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  • Welding/Cutting fumes

    I am moving to Michigan, and in the winter with snow and all it is not possible to weld outside. I plan on working in the basement. Are there any fresh air precautions I need to take?
    It will not be extensive enough to fog up the basement, no galvanize...
    At 0 degrees it will be difficult to open windows and run fans. How are hobby welders addressng this safety concern?
    thanks

  • #2
    fumes and smoke

    I have built a small fume extractor using a 4 " inlet, shop vac outlet with a small squirrel cage blower. I will take a pic and post later to day

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    • #3
      You are going to want to take great steps to seal off the basement from the rest of the house. There can be a lot of nastiness in welding fumes that you don't want concentrating in your living quarters.
      Bobcat 225NT
      Cutmaster 52
      Lincoln Weld-Pak 100 buzz box
      Caterpillar TH63
      '07 Kawasaki ZZR600

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      • #4
        Fumes will surely kill you and are a concern but I would be killed off much faster if my wife caught me welding in the basement with leads through the window...again. Depending on location in your basement you could tie your fume extractor into a dryer vent and save some cutting and swearing though.
        owner of EVOLUTION WELDING

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        • #5
          Welding is one thing, but cutting?!? Don't you have a garage? Maybe you can cut outside and weld inside..?
          Miller Maxstar 200 DX
          RMLS-14 Momentary Hand Control
          Miller Syncrowave 180 SD
          Porter Cable 14" dry metal saw
          Hitachi 4.5" grinder
          http://mhayesdesign.com

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          • #6
            You can get a 3M face mask and welding-specific filters for about $15. But in a basement, I'd still want to make sure I was circulating air -- and not through the house. Would the furnace be drawing air from the basement?
            Jack Olsen
            The Garage(And its slideshow)
            The Car(And its slideshow)

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            • #7
              fumes and smoke

              A couple of pics of a simple extractor. I weld galvanized deck posts in the garage, using fluxcore wire. Lots of smoke and crud. This fan box does a great job of clearing out the nasties. I hook the outlet through a fitting in the man door. The plastic downspout material has never been close to melting. The charcoal filter plugged up after 2 pipes. After seeing the crud and particulates in it, I will say venting is a must. Fred
              Attached Files

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              • #8
                Originally posted by tonyrico View Post
                At 0 degrees it will be difficult to open windows and run fans. How are hobby welders addressng this safety concern?
                thanks
                I don't weld in the house for the reasons that others have
                mentioned -- but when I do other stuff in the basement,
                I open the windows and run the fans - or I don't do the
                task.

                Frank

                P.s. - Jack -- the furnace does draw some air,
                but not really enough, and not regularly (they
                kick on and off as needed). And they draw air in general,
                not specifically from where it needs to be drawn.
                Last edited by fjk; 01-27-2010, 06:35 PM. Reason: p.s.

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                • #9
                  You guys enforced what I'm sure I already underlyingly knew, but needed to hear it. I accept that I need some system, and will read carefully what each of you wrote, as well as hope that some more people chime in. I think it's a serious enough topic for me, as well as for other budding home welders.
                  Thank you

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                  • #10
                    15-30 air changes per hour is the recommended ventilation rate for welding.

                    For a 1000 square foot basement with 8 foot ceilings, volume is 8000 cu ft.

                    Typical infiltration rate is around 1 ACH, but this is probably used up as combustion air by the furnace.

                    You'll need, at a minimum, 8000x15/60=2,000CFM of ventilation.

                    You can install a heat exchanger to recover a great deal of heat from the air you pump out.

                    If not, you'll need to heat that 2,000 CFM of air.

                    If it's 30 out and you're heating the air to a comfortable 60, you'll need 2000*1.08*30=64,800 BTUh of heat (19kW electric heat).

                    80% of failures are from 20% of causes
                    Never compromise your principles today in the name of furthering them in the future.
                    "All I ever wanted was an honest week's pay for an honest day's work." -Sgt. Bilko
                    "We are generally better persuaded by reasons we discover ourselves than by those given to us by others." -Pascal
                    "Since we cannot know all that there is to be known about anything, we ought to know a little about everything." -Pascal

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Bodybagger View Post
                      ...
                      You have an unfortunate name - given the topic of discussion.
                      Miller Maxstar 200 DX
                      RMLS-14 Momentary Hand Control
                      Miller Syncrowave 180 SD
                      Porter Cable 14" dry metal saw
                      Hitachi 4.5" grinder
                      http://mhayesdesign.com

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                      • #12
                        I was going to compare it to a certain athlete telling people how to avoid a certain condition, but my wife says that could be offensive and I can't say that.

