Plywood on fire - Router Forums
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post #1 of 12 (permalink) Old 06-08-2018, 09:06 PM Thread Starter
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Default Plywood on fire

Today I was cutting 5/16 rabbits in 23/32 plywood on my router table. On the 3rd piece I noticed first a lot of smoke, then actual burning wood. Not exactly flames, but fire red. I shut off the router then shut off the dust collector. Was very concerned that the collector bag would suddenly erupt into flames so I as quickly as possible removed it from my dust collector. Emptied the bag and ran the dust collector to clear out any remaining embers. Seeing none I put the bag back into place and assumed the fire was out.

Since this was my third cut with all settings and feed rate the same, I assume there was just something weird in the plywood?

Anyone have any idea what happened?
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post #2 of 12 (permalink) Old 06-08-2018, 09:24 PM
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off shore ply???

dull bit and sulfur content in the plywood or sparked by hitting metal in the ply.....
instead of sulfur there may be some other low flash point chemical present...
what did the smoke smell of???

when you cleared the system did you remove the bag??? sure hope so...
never ever assume the fire is out in saw dust... NEVER!!!
it can set for days and then start up w/o warning...
soak the snot out it and then drown the saw dust again several times...
suggest you treat the ply and saw dust to a strong magnet...
investigate this thoroughly....
you are now on fire watch till this is solved....

This would have been the week that I'd have finished chewing thru the restraints...
If only new layers hadn't been added....

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Last edited by Stick486; 06-08-2018 at 09:26 PM.
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post #3 of 12 (permalink) Old 06-09-2018, 08:59 AM
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I had that happen once routing mdf. Didn't have dust collection connected at the time, and was able to snuff it out with my shoe. A good lesson to have a fire extinguisher handy. When I was a Pup, years ago, where I worked, we had a 55gal drum out back with scraps of wood being burned from shelving being made on pallet racks. After sweeping up all the saw dust, I tossed the saw dust into the burning barrel...and to my surprise, it flashed...like gun powder. Never did that again!
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post #4 of 12 (permalink) Old 06-09-2018, 12:17 PM
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I vote for dull bit.
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post #5 of 12 (permalink) Old 06-09-2018, 12:32 PM
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Ply is very tough on bits. Check the cutting edges, i reckon they will be dark brown or even black. throw it away
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post #6 of 12 (permalink) Old 06-09-2018, 07:10 PM Thread Starter
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Default Thanks for replies

Thanks for the replies. Everything seems to be OK now. Maybe a dull bit, but it was the third cut and cut several more afterwards with no problem. Absolutely certain that any remaining embers were gone. This was pretty good birch ply but don't know the origin. Finished project looks very good! Thanks again for the replies.
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post #7 of 12 (permalink) Old 06-11-2018, 12:18 PM
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Exclamation Beware of flames/embers and dust collectors

Quote:
Originally Posted by gmercer_48083 View Post
I had that happen once routing mdf. Didn't have dust collection connected at the time, and was able to snuff it out with my shoe. A good lesson to have a fire extinguisher handy. When I was a Pup, years ago, where I worked, we had a 55gal drum out back with scraps of wood being burned from shelving being made on pallet racks. After sweeping up all the saw dust, I tossed the saw dust into the burning barrel...and to my surprise, it flashed...like gun powder. Never did that again!
Not only saw dust but flour or even just plain dirt-type dust will flash like that and, if it's in a vacuum cleaner/dust collector, it can cause a major explosion.

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post #8 of 12 (permalink) Old 06-11-2018, 12:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RDWilson2 View Post
Not only saw dust but flour or even just plain dirt-type dust will flash like that and, if it's in a vacuum cleaner/dust collector, it can cause a major explosion.
never knew dirt dust would flash. I learned something today.
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post #9 of 12 (permalink) Old 06-11-2018, 02:42 PM
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Fine dust will flash like gasoline. Had it happen. I told the wife about this as we have a burn pile in the back of the lot. FWIW, I went to college with a good ol' boy who worked one summer in a feed mill. That is where he learned to chew tobacco. They were not allowed to smoke in or near the mill as the fine dust would flash. If you lived in the country like I did, you would hear of grain mills exploding due to the fine dust igniting.

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post #10 of 12 (permalink) Old 06-11-2018, 11:54 PM
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Watch this video to the end to see how bad it can get when a grain bin goes.


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