Welding magnets are one of those things which seem small and inconsequential, but can actually be real game-changers for, in this case, welding metals. What welding magnets and clamps do is hold together metals at varying angles so that they can be welded together.
Both welding magnets and clamps come in different shapes and sizes, and you will need to research and evaluate which type you need in your workshop.
The article below will be discussing 10 of the best welding magnets and clamps out there, and will also be giving you a bit more insight into the types and purposes of different welding magnets.
10 Best Welding Magnets and Clamps Review
Whether you are shopping for your first welding magnet and clamp, or are looking for replacements, a list of specific products can really help narrow down your search.
This is a unique and compact welding magnet set from Strong Hand Tools that has magnets on both the v-pad face and the bottom.
These are light-duty magnets that can hold onto tight spots. What is fascinating about these magnets is that they can be used to hold many shapes and angles of metal. For instance, you could rest a steel pipe on two of these magnets while you weld on it.
Of course, they can also be used to hold and position flat and square metal parts. These magnets are called ‘v-pads’ because of their shape. That is, the bottom is rectangular and flat (and magnetic), while the top has two magnets facing each other in a V formation.
Another characteristic of these which stands out is that each ‘pad’ can be angled and adjusted as per the user’s needs. This means that they can be used on objects which have odd shapes or angles.
The magnets on these v-pads contain four rare-earth elements. However, this also means that they will lose their magnetism if exposed to temperatures over 185℉.
A common and convenient shape for welding magnets is the arrow shape, which is represented in this product from Spurtar. This set of 6 welding magnets are shaped like arrows, but instead of a pointed tip, these magnets have flat tips.
While the bottom and two sides of the arrow help it stick to objects at 45° and 90° angles, respectively, the flat tip helps it hold objects at a 135° angle. In fact, every corner of the arrow is flattened for this very purpose.
Though the 3” magnets weigh about 4 pounds when stuck together, each can support weights of up to 25 pounds. The primary use of these magnets is to hold metal objects in position during welding. However, they can also be used as floaters between metal parts to separate them.
Unlike some other arrow welding magnets, every magnet in these sets measures and weighs the same.
And while having a bit of variety in terms of the pull force and sizes of your welding magnets is recommended, having consistently featured magnets such as these means that you can use one or two at a time while the rest stay on the back-burner.
Not only do you save money over time, but you can also use that to buy smaller or larger individual magnets that your collection lacks.
There are a few things that set this welding magnet from Strong Hand Tools apart from others in the market.
For one, it is one of those rare adjustable welding magnets. This means that this magnet has a switch to control its magnetism. You can turn it on, off, or keep the magnetism midway. Being able to turn the magnet off comes in especially handy when cleaning it.
Though this only holds metal objects at two angles (45° and 90°), it has an immense pull force of up to 90 pounds. That is what makes this a heavy-duty welding magnet. The product itself weighs a little over 1.5 lbs. Unlike most other welding magnets, the magnet in this one is concealed, which protects it and makes it easier to clean.
This welding magnet is perfect for use during round tubing, square tubing, and to hold metal plates in position. Although these are a bit expensive, they make up for it with their incredible and varying strengths. These also come in packs of 2, 3, and 5, as well as individually.
A bit of a different type of welding magnet, this grasshopper welding finger from Strong Hand Tools can be broken down into two parts the magnetic base and the spring-loaded ‘arm’.
As the magnetic base sticks on to one object, the brass tip arm (which is powered by a spring) holds the other object firmly against the first one so that the two can be welded together.
There are two options for the pull force in this line, 18 pounds, and 35 pounds. The magnetic base is a V-pad, which means that it can attach to objects at many different angles.
Because the tip only holds down a tiny area, there is a lot of clearance for the user when working with tack welds. The spring in the arm allows it to adjust by itself. You can also customize the force with which the arm’s tip holds down an object.
The main appeal of this type of magnetic grasshopper is its small size and relatively high pull force.
Another convenient arrow-shaped set of magnets is from ABN (Autobody Now). This particular set contains 6 magnets of varying features. If you prefer to have a compact set of multiple magnets of different sizes and pull forces, then this one is your perfect fit.
