Some applications require more protection, demanding the strongest, toughest, and most resilient safety gloves to handle extreme occupational hazards. This was the case for CADWELDing, a type of exothermic welding that requires extreme heat. Read how this utility company calls HexArmor’s HeatArmor® 5050 glove one of the best they’ve ever used.
The CADWELD process is a method of making electrical connections of copper-to-copper or copper-to-steel in which no outside source of heat or power is required. In this process, conductors are prepared, placed in a purpose-designed graphite mold, and exothermically welded to produce a permanent electrical connection, called a “shot.” This process is extremely dangerous, with temperatures reaching as high as 1500°F inside the mold, which typically forces the welder to let the parts and gloves cool off for 5 to 15 minutes every hour before resuming the weld.
This ends up being a costly process, not only in time wasted in order to let the units cool but because of the hourly cost to do so. In addition to the extreme temperatures, this process also requires the use of handheld tools, so dexterity is important.
The utility company had done glove trials with other brands and found that many leather glove options would get really hot (even from a distance) and would then melt, crack, and/or stiffen instantly on contact, leading to a huge loss in protection and dexterity.
Because of previous success with other glove solutions, HexArmor® was called in to help.
The solution and result
After the initial conversation, the HexArmor® representative recommended the HeatArmor® 5050 glove with HeatHide® technology – an all-new glove option created specifically for high-heat and tough operations. After just one use, the welders saw a drastic improvement: they were able to finish the complete weld without stopping to let the mold and glove cool.
After a few months, results were even more dramatic with the 5050 outlasting their previous welding glove 10:1… and more! Whereas other glove brands would only last for approximately 10 molds before they had to be discarded, the 5050 was used to handle more than 100 molds, with little to no visible damage, and wasn’t done yet (see images bottom right).
This site was normally doing approximately 200 “shots” per day (other sites range from 100-300, depending on the size of the project), with two to three people working on each mold. Because of the no-wait time to cool with the 5050, the glove saved about five minutes of time per shot per person.
To put this into cost savings, that’s $850 of savings on this site per day just in labor alone. Plus, the extra time allows for more shots per day, upping productivity. Here’s the math:
(5 minutes/shot x 200 shots) = about 17-hour savings
(2 people x $25/hour) = $50
(17 hours X $50) = $850 savings just in labor
Additionally, the welders were impressed with the comfort and dexterity of such a high-heat glove, as well as the excellent grip and extra protection.
“You can literally grab fire with the 5050,” says a quality control employee. “It’s extremely comfortable and durable, rejects heat amazingly, and maintains dexterity. The [welders] felt a lot safer with the 5050 not just because of the superb heat protection, but also with the cut and puncture protection.”
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