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Machining titanium on a lathe

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  • #16
    Ti is flamable. I do not use coolant on it when spinning it on the lathe. I tried it the 1st time and set fire to my lathe. Ti produces its own oxagen when burning. so dont try water on it or a normal shop extingusher. I brole it into small piles and let ity burn out.

    Just my .02 worth
    Will sweep shops for knives and materials

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    • #17
      I did not know that Ti was a fire hazard.
      So far I have only cut some Ti bar with a hacksaw to make TIG fill rod, have not turned it in a lathe.
      It welded OK, anyone know why TIG did not set the Ti fill & Ti casting on fire?

      Frank

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      • #18
        Titanium in not a pyrophoric metal - unlike Magnesium, Uranium, Zirconium, Niobium, and Indium. I have never seen it set on fire, smoke, or smolder. Seen all those others do that...

        If it was every SR-71 would burn up from the extreme heat of mach 3.4+ travel in air. It is tough to machine alloys like Ti(13V-11Cr-3Al) (260,000 psi tensile, .3x machinablilty compared to 200 Brinell free machining steel) as the heat can readily ruin the inserts - coolant is a must with this stuff.

        Zirconium is just as difficult to machine as Titanium, it looks similar and DOES burn. It is used in nuclear reactors to accelerate neutron flow and Hafnium is used to control it - Zirconium and Hafnium occur together in nature too. It is quite possible that what you have been machining is Zirconium - they are quite similar in properties and appearance. It is a controlled substance and illegal to own - ask your local University to test it for radiation and on a mass spectrometer.


        [This message has been edited by Thrud (edited 07-28-2002).]

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        • #19
          check out titanium industries web site, they
          have a machining guide

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          • #20
            This is an interesting website. Stresses titanium's fire resistance as one of it's major attributes. Wonder how those guys managed to have it catch fire on them?
            Jim H.

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            • #21
              JCHannum:

              Only thing I can think of is they are machining Zirconium - it will burn in the air if heated and looks and feels similar to Titanium. I was trying to figure out what was going on and that was the only thing I could come up with.

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              • #22
                Ti chips can burn. Been there, done that. http://www.titanium.com/tech_manual/tech15.cfm

                ------------------
                Neil Peters
                p.s. Ti has an oxide coating like Al and when cut this layer is missing and reforms on the hot chip in a vogerous manner called fire.

                [This message has been edited by NAMPeters (edited 07-29-2002).]
                Neil Peters

                When on the hunt, a broken part is better than no part at all.

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                • #23
                  Neil

                  Thanks for the url - most informative. I was unaware of the 480* ignition problem with <100 mesh dust. I did not know paint dust would do that either until it set our dumpster on fire. I have seen the other metals I mentioned burn (along with Na, Li, & K in water) but have never seen a Ti chip burn. I stand corrected again - geez I am a dork. Twice in one day. I will have to try burning some now!

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                  • #24
                    Any one dealing with metals dust should go to fire code and readup. Ground small enough, most will burn and even explode. Flour dust, brain dust cotton lint (as in clothes dryer) oxidize with ease and speed.
                    Lee Valley catalog had a story (I think it was Lee- comments please) about a grinding wheel use for iron and aluminum that exploded. I've doubts about the story but it is possible given right conditions- I guess

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                    • #25
                      What is brain dust?

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                      • #26
                        brain dust = dandruff

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                        • #27
                          It is doubtful you could get a high enough concentration of brain dust to explode. Brains will autoignite. Dumb salesclerks frequently seem effective with mine.
                          As regards the rest of post, the link on Titanium was interesting. I have been trying to find similar information for other materials, such as iron, as I suspect information will be quite similar. Many MSDS's I found for Titanium listed autoignition and explosive limits as N/A. Iron too.
                          Iron is very easy to get to burn, you can light steel wool with a match. It is not easy to extinguish either.
                          The mention of dust explosions was generic, and should not be taken lightly, dust plus ignition source can be very hazardous.
                          Jim H.

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                          • #28
                            Zirconium was used in cluster bombs ond other high explosive applications.

                            After Steve's warning about brain dust I will put the q-tips I use in my ears in the fire proof rag can and not the garbage. If I run a towel straight through both ears does this work better than the q-tips? I have seen Stimpy do this, but he removes his brain first with tweezers ("It's so small...!"). And should I use coolant in this procedure?

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                            • #29
                              Re: Brain dust.
                              Gents please be informed that ALL my posts should go through Microsoft spell check, etc.
                              Microsoft agrees that "brain dust" is a OK phrase- when I use it. Microsoft also approves of "grain dust"- which explodes also, Drain dust which is rare,Krain dust is a protected specis, Train dust is now rare.
                              Hope you are more aware than before
                              Steve

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                              • #30
                                Steve

                                Don't blame macroslop for your airrors - you no bill gaates nevur makes missteaks. I uze thair spel cheecker awl thu tyme and I doant git mistaks! Four sham, Steave...

                                Brain Dust: n. - what you get when you put your nose to the grindstone too long without the right coolant, also that funny smell in your mouth when the dentist says "oops! nurse call this number - quick"

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