Importance of wearing a dust mask

19 posts in this topic

Posted · Report post

So I finally learned the hard way unfortunately. From the people who have been answering my questions on my table saw build, you know that I used melamine as the top. Well not wearing a dust mask caught up to me and I'm regretting it now! I was using my router on the melamine to cut the slots for the miter gauge and well that kicked up so much fine dust I had to stop. Minutes after I pulled that stupid move off I was sneezing uncontrollably and with in 20 minutes I felt like crap! 5 days later I'm dealing with a sinus infection that won't go away, and a birthday party tomorrow I'm hoping to attend since well...its for me.

 

I think everyone can agree with me in that dust masks suck to wear and usually don't see the problems that can occur until they do. From now on, a dust mask will be worn at all times. Hopefully anyone who reads this who doesn't wear a dust mask will take my stupidity and learn something from it and wear one. I never had a problem when working with solid wood(yes I know this was stupid as well, and know the dangers of that), but when you are dealing with plywood and compressed wood such as melamine, there's a lot more unknown chemicals then people are aware of like myself. 

 

Needless to say, safety does come first, and sometimes it takes an injury or sickness to realize that. Hope my stupidity makes you wear that dust mask, because this absolutely sucks!

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Posted · Report post

This can happen even with Solid wood.

Especially some of the exotics.

 

My wife got me a sweet comfortable full face dust mask/safety shield combo thingie that I use all the time.

 

Get well soon.

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Posted · Report post

Hi Kuhn315,

 

Sorry to hear about your trouble with dust. If you have not already done so I recommend you purchase an appropriate extractor to help control the dust at source in addition to you dust mask. Get well soon.

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Posted · Report post

When routing MDF(which is rare) I do it outside with a fan pushing the dust away from me in addition to the dust mask. I also do the same with sanding whenever possible.

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Posted · Report post

Yeah, I just discovered the joys of ipe dust. I normally don't worry too much if I'm just hand sawing or planing a couple pieces most times, but I cut up a couple pieces of ipe and did some plane/spokeshave/file work without a respirator. Ooops. Ended up with a nice nosebleed after that. Not as bad as a lot of reactions I saw online, but definitely not fun.

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Posted · Report post

its your party cry if you want to ok ok i know that was just sad

 

good thing about my style of work is im working with smaller stuff so i have dust collection right next to my carving space and scroll saw ect.....if i can ever get my lathe out ill hood dust collection to that.  and since in in the basement about 5 feet from the furnice i have to collect dust as fast as i make it.

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Yeah, I just discovered the joys of ipe dust. I normally don't worry too much if I'm just hand sawing or planing a couple pieces most times, but I cut up a couple pieces of ipe and did some plane/spokeshave/file work without a respirator. Ooops. Ended up with a nice nosebleed after that. Not as bad as a lot of reactions I saw online, but definitely not fun.

 

have you noticed if you ipe smells like beef jerky or barbecue

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Posted · Report post

have you noticed if you ipe smells like beef jerky or barbecue

 

No... but now I'm going to check as soon as I get home.

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i was sanding my wood and smells somehting that semlls like barbecue first i thought someone  was cooking but i was the onlyone in the building.  then i thought it was me, again only one in the building i figure it was rather strange but maybe.  then i smelled the wood and go figure it smells like beef jerky or barbecue.

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Posted · Report post

Yes get well soon and my dust mask is a little .... dusty at the moment so I shall heed your advice and wear it.

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Posted · Report post

i was sanding my wood and smells somehting that semlls like barbecue first i thought someone  was cooking but i was the onlyone in the building.  then i thought it was me, again only one in the building i figure it was rather strange but maybe.  then i smelled the wood and go figure it smells like beef jerky or barbecue.

 

That reminds me...I forgot to add to your wood that smells like food thread...I think white oak smells like burnt popcorn.  Maybe it's just me.

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I bought a great mask from 3m, which is very comfortable to wear. The main reason I did not wear a mask before was because it was uncomfortable and annoying. The newer mask solves all those problems.

Marc did a review on the mask I bought, just do a search in the podast section.

Indy Cindy and Beechwood Chip like this

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Posted · Report post

I've learned from family experience what dust inhalation can do to you. My father has problematic asthma, and my grandfather died from lung complications and heart failure.

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I have to wear a respirator of some type when I work with wood because I get flu like symptoms from the dust.  I'll be sick for weeks.  MDF will darn near kill me.  I'm very anal about dust collection and protection.  This dust will damage your lungs and you'll regret not wearing one later in life.  People, please use a respirator of some kind!!!!  

 

I have 3 PAPR models and 2 half facepieces.  It's just one area I'm not shy to throw money at.  Use good dust collection to grab dust at the source, but that's still another topic.  While I'm not happy to hear of the problems that resulted from the dust, I am glad to hear you've learned from it.  Always happy when I hear somebody is going to buy a respirator.

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Thanks guys, I definitely learned my lesson, I'm usually good with my dust collection, but the router on melamine just threw dust in my face, I literally cut 2 inches and stopped because it was that bad.

 

I bought a great mask from 3m, which is very comfortable to wear. The main reason I did not wear a mask before was because it was uncomfortable and annoying. The newer mask solves all those problems.

Marc did a review on the mask I bought, just do a search in the podast section.

I will def look into this, like i said, most people hate wearing these because they are uncomfortable and just annoying, but hearing it from someone saying it's comfortable I'll have to give it a shot!

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Just to chime in here, as others have said PLEASE PLEASE USE A GOOD RESPIRATOR!!!!!   They are so cheap - $50 will get you a pro quality respirator with filters from 3M......  just do it.  You won't regret it.  I can hardly think of anything that you could spend the $50 on that would be a better investment.

 

My throat hurt every day for months before I got a respirator.  I couldn't figure out why, and then I realized it was because the crappy disposable dust masks I was using had crappy seals and were letting in dust.  AND, I was using the expensive, "good" disposable ones with the exhaust valve!

After switching to a respirator, my throat felt perfect ON THE FIRST DAY!!!!

 

I don't mean to preach here, but seriously people... if you haven't jumped on the respirator bandwagon, it's time.

And big thanks to Kuhn315 for bringing up this important issue.

 

Best,

EG

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Posted · Report post

My very first woodworking project was a redwood bench. I used no dust protection. Man I felt like crap. Redwood is a bug and mildew resistant outdoor wood for a reason. Played havoc with my respiratory system. I still don't used a mask as much as I should. I mainly use one when sanding without a dust extractor.

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I hate to think of all the dust I sucked in before I got smart! The first time FWWing did an article on the link between wood dust and cancer I bought a dust collector but it wasn't until a few years ago I really started wearing a mask and now I am pretty careful about it but still get those lazy "it's only a cut or two" moments that need to stop. He you feel better and can enjoy your party and hopefully you get a nice comfortable respirator from a loved one!

Nate

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Thanks! After spending a day home from work yesterday, feel 100 times better, and Nate good idea on getting it as a gift haha

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