Metalworking questions in this section please

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I dabble with welding and have only a cheap arc welder, till I get more confident and will probably buy a mig welder, however, I am aware that arc welding can give off toxic fumes, and my workshop (Garage extension!!) does not have ventilation unless I freeze and open the door. So whilst i sort out some extraction, I was thinking of buying a respirator, but then from the look of them, it will not fit under the auto welding mask. So wondered what others do, I have seen a combination gadget but they cost hundreds. On and buy the way this is my first post on here!!

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Post by Someone-Else »

You seem to have answered your own question.
As you have said, a respirator will not fit under a welding helmet, so ventilation it is then. You could always install a fan, but be aware that you will also need a way for (Fresh) air to get in.
I am not clued up on respirators, but they seem to be mostly for dust / paint, not welding fumes, so I can't help but wonder would they be of any use?
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Post by Rorschach »

Ventilate. Wrap up warm and get the door open and a fan going.
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Post by Chippo1 »

A big danger is welding anything that’s been galvanised , zinc fumes are dangerous , they rise like whisky white threads and cause metal fume poisoning.

Other than that usually just reasonable ventilation is required and I personally suppose you could look at it that you are no doing it 8 hours a day 5 days a week.
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Post by Hitch »

Get the door open, and a fan on, then personally, i'd not worry about anything more if you only do a few inches of weld here and there on a bit of steel.
if you do a bit more than that, you could get hold of some disposable respirators that are suitable for welding, that type fit under most headshield fine.
They aren't cheap, but with minimal use, keep it in a zip lock bag and im sure it would do a few sessions fine....

In the workplace its quite a thing now, air fed headshields, local etraction and filtration. Understndable if your doing it for hours a day.

As mentioned above, galvanised/zintec is one of the worst offenders, but you'd try and avoid welding that most of the time anyway.
Brass and copper, stainless steel can be nasty too at reasonable levels.

Stick (MMA) is probably one of the fumiest procesess to be honest. MIG/MAG isnt as bad as there isnt a flux coating on the electrode to burn away.
'Gasless MIG' will be somewhere in between the two.
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