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Fresh Air System - Opinion Needed

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Canuck, Apr 3, 2013.

  1. Canuck
    Joined: Jan 4, 2002
    Posts: 1,065


    This one might bring up some controversy. We all know about the toxicity of modern automotive paint. Have done a little bit of painting with a carbon filter mask and doors open to insure a GOOD cross draft, but was never happy about doing it. As the plan is only the painting of one vehicle, the purchase of systems such as Hobby Air become quite expensive for a one shot use tool, so I looked for alternatives.

    Managed to score a half face mask and hose connector assembly at a garage sale. Brand new, never used. Tried it with my air compressor, adequate air, but concerned about oil etc in the air especially with my old compressor and adequate filtering is not cheap. Tried a small diaphragm compressor that Canadian Tire had on sale, figured clean air that way. Capacity was too low. The next experiment was with 50’ of RV 5/8 water hose adapted to the mask hose connector instead of the snap connector and a adapter on the end of a electric leaf blower. Didn’t know if it would work as the leaf blower has lots of volume but not much pressure. A test run with the blower on high speed resulted in adequate air volume at the mask, cool air and lots of noise. The low speed setting was not adequate. Under actual use the blower would not be in the shop, located outside in the fresh air, out of any area that it could pick up dust or dirt. The mask connector has a particle filter, so larger particles would not get through and anything smaller would be breathed normally anyhow. I think I have a fresh air system with minimal cost.

    I know a full mask or a hood is a better solution, but right now I only have the half-mask. I think this could be easily used on a full mask or hood as well.

    Any critique from those in the know is welcomed.


    Attached Files:

  2. s55mercury66
    Joined: Jul 6, 2009
    Posts: 3,980

    from SW Wyoming

    Back in the '80's, a friend converted a 1/2 mask charcoal canister respirator to a homemade fresh air system. He kept the check valves in it, and teed some shop vac hoses (new ones) to it. He hooked the hoses to the shop office, because it was air conditioned. I never tried it myself, but he said it worked pretty good. There was a big scare at the time from the early supplied-air systems that used compressed shop air. Supposedly people were dying from carbon monoxide poisoning due to oil being used in the shop compressors, so I'm glad to hear you gave up on that. I always wanted to try a SCUBA or SCBA setup, but never could afford one.
  3. willymakeit
    Joined: Apr 13, 2009
    Posts: 1,326


    We used to make one for foam and paint. Take a full brim hard hat, put a swivel fitting on top and connect hose to a small vacum[exhaust side] with a hepa filter in it ,set outside. The hard hat has a full veiw hood and a drape from hat to shoulders attached to it. Hokey but it worked since it was postive flow air. Down side if some one farts or puts aturd by the inlet it gets rank.
  4. Bugguts
    Joined: Aug 13, 2011
    Posts: 699


    Glad you gave up using air compressor air without the proper filtering. It is dangerous and could kill you. The leaf blower idea is interesting. I've painted for 30 years now and have isiosyanate poisoning. Have used a fresh air mask for many years now. Even a little whiff of fumes causes my throat to hurt, so be carefull. Everyone thinks we're gonna live forever.

  5. Canuck
    Joined: Jan 4, 2002
    Posts: 1,065


    A couple of other good ideas on home made fresh air systems.

    What is the opinion of those with years of experience on someone using systems like this? Any drawbacks that we should be watch for with these designs?

  6. I have a Hobby Air system (which I like) and I am pretty sure the "compressor" is nothing more than a vacuum cleaner type pump with an inlet filter. It is pretty noisy, but like was said it is outside when running. I would try it with a cleaned out vacuum cleaner. The mask regulates the pressure with air leaking out around it.
    My system has the half-mask. The hose is like a reinforced plastic water hose, and has just regular garden hose type connections, and a quick disconnect at the mask hose. It has a belt to attach the hose to, to pull the hose.

    Last edited: Apr 4, 2013
  7. oldrelics
    Joined: Apr 7, 2008
    Posts: 1,727

    from Calgary

    I just bought the Breath Cool system from Turbine products. Good heath is well worth the money. I'm scared poopless to spray those chems.

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