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Old 05-29-2001, 09:14 AM
Catcher Catcher is offline
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Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: Kalamazoo, MI
Posts: 166
Home-made exhaust

Welding will always give you fumes. Sometimes it's un-avoidable to weld galvanized or heavy metals such as stainless etc. which make the toxiticy of these fumes even worse.
I've been looking at commercial fume-exhausters for a while and couldn't really find anything I thought was worth the mega-bucks they were asking for them.
Looking around the shop I saw an old 'duct-fan' (new ~$ 25.-). I bought 2 lengths of aluminum flexhose, 8", like the fan (~$ 20), and put one on each end.
Everyone has a bunch of electrical cords, cut the female end to wire it into a switch and the fan. I also found an old (no clue what you call these things) 'adaptor' from round duct to baseboard-vent rectangle thingy for about $5.-.
Now, the door can stay closed, your shielding gas stays where it belongs, the 'nozzle' end is held in close proximity to the work with magnets and the other end goes out the door, along with the fumes.
If you buy the right type hose (not the stiff one, the oversize clothes-dryer style - several layers of aluminum with nylon layers inbetween for strength, it's very flexible and nimble) the whole assembly will collapse to almost the size of the fan easily when not used.
Something to try on a rainy day.
If it ain't broke you aren't trying hard enough
Old 05-30-2001, 08:23 PM
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75 75 is offline
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Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: Orillia On (Canada)
Posts: 992
Good idea! Now why didn't I think of that................

I know! It's too late to help me - been breathing too much of that "hard surfacing" smoke doing buildup on the crusher lately...................................
Old 06-08-2001, 10:34 PM
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75 75 is offline
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Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: Orillia On (Canada)
Posts: 992
Further on the topic of ventilation: Catcher's described a good way to keep your shop ventilated. I've been working in a customer's heavy-equipment repair shop this week and they have the big (expensive! ) "smog-hog" units which are basically the same idea, just a lot bigger.

Many times I find myself working on projects out in the field such as the aforementioned crusher hard-surfacing and also repair welding on concrete mixer trucks - always INSIDE the drum! In these cases, a fume extractor is not readily available.

As long as the air is circulating, the smoke & fumes will move along with it. To get the air moving, one of the plain old-fashioned "box fans" works well. Ideally, you want it drawing air away from your work area, preferably UP and away. If I'm working in one of those mixer trucks, the fan will be set up at the top rear of the truck, above the fill chute, "pulling" the air out of the drum. This takes any of my smoke up and out of the way, and fresh air is drawn in through the access hatch. (Since any time I'm working on a "field welding" job like this I'm using stick, I don't need to worry about the shielding gas)

Wire, bungee cords, rope or just about anything you can think of can be used to hold the fan in place. And since those "box fans" are pretty inexpensive, dedicating one to welding service only isn't too much of a financial burden!

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