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i agree with it for soft woods(pine) in the fact that the body might be able to break down soft woods but hard wood (oak) might it is harder so the body would have to work harder. please note the word MIGHT so please no but chewing ...................... but if you insist on chewing you might want to know that .......................... i forgot to pick up tp on my way home today so HAHA
I think is all based on how you present it. If I read it right, the report is on the problems these folks have that work in the test plants. With government regulations on air quality in the work place, and mandatory use of respirators in certain areas, the plants tested may actually have good environments to work in.
Now if you gloss over the article, you may think that inhaling wood dust is just fine , and then I think your fooling yourself. Shoot, back in the day I remember walking off the job site and blowing plaster dust and saw dust etc out my nose, and then commenting on how tight my chest felt because I was too stupid to wear a dust mask or respirator. Just my humble opinion, but they'll never get me to beleive that it's ok to breath saw dust.
As I see it, there was very little information in the article regarding the parameters of the test. Were these done in an environment that was using dust collection, what levels of dust were the participants exposed, were there noticable differences between one exposure rate versus another, length of exposure, differences in wood varieties, particulant levels, age groups, etc.?
While there may be a possibility that some types of wood, like pine, can be enhaled at low levels without traumatic harm, there are cases where woodworkers have noted strong reactions to more exotic wood species, even with skin exposure.
One might also be suspicious that it may be in the sponsors' best interest to have the reported findings. As previously mentioned, there were no manufacturers of dust collection equipment in the sponsorship. Could it be that their particular interest would be in opposition? (Like wood dust is not a problem, so no need to buy our products.)
From a personal point of view, I am under the belief that any prolonged exposure to dust of any kind is not a good thing. Organic wood dust might be better, but certainly organic mold isn't or exposure to cotton, hay, and similar dusts. Bottom line is that I'm naturally suspicious of any findings from research by an industry that has a vested interest in the outcome. Unfortunately, we live in a CYA world and the findings of such research would go a long way in keeping a factory woodworker's case from ever reaching the courts. How many decades did it take to get tobacco to come clean? Oh wait, I forgot... they still haven't!
Wood Dust in Industrial setting... not homes/shops
Hector hit it right on the head.
This is a study of industrial makers of wood products. It is interesting, and frankly I am surprised by the findings (but have no basis for that), BUT it is not at all applicable to 99.9% of us on this forum.
For the wood hobbyist or small wood shop who don't operate under OSHA regulations and inspections for dust collection--namely industrial DC, respirators, filtration and circulation restrictions-- I don't feel we can even extrapolate from this, never mind find it actionable.
Sounds like some of that 1.9 million went to pay for results in thier favor. At no time is it safe or healthy to inhale any solid substance into your lungs.
If that statement were actually true, the entire human race would be gone from the earth by now. There are millions of sources of fine dust on the planet, only a few of which are man made.
Someone will always accuse the research group of slanting the results based on the organisation that sponsored the study, no matter how presitgious or above board the researcher's reputation. I used to live in a little town in Alabama that happens to host the largest cabinet shop in the US East of the Mississippi river. Their shop is over a million square feet IIRC (maybe 2 million)and they employ some 2000 or so people. If you ever took a tour of this place, you would see why such manufacturers have no problems with the lung health of their employees. They use powerful central dust collection cyclone systems with 18 wheelers hauling off the dust. They constantly monitor particle counts to ensure OSHA compliant conditions.
This situation (and study) is in no way applicable to the hobbiest woodworker.
I agree. Dust particles need to be extremely fine to do damage. Only sub micron particles will make it past the cilia and into the depths of the lungs. Toner (the black powder that printers use) is also classified as non hazardous to the lungs and it is much finer than most wood dust. Where you run into problems and this was likely not part of the study is when you start fine sanding (400+ grit) and working with MDF or exotics which are known to be lung irritants like cocobola etc.
Yes, I believe diameters of 10 microns (10 thousandths of a millimeter) and below are able to stay in the airstream, avoid sticking to the mucociliary blanket, and end up in the alveoli. Plus being too small to be affected by gravity, so they stay airborne. Asbestos particles and TB infectious particles are this size and are thus very dangerous. Most wood dust is not this small, but maybe we have to worry about more than just the alveoli. Maybe longterm exposure in the rest of the airway can be harmful, chemically. I've always heard that oak and cedar dusts are the ones to worry about.