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Safety -- Make sure you are safe!

View Poll Results: Do you have propane tank(s) in your house?
Yes, but only a maximum of 2 one-pound tanks 75 10.58%
Yes, I keep my BBQ tank right next to me in the studio. 208 29.34%
No, it always stays outside. I run the lines through a door/window. 245 34.56%
No, it always stays outside. I have a plumbed line through the wall. 181 25.53%
Voters: 709. You may not vote on this poll

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  #61  
Old 2005-08-05, 8:38am
Deneen Deneen is offline
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Thanks, Bill!
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  #62  
Old 2005-08-05, 2:59pm
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Here's why I personally have my propane tank outside and have it piped in through the wall.

1. Propane is very dangerous to breathe. If there's a leak, whether you're torching or not, this gas can kill you. I don't want to have to worry about gas leaking and pooling in my home/garage where the people and animals can breathe it in. When I took my very first class in a studio, they had no decent ventillation and had the propane inside. I had chest pain and dizziness for a whole week. I don't want to go through that again, so I keep it outside.

2. I don't want my house to blow up.

3. It was very easy to drill a hole in the wall, pipe the hose through and seal it. Easy. So I had no good excuse not to do it.

So there you have it. That's why I have the propane outside, and why I encourage others to have it outside as well.

However, I don't take it personally if someone else takes the risk of having it inside. They're adults and are perfectly capable of making those decisions on their own. It's silly to me to get all worked up because someone decides to take a risk. I encourage safety. I want and wish for people to be safe. But if they decide to take the risk of doing something I view as unsafe, well.....then they take on the possibility of being poisoned or blown up.
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  #63  
Old 2005-08-05, 4:05pm
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Just a small note about keeping your propane outside. Our house insurance policy is null and void if our propane (or any gass for that matter) is left outside unsecured. It's considered a "hassard". It needs to me inside a metal "theft proof" container and paddlocked.
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  #64  
Old 2005-08-06, 6:28am
Barb H. Barb H. is offline
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Hi guys! Since I'm a part time lampworker, I use the MAPP handheld small tanks. When our new garage is finished my hubby was going to set me up a workbench in the corner. Is there a problem with this kind of setup? Maybe if I ever get really into it then I can have the bigger tank and run a hose right to the bench from outside. Right now when the weather's nice I work on the deck, but come winter I was going to the garage. I know there's fumes either or, and will have good ventilation in the garage. And I would guess it's a no-no to use one of these in the basement small tank or not. Thanks for any help!
Barb H.
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  #65  
Old 2005-08-06, 6:39am
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If you don't want to go through the major hassle of putting in proper plumbing for your gas supply, you could just buy a bulk hose and tank of MAPP, or a BBQ bottle of propane, and simply carrying the tank back and forth.

Bring the tank into the garage, make beads, and return the tank to proper outside storage when done making beads. Even get a little free excercise in the deal.
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  #66  
Old 2005-08-06, 7:02am
Barb H. Barb H. is offline
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Thanks Bill....
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  #67  
Old 2005-08-06, 7:15am
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MikeAurelius MikeAurelius is offline
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You CAN use single one pound tanks in the house. Current code allows for a maximum of two full one pound tanks in a residence. There is no real problem using them in a basement, provided you have good ventilation.
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  #68  
Old 2005-08-06, 4:02pm
Barb H. Barb H. is offline
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Thanks Mike! I always worried though with the hot water heater flame and furnace. We only have one window, and then I thought a fan would help push it up and out. Scary though! Although, that's one way to see if the co detectors are working. But then I've always wondered about welders and plumbing when they're in a basement, or would they shut down all the pilots, or is that even a concern? Thanks again Mike. Barb H.
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  #69  
Old 2005-08-07, 8:04am
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CO detectors will only detect carbon monoxide, unless you have a dual purpose detector that also detects propane/natural gas (Nighthawk sells them, and I strongly recommend them to every lampworker).

The reason single one pound tanks are permissible is that the volume of gas contained in the tank is so small, that even if there was a full blown leak, the average sized room is large enough that the explosive level of propane won't be met. This is not the case with 20# BBQ tanks though.

