Last night I had decided to finish welding on the new gin pole mounts.
My hands are not quite as steady as they used to be but not all that
bad. OTOH enough that I expected the need for some grinding.
I had welded some 4" X 12" pieces of 1/8" steel plate onto 16" lengths
of 2" EMT to form a triangle. IOW one side of each welds to opposite
sides of the EMT with the opposite side of the plates welded together.
The narrow part is where the hinges go for the 1 1/4" X 1/8" angle that
clamps on the tower legs.
The welding went pretty well, but still needed a bit of touching up with
the grinder. So I clamped the 4" extension in the vise and started
trimming. Something smelled like cloth burning and I thought, "Oh NO,
not the sweat shirt, my wife is not going to be happy", but I didn't see
any spots so I went back to grinding. However the smell was getting much
stronger. Still nothing on the sweat shirt which was the only cotton I
had on besides my welding jacket.
However...when I turned around I discovered I could only see a couple of
feet. The shop humidifier was behind me and had not been started up for
the season yet which left the inside dry. IOW the large wicks in the
bottom were really dry. Smoke was coming out of that thing like it was
being pumped out. I immediately pulled the top off which reduced the
chimney effect, but I was able to see those large wicks glowing. I had
a gallon water jug there for watering the plants/Alovera so I grabbed
that and poured it on the wicks which improved things greatly. I then
hauled the frames holding the still smoldering but now soggy wicks
outside. I opened the 8' garage door on the West end of the South side
of the shop and opened the 16' one on the East side about a foot or so
which made it more than a little drafty in there. The wind was coming
across the yard from the SW, right into that open 8' door and really
flushing out the air in the shop. It was actually pressurizing the shop.
So I headed in the house to get something to eat, and try to flush my
sinuses out so I could breathe through my nose again. It never occurred
to me to grab one of the masks I have out there.
Fortunately the station and equipment I'm working on was all covered and
well protected along with the high wind quickly clearing out the smoke,
so it should have, and seems to have avoided an aromatic fate. I just
came back in from the shop and it doesn't appear to have any residual
odor. We'll see what it's like after I bring the temp back up to 70 degrees.
With my normal, single mindedness when working on something I could have
easily kept right on working until it started getting warm from a much
more serious situation. All I lost was a large, inexpensive humidifier
and that was mainly due to my none so gentle hauling of the thing
outside as fast as I could.
So, instead of finishing up the rotator and gin pole I'm getting rid of
every thing not needed out there go give a lot more space.
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