Basement Workshop Question

I am planning my basement workshop. It will be about 13 by 25 feet. My question is will it at all be possible to safely weld by any method (
gas,MIG,TIG) in the basement or should I just forget the idea and do it all in the garage upstairs. Are there any practical hoods/filters for the home shop which I could plan on which would allow this. Of course, safety would prime concern. As there are no walls or ceilings up yet, I could adapt to these as needed.
Thanks,
Barry
Thanks to those who answered my previous post.
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wrote:

"Practical" is a debatable issue. Exhaust hoods do exist, but affordabilty is an issue. Walls and ceiling could be done with cement board (aka tile backer board).
An issue which is often a great deal more difficult than "can this be done?" is "how long after that before my homowners insurance is revoked, and I can't get insured anywhere else, either?"
What can be done safely and what can be insured are not the same. It's a racket, and it's unfortunately all too often the limiting factor in what you're allowed to do in your own house. Rather than see that you have done it safely, or help you to do it safely, most companies will probably drop you like a hot rock if you put a welder actually inside your house, because they don't want to pay attention to "done safely" - their idea of "safe" is "not at all".
Your odds are better in the garage.
--
Cats, Coffee, Chocolate...vices to live by

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I asked an insurance guy about this (not my insurance guy), and he said that if things are done as a "hobby", then there isn't too much that they can say about it. I was a bit surprised by this, but I haven't explored it much further (so don't rely on this as spoken with any sort of authority). Something that you should look into though.
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Actually I think there is a fire resistant sheetrock out there you can use. I cant remember the name of it though.
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Brian wrote:

All gypsum board is fire-resistant. Thicker is better, oviously.
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Wood can be made fireproof by painting it with sodium silicate.
If you're welding in the basement or living room you might want to invest in a whole drum of the stuff.
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wrote:

no it's not - with a fire under it, it burns through within minutes. There are fire rated gypsum boards, which are fibre reinforced and rated for varoius burn times. The manufacturers also have special stopping compounds for joining the sheets. Double layers give longer times. IT is not cheap and is really heavy. Geoff
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Yes it will burn. 5/8ths drywall has a one hour fire rating. This fire resistant board you are talking about must have a better rating. Then again, anything will burn (oxidize) with enough fire near it. Given a big enough fire a cinder block building will fall. It "seems" natural that forest fires occur but take some of the same (wet) wood back to camp and try to use it to cook dinner. That dinner may turn out to be next day's breakfast.
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Zorro wrote:

Right. Fire resistant, not fire proof.
So, for the 5/8, you apparently have 1 hour to figure out that there's a raging fire in the corner. Works for me.
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wrote:

Not exactly... This rating is not equivalent to "barrier protection against ANY fire for one hour". The rating should more precisely read: "This material took one hour to fail the ASTM E-119 test" In a real fire this rating could become 10 minutes or 2 hours depending on the fire.
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Geoff M wrote:

All gypsum is inherently fire-resistant. The only thing that will burn, in practical terms, is the paper. I've seen walls with the 2 x4's half burnt through and the rock still standing there.
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Barry, As long as your properly address all the safety concerns you should be okay.
Just be sure the work area is:
Well lit (I use lots of 8 foot, 4 tube flor. lts.)
Free of flammables (NO GAS CANS, no fuel, oil, papers, wood, etc)
Powerful exhaust fan (and a source for incoming fresh air)
Smoke alarm (mines on a switch so I can turn it off while burning)
Fire extinguishers (I've got co2, Halon, and PKP)
Can anyone else think of any other concerns?
Good luck!
(`._. rr ._.)

