What kind of fire extinguisher for home shop? - Page 2
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  1. #21
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    some ansul 10 lb abc dry chemical extinguishers have a rating of 10A for class a fires which is the highest rating for class A fires If you are looking for a 10 lbs dry chem I would see if you can find and 10 A rated ansul abc unit

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    Check out Coldfire fire extinguishers. We use a Coldfire system in the land speed car because it does not wreck the hardware and won't suffocate the driver. They sell portable extinguishers that use the same solution. I was told once that its essentially soap suds but. . . I looked real quick and the prices seemed very reasonable for the portable extinguishers. Just Google it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bobw View Post
    I'm sitting here reading this thinking you probably need a class D.

    But then again I've spent my last couple days on magnesium castings. Ones I had done before and used the chips to make a white hot fire in the parking lot.

    So, tried getting a nice little magnesium white hot burn off going here, and no luck. Just shitty smolder.

    This is from about 5 minutes ago. Chips in a coffee filter, cleaned and dried, a light handful, just sitting there smoldering. Pretty disappointing.



    Kind of crappy, got a few white flare ups, basically little sparks.

    So I hear, magnesium fires do not like water, so just a few minutes ago, I take my water bottle out there to that smoldering pile, from about 10 feet away, and squirt some water
    on it.

    Wouldn't you know, you really do need a class D extinguisher. That pile exploded in white hot sparks. Literally exploded, about 8 feet in all directions.

    A bit counter intuitive. Water on a fire, in some cases it apparently doesn't work too well.




    My advice on the extinguishers, you have a local extinguisher place, talk to them, they will certify and charge and blah blah blah. They will know what
    the fire inspector wants to see. Finding somebody that has the ability to deal with a class D, damn near impossible, that's why I don't have one,
    just big buckets of sand.
    The chemistry is that magnesium has a stronger affinity for oxygen than hydrogen has. When you put water on a magnesium fire, the magnesium breaks the bond between the hydrogen and oxygen and bonds to the oxygen. The result amounts to pouring oxygen on the fire. Then the liberated hydrogen is free to look for oxygen in the atmosphere, making the fire even hotter.

    In the 50s some students at the university at Rolla, MO turned a magnesium bar into shavings and stuffed a junk car full. They towed it to the middle of town and lit it. The fire department, less sophisticated in those days, came charging up and turned a hose on it. You can imagine the result. A miracle no one was hurt.

    Like others have said, when I set up my shop, I got dry powders to keep the insurance Co. happy and four 15 lb CO2s to put out fires.

    Bill

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dan from Oakland View Post
    Check out Coldfire fire extinguishers. We use a Coldfire system in the land speed car because it does not wreck the hardware and won't suffocate the driver. They sell portable extinguishers that use the same solution. I was told once that its essentially soap suds but. . . I looked real quick and the prices seemed very reasonable for the portable extinguishers. Just Google it.
    Full disclosure - I worked on designing this stuff. However, I think it's pertinent to the conversation. The GreenFire fire suppressant from FSI is certified for Class A and B fires, and certification is pending for D and K. Non-corrosive, non-toxic and even NSF certified. I only worked on the suppressant itself, but it looks like they're going to be offering some small units for shop/construction use. You might check it out.

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    Full disclosure isn't really necessary when you join the forum and your first post is to open a 3 year old thread to promote a product. We've already figured out you work there.

    Steve

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  7. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by SteveF View Post
    Full disclosure isn't really necessary when you join the forum and your first post is to open a 3 year old thread to promote a product. We've already figured out you work there.

    Steve
    Naw....they are just a paid spammer.

    They will act like and say they are an expert in what ever you
    pay them to be.

    Much like Hollyweird.

    So now Nicole is a fire extinguisher expert......

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    S rated fire extinguisher: Under enough pressure and with the right nozzle Spam will do a great job of smothering a fire. The benefit is when you are done just break out the bread and have a hot spam sandwich

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    All good to have different types of extinguishers but in the ensuing panic who has the wits or training to grab the "right" one.
    I think few of us do "fire drills" with everyone in the building.
    Dry chem a mess and if you have enough employees over time some ya-hoo will light one off for fun. (and no one will talk )
    Yet easy to use. I'd think 20's sort of a min. and every 20-30 foot.
    Bob

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    I have been involved with 3 Real fires. Rule #1 you never have enough Fire Extinguishers when needed.

    In my home shop there is a CO2 22lbs, an abc 40 lbs another abc 10 lbs, in the garage is an abc 5lbs hanging on the Ox/Ac torch cart, thats code, and an ABC 10lbs on the wall. And a Halon in the Kitchen.

    I have not needed a FE ever at my house, but at my business twice in 12 years, Forklift caught fire while changing LPG tank, someones sandwich caught fire, which set fire to the paper plates, cups etc.

    And a boat fire which almost killed me.

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    It's always kind of weird to see a post I wrote 6-1/2yrs ago pop back up.

    If anyone ever gets the chance, take a live action fire extinguisher course. I've done one hosted by Ansul at our facility and it opened my eyes to two things- it's trickier than it may seem and it's a shit load of work. We used 30lb (I think?) dry chemical extinguishers to fight a diesel fire. Between the weight of the FE and the constant motion, suppressing and killing even a medium sized fire was a workout. You have to be judicious with your spray, supplying adequate coverage without waste as the fire dances about.