                        80% of failures are from 20% of causes
                        Never compromise your principles today in the name of furthering them in the future.
                        "All I ever wanted was an honest week's pay for an honest day's work." -Sgt. Bilko
                        "We are generally better persuaded by reasons we discover ourselves than by those given to us by others." -Pascal
                        "Since we cannot know all that there is to be known about anything, we ought to know a little about everything." -Pascal

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                        • #13
                          What type of welding are you planning on performing? Not all welding is the same when it comes to making fumes.

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                          • #14
                            Thanks for the detailed info. btu/cfm/wow!

                            Just mild steel, probably some aluminum, but not every day or for long periods. If it comes to that I'll build a shop - and will still have to deal with removing the fumes.
                            I plan on building some cooking equipment, and no telling what else.
                            It it were trailers, galvanize, and such I'd wait until spring/summer and do that stuff outside. I just don't want to lose all welding opportunities for an entire winter.
                            It may come down to a couple of open windows and a box fan.

                            Not to get off topic, and if the following should be a thread of its own please advise me. A basement with open windows could be cold without aux heat. Outside welding could also. I don't recall seeing anything about ambient temperature as it applies to welding. Probably taught in metallugy or formal welding classes. Lots of available info about windy conditions, fluxcore vs gas, but nothing about how external temperature effects the quality of a weld. I would think preheat the metal if it has been sitting in the cold, but not sure if anything else is different about the actual welding process.
                            thanks
                            tonyrico

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                            • #15
                              An excellent source of information regarding industrial ventilation can be found at:

                              http://www.osha.gov/dts/osta/otm/otm_iii/otm_iii_3.html

                              and specific to welding fumes:

                              http://www.vilair-aaf.com.au/documents/WeldingFume.pdf

                              OSHA doesn't apply to you, but you can use it as a guide. For example:

                              Ventilation for general welding and cutting.

                              1910.252(c)(2)(i)

                              General. Mechanical ventilation shall be provided when welding or cutting is done on metals not covered in paragraphs (c)(5) through(c)(12) of this section. (For specific materials, see the ventilation requirements of paragraphs (c)(5) through (c)(12) of this section.)

                              1910.252(c)(2)(i)(A)

                              In a space of less than 10,000 cubic feet (284 m(3)) per welder.

                              1910.252(c)(2)(i)(B)

                              In a room having a ceiling height of less than 16 feet (5 m).

                              1910.252(c)(2)(i)(C)

                              In confined spaces or where the welding space contains partitions, balconies, or other structural barriers to the extent that they significantly obstruct cross ventilation.

                              1910.252(c)(2)(ii)

                              Minimum rate. Such ventilation shall be at the minimum rate of 2,000 cubic feet (57 m(3)) per minute per welder, except where local exhaust hoods and booths as per paragraph (c)(3) of this section, or airline respirators approved by the U.S. Bureau of Mines for such purposes are provided. Natural ventilation is considered sufficient for welding or cutting operations where the restrictions in paragraph (c)(2)(i) of this section are not present.

                              1910.252(c)(3)

                              Local exhaust hoods and booths. Mechanical local exhaust ventilation may be by means of either of the following:

                              1910.252(c)(3)(i)

                              Hoods. Freely movable hoods intended to be placed by the welder as near as practicable to the work being welded and provided with a rate of air-flow sufficient to maintain a velocity in the direction of the hood of 100 linear feet (30 m) per minute in the zone of welding when the hood is at its most remote distance from the point of welding. The rates of ventilation required to accomplish this control velocity using a 3-inch (7.6 cm) wide flanged suction opening are shown in the following table:

                              __________________________________________________ _______________
                              Welding Zone.................................|CFM ........| Duct diameter (in)
                              4 to 6 inches from arc or torch ........| 150 | 3
                              6 to 8 inches from arc or torch ........| 275 | 3 1/2
                              8 to 10 inches from arc or torch .......| 425 | 4 1/2
                              10 to 12 inches from arc or torch ......| 600 | 5 1/2
                              ________________________________________|_________ _____|____________
                              Footnote(1) When brazing with cadmium bearing materials or when
                              cutting on such materials increased rates of ventilation may be
                              required.
                              Footnote(2) Nearest half-inch duct diameter based on 4,000 feet per
                              minute velocity in pipe.


                              1910.252(c)(3)(ii)

                              Fixed enclosure. A fixed enclosure with a top and not less than two sides which surround the welding or cutting operations and with a rate of airflow sufficient to maintain a velocity away from the welder of not less than 100 linear feet (30 m) per minute.
                              Last edited by Bodybagger; 01-28-2010, 04:19 PM.

                              80% of failures are from 20% of causes
                              Never compromise your principles today in the name of furthering them in the future.
                              "All I ever wanted was an honest week's pay for an honest day's work." -Sgt. Bilko
                              "We are generally better persuaded by reasons we discover ourselves than by those given to us by others." -Pascal
                              "Since we cannot know all that there is to be known about anything, we ought to know a little about everything." -Pascal

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