bluenose2

Using highly toxic substances.

Hello Les here. After further consideration I would like to suggest a new category. This site requires a WHIMIS folder for those using highly toxic chemicals such as sulphuric acid and other high VOC compounds that people are using. At present there appears to be no guidelines on this site for users. As a former safety officer with a fire department it would be in everyones best interest to have good information about the chemicals they use and the side effects there in. Please contact me on this issue.

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Les; thank you for the reminder. You'll find regular safety warnings in various threads when the subjects of flammables, VOC's, particulates or other hazards come up. However, an extra 'safety' thread would not be amiss!

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Totally agree about the need for safety. A material safety data sheet (MSDS) is the place to look for info in the US.

Jaxboat

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Hello Les back. As discussed most of the solvents, adhesives and paints we use do not have a list of what they contain. If you are a commercial company you can request the WHMIS data for products you use so it can be included in your spill cart. My intention here is to see a data base in "ONE" topic site, no hunting required. So you if you are using lacquer thinner you can look at the handling, storage and disposal data. This is important if you are going to use a compound such as sulphuric acid for example. You need to have available, the required safety equipment in case of a spill or worse yet if you splash some on yourself. Long term exposure effects to many chemicals can be very harmful. This could also have recommendations for correct venting, for enclosed the spaces we tend to work in. This would be a topic that could be updated regularly as companies release new adhesives and paints etc.

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NB, sulfuric acid is not toxic ! I doubt that you could drink enough to experience any toxicity from the sulphate ions ... sulphuric acid dehydrates and oxidises organic tissue, which is something completely different.

 

It is important to not mix up different categories of hazards. Otherwise, people get worried about things, while in reality materials can be safely handled with the proper procedures and precautions.

 

Having said that, for me there would be certain no-nos in certain working environments. For instance, I am working seated at a wooden workbench. This means that I would shy away from using at this workplace strong oxidising acids, such as sulfuric or nitric acid. A spill is difficult to control on a wooden bench and when seated, you cannot get out of the danger zone quickly - you will have it all in your lap.

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Hello wefalk Les here. I want "YOU" and everyone else who has looked at this thread to IMMEDATELY google Sulfuric or the alternative spelling Sulphuric acid. Go to the wikipedia web site on this. " NO ONE" , I repeat "NO ONE" should ever drink this substance as it is the main component in your car battery.  If splashed in your eyes it can cause blindness, severe burns to skin and respiratory damage to name a few. This is the main reason I would like to see a dedicated topic to things we use and their interactions. Our health is extremely important and this should not be a space for unqualified recommendations for handling such items.

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Hi.

Please don't forget about the types of wood dust that can be toxic.

And also include it's uses and storage. 

 

Regards Antony.

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Of course, I did not imply that anyone should ever attempt to drink sulphuric acid ! I tried to point out the difference between 'toxicity' in the scientific-medical sense and other detrimental health effects. Peolple tend to confuse these.

 

Oh, btw, I have a PhD in geochemistry and many years of practice in chemical laboratory work B)

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Thanks for clearing that up Wefalck, also good to know that you are "qualified";)

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Hello Antony, Les here. I fully agree. One of the secrets is how toxic wood can be when you cut or sand it. I had an employee of mine cut a bunch of lengths of mahogany on a table saw for a project we were doing. Without my knowledge he did this without adequate respiratory protection. He suffered for this. Also the health issues associated with using MDF and particle board without adequate protection may lead to long term issues.

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Hello wefalck. Les back. My intention was never to impune your credentials. My goal here is to have a topic that members can go to so they can see the ramifications of the products they use. The reason I got upset with your post was that as I young guy fresh out of high school I worked at a fertilizer plant. I was burnt on my back with sulfuric or sulphuric acid. Once again I respect your credentials.

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Hello Les here. I am now appealing to the moderator gurus. How would one set up this site? I believe it is important. What say you?

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Les, it's a great idea. The various glues, paints and assorted other substances we use in constructing our models can be toxic, some immediately, some over time. I'd break it into the various uses; glues, paints, blackeners, etchants, etc.

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Thnx Ken. Les back. How would one go about setting up a separate topic, or would this just be a data base under a topic such as tools and equipment etc. I believe this should be a stand alone topic and not one buried into another topic.

