AS170 Set to Increase Safety & Reduce Silica Exposure on Work Sites

silicosis lung damage

 

“Silicosis is a growing concern in the building and construction industry. Because symptoms aren’t imminent and can take many years to develop there is a tendency to forget that dust is deadly and Silicosis is irreversible. By simply investing in the right tools and equipment up front, contractors are taking the right steps to reduce silica exposure and therefore prevent themselves and their work mates from potentially developing Silicosis.”

 

 

What is Crystalline Silica?

Silica, also known as Quartz is found in many construction materials including brick, mortar, masonry, rock, landscaping material, granite and more. Silica dust is commonly produced during building and construction activities such as cutting and grinding. Furthermore, these small dust particles of silica are microscopic and easily inhaled, even the smallest amounts inhaled can lead to lung damage.

What is Silicosis?

Breathing in or inhaling Crystalline Silica causes Silicosis, a lung disease that is irreversible, potentially life threatening but also 100% preventable. Silica particles that make their way into the lungs of contractors, workers and even bystanders develop hard nodules, inflammation and scarring in their lungs. Should these nodules increase in size they can make it very difficult to breathe and can lead to death. While there is no cure for Silicosis, it is 100% preventable.

Why is it dangerous?

Inhaling Crystalline Silica can lead to one developing a number of lung diseases including, Silicosis, Lung Cancer, Tuberculosis and more. Crystalline Silica is recognized by the World Health Organisation – International Agency on Cancer Research (IARC) as a “known human carcinogen”.

The AS170 Masonry Solution

AS170 reduction in Silica Dust_compliance productivity

The AS170 is an innovative masonry restoration saw. Its unique cutting technology reduces the amount of airborne dust when cutting as well as the risk of inhaling crystalline silica.

Silicosis is a growing concern in the building and construction industry. Because symptoms aren’t imminent and can take many years to develop there is a tendency to forget that dust is deadly and Silicosis is irreversible. By simply investing in the right tools and equipment up front, contractors are taking the right steps to reduce silica exposure therefore prevent themselves and their work mates from potentially developing Silicosis.” – Alicia Ellen, Marketing Coordinator.

The AS170 can contribute up to a 77% reduction in respirable silica dust (Alan, E., Chaolong. Q., (2016) In-Depth Survey Report: Removing mortar with a powered saw. Ohio: NIOSH) when carrying out tasks such as heritage restoration, tuck pointing, toothing of brickwork and chasing. Unlike other masonry saws and grinders, the AS170 does not require the use of heavy duty, expensive face masks and suits to be compliant. This is largely because the innovative motion of the blades produces mostly larger dust particles. As a result these particles don’t become airborne and spread like that of angle grinders. This coupled with the Dust Boot makes it ideal for Heritage  Restoration Professionals and other Masonry Contractors looking to improve on-site safety and compliance.

More Safety Features of the AS170

AS170 Toothing brickwork

Aside from its superior dust control, the AS170 is engineered to prevent dangerous kickbacks while allowing operators good visibility of the cutting blades for better control and precision cutting.

Arbortech is all about creating some of the most innovative products in the industry that will make any professional contractor’s job safer, easier and more productive. OSHA’s Silica Rule is playing a big part in the further development of Arbortech’s Allsaw technology.” – David Pellegrine, Sales Manager.

 

For more information on Silica Exposure or OSHA rulings, please visit www.silica-safe.org 

The Ian Key by Kevin Inkster

 

The Ian Key is an ingenious solution invented by my brother, Ian Inkster. We have just recently launched the Ball Gouge and part of the pack includes this unusual looking tool alongside it.

 

Many people know about the Allen Key, (I have no idea who Allen is) a small L-shaped tool commonly used to tighten screws and bolts in self assembled furniture. The Ian Key provides a similar function that is unique to Arbortech tools, and it ensures the correct amount of torque (18Nm to be exact) when tightening bolts in both the Ball Gouge and our masonry Allsaw the AS170.

 

It is longer than an Allen Key and has an unusual ‘pig-curl’ tail which is the secret to being able to tell if you have tightened bolts to the correct level of torque. When the gap between the two straight portions of the Ian Key closes, you have reached the right torque. The bolts are now tight enough to perform, but not so tight that it is almost impossible to unscrew later with the opposite end of the Ian Key.

 

The shorter length is designed to be inserted into the socket head while the longer length is designed to be hand held and makes the tightening easier for the user.

