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Preamble When working in industrial areas a person’s hands will be subjected to great risks. The hands are the workers’ original tools and therefore have to be protected carefully against mechanical, chemical, thermal and electrical hazards. With industry’s increasingly complex and sensitive manufacturing and handling processes, there is a growing insistence on the use of job-fitted gloves that meet each of the users’ specific requirements. Type, style and material of handwear have to be chosen with regard to the intended application. CAUTION: Hand protection must not be used while working on rotating machine parts (i.e. drilling machines, milling machines, turning lathes, automatic cutter, grinders etc.) because there is danger of getting caught in the machine. The following types of protective handwear are available: ➤ Mittens ➤ Three Finger Gloves ➤ Five Finger Gloves Whereas mittens and three finger gloves are used for rough works where sense of touch is not necessary, five finger gloves have widely gained acceptance in today’s industry. Five finger gloves are used when high mobility and an extra sense of touch are required. It is not possible to pull off these gloves fast in case of an emergency. As these gloves are very comfortable they are used in most areas of industry (i.e. assembly lines, repairs etc). Five finger gloves are made of leather, textile, rubber and plastics in various designs. Material Guide ➤ Leather (cowhide) ➣ Split leather ➣ Shagreen leather ➤ Natural Rubber ➤ Plastics ➤ Textile Fabrics ➤ Synthetic Fibres (Kevlar, Nomex, etc.) 1.0 Hand Protection Made of Leather Leather is preferred to other materials for works, where high resistance to mechanical and thermal hazards is required. The advantages of leather are ➤ Flexibility ➤ Air-Permeability ➤ Steam-Permeability Moisture, especially sweat, passes through the material and evaporates on the surface. Therefore the worker‘s hands stay dry, an increased wearing comfort is granted. 1.1 Split Leather Main Applications Welding, grinding and cutting operations Split leather has a rough, structured surface. This surface provides better resistance against cuts and sparks when compared to the smooth surface of shagreen leather. 1.2 Shagreen Leather Main Applications Wherever high dexterity and air-permeability is required, i.e. for driving. Shagreen leather has a smooth surface which provides the wearer with a better sense of touch than split leather. Furthermore it resists oil and greases better than split leather. Both types of leather can be especially impregnated in order to increase water impermeability or to provide better protection against oil and greases. Heat resistance can be achieved by means of covering the gloves with refractory or insulating material. This increases the heat resistance from 80° C for normal leather to up to 300° C for covered leather. 2.0 Hand Protection Made of Natural Rubber Main Applications Chemical protection, electrician‘s work, applications requiring high dexterity Rubber materials like natural latex or natural rubber are mainly used for applications where the skin should be protected against liquids or aggressive substances. This is achieved through rubber‘s impermeability to gases and liquids. As a result the wearing comfort is decreased because of higher perspiration. In order to avoid this we recommend to wear textile gloves under rubber gloves. A disadvantage of rubber is that the material is less resistant to oil, greases and solvents. Rubber gloves are also used for electrician‘s work because of their good insulating characteristics. Rubber gloves are seamless and, in connection with a textile insert, they are more resistant to cuts, snags and punctures. CAUTION: Natural rubber and natural latex lose their protective characteristics with age! 3.0 Hand Protection Made of Plastics Main Applications Chemical protection, cutting operations, food industry, rough mechanical applications Plastic as a material for gloves is used for applications, where the skin has to be protected against aggressive substances like acids, fuel, oil, greases, alkaline solutions, solvents etc. Plastic gloves are available in a seamless make. They are either made of one-piece dipped pure plastic or plastic covered textile fabric. The covering of the textile fabric can either be partial or complete, i.e. over the whole glove. Covered textile gloves are preferred to dipped gloves, whenever mechanical hazards, such as cuts, punctures or abrasions have to be dealt with. Plastic gloves are 70

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