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Vacuuming after enamelling


#1

I am using the leaded enamels and read that I should only damp mop in
the studio. I wonder if my Rainbow water vac would be safe to use? I
don’t think any of the enamel dust can escape the water basin.

J. S. (Sue) Ellington
http://www.jsellington.com


#2
I am using the leaded enamels and read that I should only damp mop
in the studio. I wonder if my Rainbow water vac would be safe to
use? I don't think any of the enamel dust can escape the water
basin. 

I would not chance it unless you have a true HEPA style vacuum
cleaner like is used for removing asbestos dust (not the household
style that claim HEPA filtering). Any other vacuum cleaner is just
going to put the micro dust into the air where it can do the most
damage even your water vac.

Jim

James Binnion
@James_Binnion
James Binnion Metal Arts


360-756-6550


#3
I am using the leaded enamels and read that I should only damp mop
in the studio. I wonder if my Rainbow water vac would be safe to
use? I don't think any of the enamel dust can escape the water
basin. 

Your Rainbow vac should have a little foam filter piece that is
inserted in the opposite side of the machine from the intake. It
looks like a foam rubber tube that is supposed to take super fine
particles out that bounce off the water. I usually moisten it when
cleaning anything potently hazardous, fine dust, silica, enamel, etc.
Thanks for the reminder, I should do a little cleaning myself, it
helps with the after holiday blahs.

Christopher Arnett
www.christopherarnettjewelers.com


#4

Per Coral Shaffer, who sells Japanese leaded enamels and has worked
with them for many, many years: your Rainbow water vac should work,
if the particles of enamel sink to the bottom of the water reservoir
and do not recirculate. The only type of vacuum cleaner she
recommends for cleaning up lead-based enamels is one with a true HEPA
filter.

Hope this helps!


#5

I would agree with the poster ref HEPA vacuums as one possibility,
but yeah, I wouldn’t trust the wet vac. But make sure it is truly a
HEPA vac. Most are not “Almost HEPA” was one I saw advertised up
here… If you are inhaling dust containing heavy metals… Sorry
almost doesn’t cut it. All it means is the stuff that would not cause
you problems anyways are filtered out and the ultra fine stuff that
is dangerous gets dispersed into your inside air so you can breath
even more of it into your lungs.

One possible source for a system for dealing with micro fine powder
that does meet HEPA standards is cleanup systems for dealing with
laser printer toner. Take a look on TigerDirect.com ( or
tigerdirect.ca for the Canadians) They have several models. For an
example take a look at:

http://tinyurl.com/scurj

Another possibility are to install a central Vacuum with an outside
exhaust (it is cheaper to buy and install and run than a HEPA vac),
and run the exhaust up into the air a bit so has to allow the exhaust
plume to disperse.

Kay


#6
Before Hepa, there were Rainbows. Both are good systems.......... 

I know about both the Hepa filters and Rainbow vacuum cleaners. One
of my first vacuum cleaners was a Rainbow (since I was 9) and now I
have a Hepa filter vacuum. I have had Asthma and allergies all of my
life. I would say that both of you are right to use either of these
vacuum cleaners. Enamel is glass, which is heavier than dust and
most sand particles. That means it will be heavier than water.
Especially when the water is swirling around in a tub as it does in a
Rainbow vacuum cleaner. Rainbows have been out for more years than I
want to admit. They work for most allergy and asthma sufferers. I
think Rainbows are more expensive than today’s Hepa filter vacuum
cleaners, which is a more recent technology.

Just thinking about this subject makes me sneeze… So
use whatever means your logical mind tells you to use. Better to use
any vacuum than no vacuum at all… That being
said, if you see dust flying back into the air or “hear” that the
motor on your vacuum isn’t performing the way it should, it is time
to get a new vacuum cleaner.

A lot of this will be “common sense”.

Yvonne
www.ympdesign.com
www.studio-tours.com


#7
I would say that both of you are right to use either of these
vacuum cleaners. Enamel is glass, which is heavier than dust and
most sand particles. 

It is not the large particles that are dangerous it is the ones that
are smaller than couple of microns. Particles in the this range can
and do float for a long time in the air easily even if they are
"heavy". These particles are the deadly ones as they are easily
inhaled and then lodge in the lungs where they do their damage. The
enamel always has some fine particles in it and any spilled on the
floor is ground finer by foot traffic and you end up with some of
these super fine particles. It is very difficult to filter these
particles out due to their size, this is what true HEPA filters were
designed for. Most of them will easily pass right through the water
vac as they will be carried along with the air stream and right
across the top of the water due to their small size. They move more
like air molecules than particulate matter.

Any studio where leaded enamels or casting investment (silica) is
used should be wet mopped or vacuumed only with a true HEPA vacuum.

James Binnion
@James_Binnion
James Binnion Metal Arts


360-756-6550