Author Topic: Be Carefull What Material You Use and Were You Use It.  (Read 2902 times)

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Offline Rip Van Winkle

  • Posts: 228
Be Carefull What Material You Use and Were You Use It.
« on: December 04, 2016, 11:22 PM »
I don't know if anybody else saw this story.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3997602/15-000lb-cedar-sculpture-FBI-makes-dozen-employees-seriously-ill-including-office-nurse.html

https://www.google.com/amp/gizmodo.com/over-a-dozen-fbi-agents-hospitalized-after-million-doll-1789601423/amp?client=safari

http://www.politico.com/states/florida/story/2016/12/the-750k-sculpture-that-hospitalized-fbi-miami-workers-107768

"$750K sculpture sickened FBI workers in Miami"

"15,000lb cedar sculpture at the FBI makes more than a dozen employees seriously ill including the office nurse"

"An enormous sculpture in the FBI's Miami field office is being blamed for sickening a number of the bureau's workers including the office nurse who had an extreme allergic reaction."

"Made of Western red cedar imported from Vancouver, the massive artwork was actually 30 individual wooden pieces built to resemble a tornado. It was designed by Ursula von Rydingsvard, an artist known for making sculptures from wood beams."



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Offline Chris Wong

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Re: Be Carefull What Material You Use and Were You Use It.
« Reply #1 on: December 04, 2016, 11:36 PM »
Bizarre!
Chris Wong, http://FlairWoodworks.com

The thoughts and ideas expressed here are my own and do not necessarily represent those of http://UltimateTools.ca.  But Dan does say "hello".

Offline Corwin

  • Posts: 2388
Re: Be Carefull What Material You Use and Were You Use It.
« Reply #2 on: December 04, 2016, 11:46 PM »
I think Michael Goodwin, regional director for the GSA, needs to look for a new job. He obviously is totally unqualified for his current position.
Looks like your rabbit joint is a hare off! ;)

Offline HarveyWildes

  • Posts: 437
Re: Be Carefull What Material You Use and Were You Use It.
« Reply #3 on: December 05, 2016, 12:15 AM »
Here is a wood site that describes wood and wood dust toxicity:

http://www.wood-database.com/wood-articles/wood-allergies-and-toxicity/

Note that Western Red Cedar is one of the more toxic woods.

I've seen at least three of the directly poisonous woods for sale (Tambootie, Sassafras, and Yew).  Personally, I experienced a minor reaction to Mesquite dust.  It was minor enough that I still work with it, but I make sure that all of my dust controls are running and I cover as much exposed skin as is feasible.  I've also noticed that Wenge splinters pretty much always get infected.

My understanding is that you may work with some of the woods listed as irritants for a while without problems, and then one day you go to the shop and bang! you have a reaction.  That has happened to my son with two different woods now, after about 15 years of woodworking.  Black Locust was one if I remember correctly - it's available locally as urban lumber.  While most of the woods on the list are just irritants that only cause problems very occasionally, I have always avoided the woods that have the potential for worse symptoms - Yew and Sassafras, for instance, both of which sorely tempted me until I read the toxicity report.

Why did I spend mucho bucks for the Festool sanding / vacuum combination?  Because too much dust was getting away from my DeWalt / Fein combination.  I decided that I wanted a combination that was designed to capture the maximum, and so far, so good.

Offline Untidy Shop

  • Posts: 2493
Re: Be Carefull What Material You Use and Were You Use It.
« Reply #4 on: December 05, 2016, 12:44 AM »
From the Wood Data base -
Western Red Cedar
irritant, sensitizer, runny nose, asthma, nervous system effects, NPC (rare)

Someone really messed up here! Pity; great sculpture.

One of my favourite Australian Timbers is Huon Pine, a now relatively rare timber from the Huon River in Tasmania. Great and pleasant odour -
irratant

And another, of which I have stock in the Untidy Shop, Tasmanian/Otway Blackwood -
irritant, skin lesions, nosebleeds


Laminated Blackwood shorts.


http://www.huonpine.com
http://www.brittontimbers.com.au/timber/tasmanian-blackwood

« Last Edit: December 05, 2016, 12:50 AM by Untidy Shop »
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Offline Michael Kellough

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Re: Be Carefull What Material You Use and Were You Use It.
« Reply #5 on: December 05, 2016, 12:50 AM »
I wonder why this is a story now? The sculpture was removed from the building 14 months ago.

