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- Before connecting air or steam hoses, check the outside of the hose to be sure it is in good, usable condition.
- Blow air or steam through the hose to be sure no dirt or debris is clogging the inside.
- Never use an air hose to carry steam! Steam will melt the air hose. Take off all protective tape from the openings of the hammer cylinder.
- If the openings were not covered, check them to be sure they are clean. It is very important to keep hoses, couplings and openings free of dirt and debris. Doing this will add to the life and safety of the hammer.
- Air and steam hoses must be safely secured. If they are not, or if they come apart during use, the hoses will whip wildly over a great distance. This can be extremely dangerous and can cause substantial injuries to personnel and property. To lower the risks, all hoses and couplings should be checked at the beginning of each shift and after the driving of each pile.
- All hoses must be secured by a heavy chain or wire rope (refer to O.S.H.A. Standards 1926.251) attached to an anchor point on the hammer with a shackle, in a way that will support the weight of the hose at the coupling and help stop the jolting motions which happen during operation.
- There are several good ways of securing hoses:
- Figure 1 shows the method of running a chain or wire rope from the air/steam inlet extension (A) to the cylinder head bolts at the top of the hammer (6) and securing the air/steam coupling (C) with a separate chain or wire rope.
- Figure 2 shows the airisteam inlet extension (D) being connected to the lug (E) just above the air/steam inlet, which appears on some hammers, by a chain or wire rope and securing the air/steam coupling (F) with a separate chain or wire rope.
- Figure 3 shows the airlsteam coupling (G)a ttached directly to the air/steam inlet, without the use of an extension, and secured to lug (H) with a chain or wire rope.
Note: much of the information in this tip is taken from Vulcan's User's Guide to Safe Operation, which is featured in the Vulcanhammer.info Guide to Pile Driving Equipment.