Safety relating to thin fire kiln shelf paper - WarmGlass.com

Safety relating to thin fire kiln shelf paper

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Carol Ann
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Safety relating to thin fire kiln shelf paper

Postby Carol Ann » Mon Dec 02, 2013 5:24 pm

I Have acute contact dermatitis. I work with glass and the kiln at least 5 days a week. I have the dermatitis on my hands and wrists. I do use rubber gloves when removing the kiln shelf paper which is very dusty, also a mask. Has anyone come across this before? Any suggestions on other forms of protection. Thanks for any help. Carol Ann
Carol Ann

Morganica
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Re: Safety relating to thin fire kiln shelf paper

Postby Morganica » Mon Dec 02, 2013 6:05 pm

Could be. Could also be a sensitivity to the gloves, particularly if they're latex and/or you're wearing them so long they're getting sweaty inside. I have a friend who discovered her latex sensitivity by wearing rubber-coated gloves when scraping kilnshelves and such. She developed welts all along the areas that exposed latex and once the reaction started, just about anything would make it worse. So first off, I'd see an allergist and make sure that there's not something else going on. You'll want to log everything that the affected areas come in contact with--change of soap or lotion (and, BTW, if you're in a flare-up, be really careful of which hand creams and such that you use--they can make it worse).

Then try taking a week off and staying away from the studio to see if the dermatitis goes away. Once your skin settles down, try not using shelf paper and see if the problems return. Kilnwash is cheaper and works just as well tho it's a bit more work. You'll want to vacuum out the kiln to remove any shelf paper residue, at least a couple of times over the course of a couple of days, because the dust drifts and resettles. Try that for at least a week, or as long as it takes for the allergic response to return.

If you discover you really are reacting to shelf paper and for some reason must use it anyway, swap gloves--look for surgical gloves for people with sensitive skin. Wear long-sleeved, high-necked shirts and pull the gloves OVER the sleeves to prevent dust getting to your skin.

If your studio is adjacent to your living spaces, keep the door to your studio closed when you're working, and put a change of clothes or a bathrobe and slippers right outside the studio. When you've finished for the day, take your outer clothes and shoes off IN the studio, stick 'em in a plastic bag or whatever and change into the robe and slippers (or whatever). This helps to keep the dust from tracking into the rest of the house, so that you have a respite from it.
Cynthia Morgan
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Carol Ann
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Re: Safety relating to thin fire kiln shelf paper

Postby Carol Ann » Mon Dec 02, 2013 7:16 pm

Thank you. I will take your advice.
Carol Ann

Kevin Midgley
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Re: Safety relating to thin fire kiln shelf paper

Postby Kevin Midgley » Mon Dec 02, 2013 8:34 pm

Candida fungus loves to live inside damp rubber gloves. :shock:
Hands must be kept absolutely dry.
Don't ever put damp hands inside a glove.
If you have no nail cuticles and that isn't from manicure treatments, and often get hangnails, it could be another source of the problem. :shock: :shock:
over the counter fungicidal cremes can work.
My guess is it is problem you have since you live in your gloves.

After all that, ditch the paper. I've never used it.

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Re: Safety relating to thin fire kiln shelf paper

Postby Morganica » Tue Dec 03, 2013 2:02 am

Kevin makes a really good point. I must wear gloves throughout the casting process (my hands become really irritated by the plasters), and if I wore the same pair of gloves for the whole day my hands would be a mess. I make a point of stripping off my gloves every half hour or so, letting my hands dry a bit (with or without washing them), and then putting on fresh. It makes a difference.

I'm not sure that's the problem here since your wrists are involved and I would think they'd be more likely to have air circulation, but that certainly could be a factor.
Cynthia Morgan
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Carol Ann
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Re: Safety relating to thin fire kiln shelf paper

Postby Carol Ann » Tue Dec 03, 2013 8:50 am

So changing gloves and removing them periodically will be helpful. I think more of the problem is the kiln shelf paper.
If you use kiln shelf paper, when you remove it, what is your process? I have a large kiln 56"x30", so after the firing when I remove the thin fire paper, the dust particles are hard to contain. The mask is essential, but how do you control the dust?
Do you vacuum the whole thing up. my usual process is to use wet paper towels to remove the paper. Is there a more efficient way to accomplish this? thanks for any recommendations.
Carol Ann

Kevin Midgley
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Re: Safety relating to thin fire kiln shelf paper

Postby Kevin Midgley » Tue Dec 03, 2013 11:58 am

rainbow vacuum cleaners are low rated by consumer tests but they really do work to collect the dust in their water bowl. As previously noted I don't use the shelf paper in my kilns however the regular fine studio dusts will turn into a thickened sludge when I do a heavy cleaning. If you could pick one up used for $50 or $100 it could be a better paper picker upper. New, they go for a ridiculous $2000. The rainbows are messier than a dry bag less vacuum but they work. For sure, don't expect a septic system to like the contents and I dump mine in a composting area outside.
As far as drying off hands, I've ensured mine are completely cuticle dry by using a hair dryer on them.

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Re: Safety relating to thin fire kiln shelf paper

Postby Brad Walker » Tue Dec 03, 2013 1:09 pm

Carol Ann wrote:Do you vacuum the whole thing up. my usual process is to use wet paper towels to remove the paper. Is there a more efficient way to accomplish this? thanks for any recommendations.


The main thing is a vacuum with a HEPA filter. They are available for many different shop vacs, as well as some home vacuums. A HEPA (High Efficient Particulate Air) filter will remove 99.7% of the particulates under 0.3 microns. These are the very small particles that can cause trouble when breathed.

To be extra safe, you could also wear a P100 respirator when cleaning up. The P100 is also a HEPA filter.