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How about a "Topic" on Shop safety, and under that, threads on:

 

- Toxic Materials Handling and Precautions

- Corrosive Materials Handling and Precautions

- Flammable Materials and Fire Safety

- Eye Protection

- Hearing Protection

- Breathing Protection

- etc etc etc

 

 

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Les back here. I have asked about this topic several times before. I see several dedicated topics on this site. All the "likes" are great but I am asking those who run this site to suggest how we could set up a new topic based on this issue. 

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Hi Mark, if anything, my original topic should be pruned a little bit. There was considerable discussion on the perils of wood dust, and although equally valid, my intent was to focus on the actual chemicals, glues and paints etc. Perhaps after pruning, my thread could be pinned as requested, in the appropriate forum, with the added caveat that the topic is to be restricted to posting verifiable factual information (ie MSDSs). I feel the last bit is important because of the amount of hysteria and miss-information, and obsolete information, surrounding certain substances (and I have seen some of it sneek into discussions on MSW).

 

Andy

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Hello Andy. Les here. Excellent work. I am aiming for a topic that is just like the other topics you see when you browse. You and others would build a data base for users to reference when they need information on the adhesives, woods, paints etc. that we use. Add ons to be expected. As this site is American based, litigation issues need to be kept in mind for the administrators. I can't help but think that this is an issue who's time has come.

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Are there any documented cases of ship model related poisonings? Or ship model specific injuries?  I've never heard of any. Broadening the question, are there any documented cases of model building injuries of any kind? I'm sure there are power tool related accidents, power tools cause a lot of injuries every year. The first time I used an exacto as a kid making a pinewood derby car I cut my hand pretty bad. But is there any data available on health incidents specifically related to ship model building? On a personal level, I worry most about eye injury when using a dremel. Poisoning is not on my radar at all, but then again, as mentioned above, I'm not drinking any of the liquids I'm using, I'm a mature adult. Let's not get hysterical about chemical poisoning if it can't be demonstrated that there is an actual history of ship model related poisonings. A quick google search yielded this data rich website: http://www.poison.org/poison-statistics-national

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Hi Frankie, I think the the issue is not so much those injuries associated with our hobby but the fact that some of the chemicals we use are dangerous.  The same goes for household chemicals (draino and bleach come to mine).  I agree that we adults do not drink these materials, but poisoning also happens through our skin and lungs.  When I am using solvents and thinners in my model shop, I wear appropriate gloves.  When I use toluene, zylene, nitro cellulose, MEK and others, I also go outside.    

 

As a woodworker, I am conscious of the danger of wood dust, especially from toxic woods such as ebony.  If a person has developed a sensitivity to certain dusts, then that dust is toxic to that person.  For example, I am not sensitive to mahogany dust, but one of my brothers is (too much exposure over a long period).  Dermatitis, skin inflammation, conjunctivitis, and other respiratory diseases may result.  Therefore, using latex gloves. dust masks, dust collection systems etal makes sense.  And because of the toxic dust of certain woods, I prefer to avoid them.   

 

The only 'documented' case of a model ship injury other than cuts that I know is Portia Takakjian who passed away from respiratory failure.  Yes, she was a smoker but she also sanded toxic woods without a dust mask.  This is most unfortunate as she was a teacher of model ship building, a publisher and a major inspiration for many people, including me.

 

Take care, keep building and above all, have fun.                       Duff 

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I found that wifes are far more careless when using potentially dangerous chemicals such as bleach ... and resistant to advice  :o 

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Unless you can show proof otherwise, I think it's alarmist and wrong to attribut the cause of any cancer, fatal or otherwise, to exposure to wood. Can you site a case of wood exposure causing cancer, in any field? I have NAVER heard of such a thing. Certainly there are caustic woods just as there are individual sensitivities and allergies to woods. But wood doesn't cause cancer. Back to poisons in chemachals used in hobbies: do you know of an instance of a poisonous chemical found in a material used in the hobby industry that DOESNT already have a warning on its label? If you do (and I doubt it) then you could make a case for trying to raise awareness about a hidden danger. But there IS awareness already, we all KNOW that solvents and other hobby products like them will require careful handling and extra precautions. If your true concern is for the health of model builders, the dangers you should address are whatever factors can be shown to be causing health issues within the hobby. But here is what I think you will find: there ARE no hidden health risks unique to model building, building models does NOT heighten anyone's risk of death or sickness. if you can prove otherwise please site an actual documented case and prove me wrong. The health of model builders is being negatively impacted by the same factors effecting the entire population: heart disease, obesity, smoking-the same well known factors were are all well informed of. And looking at poisonings in the whole population, most of them are due to medications, NOT the use of products found in our hobby. 

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