    I'd do another in a heart beat.

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    I worked in the Buick forge for 30 years as a maintenance millwright . The spring lines had a built in c02 system for fire suppression. The orange hot springs occasionally hung up in the large oil quench tanks , starting some impressive fires . When the c02 was released it flooded the entire area up to your waist line . The fires went out fairly quickly but I would bang my legs and shins on hidden machinery and conveyors under the fog . I thought I knew where everything was .

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    In case it hasn't been said extinguishers need to be serviced once a year and go into shop for valve check, rebuilding and recharging every 3 or 4 years. There is a local company that sells and services extinguishers - a rep came to the shop and recommended two types - one for finish room where lacquer and solvents are used and others for the rest of the shop. He told me where they should be placed - yes you want to put the fire out and save the shop but the most important thing is that you get out alive therefore having extinguishers between you and the exit is at least one factor to consider. Powder does make a mess but I'd rather clean that up than ashes. Rep comes once a year in the spring for inspection and service when necessary - you cannot buy them and forget them if you want to be sure they'll work when needed.

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    Quote Originally Posted by SteveF View Post
    Full disclosure isn't really necessary when you join the forum and your first post is to open a 3 year old thread to promote a product. We've already figured out you work there.

    Steve
    Well, this thread is about good fire extinguisher options for a home shop. So those who read the thread are interested in what might be a good option. That's why other brand names have also been mentioned on this thread, since they also might be good options. I never represented myself as a machinist. I'm not. I'm an engineer, and I worked on developing GreenFire fire suppressant as a consultant. And that's what I stated at the outset of my post. The suppressant is a genuinely good product that is actually applicable to the topic under discussion here. I don't think the fact that I was involved in developing it makes me a spammer.

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    Quote Originally Posted by gbowen View Post
    I don't think the fact that I was involved in developing it makes me a spammer.
    What you think of yourself and what others think of you are not the same eh ?

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    Quote Originally Posted by digger doug View Post
    What you think of yourself and what others think of you are not the same eh ?
    Never thought I'd see the day but ... in this case, at least it's worthwhile information.

    Haven't seen anyone remark on this so may as well share - do not use Halon on a mag fire. Puts the fire out okay but it also makes a nasty gas of some sort and rusts everything in the shop, in seconds. Not advised.

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    Quote Originally Posted by EmanuelGoldstein View Post
    Never thought I'd see the day but ... in this case, at least it's worthwhile information.

    Haven't seen anyone remark on this so may as well share - do not use Halon on a mag fire. Puts the fire out okay but it also makes a nasty gas of some sort and rusts everything in the shop, in seconds. Not advised.
    Yes, good point. The problem is if the fire is hot enough, the halon breaks down and forms HF acid. It attacks almost everything since it is so reactive, including bone.

    Halon works very well for low temperature solid state electronics but for other things it can be quite literally worse than a fire.

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    Quote Originally Posted by EmanuelGoldstein View Post
    Never thought I'd see the day but ... in this case, at least it's worthwhile information.
    Ah yes...."Variable integrity" rears it's ugly head....

  20. #38
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    I have several 5lb ABC fire extinguishers located all over the place, near welding, grinding, lathe, mill etc... I also have one refillable 2.5 gallon water filled air charged fire extinguisher in a central location.

    Because dry chemical extinguishers make such a mess and I have heard it is very corrosive, for most small fires, the 2.5 gallon water extinguisher would be my go to extinguisher.

  21. #39
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    I have been around a few vehicle fires that started off small and could have been easily put out with an extinguisher, but became fully involved before anyone could get to one. I have been around a couple that were quickly contained with an extinguisher. Extinguishers are great for taking care of things while small - I advise having many.


    I have a 5lb ABC in almost every room of my house, and 2 in the garage.


    In the shops, I have at least two 2.5lb BCs and two 5lb ABCs in every room - near every entrance & exit. Some of the rooms have more, but the idea is to always be near one.


    I have several classic cars, and every one carries a 2.5lb BC.


    All dry chemical extinguishers make a mess, but generally if you are pulling the pin, things are bad enough that it will be less of a mess than the fire... The BCs use Sodium Bicarbonate (baking soda) as the agent. It is much less corrosive than the monoammonium phosphate, used in ABC dry chemicals so that is my first choice for vehicles. CO2 extinguishers are great for no mess extinguishing, but they work by depleting oxygen, and dissipate quickly. If you have a fuel source over ignition temp it will put out the fire momentarily and then flare back up.


    Amerex is a pretty reputable brand and what I would recommend. Zoro carries them and if you wait for one of their sale coupons you can get a decent deal.


    Understanding Fire Extinguishers


    I have discharged a dry chemical extinguisher 3 times in my life - a barbecue fire, and 2 car engine fires. In all 3 cases they made very quick work of an otherwise uncontrollable situation with just a couple of bursts. I was a at a car show and a fifties Ford had an engine fire. I didn't have a classic car there so I didn't have an extinguisher - but I ran over to help the guy. I was trying to beat it out with my shirt when someone came with a small aerosol fire extinguisher that looked like a can of WD 40. It was amazingly ineffective, and I went back to beating it with my shirt as that was more effective. Within a minute or so someone else brought a real extinguisher. The extinguisher put out the fire in a second or two, but a lot of damage was done. The owner lamented he may have been better off if we let it burn completely...

    Joe


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