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Welcome to IFI!

You might want to try some kind of infrared-blocking safety glasses. Some people will wear a shade 3 pair of welding goggles or face shield.

Also, don't stare at the fire!

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I had cataract surgery last year in both eyes.  During the exam process, I asked my ophthalmologist who would be doing the surgery, if it was true that the IR from forging could contribute to cataracts forming...."most definitely, it's a fact that IR contributes to cataract formation."  When I mentioned that I did hobby/amateur blacksmithing, he said that if it wasn't the primary cause of my cataracts, it probably accelerated the formation.  As others pointed out...get some IR glasses.

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Get some IR glasses.  Start by looking at the welding supplier.

Practice NOT looking into the fire all the time, Only look for brief periods, glances, to see what you need to see, then look away.

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Many polycarbonate safety glasses will block UV rays. When I was working outdoors I would get rather comical tan lines from them. They do not, however, block IR. The heat from a forge does not put out any UV light as far as I'm aware..

You'll need tinted lenses (they come in various shades) to block IR. 

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Yes forges put out IR producing what are better known as "glass blowers cataracts".  This is also put out by oxy-acetylene welding. Arc welding puts out UV  which damages MUCH faster, (shorter wavelength == higher energy).  So don't think that UV protection will help with IR!

Also what about a deeper fire with more "covering" coal on top?   

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UV is at the other ends of the light spectrum from IR.   Just using a simple TINTED pair will not block IR, in fact they cause the iris to open further allowing more IR into the eye, dont mess with your eye site, you only have 2 eyes and forging by the braille method isnt fun I hear

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4 hours ago, alderhardtironworks said:

I just bought 3M™ Virtua™ Clear Anti-Fog Lens & Clear Frame Safety Glasses it lists thet thay ubsorb uv rays

Sorry to inform you, but those won't help a bit in filtering the IR from forging...wrong kind of filtering.  Wasted your money there...unless you are welding, then you need to see what the filtering percentage for UV is.  You apparently didn't read the thread suggested or heed the information provided you earlier in this thread regarding what kind of filtering you need for IR and forging....

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They're clear so I wouldn't weld with them either! Even they block 100% of UV there is IR radiation coming off the arc, not to mention the intense visible light that would be enough to blind you temporarily on it's own.

In the same breath, I don't consider safety glasses to be a waste of money. You can never have too many pairs laying around.

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3 hours ago, Frazer said:

The heat from a forge does not put out any UV light as far as I'm aware..

A hot forge does also emit UV. Since the coals are effectively black body radiators, a significant portion of the energy radiated from a white hot coal is in the UV range. The hotter the radiating object, the shorter wavelength light is emitted.

Polycarbonate very effectively blocks UV, but does not significantly block most wavelengths in the IR range.

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Safety glasses are a consumable item.  They get impacted, scratched, and damaged while in use and need replaced from time to time.  Keep them clean as part of your daily routine.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Yes.  My eyeglasses are safety glasses. Actually of much better material than run of the mill OSHA approved safety glasses.  I only need to wear the side shields, which I purchase in bulk.   I do need to get new ones though, because I've had them for nearly 20 years, and I'm certian that the prescription has changed.

  My boss asked me one day if I had safety glasses. I told him I was wearing them. He told me that they were not safety glasses. I took them off, laid them down, and shot them with a framing gun, at point blank range.  The nail knocked them off the table, but the lens survived without a scratch.  Then I took his "safety glasses" and did the same thing. The nail went completely through the lens.   Big difference between $15 OSHA approved safety glasses, and $600 eyeglasses custom ordered to be safety glasses. 

Anyway, they don't block much IR radiation.

 

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I wear my polycarbonate trifoculs with side shields all the time. I asked about Trivex when I got my latest pair but insurance doesn't cover Trivex and BOY are they spendy! I'll have to ask about IR coatings next time I'm in to the eye doc.

I don't stare at the forge though I keep an eye on it. Long LONG habit.

Frosty The Lucky.

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Back when I worked for Bell Labs you had to get supervisory approval for "safety prescription glasses"; my supervisor would sign off on them telling me---you don't need them sitting at a monitor at work; but they are cheap compared to you missing work from not having them at home!

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