Offline Clifford

  • Posts: 11
Re: Be Carefull What Material You Use and Were You Use It.
« Reply #6 on: December 05, 2016, 01:07 AM »
I admit I'm still struggling with a 750K sculpture in a government building. Maybe I'm just old, but that seems like a lot. Still, it's pretty cool looking and I'm thinking it was a lot of work.
Cliff J.

Offline Rip Van Winkle

  • Posts: 228
Re: Be Carefull What Material You Use and Were You Use It.
« Reply #7 on: December 05, 2016, 02:53 AM »
I admit I'm still struggling with a 750K sculpture in a government building. Maybe I'm just old, but that seems like a lot. Still, it's pretty cool looking and I'm thinking it was a lot of work.
Cliff J.

According to The Politico article, the General Services Administration, "GSA",who purchased the statue, and run the building were the FBI office was located, "GSA officials said they believed the sculpture was a good deal because it was “likely worth more than the $750,000 the government paid.”

Some cities, including a number of major cities, also have laws requiring a certain percentage of building or major renovation costs to go towards public art. Percentages vary, but are sometimes between .5% and 2%. This article sort of explains it.

http://www.artlawgallery.com/2012/10/articles/artists/public-art-programs-1-for-the-99-part-one/

Offline JD2720

  • Posts: 958
Re: Be Carefull What Material You Use and Were You Use It.
« Reply #8 on: December 05, 2016, 07:24 AM »
Why are tax dollars for crap like this?

Offline HarveyWildes

  • Posts: 437
Re: Be Carefull What Material You Use and Were You Use It.
« Reply #9 on: December 05, 2016, 09:53 AM »
From the Wood Data base -
Western Red Cedar
irritant, sensitizer, runny nose, asthma, nervous system effects, NPC (rare)
...

What the heck is NPC, I asked myself?  FYI, this from an NPC website:

"Niemann-Pick Type C Disease (NPC) simply put is FATAL. It is a genetic, neurodegenerative disorder that consequently accumulates large amounts of cholesterol and other excess fats in the cells of the liver, spleen, and brain causing progressive deterioration of the nervous system. It usually starts to affect children of school age (4-7 years old) by interfering with their ability to metabolize cholesterol. Adult onset may also occur."

"NPC is apart of the Lysosomal Storage Disorder family that encompasses about 50-60 diseases under the umbrella.  You may have heard of more common Lysosomal Diseases such as Tay Sachs, Battens, Pompe Disease, Gaucher Disease, and many more.

"Life expectancy with Niemann Pick Type C Disease (NPC) is younger than 20 years of age typically not living past their teenage years. However, there is no normal to go from because this disease is so rare most neurologists, geneticists, and Primary Care Physicians have never treated a child or adult with this disease. They estimate there has
[sic] been around 500 cases diagnosed worldwide ever."
« Last Edit: December 05, 2016, 10:00 AM by HarveyWildes »

Offline Dovetail65

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Re: Be Carefull What Material You Use and Were You Use It.
« Reply #10 on: December 05, 2016, 11:01 AM »
Why not just shellac the piece and be done with it. Even if it cost 25,000.00(heck even 100,000.00) to get it sealed that seems to me to make more sense. Instead of a loss they would have an asset. I am betting anything there is more to the story and it's political. Someone didn't like the thing or was trying to make a point of the money spent being wasteful. There are numerous ways I can think to eliminate the dust emanating from it that cost far less than the 1.1 million dollar loss they took. Simply put someone at the top wanted it gone, if some at the top wanted it fixed it would have been.
« Last Edit: December 05, 2016, 11:05 AM by Dovetail65 »
The one who says it can't be done should avoid interrupting the person doing it.

Offline HarveyWildes

  • Posts: 437
Re: Be Carefull What Material You Use and Were You Use It.
« Reply #11 on: December 05, 2016, 11:22 AM »
Why not just shellac the piece and be done with it. Even if it cost 25,000.00(heck even 100,000.00) to get it sealed that seems to me to make more sense. Instead of a loss they would have an asset. I am betting anything there is more to the story and it's political. Someone didn't like the thing or was trying to make a point of the money spent being wasteful. There are numerous ways I can think to eliminate the dust emanating from it that cost far less than the 1.1 million dollar loss they took. Simply put someone at the top wanted it gone, if some at the top wanted it fixed it would have been.