 

Watch this short video where Kevin talks about the Ian Key

 

I feel this tool deserves special mention and a bit of explanation as it epitomizes the approach we at Arbortech like to encourage and embody in all of our tools.

 

Best regards and happy woodworking!

Kevin Inkster

Kevin Inkster

 

The Evolution of the Ball Gouge

Dear Arbortechies,

 

By the time you’re reading this you are probably very much aware of our new product the Ball Gouge. While it now seems surprisingly simple and effective, this tool is the product of countless prototypes and experiments often leading to dead ends.

I would like to share with you some of the thoughts that went into its design.

I usually start my tool projects with a vision and try to work towards that. The idea I had in mind was that of a ball shaped cutter that could effectively cut in any direction whilst leaving a smooth cut. Such a tool (as with all our shaping tools) must be able to willingly cut in any direction but not grab or catch.

 

drill bit

Countersink drill example

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

While I was pondering on how to achieve such control, I noticed an old style tool that was used to produce a counter sink at the top of a hole. Essentially a cone shaped mandrel with a hole drilled at an angle, that when pressed into a pre-drilled hole, will cut the countersink but only to the point that the circular shape prevents it cutting any further. I reasoned that the same principal might work with ball shaped cutter and so began a bunch of experiments.

In collaboration with our Product Designer Matt Cormack, we started with several prototypes with a shape similar to this:

 

prototype2

One of the first prototypes

 

There were several problems with this design however not the least the fact that as soon as it formed a shallow spherical hollow, it would no longer cut. Also, it was difficult to sharpen and the large hole allowed a finger to be inserted making it not meet our safety standards. I liked the fact though that the holes scribed a perfect sphere with no kickback or grabbing. We progressed through about thirty designs including holes, slot and spirals, all of which had their inherent problems until we finally realized that the inverse i.e. a disc set at an angle would also scribe a perfect sphere.

 

A few of the many initial prototypes

 

By adding the sphere (with cut away for swarf) the exposure of the cutting blade can be limited and tuned while the trailing edge of the cutter prevents the leading edge from grabbing. We like to call this feature “Anti-Grabity” and it is unique to the Ball Gouge.

 

anti-grab

Anti Grab diagram

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The final design solved all our problems with control and the circular cutter being set on an angle produced beautiful shavings. One unexpected feature was that the rubbing of the trailing edge actually polishes and sharpens the edge, which can be rotated to be the cutting edge. i.e. self-sharpening.

 

So that’s a much abbreviated explanation of the design process without going into the nitty gritty of testing etc. I hope you found this aspect interesting.

 

The final tool is in your hands now and I am truly looking forward to receiving your feedback and seeing what you create with it. Many of our staff are eager to get their hands on the new Ball Gouge for our in-house staff woodworking competition but they will have to wait until the limited edition is sent out. We will be posting videos of projects on our YouTube Channel and I welcome any photos or videos from yourselves.

 

 

Once again, thank you for your support and I look forward to your feedback.

 

Best regards,

 

 

Kevin Inkster

Arbortech CEO & Founder

Post Maleny Expo 2017

 

Maleny 2017 was yet again a huge hit, thank you to all of those who came to visit and support us! For those of you who don’t know, The Maleny Wood Show is hosted in rural Queensland and is renowned for showcasing the finest crafted timber products, timber cutters, live woodworking demonstrations and hands on workshops. There were plenty of things happening this year including our first kids workshop, Pacific Islander totem demonstrations and of course the prestigious Wootha Prize.

 

We thoroughly enjoyed running our first ever session of the Arbortech Lil Woodworkers Workshops, this one was called ‘Make a Sign’ with the Arbortech Power Chisel. We were inundated with kids aged 7 years and up who were eager to learn some new skills and unleash their timber creativity. Not only did they learn about proper power tool safety, handling and processes, but also were given the chance to create designs freehand or with stencils. Every participant walked away with their creation and a huge grin on their faces!

 

               

 

Another great attraction at the show was Shane Chirstensen who hosted two Pacific Island wood sculptors to demonstrate wood carving for the three day long show. During the festival, each carver sculpted a traditional totem pole to represent their island with the help of some modern wood carving technology – the TURBO Plane. Shane says “From my experience of carving at festivals with Pacific Islanders, the Islander Carvers are used to using chainsaws for larger cuts, and moving down to the chisel work, but we all know the Arbortech TURBO plane and Industrial Woodcarver can nearly replace the chainsaw and can carve much finer and smoother”.