Carol Ann
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Re: Safety relating to thin fire kiln shelf paper

Postby Carol Ann » Tue Dec 03, 2013 1:29 pm

thanks. I do have a HEPA filter on my vacuum cleaner. I will use that to vacuum up the kiln paper.
Also I will get your recommended respirator. thanks for your recommendations.
Carol Ann

Brock
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Re: Safety relating to thin fire kiln shelf paper

Postby Brock » Tue Dec 03, 2013 2:55 pm

Or you could use kiln wash and not worry about all this stuff.

Carol Ann
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Re: Safety relating to thin fire kiln shelf paper

Postby Carol Ann » Tue Dec 03, 2013 3:47 pm

right!
Carol Ann

Kevin Midgley
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Re: Safety relating to thin fire kiln shelf paper

Postby Kevin Midgley » Tue Dec 03, 2013 3:52 pm

I'm with you Brock, I cannot understand why someone would want to burn stuff in their kilns.
For one it is expensive and if you take into account all the cleanup issues and time involved, applying kiln wash is simpler and quicker.
For two, if you are burning stuff in your kiln, it has to have an impact on the life of kiln elements. Add that into the cost and using the paper is insane.
For Three, burning thin fire paper necessitates venting of the kiln or gives you dirty fired glass which means you waste energy and have to attend the kiln to close it after burning has finished. Plus you have to deal with the stinky fumes.
For Four, what impact is there in the kiln and glass of having cold external air entering the kiln during the venting process? How many marginally annealed
pieces have been broken reaching 1000f as a result?

bob proulx
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Re: Safety relating to thin fire kiln shelf paper

Postby bob proulx » Tue Dec 03, 2013 7:07 pm

I agree with Brock, I find no reason to use the stuff.
Bob

Greg Rawls
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Re: Safety relating to thin fire kiln shelf paper

Postby Greg Rawls » Wed Dec 04, 2013 8:40 am

Main ingredients in Thin Fire Paper are Cellulose, Aluminum Hydroxide, fiber glass, organic binders. It is predominately a nuisance dust and an irritant. Regarding the Fiber glass – the jury is out on toxicology but would be a good idea to wear a P95 respirators (cheaper than P100, less breathing resistance - the difference in efficiency vs. P100 is almost negligible). Some kiln lining paper does contain RCF so read the MSDS (BE does not). Keep kiln closed when binders are burning off.
Greg

lmartine
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Re: Safety relating to thin fire kiln shelf paper

Postby lmartine » Fri Dec 06, 2013 7:26 am

Greg Rawls wrote:Keep kiln closed when binders are burning off.


Greg,

Kevin had just mentioned in his post to vent the kiln when the Thin Fire is burning. His reasons made sense (for a newbie) as much as yours. I guess the jury is still out on that one too?

Lucie

Greg Rawls
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Re: Safety relating to thin fire kiln shelf paper

Postby Greg Rawls » Fri Dec 06, 2013 8:31 am

lmartine wrote:
Greg Rawls wrote:Keep kiln closed when binders are burning off.


Greg,

Kevin had just mentioned in his post to vent the kiln when the Thin Fire is burning. His reasons made sense (for a newbie) as much as yours. I guess the jury is still out on that one too?

Lucie


Your choice. I like to keep the smell contained.
Greg

Lynn Perry
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Re: Safety relating to thin fire kiln shelf paper

Postby Lynn Perry » Wed Dec 18, 2013 7:33 pm

Greg Rawls wrote:Main ingredients in Thin Fire Paper are Cellulose, Aluminum Hydroxide, fiber glass, organic binders. It is predominately a nuisance dust and an irritant. Regarding the Fiber glass – the jury is out on toxicology but would be a good idea to wear a P95 respirators (cheaper than P100, less breathing resistance - the difference in efficiency vs. P100 is almost negligible). Some kiln lining paper does contain RCF so read the MSDS (BE does not). Keep kiln closed when binders are burning off.


Thanks, Greg, for the clarification about P100 versus P95. I have a refillable P100 but don't use it that often (kind of defeats the purpose of even having it), because it has too much breathing resistance for me. I bought a ten-pack of 3M P95 dust masks at Lowe's yesterday based on your information in hopes they will be more comfortable plus I can discard the used ones for better hygiene.
Lynn Perry

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Re: Safety relating to thin fire kiln shelf paper

Postby Glass Fever » Wed Dec 18, 2013 10:18 pm

If you are wearing gloves when removing the used Thinfire, I wouldn't think your contact dermatitis would be from the dust. It may actually be from the gloves as mentioned previously. I am an RN, and I used to get a similar thing on the backs of my hands. I thought I was developing a latex sensitivity. Turns out it was just the powder in the gloves. When I switched to powder free gloves the problem went away.

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Re: Safety relating to thin fire kiln shelf paper

Postby JestersBaubles » Wed Dec 18, 2013 10:46 pm

Greg Rawls wrote:
lmartine wrote:
Greg Rawls wrote:Keep kiln closed when binders are burning off.


Your choice. I like to keep the smell contained.


I almost always use "thinfire" (Papyros, actually) on non-slump firings and I never vent the kiln. It's been successful for me (so far! Jinx!!)

Dana W.

misteroldhouse
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Re: Safety relating to thin fire kiln shelf paper

Postby misteroldhouse » Mon Dec 23, 2013 3:14 pm

Great question/great topic!

I would also add in my belief that a mask and gloves, even if latex-free, are not enough protection for any of us glass workers! I use those and vacuum the Thinfire off of the kiln shelf using a HEPA filtered long-handled vacuum.

When we brush that dust into a dust pan or whatever, some of the particles become airborne and remain so for a long time. I do similarly with me sandblaster, using a dust collected, mask & HEPA vacuum.

Larry Pile
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