Safety in the Glass Studio
" Safety in the glass studio rules."
Common sense practices and keeping your working area is key for being protected while glass fusing.
Before beginning your projects, be sure that your area is set up for maximum risk-free working.
Read through all the safety precautions below and follow them so that your experience is worry free.
Ideally you will have an area that is just for the sole purpose of glass fusing.
But, if this is not the case, be aware of your surroundings, use common sense and make it a practice of cleaning up your area while working and when finished with your project.
Some Basic Safety Tips
Wearing the correct materials
Operating your equipment correctly
Be aware of what is going on around you
Keep your work area clean
Use good ventilation
Keep all hazardous materials in a limited area
Avoid eating and drinking
Wash your hands after leaving the area
Try wearing a smock or apron to keep clothing clean
Keep your hair pulled back away from your face
Don't wear jewelry, especially when opening the kiln
Glasses With Ir And Uv Protection - These should have a #3 filter to remove infrared and ultraviolet light when looking in a kiln. They should have side shields. Protect your eyes.
Respirator – This should be NIOSH approved for fumes, vapors and/or dust-trapping.
Heat-resistant gloves – Wear non-asbestos Zetex or Kevlar.
Cotton Gloves – These will protect your skin from irritating dusts or fibers.
Bandages – Keep these handy for accidental cuts.
Fire Extinguisher - Have one on hand for any emergencies.
- Any of these materials is fantastic to keep your area safe.
When working with glass use common sense and take extra precautions to avoid any unnecessary injuries.
Wear Glasses With Ir And Uv Protection when cutting, grinding or sawing glass. Small pieces of glass can fly into the air and enter your eye causing serious damage.
Wear your hair pulled back and remove all jewelry.
Wear a dust mask when working with glass powders. Glass powders can be inhaled, especially when grinding and sawing glass.
Wear ear plugs when using loud equipment such as the grinder or glass saw.
While getting your pieces ready to fire, use precautions.
Wear a dust mask when working with:
Frit – these small pieces of glass can be both an irritant and toxic.
Kiln wash on shelves or molds – can cause respiratory irritation and long-term exposure can cause silicosis
Powder glass, or paints – can be inhaled and harmful
If your kiln came with a manual, read it thoroughly.
It is important to be careful when working with a kiln.
A kiln releases vapors and fumes, so operate in a well-ventilated area.
Be sure that your kiln is a minimum of at least 12 inches from any wall, preferably three feet.
It should be placed on a nonflammable surface.
If your kiln doesn’t run on normal household current, be sure that you hire a qualified electrician to do the necessary wiring.
Make sure you have a separate circuit for the kiln and that you know the location of the breaker.
Have a fire extinguisher close by.
When working with your kiln, be sure to wear protective equipment.
Your kiln is extremely hot and hot glass emits infrared rays.
Prolonged exposure to infrared rays can give you cataracts.
When opening the kiln you will need to wear heat-resistant gloves and protective glasses.
Always unplug the kiln if reaching inside, and when finished working.
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