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Carbon Fiber Hazard

Old 03-19-2003, 04:04 AM
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Default Carbon Fiber Hazard

Came across a case of lymphoma which may have been caused by inhaled carbon fiber saw dust. Any one know of technical/health literature linking the two?
Old 03-19-2003, 06:01 AM
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CafeenMan
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Default Carbon Fiber Hazard

Find out who the manufacturer is and request a Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS). They have to provide you with that information.
Old 03-20-2003, 12:39 AM
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Default Carbon Fiber Hazard

Somewheres about, a while back I posted a photo of my finger.

Long story short version...

I now take much more care cutting cf in any form.

It is dangerous stuff...believe me I know. I have a growth that covers most of the end of my 2nd finger. It is the result of a skin puncture wound, no blood, no drama, by a piece of cf about 2mmx0.8mm which penetrated about 3mm inside (between inner and outer) skin layers.
Old 03-20-2003, 03:44 AM
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CafeenMan
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Default Carbon Fiber Hazard

Yeah, but I'll bet the chicks really dig you now.
Old 03-20-2003, 10:34 PM
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Default Carbon Fiber Hazard

Guys, this is serious business. This 24-yr old got exposed to carbon fiber dust and now has lymphoma. Is there any technical/medical lterature that confirms (or negates) a cause-and-effect relationship?
Old 03-20-2003, 10:44 PM
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CafeenMan
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Default Carbon Fiber Hazard

Did you try to contact the manufacturer?
Old 03-21-2003, 07:47 PM
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Default Carbon Fiber Hazard

Carbon fiber is in modeling one of the most dangerous products that we use which people have very little knowledge off.I use it all the time in many different moulds but take extreme care !
Old 03-23-2003, 03:07 AM
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Default Carbon Fiber Hazard

Dr. Jason, do you know of any health/technical literature on the subject?
Old 03-26-2003, 03:12 AM
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Ian M Emery
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Default Carbon Fiber Hazard

I'd try searching JAMA or New England medical journal. Found alot of good referance material about an unrelated condition. Youll get better at speed reading if nothing else. Also OSHA's MSDS has to have a listing.
Old 03-28-2003, 01:28 AM
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canadianjosh
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Default Carbon Fiber Hazard

i found the msds on carbon fiber/ carbon/graphite. check out the link Carbon Fibre MSDS
Old 03-28-2003, 03:57 AM
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Default Carbon Fiber Hazard

Thanks, CanadianJosh! Good info. I'm also in touch with NCI to independently confirm non-carcinogenic nature of carbon fiber.
Old 03-28-2003, 06:39 AM
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Default Carbon Fiber Hazard

carbon itself is the reason that we can live, any organic mleculeuses carbon as the main component. I don't know if it is carcinogenic. I think someone would have to be working in a carbon dust enviroment for their life to develop lymphoma. i dunno
Old 03-28-2003, 09:20 PM
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probligo
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Default Carbon Fiber Hazard

The problem with cf lies in its size, structure and molecular structure.

There was quite a bit of publicity some years back about using cf rovings to assist the "repair and healing" of damaged tendons in the legs and feet of racehorses. This use relied on the ability of cf fibres to encourage the development of (I think) collagen, and hence cartilage, structures along the fibres.

Certainly the medics believe the lump on my finger is gristle or cartilage in nature. And I am informed it is consistent with the kind of "growth" that cf generates.

Therefore, if a person breathes the dust from sanding cf (for example) some of those particles will have the basic (if only very small) characteristics of the cf fibres. If one of these lodges in lung tissue then I can imagine (just by looking at my finger) that it is going to cause severe problems in time.

How many have heard of asbestosis? Same principle, different substance. It is caused by the size and shape of the particles, not by the "chemicals", that make up the asbestos.

So, to repeat, it is not "carbon" that is "carcinogenic".

It is the size and structure of the particles that causes the problem.
Old 03-29-2003, 10:15 AM
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purge98
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Default Carbon Fiber Hazard

Should I stop drinking from the carbon fibre mug I made last year?

It fits perfectly into the armrest of my vehicle though. I would be sad to lose it.

What if i made one out of Kevlar. Would that be more safe?
Old 03-30-2003, 05:50 PM
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canadianjosh
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Default Carbon Fiber Hazard

your carbon fiber mug is most likely safe because the actual little fibers have been embedded in epoxy or some other resin. This will prevent you from ingesting them. The main proplem arises when you inhale them, like any fine dust it can lodge in your aveoli(sacs that absorb oxygen in lungs) and hinder breathing. Ingestion of carbon fiber should be no problem. If you ever get picked up and are very very drunk the police or ambulance will make you drink a mix of carbon(in the form of fine ash) and water. While very disgusting it absorbs the alcohol in your stomach and you promptly throw it back up.
Old 03-31-2003, 11:30 AM
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Default Carbon Fiber Hazard

Thanks for the reply Canadianjosh,

I NEVER drink and drive in case I spill it!
Old 04-18-2003, 11:44 PM
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treemagnet
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Default Carbon Fiber Hazard

Hey canadian josh,
Are you sure it's carbon, and not activated charcoal? I think that's what ER's use for suicide attempt/drug OD's.
Old 04-26-2003, 10:10 AM
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Default Carbon Fiber Hazard

hi,
few, carbon mug?.. i would probably put it on the mantel piece.
a few things here..
firstly the carbon fibre itself.
A lot of carbon fibre (cf) is sold with binder agent to hold the fibres together slightly ( not pre preg), make them easyier to lay up.
this is a pluss mostly as it means it is much less likely that any cut strand will get airborne as they are attached to their neibours.. But if you are unlucky enough to inhale them, you also inhale the binder, a resin (i am not sure about the common resins used for this) but its not likely to be maple syrup so its probably not good for you.

