

by Admin 11. November 2019 10:36

Karen has been part of the Rapid team for over 9 years and is a fundamental member of the service team. Initially Karen sold gas on behalf of Air Products, but now enjoys bossing around the Service Engineers, working as the team administrator based in Hedge End. She’s the first point of contact for all service-related enquiries, organising machine collections and site visits, quoting customers and keeping them up to date on repairs and sometimes she’ll even pop on some overalls to help out in the workshop!

Due to Karen’s role, no two days are ever the same. Her favourite part of the job is the variety of customers she gets to work with and of course, working with the Rapid team! 

Karen’s Fun Fact: I have a huge love for Zombies and Zombie films and actually got to meet the King of Zombies himself George A Romero a few years ago. I’ve also volunteered in the past to be a Zombie in a horror maze at Comic Con which helped raise money for QA Hospital. 


Welders Gift Guide 2019

by Admin 8. November 2019 10:39





When it comes to buying gifts, welders aren’t known to be the easiest to buy for. Welding is a popular hobby as well as a profession, so with that in mind we have put together a practical gift guide to find something the welder in your life will love.

Welding Jacket

Staying safe while welding is an important consideration for every welder. A leather welding jacket offers protection from sparks and heat from welding and other industrial processes. This particular jacket is made from split cow hide and includes a number of different features for improved comfort including a cloth back with shoulder vent, cloth under arm to improve flexibility and adjustable wrists.

This jacket is available in 5 different sizes, ranging from medium to XXL.

Prices from £32.30 ex VAT


View Online

Welding Helmet

Every welder needs a helmet no matter where they are welding or what process they are doing. Helmets provide vital protection for the eyes and face area from burns, sparks, light and heat. Whether the welder you know is just starting out or is more experienced and requires an upgrade, a helmet is a great gift! 

Our favourite choice for helmet is the Optrel Crystal. This helmet was launched this year and has been a proven to be a best seller. Every welder dreams of having one of these! This helmet has a lens like no other. With the 2.0 crystal lens technology the welder is able to see before, during and after welding with a practically unclouded and clear view of the working environment.

£348 ex VAT 



View Online 

If you’re looking to spend a little less, the Lincoln 3350 is a great value helmet, which has proved to be a very popular option amongst our customers at this price point. With its 1/1/1/1 optical class it provides the largest viewing area compared to others in its class. This helmet comes with a bandana and decal sheet for a personal style. 

£164 ex VAT


View Online

For more information, please consult our helmet buying guide by clicking here or contact our sales team for expert advice.

Welding Gloves (Gauntlets)

Another essential piece of PPE for welding is gloves. They’re a vital component to every welder’s set up. We have chosen two of our most popular gloves. One pair for MIG welding gauntlets, which are a little bit thicker and offer the ultimate protection. Then a pair of TIG gauntlets. Being a little thinner, these are perfect for TIG welding giving the welder more control over the torch and wire.

 MIG Gauntlets £5.43 ex VAT 


View Online 

 TIG Gauntlets £6.15 ex VAT


View Online 

Arc Welder

Lincoln Electric presents the Bester MMA Inverter series of Arc welders.

These great value Inverter welding sets are the perfect solution for anyone wanting to stick weld. They are compact, yet versatile, allowing for anything from workshop use to site work. These MMA welders also offer excellent striking with Lift TIG offering fantastic machine characteristics that welders can rely on. 

With three models to choose from we have the complete range, all with the same features:

Great welding characteristics

Digital display, allowing precise setting of welding current

Generator compatible

Lift TIG with excellent striking

2 Year warranty

These machines come as a complete ready to weld package with an electrode holder, 3m ground cable and carry case.

From £159 ex VAT 


View Online 

MIG Welder

The new Lincoln Electric Bester 190C multi process machine is a great all-purpose inverter welder. This machine comes in a package which includes a MIG/MAG welding gun, earth cable and gas hose. Extra accessories can be bought separately to experience the excellent TIG lift and MMA welding processes. This compact machine is portable and lightweight making it perfect for workshop use and site work.

Compact and robust single phase inverter 

Portable and lightweight 

Large digital display, friendly user interface 

Suitable for use with generators 

Easy polarity change 

Functions: Arc force, hot start and anti-stick 

2 Year warranty 

£429 ex VAT


View Online 

TIG Welder

The small but mighty Kemppi MinarcTig Evo 200. This is a great compact machine producing the finest TIG welding quality. The accurate and refined HF ignition and the necessary control, power and work capacity to reliably complete a variety of professional welding tasks. This is a great machine for light industrial manufacturing, installation, repair and maintenance applications.

200 A DC @ 35% duty cycle, 1-phase, 230V

Smooth welding quality

Refined arc ignition from 5A

Pre and post gas timer

Torch switch latching

MLP and Pulse welding option

Remote current controls options

PFC technology for ultimate energy efficiency

Kemppi 2 year warranty 

      From £1299 ex VAT 


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Plasma Cutter 

This compact inverter plasma cutter is capable of a 10mm maximum cut and its constant striking pilot arc allows a swift and distortion proof cutting of all conductive materials such as steel, stainless steel, galvanised steel, aluminium, copper and brass. This model is equipped with a built-in compressor which makes it highly suitable for mobile work.