Not only will these magnets fit objects at a multitude of angling positions, but they also come in 3 sizes. The set contains 3 pairs of magnets, each pair having two magnets measuring 3 inches, 4 inches, and 5 inches.
The pull force of the 3” magnets are 25 pounds, 50 pounds for the 4” magnets, and 75 pounds for the 5” ones. And the variation of size and pull force is truly one of the most appealing traits of this set. Needles to say, the arrow shape (with its flattened corners) lets users weld objects of angles of 45°, 90°, and 135°.
These magnets can also be used as floaters between pieces of metal or with cranes to lift and transport objects.
Moreover, another nifty feature on the 50 pounds and 75 pounds capacity magnets are the holes in their centers, which make them easy to grab. Also, the powder coating on the metal makes it highly resistant to corrosion and rusting.
This is a unique product from LISHUAI on this list, given its shape and its angle variations. You can use the attached hex wrench on this magnet to adjust its angle from anywhere between 20° and 200°. It is shaped almost like a clamp with two scissoring sides.
Depending on whether you get the small or medium size, the pull force of this will be either 48 pounds or 77 pounds, respectively. You will also be able to see what angle you are adjusting the magnet, too, thanks to the printed protractor where the two sides of the magnet meet.
Whether you buy the small or medium size, both are light enough to carry in your toolbox without weighing it down a ton. This product is especially useful on construction sites and for hardware processing.
And whether you are a professional or a hobbyist, having a welding magnet such as this (with its convenient labeled protractor and flexible angling) will likely prove useful.
Especially if you are on your feet when working and have to move from one area to another, a compact and do-all magnet such as this one will fit in your pocket and will not add to the weight of all the other equipment you are lugging around.
The first magnetic clamp on this list comes from Strong Hand Tools. This pair of pipe pliers measures 11” and can be bought individually or in packs of 2 to 5 pliers.
Its maximum clamping capacity ranges between 38 mm to 64 mm, and it has a throat depth of 89 mm. The top spindle of this is adjustable so that it can hold onto different sizes of pipes.
And the most significant features are the V-pads, which are at the ends of the clamp. These are stainless steel by default but can be swapped out with magnetic ones. Needless to say, the magnetic v-pads provide the same angular variation as the stainless steel ones, but with higher holding strength.
One downside of these pliers, though, is that the magnetic V-pads may need to be bought separately to replace the stainless steel V-pads, which are the default attachment.
However, that also opens up more possibilities and choices for the user, given that you can swap out one type of V-pad for the other depending on what you need for a certain job. Given this option to customize, it makes this pair of pliers a more attractive addition to your toolbox.
This pair of corner squares from Strong Hand Tools measures 3.25 inches by 3.75 inches. They can be used at angles of 60°, 90°, and 120°. These can also be purchased in packs of two to five, with the individual pack coming with two ‘corners’.
Each corner has a unique shape in that the inside of the corner extends a bit inwards so that it can be used with taller pieces of metals. The outside corner is also flattened for use at a 60° angle. These weigh only over 13 ounces but provide a maximum pull force of 30 pounds.
Not only do these have a unique and flexible shape, but they also let you work with a few of the most necessary angles. To add to that, they are quite lightweight but with a substantial amount of pulling force. These magnetics corners are also very affordable and can be bought in convenient numbers of pairs.
All this makes these welding magnets a very good starter option for those who are not fully committed yet to using magnets when welding. But these also prove to be great portable welding magnets for professional or advanced welders.
This 300 Amps ground clamp from Magswitch is also an outlier on this list but deserves to be discussed.
It is a powerful device with a pull force of 90 pounds, given how lightweight it is by itself. This ground clamp is able to lower temperatures by almost 27%, increasing the amount of time you can work with it at length.
The ground clamp is suited to work with very heavy gauge cables and can be grounded on most clean work surfaces. It has a 21 shear working load of 20 pounds. In order to use it, you will simply need to place it on a clean working surface, turn it on, and get to work with your welding.
Moreover, the ease of use with this device is its main appeal. It completely eliminates the need for you to tack on tabs for pipe welding jobs or when welding large sheets of metal.
