As compressed air technology advanced through the 20th Century, its uses multiplied. Pneumatic cylinders became common for rolling and forming presses. The convenience and portability of powerful pneumatic hand held tools spread in assembly and manufacturing facilities. Along the way, operators also found that an open-ended compressed air line could be used for quick and easy blow off in a number of applications. There were, however, some pretty risky safety issues associated with this.
In December of 1970, the Occupational Safety & Health Act became the law of the land, and in 1971, the Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) was created. Among the many hazards in workplaces they targeted was compressed air use for cleaning. The primary concerns were:
- An open ended blow off could inadvertently be dead ended onto a person’s body, and if the pressure were high enough, it could break the skin and cause a deadly condition called an air embolism. So they limited the outlet pressure to 30psi.
- Blowing something off with air can (and usually does) result in airborne particulate traveling at a high velocity that can imbed in your skin or in your eye. So they mandated the use of proper chip guarding, protective clothing, and eye protection.
This is where the history of the safety air gun begins. Through the 1970’s & 1980’s, engineers rolled out product after product conforming with these new safety standards, sometimes looking for economy, sometimes efficiency…and occasionally, both.
It’s not hard to make a blow off nozzle that complies with OSHA’s dead end pressure requirement; you just need to provide a path for the air to escape in case the nozzle end is blocked. Cross drilled nozzles (shown at right) are simple, cheap, and OSHA compliant, but they’re also loud & inefficient.
EXAIR’s Super Air Nozzles not only protect against injury from dead ended high pressure air, their engineered design also makes them quiet, and efficient. They are commonly installed on the Soft Grip Safety Air Gun. Along with our Chip Shields (shown at right) and your personal protective equipment, you get OSHA compliance, AND lower air consumption & noise levels.
With the Soft Grip Safety Air Gun, you also get a diverse range of options to suit the specific needs of numerous applications:
- Our Model 1210 Soft Grip Safety Air Gun is fitted with our Model 1100 Super Air Nozzle, and is ideal for most typical industrial & commercial blow off tasks. If your needs call for it, though, it also comes with nozzles as small as our Atto Super Air Nozzle (2.5 SCFM; 2.0oz of force) or as large as our Model 1106 High Power Super Air Nozzle (60 SCFM; 3.3 lbs of force.)
- We can provide most Soft Grip Safety Air Guns with Rigid Extensions or Stay Set Hoses, for additional reach and/or aiming of the air flow.
- The Soft Grip Super Air Scraper uses a scraping blade in conjunction with our 2″ Flat Super Air Nozzle to remove stubborn debris like caulk, paint, stickers, gaskets, etc., from flat surfaces.
- Cleaning out the inside diameters of tube, pipe, channel, blind holes, etc., has never been easier than the Soft Grip Back Blow Safety Air Guns. You can get it with the 1004SS (1/4″ to 1″ diameters; 6″ to 36″ extensions) or the 1006SS (7/8″ to 4″ diameters; 6″ to 72″ extensions) Back Blow Nozzles.
If you’re looking for a hand held blow off device, your choices are many. If you’re looking for a quiet, efficient, safe, and versatile one, your choice is easy: the EXAIR Soft Grip Safety Air Gun. Call me and we’ll figure out which one you need.