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Smoke Extractors: Remove Fumes and Add Value

01 March, 18 2:11 pm · Leave a comment · reddarc
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Welding Smoke Impacts Welder
By guest blogger David H.

How important is it to remove welding smoke from the work area? Ask a welder, or ask someone who has to work in the vicinity of welders working in enclosed or semi-enclosed areas.

I recall some years ago working on a Navy general cargo ship. The ship was was undergoing extensive renovations and the hold of the had four or five levels. My employer, a small repair yard in San Francisco, unfortunately did not take air quality in the work area seriously. There were more than 20 of us working in the hold, and some number of us were welders. From a distance you could see where the work was being done — smoke and fumes drifting up out of the hold! In those days, safety requirements weren’t always top of mind. OSHA and other regulations aside, taking care of your workers by providing a safe work environment is simply the right thing to do. Without them your business can never be profitable. By failing to provide a safe workplace, you may lose workers due to health issues and employee turnover or face consequences for not complying with standards.

“respirators are hot and uncomfortable, and many welders simply refuse to use them”

There are a number of ways to deal with welding fume issues. One approach is the use of respirators. I often wore one, but they are hot and uncomfortable, and many welders simply refuse to use them. They can be remarkably expensive, over the long haul,  given that filters must be replaced daily.  If the mask is a disposable type, the entire mask must be replaced daily.

Portable smoke extractors – sometimes referred to as smoke eaters – are a far better solution. They extract a higher percentage of the fumes than respirator masks and protect everyone in the work area, not just the welders. They can be moved around the job site and from one job site to another, but can also be set up at permanent work stations.  These machines can help make sure that your work space is a place where people can get their work done safely. Your employees will thank you.

To view the smoke extractors Red-D-Arc offers for rent head over to our smoke extractor rental page.
We also have used smoke extractors for sale on our used equipment page.

Naval Shipyard Welding: Air Arc Gouging Saves the Navy Time and Money

23 October, 17 9:20 am · Leave a comment · reddarc
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Navy ship at dockGuest blogger David J. shares his experience as a shipyard welder for the U.S. Navy.

Need to remove or move a large object welded onto the deck of a ship?  Arc gouging equipment can really help speed up the process. I worked as a welder in the shipbuilding/ship repair industry, and especially ship repair, in the San Francisco Bay Area for many years.  One particular day I was given the task of finishing up the removal of a pair of bollards that had been mounted on the deck — the navy wanted them moved a few feet forward.  Someone else had done the initial cutting, but a rectangular shaped weld measuring about six by three feet, where the bollards had been joined to the deck, remained.  This weld was perhaps half an inch wide and protruded above the deck by nearly half an inch.  That’s 18 feet of steel nearly half an inch square.

This steel could have been ground flush with the deck, but the time involved using a grinder would have greatly increased the time and cost of the task.  With a hand arc gouging torch, see the K4000 manual gouging torch, I made much quicker work of the job.  Properly handling the gouging torch, the welder can leave the surface such that the grinder who follows him need only do the lightest touch-up.  For bigger jobs and for outfits that routinely have gouging operations, the N6000 metal removal system is recommended for both increased speed and accuracy.

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Airgas, an Air Liquide company, is the nation's leading single-source supplier of gases, welding and safety products. Known locally nationwide, our distribution network serves more than one million customers of all sizes with a broad offering of top-quality products and unmatched expertise.