Walking the 2009 Fabtech welding expo, I couldn’t help but notice that welding fume extractors were all over the place.
...much more prevalent this year than years before.
With OSHA’s new stringent rules on hexavalent chromium exposure, it’s not surprising.
Companies are having to pony up to the table and make sure their workers are protected.
Not such a bad thing if you ask me.
I remember working at a manufacturing shop back in 1977 and my job was welding the mast head supports for portable drilling rigs. Lots of single pass stick welds on gussets and stiffeners.
so I sat on a 5 gallon bucket for 10 hours a day burning 50 lbs of 3/16” 11018 stick rods a day…every day.
The shop was so freakin smoky in the winter that you couldn’t see the other side of the shop.
“ Fume extractor?...we don’t need no stinking fume extractor!!"
The old timers would even holler if someone opened the door to let some cold fresh air in.
It sucked…But It did make a good stick welder out of me.
Back in the day, you might have even been labeled a pussy for complaining. That was then. This is now.
Today , there is no excuse. There is no reason for a welding shop with employees not to have a fume extractor of some kind.
I even saw a portable fume extractor advertised at the welding show for less than 3000 bones.
The Fred Series made by Diversitech inc, had a great demonstration with a portable fume collector arm that had some kind of arc or motion sensor in the vent hood that followed the arc around.
Think about how useful that would be for welding long runs.
It made for a cool demo anyway.
BTW, FRED stands for
Dramatically Reduced Pollution