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Safety Tips, anyone? Answered

Ok, obviously, "don't drop hot steel on your feets" is the first safety thing we need to think about, but what abut others? Any chemical hazards or others people'd like to share?


always be calm if something does go wrong you just need to chill out and DONT panic or that will just make things worse

Consider every piece of metal near, on, or in the proximity of the forge to be hot enough to cause severe burns. Just because it's not orange-white doesn't mean it won't cause 3rd degree burns. As far a safety glasses go - I use green tinted glasses that they use for brazing? Allows you to see the steel better in the forge fire.

Beware of uncalcined molds. Wednesday before last (the 6th) I was casting aluminum when a steam explosion launched molten metal at me, resulting in a third degree burn on my right foot. This was caused entirely by my own inattention; I had mixed up a still "green" plaster mold and the calcined one I had planned to use. Anyway, I've now got a heck of a reminder on my right heel to always be sure I'm using a calcined mold and to never cast without full casting protection (I had a faceshield, leather apron and gloves, but neglected to use my leather boots).

Don't let this be you. Never be careless with the kind of temperatures we deal with.


11 years ago

Don't be caught saying "oh, hello gravity!" after falling off a cliff. In general, beware of gravity.

Geeze...there went my Plan to ignore gravity by not knowing about it.

Thanks a lot, you !@#$%&*(

: )

Just remember, gravity is your friend (it helps you stay on the ground and not float into space and get frozeded). Except if you're a skydiver, and your parachute doesn't work. Then it kinda doesn't like you. A lot. It wants to kill you. Hmmm...it seems the forces of nature have a grudge against me...how inconveniant!

NNNNOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!! Now selling pre-plotted moon house lots by dragging myself up by my bootstraps into orbit and jumping off the space station down onto the moon (and the same way back) won't work! You nasty, nasty...TEACHER! Oops, now I'm going to get my mouth washed out with soap...

stupid gravity..... without gravity, i could have invented the flying chair or something, but NOOO, newton had to go spoil things for the rest of us, didn't he

If there was no gravity, someone would have invented it way before you were born.

Too late with the flying chairs:

Hacking Matter: Levitating Chairs, Quantum Mirages, and the Infinite Weirdness of Programmable Atoms

Dude, you lot are completly and utterly undiniably HILARIOUS!

Hydrogen Hydroxide, and now gravity conspiring to kill me. Damn. Reminds me of a joke. What's the difference between a bad golfer and a bad skydiver? WHACK!.......Damn! Damn!......WHACK!

Hayyyy, shift 6 creates superscripts... Anyone know if there is a list of such for instructables?

Oh yes I found that the caret gives you superscript.
I've also learned (through a Forum post) that double commas give you subscript.
(they behave as toggles)

Yes, I saw that. I seem to have a habit of following your posts around : )

When you find an interesting comment or person it's often worthwhile clicking on them and looking up their posts. However, you then get a bit of a feeling that you're staliking someone or something...? L

Not really, since I'm fairly certin your a guy, cause if yu weren't, well (gulp) um, that would make a grade B internet shadower... Argh! Is your picture really you or somebody else? It's the same body that stuck their head in a dryer, please say yes, oh please, please, (infinetly long repetation of plees, cut short to give room for everbody else and save the fourth demension),...

See to have missed this first time 'round... Yes L

I have experience with the cliff part, and a 17 inch scar to prove it (no surgery, as I feel my leg hit something) and you are correct about beware of it in general, I've broken 3 toes with hammers, cracked a rib out of a tree, and gotten 2 concussions falling down stairs, I am generally clumsy

I do hope that of us wear eye protection. That maybe good idea.

If it's a propane forge, make sure to turn it off right away if you smell gas...a leak

for that matter, make sure you "turn it off" in the proper direction when finished *faroooph* whoops....

Use common sense, and if you aren't sure if the metal is hot, hold the back of your fingers over it, it is a very sensitive part of you body.

Yea, and what about e.g. spitting on it instead of endagering sensitive parts of your body?

Spitting on some hot metals is a very bad idea. BOOM!

What, like molten sodium?

Sodium doesn't have to be hot. Magnesium and Aluminum and possibly titanium. And sure, if your Li-ion laptop blows up, don't try to put it out with a cuppa coffee!

also bad to spit on: lime. on contact with water, lime produces an exceptionally hot exothermic reaction. a Japanese farmers barn burned down when his cat urinated on a bag of lime once.

Um, do you mean "slacked lime" as far as contact with plain water is concerned? Urine is another matter, it has both ammonia and lactic acid in it and that will react with regular lime.

Not to mention the caustic sodium hydroxide produced....At least that stuff provides its own soap to clean your hands with....

Which hot metals then, w/ref BOOM! (I don't know)? I haven't spat on hot aluminuim, magnesium or titanium. I have tried to burn magnesium, take a bit of getting going, I thing spit would put it out? L

VIRON doesn't (and hasn't) had a clue.

Magnesium burns hot enough that it can disassociate water and use the O2 to keep burning. Not sure of titanium, but the 3000+ degree oxidation temp suggests something similar to magnesium. I've done water casting with aluminum (dump molten aluminum in a large bucket of water slowly-makes neat random shapes) without a problem. You don't want to get a small amount of water under or inside an aluminum melt (like spilling on concrete or adding a can with a little water in it) because the steam can throw the liquid metal quite far. Water ON an aluminum melt just boils away-as light as it is, it still sinks in water : )

And what does the greater volume of dissociated H2 do?

Adds to the gassing off, along with the excess steam that isn't disassociated and the magnesium oxide. Look into how chemistry works. Each element is ranked by how reactive it is-the more reactive elements can 'steal' from less reactive ones. Aluminum can 'steal' the oxygen from rust, better known as thermite.

Ok, so somehow water on molten magnesium in a forge is safe, but elsewhere it goes BOOM! Sorry, I don't think I have ever "committed forgery". :)

Molten magnesium is burning if there is any oxygen available-so no, it isn't safe. And magnesium does not go boom-it's a very stable element, used in light weight transmissions and occasional small engine housings.

You aren't looking at the mechanics-water becoming steam creates pressure. If there is something ON TOP of the steam, it can be dangerous. If the steam is on top, there is nothing to for the steam to throw.

Look up Dihydrogen monoxide to see what an incomplete understanding of what is dangerous can do.

Whatever. You're not looking at the chemistry. If you did you'd go blind anyway. And mechanically, you're saying a surface explosion makes no waves.

It's not an explosion-the heat reaches the water before it gets to the surface (the water never touches the surface) and creates a steam blanket. The steam blanket has an insulating effect, preventing spontaneous gasification of all the water.

When I'm melting metal, I use a welding filter. Am I still not looking at the chemistry?

If you have a crucible of magnesium large enough to worry about waves, you are at a commercial smelter and don't have to worry about water. Of course, there is the problem of getting the water past the inert atmosphere needed to melt magnesium in the first place...

Go back, you are thinking of ALUMINUM and typing MAGNESIUM.

Your whatever shows that you don't care about what you are saying, only that you want to win an argument.

OK, You win. May the forge be with you.

that is why they use it to ignigte thermite

Water boils at 100 C, so unless you can comfortably hold a heavy object at 99 C it's not a good test. The back of the hand test is good because you SLOWLY approach the metal, not touching it until you are sure of the temp.