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Unread 09-23-2012, 02:11 PM   #31
4DFUN
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New to welding and glad I found this info.

Most times I just hit it with a wire wheel or a grinder.

So I now know no cleaners for me just old school elbow grease, soap and water.

I will also watch out for galvanized. Thanks.

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Unread 09-26-2012, 06:58 AM   #32
Netpackrat
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Quote:
Originally Posted by streetglideok View Post
In the past, R12, also used as a propellant in aeresols, or something closely related chemically, would become poisonous like this, so I would speculate that its the propellant used in brakleen thats causing the issue here. Regardless, very dangerous stuff!
I wouldn't place any bets on the propellant being safe, but in this case it is definitely the brake cleaner itself that is chlorinated. When I had my little incident with the stuff, I went outside of my shop, and sprayed it off out there, and then let it all (or so I thought) evaporate before bringing it in. Then I had to install the pieces in the jig before I could weld them. There was no propellant involved at that point, just whatever cleaner was still hiding in some pits on one of the pieces, or in some other nook or cranny.

These days I do not use anything stronger than isopropyl alcohol for degreasing parts that are to be welded, or may potentially be welded at some point.
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Unread 10-02-2012, 08:33 PM   #33
outbackmatt
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What are your guys thoughts on welding fumes produced from WD40 and lithium grease? Anything toxic in either?

I flood my hole saws and metal with wd40 to lubricate when tube notching. I normally just grind off the burrs but dont wipe off the wd40 residue left over.

Also I use lithium grease to lubricate my tubing bender follow blocks. As the tubing slides through it picks up the grease. I try to wipe this off but when I'm busy it's hard to clean every square inch.
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Unread 10-04-2012, 08:40 PM   #34
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I always try to have a fan that blos fresh air aimed to my helmet, sometimes Ill put a fan on the welding table blowing away from the piece and it will suck all the smoke and fumes away.

Recently I have been Acid cleaning parts using Muratic Acid, then a Rinse with washing soda and water, and then a final rince in plain water before welding. once it is welded it gets a coat of oil to prevent flash rust.

I have also heard drinking a glass or two of milk will help prevent zinc poisoning.
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Unread 11-09-2012, 05:33 AM   #35
lolo75racing
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Wow! I don't weld but I do use a lot of brake cleaner to clean just about anything. So is this danger only present when welding? I know all chemicals are bad , thanks for the post and hope you get better !
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Unread 11-12-2012, 12:12 PM   #36
outbackmatt
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I would assume spraying brake cleaner onto any hot surface to where it fumes would be just as harmful as welding through it.
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Unread 11-22-2012, 10:56 AM   #37
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Thats crazy! Never heard of that, need to be careful when I'm at the shop.
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Unread 11-23-2012, 08:05 PM   #38
Netpackrat
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lolo75racing View Post
Wow! I don't weld but I do use a lot of brake cleaner to clean just about anything. So is this danger only present when welding? I know all chemicals are bad , thanks for the post and hope you get better !
No, fires will do it too. Particularly structure fires that involve certain types of foam or plastics can release phosgene as well. And not just brake cleaner and welding... Welding on cars with damaged A/C systems can get you too. The refrigerant will decompose into phosgene in the presence of welding heat and the arc rays.
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Unread 12-09-2012, 01:32 AM   #39
89YJBuilder
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WOW!!! I sent this to everyone I know who welds. One of my friends teaches the welding/fabrication class at the community college, and the other owns a business building docks here on the lake. I do a lot of fab and repair for my cousin's ranch.
Thank you so much, I used to use break cleaner all the time as a degreaser.
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Unread 04-17-2013, 05:43 AM   #40
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thanx a lot
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Unread 04-24-2013, 11:11 PM   #41
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 4DFUN View Post
New to welding and glad I found this info.

Most times I just hit it with a wire wheel or a grinder.

So I now know no cleaners for me just old school elbow grease, soap and water.

I will also watch out for galvanized. Thanks.
If you're new at welding you won't be welding galvanized metal anyway. It's ridiculously hard to weld, and you have to burn through the galvanization in order to get any kind of penetration.

Thank you for this thread. I read it before I ever started welding, but now I know to not mess with chemicals on the metal I will be welding.
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Unread 04-25-2013, 09:21 PM   #42
Soldier905
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Other than soap/water , distilled water , denatured alcohol is there any other way to get rid of grease ,brake ,trans fluid ,oil and other contaminants could be harmful before welding ?
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Unread 04-25-2013, 09:25 PM   #43
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Soldier905 View Post
Other than soap/water , distilled water , denatured alcohol is there any other way to get rid of grease ,brake ,trans fluid ,oil and other contaminants could be harmful before welding ?
Acetone..MEK...Lacquer thinner..mineral spirits....etc....
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Unread 04-25-2013, 10:53 PM   #44
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Soldier905 View Post
Other than soap/water , distilled water , denatured alcohol is there any other way to get rid of grease ,brake ,trans fluid ,oil and other contaminants could be harmful before welding ?
Easiest and cheapest method is to go buy a Harbor Freight 4 1/2" angle grinder and a couple of flap disks. You'll need a grinder anyway, and I always hit whatever I'm welding with the flap disk to clean it up. I use it to cut, grind and to clean.
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Unread 05-02-2013, 09:35 AM   #45
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Great Timing!

Glad I saw this article! I am restoring a 1975 Bolens HT-20 garden tractor with a front-end loader and a hydrostatic transmission. I recently pulled the rear axle for an overhaul and found that the frame had some stress cracks around the axle mount points.

I was planning to weld it up this weekend...and of course, it is all greasy and grimy, to say the least! Like a lot of other posters, I LOVE brakleen and use it all the time. I would very likely have cleaned the frame with brakleen and whipped out the mig.

I'm not a religious guy, but somebody was surely looking out for me this week!

Snowman64 in NW PA
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