On top of that, its magnetism can be switched on and off, which means that it is a breeze to clean up. Given the kind of work environment this ground clamp is meant to be used in, easy clean-up is a priceless feature for it to have.
This uniquely shaped welding magnet from Magswitch is somewhere between an arrow and a square.
It has a pull force of nearly 150 pounds and can be placed against objects at angles of 40°, 60°, 90°, and 120°. Furthermore, it can be used as a grounding device as well, with a grounding connection of 300 Amps. The magnet can also be connected to a ground cable.
And this welding magnet is pretty strong, but it is also compact enough for smaller welding jobs and for easy carriage. It only weighs a pound, and its longest side is a little over 2 inches.
The magnet itself is encased within metal, which protects it from the outside environment and also makes it more resistant to higher temperatures. Most importantly, though, this magnet can be switched on or off. This means that it is easy to store and a breeze to clean up.
Also, it should be noted that the cable and plug will need to be bought separately by the user unless you already have your hands on them.
Though it is more expensive than other welding magnets that are sold individually, you need to keep in mind that this one can also be used as a grounding device, which is not something that most magnets are able to do.
Also, don't forget to check my Budget MIG Welder review here.
What You Should Look for When Choosing Welding Magnets
While all welding magnets have a lot of things in common, there are many different types of welding jobs. Before you purchase a welding magnet, you need to first evaluate what you will need from a magnet when doing your specific welding task.
- The Number of Angles
An ideal welding magnet will stick to metal surfaces at three angles of 45°, 90°, and 135°. However, there are some magnets whose angle variations are not as limited, such as ones with adjustable V-pads. Those will offer more in terms of angling and positioning.
Even if you need a welding magnet for a one time job, you never know when you might need it again for another purpose, which requires different angles. Try to get welding magnets that offer the widest range of angles so that you do not have to go out and buy a new one for the nest welding job.
- Pull Force
The pull force of a welding magnet determines the weight of metal it can support. This means that the bigger the objects you are welding together, the higher your magnet’s pulling force has to be.
For small welding jobs, you can get away with using a smaller welding magnet, which has a pull force of, say, 25 pounds. However, it is safe to assume that you will be doing more welding jobs somewhere down the line. Even if you do not weld frequently, you should still keep your options open.
Your best bet would be to either buy a set of welding magnets of varying sizes and pull forces, or buy a few different styles and sizes of welding magnets to diversify your options even further.
Sure, you can increase the pull force by using two or more welding magnets in one area. That will not only interfere with your welding. But for smaller welding jobs, you cannot use more than one welding magnet anyway.
Ideally, you should buy a welding magnet, which is very flexible in terms of the angles it allows you to work with. However, the most popular magnets are often ones that only provide a limited number of angling positions.
Even then, it might happen that the angles are not accurate, and hence, will not fit perfectly against your metal object.
It may seem strange, but you can ask to measure a welding magnet before buying it at the store. However, for online purchases, you will need to conduct some research based on user reviews to determine whether a particular welding magnet is shaped inaccurately.
As for magnet sizes, you may feel inclined to get larger magnets as that usually translates to a higher pull force. However, there are times when you will need to use smaller magnets because a larger one will get in the way of your welding job.
Usually, the smallest welding magnet size is 3 inches. But if you dig a little deeper, you will be able to find much smaller ones too.
Again, it is best to have options at hand (in terms of size and pull force) when it comes to welding magnets.
Most magnets in welding magnets are made of a limited selection of rare-earth elements. There is not much choice for the user in that department, nor is the choice needed. You can rest assured that the right size of a welding magnet will help you get your job done properly.
But what about the material which surrounds or encases the magnet? This material should be completely metallic and as proof against corrosion and rust as possible. The metal should also not be thin or flimsy, as that will affect the angling abilities of the magnet.
Also, you need to make sure that the welding magnet has no plastic bits surrounding it. The process of welding can exude very high temperatures, which only metal can withstand.
Types of Welding Magnets
The welding magnets industry is well-developed enough that these come in a variety of types, a few of which are discussed below.
