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Thread: this is interesting

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    PyInTheSky.com Array WildWilli's Avatar
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    Default Re: this is interesting

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    Member Array St1dinoh's Avatar
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    Default Re: this is interesting

    the best quote here, the one that matters to us, is this:

    Quote Originally Posted by canuck OSHA
    Non-sparking tools also generate sparks sometimes referred to as “cold sparks”. These cold sparks have a low heat level and do not ignite carbon disulfide, which has the lowest ignition point of any substance known to man.
    so if it can't even set off something with "the lowest ignition point of any substance known to man" i'm not worried about ramming a "non-sparking tool" into lift grains of BP.

    i'll still do it outside with tubes plug touching a hard surface and pointed away from me... but i'm not going to pucker up any more or less knowing brass produces cold sparks.
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    Default Re: this is interesting

    Not sure I see the need for non-sparking pokes, to be honest. I'm a newb in the firework industry, but I've got quite a bit of experience in technical trades. I don't see how the BP grains, cardboard, paper, etc is going to cause a spark. The only time sparks are a concern is when you have to hard materials that could cause a spark. For instance, there was an area in one of the national labs I worked at where we used beryllium copper ratchet wrenches. We were working in a steel pipe line that had residule flamable vapors and the safety officer was concerned that we might accidentally drop a tool and cause a spark which would ignite the vapors.

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    Member Array St1dinoh's Avatar
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    Default Re: this is interesting

    Quote Originally Posted by Fasttrack View Post
    Not sure I see the need for non-sparking pokes, to be honest. I'm a newb in the firework industry, but I've got quite a bit of experience in technical trades. I don't see how the BP grains, cardboard, paper, etc is going to cause a spark. The only time sparks are a concern is when you have to hard materials that could cause a spark. For instance, there was an area in one of the national labs I worked at where we used beryllium copper ratchet wrenches. We were working in a steel pipe line that had residule flamable vapors and the safety officer was concerned that we might accidentally drop a tool and cause a spark which would ignite the vapors.
    it's just a comfort TBH. when i'm digging around inside a tube and i have no idea whats inside it... i'd rather i be using a non-sparking tool.
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    Member Array pyro92's Avatar
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    Default Re: this is interesting

    Now I want to try and make some sparks with some non-sparking tools.
    Come to the pyro side, we have things that go BOOM!

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    Member Array nater219's Avatar
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    Default Re: this is interesting

    Quote Originally Posted by Fasttrack View Post
    Not sure I see the need for non-sparking pokes, to be honest. I'm a newb in the firework industry, but I've got quite a bit of experience in technical trades. I don't see how the BP grains, cardboard, paper, etc is going to cause a spark. The only time sparks are a concern is when you have to hard materials that could cause a spark. For instance, there was an area in one of the national labs I worked at where we used beryllium copper ratchet wrenches. We were working in a steel pipe line that had residule flamable vapors and the safety officer was concerned that we might accidentally drop a tool and cause a spark which would ignite the vapors.
    We have a couple of WildWilli's tools we use on shoot sites. How are you sure there is nothing metallic or hard in the lift cups that could cause a spark? What if you want to punch into something that contains flash? They're cheap and help to significantly reduce a hazard. The odds may be well in your favor, but when the penalty of error is death or dismemberment, I'll use a non-sparking tool.
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    1UPed Russell Array Harisdraco's Avatar
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    Default Re: this is interesting

    Quote Originally Posted by WildWilli View Post

    Hey willi,

    Are these non-sparking?

    http://www.homedepot.com/h_d1/N-5yc1...atalogId=10053
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    PyInTheSky.com Array WildWilli's Avatar
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    Default Re: this is interesting

    No, those are stainless steel. The word "steel" should not be included in the description of any non-sparking tools.
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    Default Re: this is interesting

    Quote Originally Posted by WildWilli View Post
    No, those are stainless steel. The word "steal" should not be included in the description of any non-sparking tools.

    Unless that's how you plan to get your lolly pokes
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    Member Array leeca's Avatar
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    Default Re: this is interesting

    Quote Originally Posted by WildWilli View Post
    No, those are stainless steel. The word "steel" should not be included in the description of any non-sparking tools.
    Stainless steel is non-spark until you get into the 400 series stainless steels, 400 and up has iron, below 400 doesn't. It’s the steal mixed in the super alloy that makes it spark. If you want to know if the stainless steel has Iron in it, touch a magnet to it. If the magnet is attracted to it is 400 stainless or higher. You can put 300 series stainless to a grinder and you will not see any sparks. Not recommended as 300 series stainless steel can load up your grinding wheel.

    The toughest non spark metal is an alloy known as Nickel Aluminum Bronze, all soft metals but when mixed the stuff is very tough, if you took a machine tool cutter to it and attempted to take a cut more the .025 deep it will break the teeth off your cutting tool. (I stalled a Giant shaper once as a rookie Navel Machinist)That is the same Non-Sparking materiel that the US Navy uses in large ships reduction gears. It would be the perfect materiel to use to make Non Sparking scissors.
    Last edited by leeca; November 30th, 2011 at 04:34 PM.
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    1UPed Russell Array Harisdraco's Avatar
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    Default Re: this is interesting

    Quote Originally Posted by WildWilli View Post
    No, those are stainless steel. The word "steel" should not be included in the description of any non-sparking tools.
    Thank you for the reply sir. Picked up a 4 piece set of these this past weekend from home depot for a great price. And just thought they might work good. Just need to replace my snips, gettin dull.

    and yes I also use my box cutter!
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    Member Array GK's Avatar
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    Default Re: this is interesting

    Stainless even 300 series will spark as will other nickel alloys (monel, Inconel, etc.) Most of them will actually produce tiny red colored sparks an a grinding wheel (you might have to turn the lights off to see it though).

