Ski Club 2.0 Home
Snow Reports
FAQFAQ

Mail for help.Help!!

Log in to snowHeads to make it MUCH better! Registration's totally free, of course, and makes snowHeads easier to use and to understand, gives better searching, filtering etc. as well as access to 'members only' forums, discounts and deals that U don't even know exist as a 'guest' user. (btw. 50,000+ snowHeads already know all this, making snowHeads the biggest, most active community of snow-heads in the UK, so you'll be in good company)..... When you register, you get our free weekly(-ish) snow report by email. It's rather good and not made up by tourist offices (or people that love the tourist office and want to marry it either)... We don't share your email address with anyone and we never send out any of those cheesy 'message from our partners' emails either. Anyway, snowHeads really is MUCH better when you're logged in - not least because you get to post your own messages complaining about things that annoy you like perhaps this banner which, incidentally, disappears when you log in :-)
Username:-
 Password:
Remember me:
👁 durr, I forgot...
Or: Register
(to be a proper snow-head, all official-like!)

How to damage your lungs nicely....

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
You skiers sure know how to take the fun out of snowsports!
snow conditions
 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Gainz, yep, we aim to please....mission accomplished
ski holidays
 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Surely this is all about risk assessment - whatever iron you use there is bound to be fumes. If you are a ski tech doing this stuff 4hrs a day every day for 6 mths of the year, then yes I'd expect to see the exercise COSHHed, ventilation and masks used etc. Then again I guess you have got to be a specialised ski tech to be hand ironing it on in the first place - since most shops use a machine. When you do it yourselves - unless skiing a season, I guess you might be doing say 4 sets of skis 2 or 3 times a year. The actual process of heating and ironing takes <5 mins per set of skis - say 20 mins exposure over a couple of hours. Most folk I imagine do the task outside/garage/shed - probably better ventilated than inside a house (unless wife has no objections to use of the kitchen). If the wax has a hazard marking and instructions it will probably give the WEL's for the wax and the shortest of these will probably be for 15 minutes exposure and designed to protect someone doing the task all the time. I don't have any data to rack up actual figures, but just through gut reaction I doubt Joe Public is in much danger health wise from the fumes from these one off exposures - surely you've got to be some sort of nutter to lean over and inhale them like drugs!!. The health of the skis from too hot an iron might be another matter though!
snow report
 You need to Login to know who's really who.
You need to Login to know who's really who.
Megamum wrote:
Surely this is all about risk assessment - whatever iron you use there is bound to be fumes. If you are a ski tech doing this stuff 4hrs a day every day for 6 mths of the year, then yes I'd expect to see the exercise COSHHed, ventilation and masks used etc. Then again I guess you have got to be a specialised ski tech to be hand ironing it on in the first place - since most shops use a machine.


Do they? It's a genuine question as I've not been a 'professional' ski tech for over 10 years now, so I'm not really up to date with what's being used in shops.

For me, the first place I the only machine was a belt-sander, and everything else was done by hand. The second had a belt and a stone-grinder, but still everything else was done by hand: base repairs, edges and waxing.

I know there are waxing machines, but I'd always assumed they were for places doing hundreds of pairs of skis, such as a rental place in a resort, rather than the volumes seen by a ski shop in the UK.
snow conditions
 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
feef, The place that I could take mine to in the UK is a Wintersteiger service centre and I am fairly convinced that they use a machine - I must admit I therefore assumed that all places probably did the same. Perhaps that isn't correct.
latest report
 You'll need to Register first of course.
You'll need to Register first of course.
valais2, no it's all about licking the flourinated wax for good luck here. Which might explain a lot! Very Happy
snow report
 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Megamum, Yes, ...but .... there are fumes and then there are fumes. And flourine is a highly reactive compound which goes bonkers when it reaches a certain temp, in the presence of that highly reactive gas called oxygen.