Welding Magnets with Switches
These are magnets whose magnetism can be turned on or off. Some of these welding magnets also come with the option for the user to keep the magnetism at a midway point.
Magnets that have switches come in especially handy during cleaning. When the magnet has an ‘off’ switch, you can turn it off and wipe it down to clean it, without risking getting metal bits into your eyes or nose or skin.
And these welding magnets are also easier to find and pick out from your toolbox because they do not stick to other metal objects if you turn them off when they are not in use.
Arrow-Shaped Welding Magnets
These magnets are shaped like arrows whose corners have been flattened. They usually provide three angles for you to work with and are available in many different sizes and pull force options. Some of these also come with holes in the middle, which make them easier to grab and carry.
Adjustable Angle Welding Magnets
While most welding magnets have only two to three angle options, these ones are adjustable over a large range of angles.
Some can even reach the whole 360°, though most stop at about 200°. Of course, the adjustable property does hike up the prices of this type of welding magnets, compared to those which give you a select number of angles to work with.
Multi-Angle Welding Magnets
While adjustable angle welding magnets allow you to adjust the magnet’s angle to your liking from an unbroken array of angles (often up to 360°), multi-angle welding magnets are a tad more limited.
As the name suggests, you can switch between angle orientations on the magnet (usually due to how it is shaped), but there will only be a few angle options available to you. The most common angle options found on multi-angle welding magnets are 45°, 90°, and 135°.
Magnetic Welding Pliers/Clamps
Though these are not the first option that most people consider when looking for magnetic welding tools, they are worth looking into.
These clamps are basically a pair of pliers with welding magnets on end. Alternatively, they can also have arms that by themselves are magnetic and can be adjusted to a certain limit of angles against metal objects.
They are suitable for assembling large parts, welding, and fabrication, and work great with fixing the square inside corners of metal objects. Usually, these only have a limited number of angle orientations, but they offer the user the option to have more control over the placement of the magnets on an object.
How to Use Welding Magnets and What Are the Benefits of Using This
There are so many types of welding magnets out there that there isn’t a fixed and standard way of using them. In general, though, depending on the angular option of your welding magnet, you will have to use it to join together two pieces of metal that you would like to weld together.
The magnet will free both your hands by holding the metals in the position they are to be welded in. Once you are confident that the magnet is secure and the metals are placed correctly, you can weld them together.
You should always weld at least six inches away from where the welding magnet is. Otherwise, the magnetic field will disrupt your welding. This is why it is important to pay attention to the size of your magnet as well so that it is not too big or too small compared to the objects you are welding together.
If you are unsure about how to use your particular welding magnet, try to figure out what type you have and look up related tutorials using the magnet. Welding magnets are immensely useful. As mentioned before, they free up your hands (almost acting as a third hand) so that you can concentrate on the welding job fully.
Some welding magnets also work well as floaters and as attachments on cranes.
Frequently Asked Questions
Below are the most commonly asked queries regarding the best welding magnets:
How many angles can a welding magnet hold metal?
Most welding magnets can hold metal objects at three angles: 45°, 90°, and 135°. However, there are some magnets that deliver more flexibility in terms of angles and are not as limited.
What material is the magnet in a welding magnet made of?
To ensure maximum strength, most welding magnets will contain magnetic elements such as samarium cobalt, neodymium, or alnico (an alloy of aluminum, nickel, and cobalt).
How do I clean my welding magnet/s?
While some welding magnets have the option for the user to switch off its magnetism, most welding magnets are not so easy to clean.
You will need to take your magnets and an air compressor outside while wearing protective eyewear. Shoot a few bursts of air onto your magnet, and it should come clean.
At what temperature will a welding magnet lose its magnetism?
Any magnet will stop being magnetic if heated past the temperature of 176° Fahrenheit (or 80° Celsius).
Is it difficult to weld near a magnet?
You will need to weld at least 6 inches away from the welding magnet to stay out of its strong magnetic field, which can affect your welding.
Now that you are aware of some of the best welding magnets and clamps, and also have more knowledge about both devices in general, you can definitely trust yourself to make the right purchase.