Reasons to be careful

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http://www.woodshopnews.com/news/features/503083-boom-the-dangers-of-wood-dust
Nice article.
How OSHA currently judges with a paper clip. :)
"So is the sawdust in my facility a hazard? It depends, Scott says. The really dangerous stuff is so-called “wood flour” — fine particles 500 microns or smaller."
It appears to be a very small chance.
However as far as I am concerned the breathing of the "wood flour" is my concern, so I will be paying attention, to this for my sake.
Steel wool catches fire easily, just so as you are aware of it. I like to bet that I can set steel on fire. ;) Haven't lost yet.
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On 2/23/2016 9:43 PM, OFWW wrote:

I hope every one also noted the comments about the static electricity that can build up in plastic pipes in your dust collection system. They must be grounded to dissipate this charge.
Also while the article is about wood dust, the dust of other organic material can be equally explosive.
Bottom line keep things clean and avoid excessive dust.
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On 2/23/16 9:24 PM, Keith Nuttle wrote:

And again, I have yet to see or hear of a credible documented case of a dust collector pipe explosion from static charge. I'm still waiting. It's the Loc Ness Monster of woodworking folklore. :-)
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-MIKE-

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If you notice static from your DC system, by all means ground it. It's not for safety per se, but just to keep you from getting an annoying shock. One of the normal human reactions when you get a shock is to move rapidly away from it, which could cause you to hit something.
I had to ground the discharge chute (a piece of downspout extender) on my planer because of the annoying shocks. That's the only reason I bothered.
Puckdropper
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On 2/24/16 12:07 AM, Puckdropper wrote:

Thank you, voice of common sense. I believe that's the *actual* reason for grounding a dust collector system. Unfortunately it seemingly got hijacked by the oak rust society and now the common but false believe is that's it's done to prevent "explosions."
Another reason to use metal ducting.
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-MIKE-

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wrote:

BOY HOWDY!
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On 24 Feb 2016 06:07:39 GMT, Puckdropper

OK, ground the equipment (it should be anyway) but the plastic pipe between them? Really?! The only thing I see the ground wire accomplishing is to plug the thing up.

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On 2/24/16 3:53 PM, krw wrote:

The one's I've seen grounded (to prevent uncomfortable static shocks, not "explosions") were grounded by a wire on the outside of the plastic pipe, not inside.
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-MIKE-

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Right, that's how I did mine. I just wrapped a wire around the outside of the pipe and that pretty much solved the problem.
Puckdropper
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On 2/24/16 4:34 PM, Puckdropper wrote:

AND it blocks the mind control rays.
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-MIKE-

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Are they the ones that cause you not to end a sentence with a punctuation mark?
Puckdropper
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Setting steel wool on fire is an old boy scout trick for starting camp fires, since two D cells are sufficient, and flashlights often had D cells in them.
Mythbusters did a test with coffee creamer and a flare. The creamer wouldn't catch fire until it was blown (as in with wind) into the air. When it got to the right mix it nearly exploded. Wood flour (and even wheat flour) is the same thing; as a pile on the ground it's safe but as a cloud in the air it's highly flammable.
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On 2/23/16 9:30 PM, DJ Delorie wrote:

Broken record: the concentration would have to be so high that you couldn't see across the room, let alone breathe.
I think Darwinism would do us all a favor and explode the shop of any woodworker who would let that kind of "cloud" be produced is his shop. Lord know, I wouldn't want to see any of his work if he's that reckless.
I can't even imagine a normal woodworking scenario in which that high a concentration of wood dust could occur.
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The linked report had a suspect cause: wood flour collected in hidden spaces, something else went FOOM (like a small contained bit of wood flour) and that blew all the other wood flour up into the air in a contained space, starting a chain reaction.
Granted, this is rare in a home shop, but the focus of the report was a commercial building that actually exploded, so it's not *impossible*.
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On 2/24/16 12:03 AM, DJ Delorie wrote:

Right. But there's a boatload of things that aren't *impossible* about over I'm not about to lose any sleep. The perfect storm can always occur when the odds are stretched far enough. The fact that something happened once, or even twice does not justify rampant paranoia about it.
Of course, I forget I'm living in the age of the tinfoil hat society where a good portion of society thinks we're hiding aliens at area 51 and the moon landing was filmed on a Hollywood sound stage.
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wrote:

You've got it wrong, the aliens are holding us hostage at area 51. That is why our taxes are so high.
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wrote:

Come on! No one really believes it was shot on a sound stage. Regardless of films like "Star Wars", everyone knows there's no sound in space.
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On 02/24/2016 12:03 AM, DJ Delorie wrote: ...

But what caused the FOOM (that is, what was the ignition source)???
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wrote:

Well Mike, when you used the magic word imagine, I did.
In a vacuum strange things happen, given a spark, and a whoosh of dust already suspended in the pipe (your cloud) and I can see things happen that wouldn't happen in a positive pressurized pipe.
Yet the bottom line is all the home and small shops around and no real stories other than health hazards. If there were fires then the insurance industry would be all over it in a minute, raising prices as if you had a bad dawg in the back yard.
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On 02/24/2016 1:38 AM, OFWW wrote: ...

If it were a vacuum, there'd be no oxygen, hence no combustion.
Even in the highest CFM DC systems the air pressure is only a minimal amount below atmospheric pressure; yes it's a big "vacuum" cleaner, but there's really not a lot of vacuum, it's just slightly lower pressure air moving at a pretty high velocity. Hence, there's not going to be any strange things happening owing to anything other than that there is a concentration of dust created and given a large enough ignition source, one could potentially cause a boom. But, static electricity from PVC for at least home-shop-sized duct work simply doesn't have sufficient energy to do so. Metal hitting an iron impeller, _maybe_, but still unlikely. More likely would be an overheated bearing or another open ignition source like a steaming tube or the like that gets away but getting it into the necessary location is the trick there...
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