 

 

We were very happy to support Shane in his endeavor to unit cultural traditions with new advances in woodworking technology – our tools will provide new, safer and therefore more enjoyable ways for the Islander to craft and power carve wooden items back home.

 

The Wootha Prize is another stand out even at the Maleny show. Every year wood turner, wood sculptors, carvers and furniture makers enter this prestigious woodworking event which is the only themed exhibition art prize for woodworkers and wood artists in Australia.

 

The 3rd Place and prize went to Guy Breay for his sculpture titled ‘Navajo Revelation”. Guy used Arbortech tools to help him achieve the beautiful organic shape, hollows and twists in his piece.

 

 

 

 

 

How to fit sanding discs to the Arbortech Contour Random Sander

 

Remove hex nut and replace with plastic flange and countersunk screw which is punched straight through the sanding disc, adding the ability to use sanding discs without adhesive and keeping the  disc in place during use.  An additional kit with flange, screw and allen key will be available for purchase.

To remove the sanding disc grip the aluminium piece below the sanding disc and simply unscrew as it should be hand tightened, otherwise use a tool to loosen if necessary.

Remove hex head screw from the centre and replace with the flange and screw (these can be glued together)

This method of attaching a sanding disc can be used with or without adhesive backing on the pad.  If using a pad without adhesive simply push the screw/flange component through the centre of the disc and use on internal curves. Note* this method is not suitable for external curves as the screw/flange will make your work.

 

CAUTION: Always use the metal mounting flange of the grinder. The TURBO Plane or the plastic washers supplied with the TURBO Plane have to center on the ridge of the metal mounting flange. Do not put the TURBO Plane or the plastic washers on the spindle shaft without using the metal mounting flange.

Turbo Plane fitting instructions

Depending on the size of the spindle of your grinder, you may have to use the white plastic reduction washer in order to correctly center the TURBO Plane on the metal mounting flange.

M10 SPINDLE GRINDERS
STEP 1.  The plastic white washer has to centre on the ridge of the metal mounting flange. Push the washer down and make sure it centres on the ridge.

STEP 2. If you wish to raise the blade you can use the black spacer washers on top of the white reduction washer.

STEP 3. Use the lock nut with the ridge facing down. Ensure that the lock nut is engaging sufficient thread of the spindle and is level or below the top of the spindle shaft thread when tightened.

M14 or 5/8 SPINDLE GRINDERS

STEP 1.  The black plastic spacer washer has to center on the ridge of the metal mounting flange. (If no spacer washers are being used the TURBO Plane has to center on the ridge of the mounting flange)

STEP 2. If you wish to raise the blade you can use the black spacer washers.

STEP 3. If you have used the black spacer washers use the Lock Nut with the ridge facing up. Ensure that the lock nut is engaging sufficient thread of the spindle and is level or below the top of the spindle shaft thread when tightened.

 

Maleny Wood Show 2017

 

Visit us at the Maleny Showgrounds in Queensland for the annual Maleny Wood Expo!

The show takes place from the 29th of April to the 1st of May.

We will be contributing to the new show addition the Junior Landcare Paddock – where we will be offering kids “Make a Sign” with Arbortech Workshops across the 3 day period.

If your child would like to learn how to use the Power Chisel to carve their name, age, picture of a butterfly or even a dinosaur – make sure you stop by.

Not only will they walk away having learnt a new skill, they will also get to keep their creation to hang up on their bedroom wall.

 

“Make a Sign” with Arbortech – Children Workshop Details

Date: 29th April 2017 – 1st May 2017

Time: Workshops will be running continuously from 10.30am to 2.30pm daily

Cost: $5 per child (to cover cost of materials) on the day

Minimum age for participants: 7 years

Workshops will be fully supervised and led by qualified Arbortech woodworkers.

 

Purchase tickets to the Maleny Expo online here and visit us at the Expo 🙂


No.10 – Touch Wood Sculptures

This funky chair is hand carved from a single piece of Oak. Sculpted by Touch Wood Sculptures, it is retailing for approximately $7000 AUD! Taken from a 250 year old Oak tree that was felled for safety reasons, the Oak’s new form is minimalist, modern and somewhat rustic. The Industrial Woodcarver would be ideal for the initial removal of stock, followed by the TURBO Plane for the planing and medium sculpting components. The Mini Grinder would be the perfect option for getting into those tight spots around the arms and legs.