Your comment about one window concerns me though about ventilation - you will need more than that for good ventilation, unless you are venting out through a duct. The window is going to be needed for bringing in fresh replacement air.

I've never seen anyone welding in a basement, but plumbers do it all the time - and they don't turn off any pilot lights. Once the fuel gas has been burned, it cannot re-ignite - and the possibility of a leak is very small.
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  #70  
Old 2005-08-07, 1:12pm
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Thanks again Mike. We have Nighthawks throughout. And I also have the concern with the one window. So for now I think I'll just continue on the deck and wait on the garage. Of course this garage has been in the process for almost two years! Great contractor we have! LOL Thanks again and happy torching.
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  #71  
Old 2005-08-07, 1:25pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nicker
All though my tank is in the shop which is attached to the house,my set up was installed by a welder, inspected by the buliding inspector, insurance adjustor AND the fire chief. If they say it's safe I trust them. I think 2 layers of fireboard and the fire chiefs OK is good?
I would assume that your welding shop is correctly vented for heavier-than-air flammable gases, which is something the fire chief would have looked for. That makes a huge difference. Areas which are not correctly vented allow any leaking gas to pool, which creates the risk of explosion, against which the firewall is no protection whatsoever. (A 5-lb propane tank will take down a house, and a few neighboring houses, if it explodes.) Propane tanks leak very frequently, which makes correct venting a necessity in a welding shop. There are codes that govern this, which is what the fire chief ascertained when he inspected your shop.

I'm only saying this so that people who are unfamiliar with the reasons your shop passed inspection don't think "Well, the fire chief says it's OK for Nicker to have her tank inside a building, so it must be safe for me too!" without looking into the specific conditions which make it safe in your shop.
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  #72  
Old 2005-08-07, 3:27pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kalera
I would assume that your welding shop is correctly vented for heavier-than-air flammable gases, which is something the fire chief would have looked for. That makes a huge difference. Areas which are not correctly vented allow any leaking gas to pool, which creates the risk of explosion, against which the firewall is no protection whatsoever. (A 5-lb propane tank will take down a house, and a few neighboring houses, if it explodes.) Propane tanks leak very frequently, which makes correct venting a necessity in a welding shop. There are codes that govern this, which is what the fire chief ascertained when he inspected your shop.

I'm only saying this so that people who are unfamiliar with the reasons your shop passed inspection don't think "Well, the fire chief says it's OK for Nicker to have her tank inside a building, so it must be safe for me too!" without looking into the specific conditions which make it safe in your shop.
Good point, I was kinda trying to say instead of taking heresay from people online actually get a professional or two come and inspect your set up. Thanks Kalera I was pretty unclear.
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  #73  
Old 2005-08-07, 3:42pm
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Dale M. Dale M. is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kalera
I would assume that your welding shop is correctly vented for heavier-than-air flammable gases, which is something the fire chief would have looked for. That makes a huge difference. Areas which are not correctly vented allow any leaking gas to pool, which creates the risk of explosion, against which the firewall is no protection whatsoever. (A 5-lb propane tank will take down a house, and a few neighboring houses, if it explodes.) Propane tanks leak very frequently, which makes correct venting a necessity in a welding shop. There are codes that govern this, which is what the fire chief ascertained when he inspected your shop.

I'm only saying this so that people who are unfamiliar with the reasons your shop passed inspection don't think "Well, the fire chief says it's OK for Nicker to have her tank inside a building, so it must be safe for me too!" without looking into the specific conditions which make it safe in your shop.
Let me also add, in most welding shops ACETYLENE is used as a fuel. It is a lighter than air gas and will float off (upwards) and not pool like propane...But that does not negate the need for good ventilation.

Dale
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  #74  
Old 2005-08-09, 3:44pm
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sandra j ziolkowski sandra j ziolkowski is offline
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Thanks to all of the safety minded threaders Im working with out all the head aches and possible long term damage due to carbonmonixide poisoning not to mention fear of explosion.. Now I have my tanks out side and am having an exhaust system enstalled tomorrow so I dont kill my self. Maybe it would help if someone tells of the ills of long term build up of carbon monoxidewithout proper venilation. Just a thought Anyway I am very greatful. Being brand new at this I havn't read all the threads that have been written over time,so itjust sounds like plain good advice.
Thanks again
PS
And if there is anyone newer than I out there oxygen concentrators are the way to go. Me and my Minor burner are "very happy".
Sandi
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  #75  
Old 2005-08-10, 6:01am
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There is plenty of information on the web about CO poisoning - do a yahoo search on the keywords "carbon monoxide poisoning".
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  #76  
Old 2005-09-02, 12:34pm
mattmoss mattmoss is offline
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Hi folks...