Reduced weight and dimensions

Warning indication for torch in under voltage

Automatic cooling of plasma torch

Protection from thermostatic, over-voltage, under-voltage and over-current

CE Marking and EAC Certification

Weighing only 16.5kg

1 Year Warranty

Just £729 ex VAT


 View Online

For more information on these products, or any others, don’t hesitate to contact the Rapid Team!

Either call +44 (0)23 92 214 214, email webenquiries@rapidwelding.com or ask Andy through the Rapid Website.


Welding Helmet Buying Guide

by Admin 8. November 2019 09:33

 One of the most essential pieces of equipment when welding is a welding helmet.

The welding helmet plays multiple health and safety roles during the welding process. The correct helmet should provide complete protection, from flying materials to the blinding lights. The purpose of this welding helmet buying guide is to ensure you not only select the correct helmet for your welding applications but for the safety of the welder themselves.

Passive Vs Auto Darkening

A passive lens helmet has a fixed shade, the helmet is worn in the up position while the electrode, gun or torch is positioned. With a quick nod or snap of the neck the operator can flip the helmet into position before striking the arc. For the operator who doesn’t weld often they can find it difficult to position and hold the electrode while snapping the helmet into place.

Auto Darkening

Auto darkening helmets allow for wearing during the positioning of the electrode, gun or torch. This is due to the range of shade lowering usually down to shade 3 or 4, allowing for positioning of the welding equipment, whilst the helmet is in place. When the sensors detect the arc, the lens darkens. This can potentially improve weld quality as there is no movement required before welding can commence.

Fixed/ variable shade

On fixed shade auto darkening helmets, when an arc is detected the helmet will automatically change to the shade opted for on the control dial of the helmet, this doesn’t mean it’s the correct one for the application. If you tend to weld the same application with the same number of amps, this could be the helmet for you. However, if you are continually changing between jobs a variable shade helmet maybe the ideal solution.

Commonly welders do not change the shade for different amps or applications nor do they know exactly what shade they should be on (see table below for correct shades). If you don’t know the right shade for your application, then let the helmet choose for you, choose a model of helmet which can detect and automatically select the correct shade level. This is a new Optrel feature which can be found on their E684 and Panoramaxx helmets, this is also known as autopilot lens detection.

Lens Reaction Time

When switching from setting up your weld to the actual welding consider the lens reaction time, in most cases the quicker the better. The more arc’s you strike in a day the more you’ll appreciate a quicker speed. Some helmets have an adjustable display control, this allows for the lens to stay darker for a period once the arc has stopped, this would be beneficial when welding at high amperages, as molten metal may still emit harmful rays while it cools.

Optical Clarity

The optical clarity defines the quality of view you get through the helmet, you wouldn’t buy a cheap pair of sunglasses, so don’t let the quality slip when it comes to welding, after all you only get one set of eyes!

Optical clarity is governed by European Standards for the welding industry, the standard is known as EN379. Ratings are determined by tests that measure light transmission across the cartridge as well as lights from the cartridge layers. The ratings are displayed as numbers, each defining an aspect: Optical class (distortion), diffusion of light (blurry image), variations on luminous transmittance (even shade) and angle dependence. Ratings are graded on a scale of 1 to 3 in each class. A score of 1 is perfect, while 3 is the worst rating. So, the perfect clarity score is 1/1/1/1.

Viewing Size

The bigger the better right? Not necessarily in this case! Consider your environment when selecting the viewing size of your helmet. The bigger the viewing size, the bigger the helmet and possibly the heavier the helmet.

Number of Sensors

Helmets usually range from 2 sensors to 4. The more sensors the better coverage, if you are welding in restricted areas sensors could be obstructed, therefore the more the better.

Other Things to Consider

Availability of cheater lenses

Power source – Battery powered or battery and solar powered

Comfort — Ensure the helmet has a good fit or has changeable head gear. When wearing the helmet for longer periods, ensure weight is kept to a minimum.

Powered Air Purifying Respirator (PAPR) – Do you require a fresh air unit on your helmet or may require one in the future? Check out the availability of an upgrade to a fresh air unit. PAPR are air fed helmets which supply filtered air back into the helmet to ensure the welder does not breathe in welding fumes.

If we’ve given you too much to think about, don’t hesitate to contact our sales team who will be able to assist in selecting the correct welding helmet for you, sales@rapidwelding.com or on +44 (0)23 92 214 214.

Now for the fun bit . . .

Now you’ve got an idea of the requirements for your desired helmet, let’s review some possibilities.

Optrel Crystal

This helmet is one of the most advanced available on the market, it’s been a firm favourite amongst our customers since its launch in February.  With the crystal lens technology, the welder has a clear view before, during and after welding. The incredibly low shade 2.0 light state provides a practically unclouded view of the working environment eradicating the need for a flip up visor or removal of the helmet between welds. This helmet also benefits from an upgrade to an air fed version for the ultimate protection. 

