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Health and Safety


Material Safety Data

Material safety data containing safety information is available for every MAGMAWELD welding material. This material safety data includes:

a) Harmful components,
b) Damages that may occur when you use a material,
c) First-aid rules,
d) Limit values required for the workplace
e) Waste disposal methods

You can request material safety data for the welding materials you use from MAGMAWELD.


Ventilation

Harmful substances may form due to the content of welding material as well as the heat of arc welding. These substances may form due to the following reasons:

a) Metallic coatings such as galvanized (zinc), lead,
b) Paints such as zinc-based and lead-based paints,
c) Surface protective compounds and impurities such as oil, grease

A special attention should be paid while welding metals containing lead, cadmium, zinc, chromium. Because, these elements form harmful and toxic substances. This also applies to materials with plastic, oil and grease on their surfaces. The workpieces with hydrochloric-acid or hydrocarbon compounds on their surfaces should be cleaned from these compounds prior to welding. Because, they cause formation of toxic phosgene (MAK: 0,1 ml/m3) while welding.

A natural or mechanical ventilation should be provided to prevent the air to be inhaled at the workplace from reaching MAK-values. This ventilation type should meet the requirements given in Table 1 and 2.

The ventilation methods in Table 1 are listed relatively to the concentration of hazardous substances contained in the welding materials used or the coating types. The ventilation methods in Table 2 are listed relatively to the concentration of hazardous substances contained in the base metal used or the coating type.

The ventilation type also depends on the flaming duration or arc duration. “Short-term” term means a flaming or arc duration of ½ hours per day or 2 hours per week. “Long-term” term means a duration exceeding these values.

It should be ensured that when harmful substances are not inhaled while welding outdoor. When welding in narrow and confined areas, as specified in Article 29 of UVV 26.0, the polluted air should be evacuated or the workplace should be ventilated with fresh air.


METHOD

WELDING MATERIAL

Welding of Coated Steels

Non-alloy and light alloy steels,

Aluminum alloys

High alloy steels,

Non-ferrous metals

(except for aluminum alloys)

k

u

k

u

k

u

Gas fusion welding
fixed
portable


F
F


T
T


T
F


A
A


T
F


A
A

Coated electrode welding
fixed
portable


T
F


A
T


A
T


A
A


A
T


A
A

MIG / MAG welding
fixed
portable


T
F


A
T


A
T


A
A


A
T


A
A

TIG welding
fixed
portable


F
F


T
F


F
F


T
T


F
F


T
T

Submerged arc welding
fixed
portable


F
F


T
F


T
F


T
T


T
F


T
T

Powder spraying

A

A

A

A

-

-

 

k: short-term

 

F: natural ventilation

 

 

u: long-term

 

T: mechanical ventilation

 

 

 

 

A: Extraction of harmful substances where they form

  

 

Table 1. Ventilation type relatively to the welding method and welding material used


Various ventilation equipment may be selected for the workplaces according to the ventilation requirements. For example;

Fume extraction system to extract fume from welding torch, welding mask or head mask,
Portable fume extraction systems,
Fume extraction shafts that can be approached to or mounted on the workpiece or workplace

According to Article 29 of UVV 26.0, areas with an air volume less than 100 m3 or a height, width and length less than 2 meter and not having a natural air flow can be referred to as “Confined Areas”.

Confined areas include windowless basements, passages, pipelines, wells, tanks, boilers, containers and the cells and tank sections in ship building. In order to prevent formation of toxic substances, accumulation of flammable gases and reduction of oxygen while welding in confined areas, the fume extraction systems and artificial ventilation methods should be employed.

Appropriate respiration equipment should be used at places where fume extraction or mechanical ventilation cannot be provided. A particular attention should be paid to ventilation while performing oxy-gas welding, flame cutting and heating works that may cause the formation nitric-oxide exceeding the acceptable limit values at confined areas.


Attention!!! Ventilation with oxygen is not allowed in confined areas because it will cause serious burn injuries!



METHOD

WELDING MATERIAL

Welding of Coated Steels 

Non-alloy and light alloy steels,

Aluminum alloys

High alloy steels,

Non-ferrous metals

(except for aluminum alloys)

k

u

k

u

k

u

Flame annealing,
Flame rectification

F

T

F

T

F

T

Flame hardening

F

T

-

-

-

-

Flame shaping

F

T

-

-

-

-

Flame cutting
fixed
portable


F
F


T
T


A
T


A
A


T
T


T
T

Carving

F

T

-

-

T

T

Flame descaling 
fixed
portable


A
F


A
T


A
A


A
A


-
-


-
-

Tig welding
fixed
portable


F
F


T
F


F
F


T
T


F
F


T
T

Plasma cutting
fixed
portable


A
F


A
T


A
T


A
A


A
T


A
T

Arc-oxygen cutting,
Arc-air cutting
fixed
portable



T
F



A
T



A
T



A
A



T
F



A
T

Butt-welding

T

A

A

A

T

A

Other resistance welding methods

F

F

F

T

F

T

 

k: short-term

 

F: Natural ventilation

 

u: long-term

 

T: Mechanical ventilation

 

 

 

 

A: Extraction of harmful substances where they form

 

 

Table 2.  Ventilation methods for welding methods without welding material


Inhalation Protection

Respiratory protective devices suitable for welding process should be used in cases where ventilation is insufficient. The respiratory protective devices suitable for welding process are respiratory devices with hose and respiratory devices containing compressed air. If the atmosphere in the workplace contain at least 17% oxygen, then using a suitable protective filter will be useful. However, these filters are not allowed to be used at confined spaces such as container, pipeline, tank, wagon etc.