I thought a lot about posting re flouros (wall of posts back etc), but the issue was raised with me regarding parents of weekend race kids, since professional techs have seen committed skiing families do communal waxing in their kitchens (with kids of five and sixish), unventilated, with gas rings on, with smoky cheap irons, and doing this regularly, and with high flouro wax, which has a pretty narrow operating band between being liquid and burning. No, it's not common, and you could say that Darwin rules, but better be on the safe side and raise awareness. These adults frequently were layering wax (chasing that hundreth of a second for their little racers), and it was certainly taking more than 5 mins per ski. Yes, the adults can put themselves at risk through their own behaviour and some might say so be it. But I have had others express concern for the kids in this context. Flourine (which is odourless and so people do not immediately react to its presence) and its products do get excreted, but at a very slow rate, it's the burning and scarring to young lungs which is a worry.

But look at it this way, we now know that weedkiller is a very toxic chemical, and we have put childproof lids on it, have taught people to put it in a place away from children. Common sense when waxing should apply, but common sense usually is neither.
snow conditions
 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
valais2, It's not that there is anything wrong with raising the issues and being safe, and I must admit I am no expert on fluoro carbon waxes. However, you talk about the fluorine as though it has become free latent molecules of fluorine when the wax is vapourised. This might not be the case - I would imagine if you vapourise a fluorocarbon wax all you immediately get is vapourised fluorocarbon wax rather than free fluorine - this may not be so immediately damaging as it should still retain a certain stability which might help to prevent interaction with living tissue, and it could contribute to why they are found excreted, i.e. they have passed through the body unaltered.

AIU fluorocarbons in waxes will be fluorocarbons with single bonds in them - these are the most stable type of fluorocarbon.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fluorocarbon

You will note in that wikipaedia article that only certain types of fluorocompounds are known to bioaccumulate. The fluorocarbons likely to be the waxes are not included in the list.

I think you need to make sure that you are not confusing concerns about Fluorine (a genuinely nasty gas) with vapourised single bond fluorocarbons which might well have slightly different properties. Though of course sensible precautions are always advised with chemicals. I suspect that we expose ourselves to just as much hazardous fluorine in toothpaste as waxing folks might do with ski wax. NB. I haven't seen any data and don't know for certain, but I do think we should make sure that we are not scaring folks un-necesarily without thinking this through. Point me at some scientific data which confirms the problem and yes, I'll read it and might even agree with you, but I do think a gut reaction here may need thinking through a little further to determine if a problem actually exists - if it does I won't have any further objections.
snow report
 You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
Megamum, chemically speaking I don't think it'd be possible to produce elemental fluorine gas from combustion of fluorocarbons that you'd see in your general 'too hot iron' and it's definitely not certain that it's the fluorocarbons combusting either. The worry from the articles presented before is the bioaccumulation and metabolism of fluorocarbons into forms that have been linked with increased risk of cancer in animals. I suppose this problem might be exacerbated by combustion from too hot irons but it is one that provably exists in ski technicians who are presumably using expensive kit and not burning wax through exposure to gaseous fluorocarbons and airborne particulates. At least that's my take on it from the evidence put forward and why I tongue in cheeked a bit asking if valais2 wore a respirator whilst waxing skis.

So wax in a well ventilated area, don't inhale too much and don't feed the wax to your kids. Or something. Smile
snow report
 Ski the Net with snowHeads
Ski the Net with snowHeads
meh, yeah, I think so wink Glad to have your agreement on the lack of likelihood of producing elemental fluorine though. valais2, was certainly talking about fluorine gas when they put:

Quote:

flourine is a highly reactive compound which goes bonkers when it reaches a certain temp, in the presence of that highly reactive gas called oxygen.