To your credit, you don't think like a politician.  No politician or public employee whose job depends on politicians would ever risk trying to fix something that already made 18 people sick.  You might know that the piece could be sealed and made to work, but they don't, and they simply would not risk it unless they were feeling like political suicide was a good option that day.

They'll put it in storage, let the brouhaha pass from public memory, seal it, and then put it someplace else, outside, far away from the original location.  Or maybe they'll just send it to the chipper for mulch to avoid the storage costs.  In the meantime, no one else will get a large piece made of western red cedar in a public location for at least the next 25 years, at least not if it gets any scrutiny.

Offline Rip Van Winkle

  • Posts: 228
Re: Be Carefull What Material You Use and Were You Use It.
« Reply #12 on: December 05, 2016, 11:24 AM »
From the Wood Data base -
Western Red Cedar
irritant, sensitizer, runny nose, asthma, nervous system effects, NPC (rare)
...

What the heck is NPC, I asked myself?  FYI, this from an NPC website:

"Niemann-Pick Type C Disease (NPC) simply put is FATAL. It is a genetic, neurodegenerative disorder that consequently accumulates large amounts of cholesterol and other excess fats in the cells of the liver, spleen, and brain causing progressive deterioration of the nervous system. It usually starts to affect children of school age (4-7 years old) by interfering with their ability to metabolize cholesterol. Adult onset may also occur."

"NPC is apart of the Lysosomal Storage Disorder family that encompasses about 50-60 diseases under the umbrella.  You may have heard of more common Lysosomal Diseases such as Tay Sachs, Battens, Pompe Disease, Gaucher Disease, and many more.

"Life expectancy with Niemann Pick Type C Disease (NPC) is younger than 20 years of age typically not living past their teenage years. However, there is no normal to go from because this disease is so rare most neurologists, geneticists, and Primary Care Physicians have never treated a child or adult with this disease. They estimate there has
[sic] been around 500 cases diagnosed worldwide ever."


I think NPC is actually refering to "Nasopharyngeal Cancer". Nasopharyngeal Cancer seems to be one of the main health hazards associated with certain fairely commonly used woods. I forget the all the major woods associated with it, but I believe it has been mentioned in assocition with douglas fir, some types of oak, possibly certain types of pine, etc.

On this website, there is a "Toxic Woods Chart". If you scroll diwn the pdf, and look st the far right column, some of the woods have "nasal cancer" listed. The species with nasal cancer listed include some types of cypress and cedar. Most wood sold in the USA as "cedar", is actually a species if cypress.

http://www.mountainwoodworker.com/articles/toxic_woods.pdf


Offline HarveyWildes

  • Posts: 437
Re: Be Carefull What Material You Use and Were You Use It.
« Reply #13 on: December 05, 2016, 11:33 AM »
From the Wood Data base -
Western Red Cedar
irritant, sensitizer, runny nose, asthma, nervous system effects, NPC (rare)
...

What the heck is NPC, I asked myself?  FYI, this from an NPC website:

"Niemann-Pick Type C Disease (NPC) simply put is FATAL. It is a genetic, neurodegenerative disorder that consequently accumulates large amounts of cholesterol and other excess fats in the cells of the liver, spleen, and brain causing progressive deterioration of the nervous system. It usually starts to affect children of school age (4-7 years old) by interfering with their ability to metabolize cholesterol. Adult onset may also occur."

"NPC is apart of the Lysosomal Storage Disorder family that encompasses about 50-60 diseases under the umbrella.  You may have heard of more common Lysosomal Diseases such as Tay Sachs, Battens, Pompe Disease, Gaucher Disease, and many more.

"Life expectancy with Niemann Pick Type C Disease (NPC) is younger than 20 years of age typically not living past their teenage years. However, there is no normal to go from because this disease is so rare most neurologists, geneticists, and Primary Care Physicians have never treated a child or adult with this disease. They estimate there has
[sic] been around 500 cases diagnosed worldwide ever."


I think NPC is actually refering to "Nasopharyngeal Cancer". Nasopharyngeal Cancer seems to be one of the main health hazards associated with certain fairely commonly used woods. I forget the all the major woods associated with it, but I believe it has been mentioned in assocition with douglas fir, some types of oak, possibly certain types of pine, etc.