I'm still a newbie, having only worked with MAPP gas in the small canisters and a HH. I had been planning on moving to propane/oxy/minor, but after reading this thread, I don't think I can. I'm in a second floor apartment of a private house, so I can't go drilling holes and I doubt it would be safe/easy to start dragging lines up to the second floor... nevermind where to actually put the propane tank.

I guess my question, then, is if it's still safe to continue using those MAPP gas canisters indoors? How much ventilation would that require? (IE, do I need to start putting in ductwork/etc, or could I get away with a couple of simple fans, one in, one out, in the two windows in the room?)

Thanks...
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  #77  
Old 2005-09-02, 1:11pm
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Just wanted to add one FURTHER UPDATE. Hubby installed a CO/FIRE alarm ABOVE my work station last week! I feel VERY safe now! Thanks for all the advice, Bill, Mike and Dale!
Lynnie
Quote:
Originally Posted by danelady
UPDATED July 4th. Propane tank has been installed OUTSIDE, Ventilation installed INSIDE!!

Woohoo!
Lynnie

I know you're not attacking me, honest! You won't hear any arguments from me! I have an appointment to have my propane installed outside, just on a waiting list! Hubby will be placing a rack outside my studio window for me to place my propane tank on, and hose it indoors till then. I Read all the thread, thank you!
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  #78  
Old 2005-09-07, 11:58am
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Good for you!!!!!

Woo hoo!!!
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  #79  
Old 2005-09-23, 1:28pm
SL Beads SL Beads is offline
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Dear Mike: It seems that some people keep their propane gas next to them while working, but they put it away when done. Is this setup acceptable? Is the issue about keeping the tank away from flame and possible flying glass? If so, can this be accomplished by covering the tank with some protective material? SLBead
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  #80  
Old 2005-09-23, 4:16pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SL Bead
Dear Mike: It seems that some people keep their propane gas next to them while working, but they put it away when done. Is this setup acceptable? Is the issue about keeping the tank away from flame and possible flying glass? If so, can this be accomplished by covering the tank with some protective material? SLBead
The issure is leaking gas.... And no, this setup is not acceptable. Having tank next to you is not good, its not safe, and if it is leaking you have explosive bomb right next to you!...

Nothing you can cover tank with is going to make it safe. Only thing safe is tank outside, period!

Dale M.
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Last edited by Dale M.; 2005-09-24 at 8:02am.
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  #81  
Old 2005-09-24, 7:21am
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As Dale says. For awhile there was discussion about putting the propane in a box, whether to "hide it" from inspectors or to protect it. Once it was pointed out that if there was ever a fire and the fire personnel entered the house and could not see the propane tank, they wouldn't know it was there and probably would not take the necessary steps of protecting it or getting the hell out of the building.

What some people don't understand (especially hot head users) is that they are using full tank pressure (100 psi plus). If there were ever a leak in the hose, whether cut by sharp glass or burned through from hot glass, the tank would empty itself in very short order. As I recall, the explosive concentration of propane is somewhere around 4% - meaning that if 4% of the air is "contaminated" with propane, it will explode if exposed to an ignition source. With full tank pressure, explosive concentration will be met in seconds. Some people use the excuse that with the tank right next to them, they can react quickly and shut the tank off in time. This is totally wrong thinking.
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  #82  
Old 2005-09-24, 1:59pm
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Here's one
We are going to start traveling in a motorhome and will have to carry our tank in one of the storage bins. One is ventilated will that be ok as it will not be hooked up till we arrive and set up. The tank will remain outside away from the rig about 25 feet. Jack brown
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  #83  
Old 2005-09-24, 8:04pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cattmr
Here's one
We are going to start traveling in a motorhome and will have to carry our tank in one of the storage bins. One is ventilated will that be ok as it will not be hooked up till we arrive and set up. The tank will remain outside away from the rig about 25 feet. Jack brown
Yes... In properly VENTILATED storage compartment!.... It's quite common for motor homes to have their propane supplies in VENTILATED storage compartments... The key here is propane gas settles downward, in motor home situation there if free air space below "coach" and there is always air movement to dissipate the propane if it were to leak.

