Thread: Shaving Cream

  1. #1
    Medfire7 Guest

    Question Shaving Cream

    In the Oct issue of Firehouse you have "Cuts with shaving cream if necessary" under the battery access section of University of Extrication. What does this refer too?...Thanks M.FF. K.O. Dempsey

  2. #2
    S. Cook Guest


    The theory is that shaving cream acts as a lubricant and contains the slivers of metal and/or glass, keeping it from flying into the pt. compartment or your eyes (but you should be wearing your handy-dandy safety glasses).

    Spray a line of shaving cream and cut right down the middle of it.

  3. #3
    MetalMedic Guest


    Got an extrication drill tomorrow night... picked up a can of shaving cream to see how well it accomplished this task. I'll let you all know what my opinion is after we try it.

    Richard Nester
    Orrville (OH) Fire Dept.

  4. #4
    Carl Avery Guest


    Do Keep us posted as to what you find, I Know that Ron Moore is into this, But always interested in hear what people find out when they EXPERIMENT

    Carl D. Avery

  5. #5
    rmoore Guest


    Two tips for use of shaving cream that I have found thus far.

    1) As you apply a bead of cream to the INSIDE of the windshield, go slow enough and hold the nozzle close enough so you get a relatively wide line of the foamy stuff on the glass. This gives you a better line to follow as you cut right along the center of it with your saw.

    2) I've had the best luck with Gilette FOAMY brand shaving creme. Their 'Regular' is what I am experimenting with. 'Menthol' is acceptable too if you want to smell good as you rip the car apart.

  6. #6
    rmoore Guest


    Another application for shaving creme at vehicle crashes is to minimize the chance of ignition of battery vapors when cutting or disconnecting cables.

    If there is a load on the battery when you either cut or disconnect the cables, you WILL get an arc or 'spark' for just an instant. If flammable vapors are present where the spark occurs and they are in sufficient concentration to be within their flammable range, an explosion and fire may occur.

    Just like when you use foam to blanket a flammable liquid fire, you can use shaving cream at the battery.

    Let's say you are going to cut a battery cable. Place the cutting tool over or around the cable and hold it steady. Now 'foam' the cable and the tool, making a big gob of shaving cream that completely surrounds the tool. Then cut the cable under this protective cover of foam.

    You have not eliminated the arc from occurring. That will happen. What you have done is separate the explosive vapors from the source of ignition.

    In addition, shutting down and/or turning off electrical appliances (headlights, radio, heater, AC fan, etc) on the damaged vehicle prior to cutting or disconnecting the cable will reduce and minimize the intensity of the arc when it does occur. You can also cut the battery cables as far from the battery as possible. Distance from the battery is a good thing here.

    Be safe and think safe. Battery shutdown is something we do to make things better for everyone. There is an inherent risk however with this assignment, one that is a necessary 'evil' of our job.

    We can't eliminate all the hazards present at a crash scene. We can simply minimize our risks.

  7. #7
    MetalMedic Guest

    Thumbs up

    Well,, we had the drill before I saw Mr. Moore's explaination to put the foam on the INSIDE of the window. I have to wonder how difficult it would be to work inside the car across the dashboard with a victim trapped in there?

    Anyway, we did use "Colgate" (it was on sale) shaving cream on the outside of the windshield with good results. We sprayed one half of our cut with the shaving cream and left the other half without. We then made our cuts with a GlassMaster. There was a marked reduction in the glass dust on the shaving cream side. Enough so that I beleive we will make this a standard operating procedure. For less than a dollar a can, it sure seemed to make a difference.

    I also experimented with using the shaving cream as a lubricant for our DeWalt Saw while cutting the "A" post. From what I could tell, it did not make much difference once the blade heated up, it just broke down the foam. It may have caught metal shavings, but it was too dark to really tell.

    Richard Nester
    Orrville (OH) Fire Dept.

  8. #8
    Jim Greene Guest


    Back when Ron brought this new tech out , I just had to try it. Well , I was suprised that it work very well. I also tried the foamy style and found very little if any glass slivers coming through the line of foam. We tried saw-zall , air chisel & biel tool. It was very successfull.
    I have to say I don't know about a Geo with 2 pts trapped and a F/F trying to put a line of Foamy across the inside of the windshield may a little difficult.
    But if they're cute then I guess I'll bring out the good smelling stuff.

    Jim Greene

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