No.9 – Puzzle Stools

Wooden Puzzle Chair / Table (artist/ date unknown). This would be a great project to let the kids get involved with. Each piece is an individual stool or when combined it becomes a coffee table, talk about versatility and creativity in the home. Make the base of each piece out of solid timber for a more artistic or sculpted look with the TURBO Plane. Use the TURBO Shaft to create the puzzle shapes around the edges. You could also carve your family members names on each piece for a personalized touch – each piece belonging to a different family member but when put together it is symbolic of the family unit.

No.8 – Hugo Franca

 
Cocoon like piece carved from trunks by Brazilian designer, Hugo Franca. Very cool piece of functional art.
 

No.7 – Leaf Chair

For Art Nouveau fans, this sculptural chair is from the Mountain Region of France, c1900. The carved detail in the leaf veins along with the narrow hard to reach places in the back legs can be accomplished quickly and easily with the Mini Grinder.

No.6 – Hand Stools

 

We could barely handle ourselves when we came across these two hand inspired bar stools. Created in the 1960’s by Pedro Friedeberg these eclectic stools would add a touch of creativity and fun to any home.

No.5 – Anthropomorphic

This funky chair was made from Birch Plywood; it is called “Anthropomorphic” and was designed by Sergio Gill. 
 

No.4 – David Delthony

 
 A carved, laminated plywood chair created by David Delthony, c1985.

To sculpt a chair like this, (obviously adding a bit of your own style and flair!) you’ll need to stack laminate timber and bind them together with a strong wood adhesive such as Gorilla Wood Glue. Allow to set for a day or two and start sketching the design with a carpenter’s pencil. Sculpt away excess plywood with the TURBO Plane in line with the design. You will need to alternate angling the TURBO Plane – flat to achieve a planning effect and on a slight angle to achieve the varying curves of this flowing design. You may need to consider the Mini TURBO or Mini Grinder to reach into the smaller concave areas such as the back rest.  Plane the right side a bit more than this version to achieve a flat surface for your tea or coffee!
 

No.3 – Glemham

Sophisticated and intricate – The “Glemham” by Alex Johnson took 6 months to complete with the help of tools such as Chisels and Gauges. Alex believes that people will admire his effort and decorate their home with this special chair.
 

No.2 – Dragon Throne

 
This Dragon throne made it to No.2 because of it’s size and intricate design / detail (artist/ date unknown). Game of Thrones fans would appreciate this throne in their home, perhaps a smaller version though…?
 

No.1 Scorpion Seat

This cool and crazy Scorpion chair made it to No.1! It was made by Russian artist  Vyacheslav Pakhomov. This handcrafted scorpion chair measures in at six and a half feet and is available with leather upholstery and a variety of wood finishes.
If the translation on his website is correct, it does seem to be available for purchase for the relatively modest sum of approximately $3,636. 
Which one is your favorite?
 
 
 
 
Arbortech Woodworking Competition 2016!

On the 20th of August, the Arbortech courtyard in Perth Western Australia was once again transformed into an outdoor art gallery, with staff members showcasing their talent and pieces of work in the 2016 Arbortech Woodworking Competition. Family members, friends and colleagues gathered to view the wood creations that were all crafted using the Arbortech Woodworking range of products. To say “woodworking revolution” is an understatement, as the pieces in this year’s competition were nothing short of stellar. So much so, that a number of pieces have already been sold to the public.

 

Among the experienced staff woodworkers, there were a few new and nervous additions to the Arbortech family this year Max, Ramesh, Jana, Ade, Patricia and Alicia –“The Novices”. Although new to woodworking, they all gave the tools a go and where all equally shocked by how easy the Arbortech woodworking tools were to use and even more shocked at what they could do with the tools.

 

Plywood serving tray - Arbortech Tools

 

“We aren’t kidding when we say the Arbortech tools give their users the “Freedom to create the Impossible” says Patricia, our talented Graphic Designer and creator of the “Lagoa”, a beautiful, layered plywood tray.

 

Surf Board - Arbortech Tools

 

Max, another Novice and the company Management Accountant goes on to say “I was a little nervous before using TURBO Plane, I have not had any practice using it. I was afraid I would take too much wood off and there would be no way to fix it. But I was very surprised at how fast I got the hang of it – it was actually the most enjoyable part of the project: using the TURBO Plane.  I also used the Power Chisel to carve the design and TURBO Shaft to carve the holes to install the fin – they were also fun to use – surprisingly, it all went as I envisioned (it is a true testament to how user friendly the tools are – I have never made anything out of wood before).”