Dale
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  #84  
Old 2005-09-27, 6:23am
SL Beads SL Beads is offline
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Has anyone checked Cindy Jenkin's Book "Making Glass Beads?" The creator of HH torch shows in her book (page 20) a pic of typical single-fuel work station. Guess where she has her bulk fuel tank placed. Right under the table with the torch on it. Also on the page 21 she has a different pic with the propane tank and the oxygen tank right by the torch. Does she know something that we don't know?
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  #85  
Old 2005-09-27, 6:35am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SL Bead
Does she know something that we don't know?

No, I would say that we know something that she doesn't know.
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  #86  
Old 2005-09-27, 6:52am
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CJ's book is FULL of some very bad things. For example, she adds a lot of fuel to the clear safety glass vs didymium debate in the safety chapter.

The problem as I see it (in my own not-so-humble opinion, of course ) is that people read these books as if they are the un-mutable truth and bible. Got news for ya! They aren't. In many cases, these books are nothing more than an accident waiting to happen. CJ's been asked many times to update the photographs and "discussion" in her books to reflect current knowledge about safety topics, and she totally refuses to do so.

And when, if ever, she does change them, there is still going to be uncounted thousands of these books with bad information floating around the world.

I freely admit that I've been very outspoken in the past about CJ's attitude towards safety, and the post above shows that inspite of the tens of thousands of words about safety, it is still disregarded by those of us who put money ahead of safety.

It's a damn shame, and one day, someone is going to get seriously hurt or killed by following the practices shown in books like CJ's.
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  #87  
Old 2005-09-27, 7:40am
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Dale M. Dale M. is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SL Bead
Has anyone checked Cindy Jenkin's Book "Making Glass Beads?" The creator of HH torch shows in her book (page 20) a pic of typical single-fuel work station. Guess where she has her bulk fuel tank placed. Right under the table with the torch on it. Also on the page 21 she has a different pic with the propane tank and the oxygen tank right by the torch. Does she know something that we don't know?
Ever consider those pictures where for an EXAMPLE on how equipment is setup... Not for safe operation, but to illustrate the mechanical connection...

There is a lot of things written in a lots of books ... Do you take everything as gospel truths...

Dale
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  #88  
Old 2005-09-27, 3:28pm
SL Beads SL Beads is offline
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Dear Dale M: I understand what you are trying to say, but in the same token she should have thought about who she was writing the book for. The book is for the beginners who know nothing about the safety issue as yet. So of course beginners follow the gospel and try to follow it faithfully. She really should have thought about that, in my opinion.
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Old 2005-09-27, 4:55pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SL Bead
Dear Dale M: I understand what you are trying to say, but in the same token she should have thought about who she was writing the book for. The book is for the beginners who know nothing about the safety issue as yet. So of course beginners follow the gospel and try to follow it faithfully. She really should have thought about that, in my opinion.
And not to cast any doubt on her abilities to make beads because she is a very accomplished beads maker. But maybe she knows nothing to very little about some aspects of safety, and why it was not addressed in her books. That is why these forums flourish, because the newest latest most correct information is available...

Dale M.
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  #90  
Old 2005-09-29, 8:08am
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Greetintgs,

I just found this forum and it looks great. I've been keeping my oxy and propane in the workshop (I know, bad idea) and would like to find some very specific informationl on how to plumb them both outside, including a materials list and suggestions on where to find stuff. Can I use copper tubing to run through the wall? I'd like to be able to leave the cylinders open outside and shut them on/off with valves inside attached to the pressure guages (and then to the hoses). Is that feasible and if so what kind on on/off valves shoud I use?

I also would like to know if it's ok to put the oxy and propane cylinders next to each other outside or do they need to be seperated somehow.

Any advice or directions to a tutorial would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks!
Pam
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