Brian W Skellie interview on jewelry materials

Brian W Skellie (photo credit John Balk)

Piercing Wizard Podcast August 8 at 8:39 PM   215 – Brian Skellie on mill certificates and material verification. It was a privilege to speak at length about body jewelry materials safety with my colleague Ryan Ouellette of Precision Body Arts in Nashua NH. I welcome your questions and comments. Do you have a complete understanding of … Read more

Biomaterials and trustworthy sources

The Point 86 cover

Why materials from countries without strict quality control requirements are unacceptable for body jewelry Brian W Skellie,  APP Medical Director (published in issue 86 of The Point Journal of Body Piercing) Does it matter where a biomaterial we use comes from? Biomaterials made in the USA and in a short list of countries who maintain … Read more

Join me at the APP 23rd Annual Conference!

Join the Association and hundreds of piercers as we come together to celebrate the 23rd  Annual Conference and Exposition!  Our classrooms will once again fill with attendees from all over the world. Piercers, Studio Owners, Vendors, and Health Inspectors will all come together for a week of education and peer-to-peer sharing. Learn the core requirements … Read more

Rose gold included in APP Minimum Standards for Jewelry for Initial Piercings

A rose by any other name… The APP Jewelry Standards for jewelry for initial or healing piercings were revised 04/04/2017 to include rose gold.  Body piercing jewelry should be biocompatible and safe for prolonged contact with skin and mucous membranes. The APP continues to revise their body jewelry standards for initial and healed piercings as … Read more

Fantasy and Science Fiction: ‘Kiosk’ by Bruce Sterling | Beyond the Beyond | WIRED

The Fabrikator by Bruce Sterling

THE FABRIKATOR WAS UGLY, noisy, a fire hazard, and it smelled. Borislav got it for the kids in the neighborhood.

One snowy morning, in his work gloves, long coat, and fur hat, he loudly power-sawed through the wall of his kiosk. He duct-taped and stapled the fabrikator into place.

The neighborhood kids caught on instantly. His new venture was a big hit.

The fabrikator made little plastic toys from 3-D computer models. After a week, the fab’s dirt-cheap toys literally turned into dirt. The fabbed toys just crumbled away, into a waxy, non-toxic substance that the smaller kids tended to chew.

Borislav had naturally figured that the brief lifetime of these toys might discourage the kids from buying them. This just wasn’t so. This wasn’t a bug: this was a feature. Every day after school, an eager gang of kids clustered around Borislav’s green kiosk. They slapped down their tinny pocket change with mittened hands. Then they exulted, quarreled, and sometimes even punched each other over the shining fab-cards.

The happy kid would stick the fab-card (adorned with some glossily fraudulent pic of the toy) into the fabrikator’s slot. After a hot, deeply exciting moment of hissing, spraying, and stinking, the fab would burp up a freshly minted dinosaur, baby doll, or toy fireman.

Foot traffic always brought foot traffic. The grownups slowed as they crunched the snowy street. They cast an eye at the many temptations ranked behind Borislav’s windows. Then they would impulse-buy. A football scarf, maybe. A pack of tissues for a sneezy nose.

Once again he was ahead of the game: the only kiosk in town with a fabrikator….

via Fantasy and Science Fiction: ‘Kiosk’ by Bruce Sterling | Beyond the Beyond | WIRED.

The Fabrikator by Bruce Sterling

11 Things You Should Know About Piercings

“This article presented some sound information, but there’s still much more to know. When piercings are performed by a trained professional using sterile equipment and high quality jewelry, and appropriate aftercare is followed, the risks are drastically minimized.” — Elayne Angel, APP President

ASTM F136 revision

One of the most commonly used materials for body jewelry, the ASTM F136 – Standard Specification for Wrought Titanium-6Aluminum-4Vanadium ELI (Extra Low Interstitial) Alloy for Surgical Implant Applications (UNS R56401) has been revised to F136-13 developed by Committee F04.12, ASTM BOS Volume13.01.

The new version changes are in section 9. Special Requirements

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Safe steel for body jewelry?

A forum participant asked:

please discuss 316l and implant grade 316lvm grade stainless steel

They added a link to an essay titled
Body Jewelry Materials. Understanding Implant Grade Surgical Steel

The easy answer:

Neither are surgical implant materials. These are engineering specifications.
*AISI and SAE do not establish standards for biocompatibility.

me+.lMore detail: ASTM ? ANSI ? ISO ?

One thing to know is that ISO and ASTM are both international organizations for standards, but ISO is restricted to members of national standards bodies such as ANSI. Individuals or companies cannot become ISO members.

ASTM members are comprised of representatives of both government and stakeholders in related business, such as me. I joined ASTM in the mid 1990’s to represent the needs and learn more about the responsibilities of the body piercing business, and have been able to attend conferences, contribute my research based evaluations and vote for standards that affect us as body artists.

ISO voting is done for the USA by ANSI. ASTM makes recommendations to ANSI. ANSI has typically voted in accordance with the recommendations of the ASTM.

ASTM F04 and ISO TC 150 have merged to facilitate the flow of information.

The 2013 update that my ASTM F04.12 committee just voted to approve for the most common steel alloy for surgical implant is also most the commonly used for body jewelry, F138.

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ASTM F138-13a specifies chemical, mechanical and metallurgical refinements for 316 series steel alloys for surgical implant. It doesn’t really matter if the material is 316L, 316LVM, etc. The material is only acceptable for body jewelry when specified for human surgical implant and validated for this purpose to a peer reviewed scientific standard such as ASTM or ISO provides. AISI/SAE

As an aside: I don’t personally use steel alloy jewelry for initial piercings. I prefer pure unalloyed metals or simpler alloys with a greater margin of safety and less reactivity in the body.

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