On this website, there is a "Toxic Woods Chart". If you scroll diwn the pdf, and look st the far right column, some of the woods have "nasal cancer" listed. The species with nasal cancer listed include some types of cypress and cedar. Most wood sold in the USA as "cedar", is actually a species if cypress.

http://www.mountainwoodworker.com/articles/toxic_woods.pdf

That makes a lot more sense.  I couldn't figure out the connection between the inability to process cholesterol and wood dust, but that's what I found when I Googled "NPC medical condition".  Just googling "NPC" doesn't even get you in the ballpark.

Offline Rip Van Winkle

  • Posts: 228
Re: Be Carefull What Material You Use and Were You Use It.
« Reply #14 on: December 05, 2016, 11:38 AM »
Why not just shellac the piece and be done with it. Even if it cost 25,000.00(heck even 100,000.00) to get it sealed that seems to me to make more sense. Instead of a loss they would have an asset. I am betting anything there is more to the story and it's political. Someone didn't like the thing or was trying to make a point of the money spent being wasteful. There are numerous ways I can think to eliminate the dust emanating from it that cost far less than the 1.1 million dollar loss they took. Simply put someone at the top wanted it gone, if some at the top wanted it fixed it would have been.

The GSA purchased the sculpture as a piece of art. They might be able to get away with carefully brushing the surface off, and gently vacuuming the surface with an ULPA vacuum, but refinishing the piece, even with just a clear coat of some kind might be considered as "damaging" or "vandalizing" the sculpture, inless the artist approved of the new finish.

Another issue might be the wood itself. I believe Cedar actually "off-gases" in some way over time, and I'm not sure simply coating the wood would completely prevent the problem, and once workers had already gotten sick, even a much smaller amount if the cedar smell might continue to cause allergic reactions.

Offline Svar

  • Posts: 866
Re: Be Carefull What Material You Use and Were You Use It.
« Reply #15 on: December 05, 2016, 12:28 PM »
The GSA purchased the sculpture as a piece of art. They might be able to get away with carefully brushing the surface off, and gently vacuuming the surface with an ULPA vacuum, but refinishing the piece, even with just a clear coat of some kind might be considered as "damaging" or "vandalizing" the sculpture, inless the artist approved of the new finish.
If I was the artist whose work made people sick, not only would I give my permission, but I'd clear coat it myself (or do whatever to make it safe) free of charge.

Offline Untidy Shop

  • Posts: 2493
Re: Be Carefull What Material You Use and Were You Use It.
« Reply #16 on: December 05, 2016, 07:47 PM »
Why are tax dollars for crap like this?


http://www.nasaa-arts.org/Research/Key-Topics/Creative-Economic-Development/Facts-&-Figures-on-the-Creative-Economy.php
In 2012, the production of arts and cultural goods added more than $698 billion to the U.S. economy. This amounted to 4.32% of GDP.

I liked this sculpture and believe in the merits of public art as a source of individual and community enrichment. Even from an economic view point the arts represent significant proportions of the economy in many countries. Indeed some FOG members might be best described as timber based artists and artisans.

It is most unfortunate that the outcome in this case was, to say the least, undesirable.

As to the case for public art -
https://dirt.asla.org/2012/10/15/why-public-art-is-important/
http://www.forbes.com/2009/05/05/state-of-the-city-opinions-george-rickey-public-art.html
http://www.lboro.ac.uk/research/our-research/case-studies/maximisingthesocialandculturalbenefitsofpublicart/

The economic contributions of the arts/public art -
http://www.pps.org/blog/how-art-economically-benefits-cities/
http://theconversation.com/why-art-and-culture-contribute-more-to-an-economy-than-growth-and-jobs-52224
http://www.citylab.com/design/2012/05/financial-case-public-art/2113/

In the rural area in which I live, farming and related infrastructure industries and services are still significant. The vagrancies of farming can be stressful but the rate of rural suicide has significantly reduced in the past ten years. One reason is the emergence of arts based Festivals, community based town refurbishment and public arts programs and artisan/farmers markets.

Whilst most of this financially now self generates, there has been government underwriting through public arts grants and suicide prevention programs.

As a result, and together with food and wine based production, other industries that link with the arts such as brewery and wine/galleries, a world renowned chef and timber based and other artisans and artists have moved into the area.




« Last Edit: December 05, 2016, 08:16 PM by Untidy Shop »
If you don't like Signatures, just go to Look and Layout and tick No Signatures.

“The test of the machine is the satisfaction it gives you. There isn't any other test. If the machine produces tranquility it's right. If it disturbs you it's wrong until either the machine or your mind is changed.”
― Robert M. Pirsig, Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance: An Inquiry Into Values