Aluminum Bronze

Now in Stock: CS Unitec Non-Sparking Tools

by Andy on February 8, 2013

CS Unitec Non-Sparking ToolsWe are happy to announce that we are now stocking select CS Unitec non-sparking tools! We just received a shipment of non-sparking hammers, wrenches, scrapers, shovels, and prying tools to keep in our on-site warehouse. Make sure to check out our site for our full offering!

Have any questions on how non-sparking tools work? In December we wrote a few articles on the basics of non-sparking tools. Check out our introductory blog article, as well as our explanation of Ex zones, our comparison of AlBr vs. CuBe2, and our article on proper use and maintenance. If you still have questions about non-sparking tools then always feel free to leave comments on our posts, and we will get back to you as soon as possible.

Also, don’t forget to keep an eye on our blog for more information on new products at All-Spec Industries. Our Product Development department is working hard to bring you the latest and greatest products for electronic production, service, repair, and testing!

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CS Unitec Non-Sparking Putty/Hand Scraper KnifeTwo popular types of non-sparking tools are Aluminum-Bronze (AlBr) and Copper-Beryllium (CuBe2), but it may be hard to figure out which one you need. Both are labeled as non-sparking, and to the uninitiated they seem like they would fill very similar roles. However, there are a few key differences to keep in mind when selecting which material you want to use.

One main difference between AlBr and CuBe2 is that they can be used in different Ex zones. AlBr can only be used in zones 1, 2, 21, and 22, while CuBe2 can be used in both, the zones mentioned and in zones 0 and 20. This means that if you are in the most dangerous Ex zones you need to use CuBe2. The added protection is reflected in the price, as CuBe2 tools tend to be more expensive than AlBr.

Even if you are not working in Ex zones 0 and 20, there are still reasons to get the CuBe2 over AlBr. CuBe2 can have a hardness rating of 33-45 HRC while AlBr is only 23-35 HRC, making CuBe2 more durable. If you are doing a lot of work or very heavy hitting then you may want CuBe2 tools so you do not have to replace them as often.

Also, CuBe2 is made of non-ferrous components, making it safe for critical non-magnetic applications. AlBr has low magnetism, so it can still be used in non-critical non-magnetic applications, but it could damage some products if they are too sensitive.

Do you have any more questions on non-sparking tools? Leave a comment below and we will add your question to next week’s blog where we will be talking about proper use and maintenance of non-sparking tools!

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Basics of Non-Sparking Tools: Ex Zones

by Andy on December 10, 2012

CS Unitec Non-Sparking Aluminum-Bronze EX1503 SocketWhen you look at non-sparking tools, the most important piece of information is where they can be used. The general method relies on the EU ATEX Directive 94/9/EC, which established a classification system for areas with combustible, flammable, or hazardous materials. There are two main sections to the Ex zone classifications that are laid out in the ATEX directive, one for gasses, mists, or vapors, and one for dusts.

In the gas, mist, or vapor categories there are zones 0, 1, and 2. Each zone refers to an area where flammable gasses, vapors, or mists are present. Zone 2 is the least dangerous, where any flammable gasses, vapors, or mists are unlikely to occur, and if they do they only persist for short periods. Zone 1 is if they occasionally occur in normal operation, and zone 0 is where they occur for long periods, either frequently or continuously.

The dust categories are very similar, but are numbered zones 20, 21, and 22. These refer to areas with combustible dusts, and the frequency of the dusts in zones 20, 21, and 22 match zones 0, 1, and 2 respectively.

Have any more questions on non-sparking tools? Leave a comment below! Also, be sure to come back next Monday for another article on non-sparking tools.

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