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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
For those who think the warnings about BLO spontaneously combusting are just myths, well.. I took the day off Friday, my wife wanted me to build a new Microwave stand, so I did, I finished it with BLO (also used some Alumnahyde II and Cold Blue..) Usually when I finish a stock I do it in the basement and leave the rags on the floor overnight, but I had to finish the stand in place in the kitchen, so I just put them in the garbage tote...

Well my Father in law did some yard cleanup for me (without me asking) and dropped some leaves and such on top of the rags.

This was the result:








The Shelf:
 

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I learned it the hard way , I was redoing a stock for my dad's shotgun when I was in my teens. Got done in the basement and threw the rags in the garbage can in the kitchen. That night after smelling smoke we all scrambled. All most burned the house down. I think the only reason I didn't get beat was because it was for his shotgun.GI1
 

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In the steam age and beyond, the danger of oily rags was well understood. I had it pounded into me all through school, whenever fire safety came up. Nowadays, nobody gets oily except for, as seen here, craftsmen.
 

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The last fire I saw that started that way was in the Mohave County Fire Station in Dolan Springs, AZ. The "firemen" polished a bunch of their stuff and threw all the rags into the trash...
 

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Polymerization is exothermic. You proved that to all of us. Thanks.

Once the oil is polymerized the fire hazard no longer exists. I set my BLO rags out on the lawn for a day or so and then trash them. The water vapor together with drying avoids any fire potential.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
I always 'knew' it was a risk, and I would typically let them dry overnight separated on the basement floor and toss them out the next day. Nothing has ever gotten close to happening, so you get complacent one time and well..... At least it was outside and not in the basement trash can....
 

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Probably wouldn't have combusted without the compression and insulation from the leaf litter. It both reduced the area and provided fuel.
 
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Quite a few of them at one time, before the boating accident.
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Yep ... I've seen the rags ignite before as well.
 

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If you read the instructions on the can, you would have known.
Try a shop rag coated with it and crumple and compress it very tight, throw it on the ground. In not too much elapsed time it will smoke than burst into flames.
Don't try this at home and only by trained professionals.
 

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Probably wouldn't have combusted without the compression and insulation from the leaf litter. It both reduced the area and provided fuel.
Not true, you don't need leaf litter in there for it to combust, I watched it happen before. We use BLO on all our fire fighting tools at the airbase and watched those rags combust in a can and in a pile.
 
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