    Beyond the sparking properties, there are other consiterations when using tools around pyro. Remeber that friction can cause heat, and impact can ignite some compostions.

    Be careful out there....

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  14. #14

    Default Re: this is interesting

    Nater and St1dinoh - I wasn't suggesting that you shouldn't use non-sparking tools, I was just curious what the fixation was. I see your point, though. Better safe than sorry - especially when WildWilli has the perfect tool for the job!


    Quote Originally Posted by leeca View Post
    Stainless steel is non-spark until you get into the 400 series stainless steels, 400 and up has iron, below 400 doesn't. It’s the steal mixed in the super alloy that makes it spark. If you want to know if the stainless steel has Iron in it, touch a magnet to it. If the magnet is attracted to it is 400 stainless or higher. You can put 300 series stainless to a grinder and you will not see any sparks. Not recommended as 300 series stainless steel can load up your grinding wheel.

    The toughest non spark metal is an alloy known as Nickel Aluminum Bronze, all soft metals but when mixed the stuff is very tough, if you took a machine tool cutter to it and attempted to take a cut more the .025 deep it will break the teeth off your cutting tool. (I stalled a Giant shaper once as a rookie Navel Machinist)That is the same Non-Sparking materiel that the US Navy uses in large ships reduction gears. It would be the perfect materiel to use to make Non Sparking scissors.
    I'm sorry to say that you have been mis-informed. I work with 304 and 316 on a regular basis machining UHV components for a 125 KeV proton accelerator at Missouri S&T. 300 series SS are "austenitic" and contain nickel as well as chromium. The 400 series are ferritic and contain no nickel. However, both of them contain iron and carbon, but in different phases. I should point out that "steel" is any alloy of iron, mild steel being almost pure iron with small amounts of carbon and traces of other alloying elements. You are correct that the 300 series is non-magnetic. This is due to the particular phase that the iron is in. Cold working 300 series SS will make them magnetic by precipitating the ferrite phase in the structure of the material.

    Furthermore, 300 series SS will indeed spark and it does not load up grinding wheels. Aluminum will load up a grinding wheel, but not SS. There is a grinding wheel failure that has been known to happen when surface grinding SS without coolant. Because 300 series SS work hardens and can be very hard, it is difficult to efficiently grind. The friction between the grinding wheel and the surface produces a great deal of heat and that heat will damage a vitrified wheel and cause it to explode.

    I've also worked with aluminum bronzes on several occassions and I can tell you with absolute certainty that you can machine it pretty aggresively. It machines far better than hardened 4140, for instance (which will squeal any HSS toolbit you put to it since it has a hardness of about 54 RC where the cutting tool has a typcial hardness of 58-60 RC). It's primary use is due to its extraordinary corrosion resistance and "biostatic" effect. In my experience, it is used on ships because of these two reasons. Even 316 stainless steel, which has excellent corrosion resistance in salt water, will "grow" barnicles/muscles/etc. Aluminum bronzes don't, and they have better corrosion resistance than the SS. This was actually a big problem for some cooling pumps at one of the National Labs I worked at. The pipes were being choked with zebra muscles. Aluminum bronze cladding fixed the problem.

    (By the way, Nickel Aluminum Bronze has a machinability rating of 50. That is actually quite good compared to 316 SS).



    <EDIT> I should also point out that the SS is not contaminated or etc. For UHV applications, even a finger print can destroy one's ability to reach UHV. Everything must undergo a very careful cleaning process before being installed and even then it has to be baked and purged with dry nitrogen. The material itself cannot have any impurities in it. Ordinary steel will gas off in vacuum. Even the welding is done according to very strict procedures. It is all TIG welded with no filler rod as the action of dipping into the puddle can cause small contaminations. These are not a concern in ordinary applications, but are a concern for us.
    Last edited by Fasttrack; December 2nd, 2011 at 07:26 AM.

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    Default Re: this is interesting

    Quote Originally Posted by nater219 View Post
    What if you want to punch into something that contains flash?
    That makes my butt pucker.

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    Member Array GK's Avatar
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    Having been (mostly tangentally) involved in the metals business quite a bit I can assure that SS will spark....In fact all you have to do is search under 'spark testing' for metals and you will find that the spark characteristics are listed for SS.

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    Default Re: this is interesting

    I spent many years in the metals business. Old timers routinely test Stainless Steel by "spark" 18/8 is the most common (T302/304) and will produce short red sparks. It still contains up to .08 carbon. When worked or formed the carbon tends to migrate to the surface.

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    Member Array leeca's Avatar
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    Default Re: this is interesting

    I stand corrected; it has been too many years since I was in the trade and should have done a bit more research to refresh my memory. I had the Iron part right but did not consider the carbon.
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    Default Re: this is interesting

    Quote Originally Posted by leeca View Post
    I stand corrected; it has been too many years since I was in the trade and should have done a bit more research to refresh my memory. I had the Iron part right but did not consider the carbon.
    We've all been there before.

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