Air Supply

The air extracted from the workplace may be re-supplied only after being decontaminated from hazardous substances. The re-supplied air may be deemed to be sufficiently decontaminated from hazardous substances if the concentration of harmful substances does not exceed ¼ of the relative MAK-values. If the welding fume contain nickel compounds or chromium compounds at carcinogenic levels, then ventilation and air-supply should be provided according to the specific conditions.

Personal Protective Equipment

The personal protective equipment required to be used by the personnel working with various welding and cutting methods according to UVV 26.0 “Welding, Cutting and Related Works” are given in Table 3.




PERSONAL PROTECTIVE EQUIPMENT
(as a general rule)

WELDER PROTECTIVE

MASKGLASS FILTER

DIN 4646
DIN 4647 T.1

WELDING GOGGLES

DIN 58211 VwB 6, 7

FACE AND HEAD MASK

DIN 58214 VwB 6, 7

WELDING GLOVES

DIN 4841
Section 4

LEATHER APRON

or SeS

Method

Protection Level

Coated electrode welding

9 - 14

-

X

X

X

MIG /MAG welding

10 - 15

-

X

X

X

TIG, plasma welding

5 - 14

-

X

X

(X)

Arc- welding

10 - 15

-

X

X

X

Plasma welding

11 - 13

-

X

X

X

   X: necessary

   (X): necessary in some cases

   -: not recommended

   SeS: fireproof protective clothing

   VwB: application area

Table 3. Coordination of protective equipment for different welding methods



Safety Standards

The most recent safety standard for welding mask is ANSI Z87.1 – 2003. This standard requires mask and auto-darkening lens manufacturers to validate switching speeds, darkness shade settings and other specifications they specified with independent laboratory tests in order to demonstrate their compliance.

These rigorous tests require the mask and lenses to pass the high-speed impact tests with flying objects, to provide 100% UV and IR filtration regardless of shade settings and to comply with specified switching speeds and shading grades at very high temperature. The auto-darkening lenses should function properly between -5 and +55 °C in order to provide consistent protection.

Masks with auto-darkening filters have electronic filter other than standard colored glass. These masks have adjustable features facilitating the welding process. These features are mentioned below.

Auto-darkening filter lens or ADF is a special liquid crystal display (LCD) similar in design to the technology used for showing numbers in digital watches. Most filter cartridges are powered from battery or solar power. A few light sensors are placed at the edges of lens to detect welding arc. At times when lens is not activated, the auto-darkening CD filter typically has a #3 or 4 shade. This ensures to easily see behind the glass as with sunglasses.

Since the welder is able to see the position of MIG gun, TIG torch or rod electrode used depending on the welding material, the arc is started more easily. Once the arc is started, sensors on the mask will darken the lens to a shade grade from #9 to #13 according to the lens settings. This process occurs 100 times faster than the blink of an eye. Since the filter is equipped with UV and IR coatings, the eyes are protected from harmful rays regardless of whether the shade settings are activated or not.


Fixed or Variable Shade

In many welding processes, materials of different thicknesses that require different welding processes such as rod, MIG and TIG are used, for example, soft steel, stainless steel, aluminum etc. This means that the welding current may vary between 40 Ampere and up to 200 Ampere. This also means that the arc is of different brightness. You should use adjustable or variable shade lens in order to protect your eyes and to see the welding anneal in the best way possible.




Switching Speed (Lens Response Time)

When seeking auto-darkening masks, you notice that many manufacturers mention lens switching speed. This value specifies how long the lens will take to pass from the natural light state (usually # 3 or # 4 shadow grade) to the blackened state when the welding process starts. The faster lens shading occurs, the better the eyes of welder will be protected from high-intensity light. Very low response time causes eye disorders such as eye dryness and irritation. This is also known as arc flash.
Entry-level lenses have a switching speed of 1/3600 of a second. Intermediate level and professional level masks have a switching speed of 1/16.000 of a second or higher. Some manufacturers give this rate decimally, facilitating comparison.




Solar Power and Battery Life

Some auto-darkening masks are designed so as to have non-removable battery and solar support panel. In such masks, they have to be charged directly in sun light before the first use and in cases where the mask has not been used for a long time. This may cause a difficulty if you need to start welding immediately. The disadvantage of this type of masks is that the lens does not function upon completion of the battery life. In this regard, purchasing a mask with removable battery and solar support panel is more sense. Thus, the welding process is started immediately without the need of waiting for charging. Lens powered from AAA type battery should be preferred because of their low replacement costs and high availability. Models powered from lithium battery may be preferred for a long battery life. However, lithium batteries are more expensive and have a lower availability. For MIG welding processes, the life time of an ordinary AAA battery is about 2000 hours.




Adjustable Precision and Delay Controls

Both intermediate level and Professional level auto-darkening masks typically allow to set how much brightness will blacken the lens. While welding at lower amperes, especially in works which the arc is not much bright compared to other welding processes such as TIG, the precision control is very useful. The delay control is also another important feature. This control allows you to set how long the lens will remain dark upon completion of welding arc. Because re-positioning is required for the next welding process while performing a long-lasting point welding process, a short delay time ensures that the work is completed more quickly. Long delay time ensures that while welding at very high currents, the eyes are protected when looking at the welding zone after the arc goes out.



Mask Weight

Light masks minimize the neck strain of welder, improving comfort and reducing fatigue. There is a great difference between a mask of 0,5 kg and a mask of 1 kg. Using a mask of 1 kg does not cause too much problem in short-time welding processes however becomes discomfortable in welding works lasting for all day. This likes the case in which when we take a book in our hands by extending our arms, we do not have any difficulties for the first few seconds but feel the weight of book as 1 ton after few minutes. This also applies to when we compare the light and heavy masks. The heavy one becomes discomfortable after a certain period of time.