 

wooden Manta Ray - Arbortech Tools

 

On another note, the more experience staff woodworkers did not fail surprise either, showcasing their perfected techniques, talent and creativity.  A testament to this is Matt Cormack, our Product Designer who has been with Arbortech for over 20 years. He carefully sculpted his piece out of Plywood. The challenges lay in the fact that the project was small and the wood was fairly unstable which resulted in small pieces breaking off. Despite these challenges Matt managed to pull off a beautiful piece of woodwork called “Manta”.

 

Now take a look at for the rest of the pieces…

 

Flame by Sven - Arbortech Tools

Cheese Board - Arbortech Tools

Gadget Tray - Arbortech

Wood carved wine holder - Arbortech Tools

Wooden clock - Arbortech tools

Wooden Book Ends - Arbortech Tools

Wood desk organiser - Arbortech Tools

wooden shark sculpture - Arbortech Tools

wood peanut bowl - Arbortech Tools

wood vessel sculpture - Arbortech Tools

Wooden Sculpture - Arbortech Tools

Organic Wooden Bowl - Arbortech Tools

Walnut Wood Tray - Arbortech Tools

Wood chisel fish picture - Arbortech Tools

Wood Beer Carrier - Arbortech Tools

Plywood Sculpture - Arbortech Tools

Pine Totem Pole - Arbortech Tools

Cat Tree - Arbortech Tools

Chiseled Name Sign - Arbortech Tools

Koala Sculpture - Arbortech Tools

Wooden Emblem carving - Arbortech Tools

Candle Holder - Arbortech Tools

Paella Tray - Arbortech Tools

 

Saving the best for last – obviously this piece won 1st place, but I bet you wouldn’t believe this won first place in the NOVICE category!  Jana was initially inspired by the Arbortech creation of the Twist Candle.

 

Wooden Side Table - Arbortech Tools

 

 

 

 

 

 

A chat with Australian wood sculptor Ian Bell
We talk to professional woodcarver and sculptor, Ian Bell about his passion for woodwork, Arbortech and his new found adventure with Sculptures at Killalea.

 

Tell us a bit about yourself and how you got into wood carving and sculpture?

Years ago I lived in Tasmania and worked as a ship builder and gained lots of experience using every type of hand/power tool available .I was looking for something creative to do in my spare time and in 1995-96 completed an associate diploma in art craft and design and have been hooked on wood carving ever since.
How does your life of woodcarving compare to your life before? Do you ever miss you previous career’/s?I have much more freedom now and can structure my days around creating artwork. As far as my previous career goes, it was a means to an end and has now allowed me the opportunity to pursue my passion.
What is the inspiration behind your work? Can you tell us a bit about your artistic style or technique?I love nature and particularly the ocean and try to echo the shapes and patterns I see into my work. I would describe my style as free-form and try to always incorporate texture, form and contrast.

 

 

 

You have your own gallery now, how did that start?

I supply quite a few galleries with my work and have a gallery section on the website. It takes hard work and lots of time.

 

How have our (Arbortech) tools played a role in your sculpting process? Do you have a favourite tool?

I have been using the Arbortech woodcarving attachments on my grinders for many years and find that they allow me to move lots of material very quickly which means I have more time and energy to produce even more work. All the tools serve a purpose but if I had to choose a favourite…it would have to be the Industrial Woodcarver.

 

What is your favourite piece and why?
Hard question to answer…they are all my favourite pieces while I’m working on them because that’s when I’m learning the most as every piece has it’s challenges and no one piece is the same.

 

You are a co-founder of the Sculptures at Killalea festival that’s making its debut later this year in NSW. Has your passion for wood carving played a part in creating the Festival? Tell us what sparked this idea and what you hope to achieve with this event?
Definitely, and the idea to create this type of event stems from one thought, which was “How good would sculptures look in this beautiful area.” My hope is that people and particularly kids get that light bulb moment that starts them on their own journey with sculpture or any other creative pursuit.

 

To visit Ian’s gallery online: http://www.ianbellcreations.com.au/

To find out more about Sculptures at Killalea please visit http://www.sculpturesatkillalea.com.au/
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