Next is the resins we are using, the one i know a little about is epoxy.
really comparing epoxy to polyester epoxy seems to be much safer.
however it is still pretty nasty stuff. This is mostly because of the Amines in most epoxy resins(i have to speak broadly here) which are there to speed up the cure.
unfortunately amines are quite carcinogenic (cause cancer), they also come to the surface of the epoxy and create a waxy film called an `amine blush`. This is a real hazard, howmany times have you run your hand across the lovely smooth surface of your nice layup job? I did lots of times before i found out about amines and to be honest i don`t think i`ll die tomorrow of it. that said i do not touch the surface of a wet layup untill i wash it thoroghly now. (because i know) amines can be washed of with soap and water.
Because Amines are the main thing you want to avoid, you might like to start avoiding resins with a lot of it in it.
That means any `fast` resins, and of course those really full of amines, five minute types.
Personally i find it much easier to work with slow resins that have much less amines and then i heat cure them in a card board box.. up to you.

Carbonfibre (epoxy)mug? not a good idea. there are very few food grade epoxys on the market, and it should be remembered that there are usually free unpolymerised molycules still in most epoxytype resins. it will be mostly these and, more importantly the amines that will be leeching into your morning coffee..

I think this is a really important thing to realise, that cured epxoy is not food safe, that means the sanding dust that comes off epoxy is also not food safe. if it gets into your lungs, on your skin etc it can leech chemicals into you that are not going to be good for you and my endup giving you cancer.

Japanman
Old 05-14-2003, 03:10 PM
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Japanman . . .

Just need some clarification . . .

Good advice about not drinking from a cup made with epoxy resin.
I am assuming your references to amine release are applicable only to EPOXY resin, and not to polyester resins. I also advise anyone working with epoxy resins not to work without some type of ventilation, and also avoid repeated skin contact with epoxy.
Sanding of epoxy should involve wearing a mask. It's possible for a person to become sensitized and allergic to epoxy resins (or epoxy paints), and if that does occur, it is not reversible.

However, when you are dealing with polyester resins, my understanding is that the "smooth finish" you speak of after resin cures actually IS a type of wax, which is only present in "finishing resin". The purpose of it is to insure a surface which hardens and feels dry, and not sticky to the touch.

The "wax" (not sure of it's chemistry) will "float" or migrate to the outer surface when the resin is curing, and remains there if undisturbed. When trying to repair, or laminate to, this type of resin, it is necessary to use a solvent (like acetone) to remove the wax before attempting to sand and bond another layer.

On the other hand, you have polyester "laminating resin" which does NOT have the wax present, and a layup done with this type of resin will often be slightly sticky to the touch, and can gather dirt. The sticky surface is actually partially uncured resin, which bonds more readily with the next layer of laminating resin, or with a final layer of finishing resin.

Regards,

Al Parry
[email protected]
Old 05-16-2003, 12:52 AM
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canadianjosh
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Default Carbon Fiber Hazard

Your right tree magnet it is called activated charcoal, but is almost completely made up of carbon. This is the same stuff used in water filters. I am a rower, and recently one of my rowing buddies broke an oar while racing. The oar he broke, the shaft was made from carbon fibre. The boatman was worried about people touching the shattered area because the carbon fibres can work their way into your skin and will not come out, i guess down at the microscopic level they have little barbs or something on them. While i don;t think the carbon itself can cause a problem it may be the resin used. Whether it is the safer epoxy or more harmful polyester may not matter. The chemicals in the resins could possibly be broken down into more harmful chemicals or maybe just cause damage by themselves. It's beyond me. I do know for sure though that normal carbon, be it fibre or not is safe to ingest, therefore should be safe to handle or get on your skin.
Old 05-16-2003, 01:02 AM
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canadianjosh
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Default Carbon Fiber Hazard

this is an excerpt from the msds from above:

Graphite causes benign pneumoconiosis (graphitosis). Symptoms of
pneumoconiosis from graphite exposure are dypsnea, coughing, black sputum,
bronchitis, ventricular hypertropy and impairment of pulmonary function.
X-rays will show progressive nodulation of the lungs. The theshold limit
value was set in conformity with the limit for free crystalline silica,
which may be present in graphite.

Incompatibilies:
Strong oxidizers,fluorine, peroxides

Route of entry: Inhalation, Skin or eye contact.
Target organs: Lungs, Cardiovascular system.

Symptoms:
Coughing, forceful expiration. Dyspnea, difficulty in breathing.
Black sputum, black colored expectorate. Bronchitis, inflamed bronchial
mucous membranes, pulmonary fibrosis, fibrous tissue involving lungs.
Pneumoconiosis, degenerative respiratory disease.

It doesn't mention anything about lymphoma(cancer in the lymph)
but i am sure that it would cause similar effects as asbestos if inhaled. A general rule of thumb is to put on a resperator mask whenever sanding composite/glass material. The lymphoma bit, the fibres would have to be diffused through the alveloi into your blood, pumped through your body until the blood drops off the oxygen and h20 at whcih point they would then have to diffuse through tissues and then get dumped into the lymph fluid where it could maye do some damage. I don't think the carbon caused the lymphoma.
Old 06-07-2003, 08:27 PM
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Default Carbon Fiber Hazard

I allmost had to cut the tip of one of my fingers off to get a siver
out I dont use much carbon but it is good. I used to do poto
pc boards and used 5 gallons of 111 per week. But now even
the old diehard listen once in a while. CU
Old 06-08-2003, 02:10 AM
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canadianjosh
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Default Carbon Fiber Hazard

Yeah i have heard of that happening before, never seen it before, but apparently if a fibre works it way into and under your flesh it cannot come back out.

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