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Not a new one, you mentioned it already, but if he lives in a cold climate the makeup fresh air may do some serious damage to the heating budget. In my basement woodshop I can filter the air but I would want fresh for welding. Billh

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I personally would never do it in my own basement. There are too many issues to deal with. The difficulty of doing it right and the loss of sleep wondering if you'll burn the house down, it is'nt worth it, and you'll always be limited in size by what you can get into the basement. A huge pain in the ass.
If you do your welding outside, you can weld on any sized object, trucks, whatever. You wont kill yourself with fumes, and you wont spend a nickel on some elaborate fume extraction device. You wont burn the house down either.
It's a very bad idea to keep compressed gasses indoors as well. Some people do, I would'nt. The only way I'd bring it in the house is if the cylinder is flat empty.
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You are 100% correct, it is a bad idea and for my part I was only pointing out another problem. Billh

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Some consider any welding inside a huge safety concern. Compressed gasses inside as another safety concern??? Most industrial settings I've visited not only weld inside but have oxy/acet tanks as well as believe it or not, an air compressor inside.
I have a basement shop with air compressor and TIG welder. I don't consider myself living dangerously. TIG welding is going to be safer and cleaner than both stick and MIG inside. Stick gives off a lot of smoke and MIG shoots hot metal sparks all over the place. Make shure you can vent with some forced circulation to turn over the air in the room at an accelerated rate. Have a fire extinguisher handy if anything gets out of control. If you want real safety, don't do anything inside your home. I would also suggest removing those items in the kitchen that get really hot. Many homes every year burn down because of accidents with those hot kitchen items. Your insurance rates should definitely go down, right. ;)
I recall getting my homeowners insurance. There is wording in there that states I won't store flammable chemicals in the garage or house. I asked what about the gas can for the lawnmower or those twenty gallons of gas in the tank of my truck and another fifteen gallons in the tank of my wifes car parked in the garage? I didn't get much of a response since it is so crazy to think my insurance company won't let me park in my own garage!!!

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You are right. I have never seen a gas cylinder just leak on it's own without any provocation, but stranger things HAVE happened, such as lightning.
I have personally done many things like this, and look back and wonder how it is that I am still alive.
Think of the firemen who will come to your house if the place ever catches on fire. It is wrong to have cylinders indoors. Think of your neighbors house. Now - imagine a parking lot in it's place. Thats what'll happen. I'm not trying to be the cylinder police - but that's my thought on it.
It really depends on the building and the immediate conditions of the workspace, whether it is safe or not. But I disagree that it makes any sense unless all you are doing is welding small things. You cant get a boat or trailer into your basement. I-Beams ? Tons of steel ? Hauling in and out of the house ?
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Let me elaborate a bit on cylinders. I'm talking inert gas cylinders, not oxy/acet cylinders. Indeed the failure mode of of a small leak in oxy/acet can be catastrophic. Small leak of inert shielding gas is fairly benign On the other hand, in the event of a fire, the inert gas cyliders will fail predictably at the burst disks and release inert gas, potentially putting out the fire depending on a ton of variables.
One needs to have a vision of what they want to do and what they are limited to do in a besement shop. I have never intended to work on large items like building trailers and such. I don't even have room out in the garage and driveway to do that,thus the basement shop. I have built a gantry crane to move equipment into and out of my shop. This was done in the basement with no issues. Thirteen foot 4"x8" beam slid very easily through the basement window. Basement shop capability is a lot more than most people think. You have to be creative with an open mind.

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Most cylinder leaks I have seen are at CGA fitting to regulator and at cylinder valve stem right after opening. They are found by checking with soap suds right after regulator is attached.
Another less common leak is at burst disc on cylinder valve. Leak test with soap suds. I've never seen valve to cylinder pipe threads leak but check anyway.
Acetylene cylinders have fusible pugs on top of cylinder around the valve and on bottom of large cylinders. I would check all of them on Acetylene cylinders with regulator on and valve open before lugging it into basement. Then remove regulator and install cyylinder cap before transport to basement. Fusiable plugs have special alloy core that melts at 212 degree F and I have seen core pushed out a little in stead of flush with top of top of fusible plug which indicates it needs replaced. Aso leak check all plugs / fusible pugs with soap suds. Visually check fusible plugs before leaving gas dealer. Assume they never look at bottom plugs.
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In order for exhaust to work it has to exit on the side of the building that is not under pressure from the outside wind . For this reason I can't let smoke out through my garage door because that wind pushes in . I have to open my side window or the pleasure pushes the smell through my basement doorway . You can make a small area on the outside of your basement to house as the nasty stuff that you have and while you are at it put that noisy compressor out there too ( it helps ) . You can run hoses through a small window or hole .
Over the years I spent a lot of time trying to find the best weave, only now that I have a constant shake do I feel content !
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