  • Crystal lens technology 2.0
  • Autopilot, detection of the arc brightness to automatically set the correct shade level (4 to 12)
  • Twilight function 
  • Grind mode
  • 3 Arc sensors 
  • Viewing area: 50 x 100mm
  • Weight: 460g
  • Optical clarity: 1/1/1/2

 View Online



Weldline Flip Air

The Lincoln Weldline Flip air 4500i with Zephyr Air PAPR system is a great value air fed helmet, providing protection and comfort. It features a flip up helmet with a 4/5-13 wide view auto darkening feature. The battery powered PAPR system is mounted on a cushioned belt to ensure a high level of comfort for extended use.

  • ADF with digital display, showing shade and settings
  • ADF infotrack system can display useful information such as current time, time on a job, temperature and alarm
  • Welding mode shade 9 - 13, Cutting mode, shade 5 - 9 and Shade 4 grind mode
  • Low battery indicator4 Optical sensors, X- Mode with magnetic sensors for outside use or low amp Tig welding
  • Adjustable shade and sensitivity
  • Viewing area: 97 x 60mm 
  • Weight: 510g 
  • Optical clarity: 1/1/1/2


Lincoln 3350

The Lincoln 3350 is a great value helmet, which has proved to be a very popular option amongst our customers. With its 1/1/1/1 optical class it provides the largest viewing area compared to others at this price point. This helmet comes with a bandana and decal sheet for a personal style. 

  • Continuously variable sensitivity and delay
  • Continuously variable 5 - 13 shade with internal control 
  • Grind mode
  • Magnifying cheater lens capability
  • Solar powered with replaceable battery
  • 4 Arc sensors 
  • Viewing area: 95 x 85mm 
  • Weight: 595g 
  • Optical clarity:  1/1/1/1


ESAB Warrior

The ESAB Warrior is a great all-round helmet offering all required protection. For the price, this budget helmet provides the best protection in its class. This is a lightweight helmet that provides the ideal functionality, performance and comfort for the occasional welder, maintenance and construction workers, through to the professional welder. 

  • Sensitivity control
  • Adjustable ergonomic headband for better fit and comfort 
  • Delay control
  • Shade 9 – 13
  • 4 Arc sensors
  • Viewing area: 98mm x 48mm
  • Weighs less than 500g
  • Optical clarity: 1/2/1/2   


Still not too sure? Shop the full range of helmets available from Rapid by clicking here

Try before you buy and see the difference in helmets at our facilities in Portchester, Portsmouth. We have these helmets and many more on display for you to try before you buy. 

Alternatively, if we’ve given you too much to think about or would like some more options to suit your needs please contact our sales team, sales@rapidwelding.com or on +44 (0)23 92 214 214.


Introduction to Arc / Stick Welding

by Admin 16. October 2019 15:41

 Arc welding is one of several methods of using fusion for the joining of two metals. During the welding process intense heat is created by the electric arc to melt the metal and cause fusion. The arc is formed between the two pieces of metal being fused together and the electrode. This can either be a stick or wire, then this is manually guided into the joint.

The electrode can either have the purpose of simply carrying the current or it can be melted and used as a filler metal between the joint. This process is most commonly used for the manufacture of steel products. When the electrode is heated the rod creates a shield from oxygen. This stops the weld from being contaminated. This is why stick welding is also known as SMAW or shielded metal arc welding. This makes the process very versatile and a popular choice for site work and repairs.

Why Stick Weld?

  • Stick welding is an extremely versatile process. Welding can be carried out in various locations including on site and can be powered by a generator
  •  Equipment can be relatively simple, inexpensive and easy to use
  • The process is suitable for most commonly used metals and alloys
  • Good for windy and outdoor conditions, where other processes can’t be used


If stick welding is the process for you or you simply fancy giving it a go, there are several affordable stick welders available on the market. Our full range can be found by clicking here.

Here at Rapid we will shortly have the complete range of Bester by Lincoln stick sets. These are great value, ready to weld packages, which will be available very soon!  

The Bester by Lincoln range is the perfect solution for anyone wanting to stick weld. These are compact yet versatile single-phase machines.

With three models to choose from we will have the complete range of MMA Inverter welder packages, all complete with a carry case, electrode holder and 3m ground cable.

Benefits include: 

  • Great welding characteristics
  • Digital display allowing precise setting of welding current
  • Generator compatible
  • Lift TIG with excellent striking
  • 2 Year warranty



For more information on these machines, or any other, don’t hesitate to contact the Rapid Team!

Either call +44 (0)23 92 214 214, email webenquiries@rapidwelding.com or ask Andy through the Rapid Website.


Meet the team - Richard

by Admin 16. October 2019 15:40

Richard has been part of the Rapid team for over 8 years and is a fundamental member of the website team. He is responsible for the upkeep of products and content on the website as well as other channels like eBay and Amazon. His favourite part of his role is how the website is constantly evolving, so there’s always a different variety of projects they are working on.

Fun fact about Rich:  I’m a keen petrol head, love driving quickly on racetracks and qualified as a mechanic. 


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