BEFORE YOU BEGIN STICK WELDING PLEASE MARK OFF YOUR CHECKLIST.
* Electrode and work leads tightly attached to machine terminals.
* Cable insulation free of cuts,damage,and wear.
* Electrode lead tightly connected to electrode holder.
* Work lead tightly connected to clamp.
* Work clamp firmly clamped to worktable or workpiece.
* Floor is DRY !!!
* Ventalation is adequate to draw fumes away from welder's face
Weld safely and Know the risks
With out proper knowledge and safety precautions welding can be both dangerous and unhealthy. Most welding processes involve an arc flame, so the risk of facial and flesh burns is very high. Both the eyes and skin can be affected by the bright light and extreme temperature. Most skin burns begin similar to a sunburn, but can get much more serious. Eye burns are much more serious even in the slighter cases of damage. Additionally, the brightness of the weld area can cause flash burns in which ultraviolet light causes inflammation of the cornea and can burn the retinas of the eyes. The risk of blindness is always there if not properly protected. Welding helmets are durable and dependable, the bulk of them protects the face by drastically reducing the amount of exposure.
Welding helmets with an auto darkening lens are specifically designed for optimal protection of the eyes. Standard welding helmets protect the eyes from ultraviolet emissions released during multiple arc welding processes; exposure to these emissions result in inflammation of the cornea and is known as arc eye or ultraviolet keratitis. These dangerous ultraviolet rays can cause the same amount of damage regardless of the source be it natural or artificial. Unfortunately, the symptoms (gritty painful eyes, eyelid twitchy, very watery eyes, aversion of bright light, pupil constriction) are not recognized until hours after exposure once the damage is already done. Damage is cumulative, so the longer duration and higher frequencies of exposure will result in more serious injuries and damage. In these cases blindness is most likely to occur. However, with the proper protection of a welding helmet with an auto darkening lens injuries are easily and effectively prevented.
If not properly shielded, other damage to the eyes can occur such as retinal burns and total loss of vision. Welding helmets are always essential since damage can occur over a relatively short period of time. Arc welding operations are potentially very dangerous. Many health hazards can arise from the emission of electromagnetic waves, namely ultraviolet radiation. Ultraviolet light is the most frequent cause of radiation based eye injuries. In addition to the ultraviolet exposure risk there are other ways in which the eyes can be damaged without proper protection during welding. Such risks are photochemical and thermal damage to the retina. Photochemical damage is a result of exposure to intense blue light. Thermal damage occurs when exposed to visible and near infrared radiation. In all cases, the longer the exposure the greater the damage. Therefore making welding helmets a very important piece of safety equipment.
The newer, electronic models of welding helmets are similar to the older models but with substantial safety and convenience enhancements. For example, all welding helmets include a window filter known as the lens shade. In the older models this window was made of tinted or polarized glass. Thanks to electronic advancements the more modern models use a Liquid Crystal Display (LCD) filter, or shutter, that better adjusts to the bright light. Essentially, the auto darkening lens allows the welder to continue working with adequate vision and normal lighting.
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