Fire hazards with oil finishes

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Hi,
I'm currently writing an article for a canadian woodworking magazine about fire hazards in a typical workshop. The article will discuss passive and active measures to take to avoid or extinguish fire.
I would like to make a test with rags soaked with oil and see how long it would take before it catches fire. I'm wondering which oil is generating the most heat (tung oil, linseed oil, danish, etc.) and how long it takes, based on your experience (if you had any), to get the smoke or an actual flame.
I would also be interested in knowing any experiences with dust collector fires. There is obviously static electricity but I prefer to hear about any kind of "accidents" that might have happened and sent a spark in your dust collector to later on, catch fire. Again, I would be interested in knowing how long it takes before you do get the smoke to figure out something's wrong. I know it can be a couple hours.
Feel free to add any other fire hazards you've come across that I may just overlook at the moment.
Thanks,
Greg D.
P.S.: There is obviously the chemical storage which are also a concern.
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You might contact your local fire department for accurate information.
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Greg D. wrote:

Why don't you try a variety yourself and get back to us?
My bet is on boiled linseed oil.
--

FF


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One assumes, from the lack of woodworking knowledge -"Danish" is a pastry not an oil - that you must be a writer, then such things as subject/verb agreement and capitalization put the lie to that.
I'm with Leon. All this has been done and should be available from say, CSA among others. I think this kind of work might be too dangerous for you.
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Gheeez, I meant danish oil. Just for your information, I'm not "just a writer" but also a woodworker. Magazines are not all written by people not knowing a damn about woodworking... It just happen that English is not my primary language...

The reason why I posted this request was to get some feedback about potential risks of fire in a typical workshop based on your experiences or what you may have heard on the subject. Obviously, you didn't understand that at all from my initial post.
Maybe you should read and understand before making an ass of yourself by "assuming" things that aren't even remotely close to the truth. Or, you could have kept your month shut if you had nothing to say.
Greg D.
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Hey Greg - I have to confess, when I first read your original post I was a bit put off. I thought that the last thing I really wanted to see was another uninformed "reality/experience" article. There are so many of those kinds of articles out there that although perhaps well intended, do nothing more than perpetuate myths and misunderstandings. Experiences such as would be found in a group like this more often reflect anecdotal data and/or assumptions based on an incomplete investigative process. The net is a preponderance of poor conclusions. No point in propgating this type of thing.
Just my thoughts - sorry that they don't support your efforts. I'd really rather see a more scientific approach to workshop hazards than is likely to come from what we could give you. Most of us are comfortable with a close to accurate understanding of what might have happened in a particular incident and chose not to do that again. It works, but for the sake of an article I think your readers would deserve more accurate information.
--

-Mike-
snipped-for-privacy@alltel.net
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Hi Mike,
I clearly understand that usenet is like talking with a bunch of friends. It's in no way scientific or the truth but I believe it's a very interesting way to come up with unexpected aspects of a subject I may not have think about in the first place alone. It just opens up my horizons and gives more depth to my articles.
All my articles are built in the same way. I gather every aspect I want to cover on the subject and organize them in categories or topics and then I write the article.
I never rely on newsgroup as per say to write articles but once and a while, when I'm looking for a source of inspiration I find it tempting to ask around here.
Unfortunately, each time I do it, I end up clarifying my initial post because people don't read it (or don't make the effort to understand) or they try to make me say something I never said.
In other words, 9.9 times out of 10, it's a complete waste of time because it won't turn out anything useful aside from a great amount of sarcams and false assumptions when it's not just plain insults.
Since I'm a very optimistic person, I always believe (I'm certainly still too naive) that a few persons can discuss on a subject and bring some interesting arguments and explanations. This discussion this morning just prove the opposite again and it's certainly why, among other things, a lot of very interesting people with something to say and share eventually shut up and quit rec.woodworking. When one have nothing to say, share or have no opinion on a subject, it would just be logical they don't post especially if their answers are intented to turn the initial poster into an idiot.
On the other hand, I would like to thank all those of you who did make an effort to share some information like Han who provided a link to useful information.
Thanks,
Greg D.
wrote:

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Yes, you are still naive. After insulting most of the group, most of the group are just too polite to tell you to f-- off. You are making a lot of friends here.
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wrote:

Thank you for confirming exactly the problem I'm trying to describe.
I ask a question, I get stupid answers. I clarify it, I get even more stupid and insulting answers. What else can I say? Try reading my initial post and see if it deserved insults in the first place. I think not but it seems I'm the only one thinking that way.
Then, I will follow your wise advice and just fuck off from here.
Greg D.
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Initial post was OK. Your follow ups were not something that would make your mother proud. Learn to ignore rather than retaliate and you will still get those little gems of knowledge you seek. Make one nasty personal remark and you turn off many potential responders.
Newsgroups is a tough neighborhood.
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wrote:

Don't let the door hit ya in the butt on your way out.
--
Regards,
Doug Miller (alphageek at milmac dot com)
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wrote: [snip]

I believe it was William Zinsser, in "On Writing Well," who said that the purpose of writing is not to make yourself understood -- but to make it impossible to be misunderstood.

If you find that your writing is so consistently misunderstood, that should perhaps suggest which direction you should explore to correct the problem.
--
Regards,
Doug Miller (alphageek at milmac dot com)
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OK, that should get you many contributions towards your writing. Maybe we'll all keep our "month" shut.
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wrote:

Does that come from the danish tree?
--
Regards,
Doug Miller (alphageek at milmac dot com)
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Doug Miller wrote:

No, Danish nuts.
--

FF


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4ax.com:

Googling for "oil rag fire" I found this site from Norway: http://www.sintef-group.com/content/page1____7975.aspx?epslanguage=EN Seems the risk is being downplayed in Norway. Of course, it might be catastrophic if it does happen to you. So don't look into the gastank with a burning cigaret in your mouth ...
--
Best regards
Han
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Greg D. wrote:

Not long - only a few hours (depending on time of day). I've never seen a fire caused by this, but I have had my own wadded rags start to smoulder during a UK Summer (maybe 35C in my workshop). The riskiest time is the crossover between hottest part of the day, and an hour or so after the oil was applied. Once they've cured for a few hours on a hot day they'll start to cool down.
The expert on this stuff is Bill Knight the muzzle loader. He's the author of the best monograph out there on historical linseed oil driers and oil curing.
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: Hi,
: I'm currently writing an article for a canadian woodworking magazine : about fire hazards in a typical workshop. The article will discuss : passive and active measures to take to avoid or extinguish fire.
: I would like to make a test with rags soaked with oil and see how long : it would take before it catches fire. I'm wondering which oil is : generating the most heat (tung oil, linseed oil, danish, etc.) and how : long it takes, based on your experience (if you had any), to get the : smoke or an actual flame.
One problem in doing an accurate estimate is degree of crumple in the rag or paper towel. The fire is caused by heat generated by the oil oxidizing, and that is going to be influenced by amount of surface area open to oxygen.
: Feel free to add any other fire hazards you've come across that I may : just overlook at the moment.
Here's a couple:
1) Steel wool. Quite flammable (huge amount of surface area for thin wire). I've heard of a few fires caused by the stuff catching a grinder spark.
2) Grinding both aluminum and steel on the same grinding wheel can create thermite. This can cause the wheel to explode. Lee Valley is a good contact for this - -they had an article on their website about a specific occurrence.
Looking forward to your article (where will it appear?).
    -- Andy Barss
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On Sun, 22 Oct 2006 17:08:32 +0000 (UTC), Andrew Barss

Wow! This is something very interesting! Thank you very much.
I found the said article in the sharpening section of Lee Valley's website.
Thank you very much,
Greg D.

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I was told that this reaction was used to repair/fuse tracks for electric trolleys (Dutch word is "tram", it is similar to the "light rail" system in for instance Hoboken, NJ and surrounding).
Another explanation of the reaction between rust and aluminium (with either 1 or 2 "i"s) is here: http://www.ilpi.com/genchem/demo/thermite/index.html
--
Best regards
Han
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