Respirator recommendation

Issues related to safety

Respirator recommendation

Postby BenJackson » Sun Mar 24, 2013 9:52 pm

I know we're all properly venting our fumes outside and far away from the cutter, but I like my new respirator so much I'm going to recommend it to you:

I had an AO Safety respirator that pinched in the face, pinched where the straps held it on my head, and was quite bulky due to the "canister" shape of the filter cartridges. However, it did work and I kept using it when I absolutely had to until I bought some new filters for it at Home Depot and found the bayonet mount had changed and the new filters did not fit.

Recently I saw a recommendation for the 3M Half Facepiece Reusable Respirator. I've seen people refer to it as the "3M 7502" but that is specifically the medium size. I've got a big head so I got the large (7503). The mask does not come with any filters: You have to pick one suitable for your environment. The one everyone recommends for welding is the 2097: 3M P100 Particulate Filter with Organic Vapor Relief. This thing is great! It seals to your face with hardly any clamping pressure at all (you should always test by plugging the inlets and inhaling to ensure the mask is sucked into your face). The rubber is soft, with no sharp points to poke you. The straps are very comfortable. You can slip off the part that goes on the crown of your head and let it hang by the neck strap when taking a break. I've worn it with various combinations of safety glasses, a welding cap, a welding helmet and a face shield and it doesn't get in the way at all.

The 2097 filters seem to be 100% effective against all welding/cutting/grinding smells with its "organic vapor relief", but there are more substantial "organic vapor" filters for it which are slightly more expensive. If you're just going to be facing paint VOCs (or burning acrylic!) they might work better in some way. Maybe the NIOSH certification page would explain that?
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Re: Respirator recommendation

Postby funkybuddha » Fri Oct 25, 2013 3:23 am

Thanks for your post! Up until now I had been using a cheap respirator that I brought off Amazon and have been unhappy with it. I didn't realize the importance of a good quality respirator until I started using my cutter a month or two ago. I started coughing lots and noticed an increase in the effort I needed to breath. My wife suggested that it might be due to my poor quality respirator and so I'm looking for another one.
I will definitely look into the ones you suggested and be buy a replacement one ASAP!
Thanks once again for your recommendations.
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