In actual fact this would suggest that any elemental fluorine should react the moment it reaches the air - let alone the lungs - so would it be fluorine gas any longer - in addition the temperature that any vapours would rapidly drop to once away from the iron would also render that statement above suspect. I've got nothing against proof that comes from solid science even if it proves me wrong, but I am not keen on gut reactions driven by possible pseudo science.
ski holidays
 snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
Megamum, meh, ...no just shorthand, sorry, being sloppy

The last time I discussed this with someone who knew exactly what a couple of companies were playing with - and apparently there was a lot of substitution going on because of a potential limitations being imposed in the US regarding the manufacture and use of Teflon, they said that the toxic product due to overheating was hydrogen fluoride.
ski holidays
 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
valais2, ...and couldn't remember the other product, depending on constituent; it's perfluoroisobutylene.
snow conditions
 So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
I'd be terrified if fluoro ski wax did actually give off HF!

The article you linked on the previous page is talking about PFCs and the metabolisation of fluorotelomer alcohols into PFOA and PFNA as there wasn't enough of the latter found in the air to be the sole cause of the levels found in the ski techs. But again this is an issue in a high volume situation, with limited ventilation but using proper kit. I don't think the claim that using a 'too hot iron' increases the risk has actually been substantiated yet. This risk seems apparent even when using professional kit.

Just for good measure here is the abstract of a study showing what PFNAs do to mice:
http://toxsci.oxfordjournals.org/content/105/2/312.abstract


Last edited by So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much on Sat 27-10-12 16:53; edited 1 time in total
snow conditions
 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
So.. what you are saying is that toothpaste definitely gives you cancer if you wax your skis with it.
ski holidays
 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
flangesax, only if you make the au pair do it.
latest report
 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
meh, ...which just goes to show that mice should never be encouraged to hot wax their skis.....

...but re the article, that's correct re the metabolisation products, which are assumed to come from inhalation of particulates, and indeed in a high volume situation. There's quite a lot of controversy on this research re whether it matters re accumulation since the stability of the molecules mean excretion can reduce concentration levels, the argument being over the rate of reduction.

This next bit is simply posted out of weird interest - it's not intended to suggest this is a real risk: I can't now find the reference to a specific incident early on in the use of flouro powders in XC skiing when a tech smoked a load of cigarettes contaminated with flouro powder (the mechanism by which this happened wasn't mentioned in the article - powder on fingers? using the flouro box to store them? God knows...) but they were admitted to hospital with severe respiratory impairment - the article stated that they made a full recovery. If I come across the article again I'll post it, again only out of weird interest, I'm not suggesting that this is anything other than a peculiar exception.

But I assume SWIX and TOKO's warning about using flouro waxes near to a naked flame or element heater (gas rings, open fire, etc) is to do with the heating/combustion of the normal fumes from using flouro waxes and getting it to a temp way above the 120c or so used in a normal, stable waxing iron.
ski holidays
 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
meh, ...the oxford paper is interesting...and since interleukin affects spacial ability in mice this sure would mess up their ability to pull 1080s....
latest report
 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
valais2,
Quote:

flourine is a highly reactive compound which goes bonkers when it reaches a certain temp, in the presence of that highly reactive gas called oxygen.



Fairly comprehensive and sounding well thought through shorthand since what you describe probably would happen for natent fluorine wink
ski holidays
 You need to Login to know who's really who.
You need to Login to know who's really who.
NB irons can get very hot don't touch the base.... rolling eyes

really if its smoking its way too hot turn the iron down... it's not rocket science
snow conditions
 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Spyderjon does leave his garage door open when waxing which proves that precautions are necessary wink
ski holidays
 You'll need to Register first of course.
You'll need to Register first of course.
Colin B wrote:
Spyderjon does leave his garage door open when waxing which proves that precautions are necessary wink

And when it's too cold for that I've got an extract fan/duct over the bench & if I'm using flouro I always wear a mask Toofy Grin
ski holidays
 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
spyderjon, Very Happy Very Happy

and I'm sure the Piste Office will have all mod cons
snow report
 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
spyderjon wrote:
if I'm using flouro I always wear a mask Toofy Grin


I thought that was so you didn't frighten the neighbours. Toofy Grin
snow report
 You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
Like spyderjon, I always wear a mask when in the garage with flouro's.
snow conditions



Terms and conditions  Privacy Policy