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Safety -- Make sure you are safe!

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  #1  
Old 2017-02-09, 4:08pm
NakedDogStudio NakedDogStudio is offline
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Question New exhaust idea, through the attic?

Hi! I have moved from Maryland to Virginia on the water, now my three season studio is no longer and its in the house. So, I dismantled my exhaust hood that had a Grainger fan, one of the super duper ones and didn't keep the wooden hood. Now my studio is connected to my home in what is referred to often as a "mother in-law suite". Truly its a bedroom, bath and den area at one end of my rancher home. I'm trying to figure out a new setup without this giant box hood over my head and have looked at many tutorials, so I am wanting to use flexible heat/fire (?) duct and a setup like Andrea Guarino-Slemmons. Late one night it dawned on me that I didn't have to drill a six inch hole through my siding to the outside and possibly.... I could run this exhaust up through my attic, which is totally floored but not heated or a/c, it breathes fresh air.

If I ran the duct 30 feet to the gable end of the house and put a exhaust vent with a one-way flapper (I forget the name of that ) so wind doesn't come in, it would be similar in theory to the bathroom exhaust fan that does the same. What's your opinion on this? Do you think this would be a good idea? I could put the grainger exhaust fan up in the attic right above my ceiling and torch table, run a switch down to the studio room to turn it on and off.

In addition, there is the issue of 'make up air' and so I'd need some how to figure that out. One idea is to run a very small duct from the opposite end of the attic to pull fresh air out of the attic and drop that duct down into the studio at my torch table, having it right nearby so the exhaust will draw the attic air and not my inside home heated/ac nice air. I have no idea where this make up air duct would sit as far as how close to the torch and torch exhaust duct.

I'm trying to be so safe, just thinking of possibilities that would not affect my home heat/ac and at the same time be able to do lampwork and metalsmith soldering etc.

Thanks to those that will read this and offer their thoughts, links, experience and guidance.

Ilene
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  #2  
Old 2017-02-10, 12:37am
snoopdog6502 snoopdog6502 is offline
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Sounds like a pretty good plan. Pooping the hot air out and bringing in fresh right close to the torch is The way to preserve your indoor climate control.

Im not sure how much fire power you have running but a 6 inch is pretty nominal. 8 or 10 inch will move more air.

I work borosilicate on a GTT Mirage so I lean towards a 12 inch minimum. I currently run a 1,600CFM 15 inch fan.
Im also not much on running ducting, my fan immediately shoots the dirty air outside.

Here is a video of my ventilation test with 3 smoke bombs.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zwWqj_HuDsg
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  #3  
Old 2017-02-10, 1:40am
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Speedslug Speedslug is offline
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Flexible ducting will reduce the amount of air that flows through it alot. It's like using smooth ducting that is much smaller in size.

And it gets worse the longer it the run of it is.

I would limit the use of the flexible stuff to only those places where you don't have any other choice.


My next thought is to run the exhaust through an outside wall somewhere be it the roof or an exterior wall in the attic. You don't want particulates settling on the inside of the attic.


Also keep the inlet for your makeup air at least 10 feet from the exhaust and run that from outside air too. Any suction you put on the air in the attic is most likely to pull air conditioned / heated air from your home and push it out your exhaust wasting money unless you leave a window open in the attic and that would allow rain in.
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Last edited by Speedslug; 2017-02-10 at 1:42am.
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  #4  
Old 2017-02-10, 11:17am
NakedDogStudio NakedDogStudio is offline
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My torch is a Scorpion, which I love
The attic has five gables, three have slatted vents in them to allow air to circulate. In addition, my eaves or soffits (I'm not sure what they are called) have air holes in them every two feet, the kind that are prepunched in the metal soffit siding stuff you put up there. The attic has three roof fans that come on in the hot temperatures to cool the attic by drawing outside air in. In the winter, there is wind 95% of the time coming off the Chesapeake Bay and hitting my house at an average speed of 15 - 35 mph. Occasionally we get a day of 5mph winds, but that is rare. There is no buffer between my house and the water, so the west side gets all the wind usually.

Having the makeup air ten feet from the exhaust would also pull the warm air from the room, should it be closer than that? Also, what can you do to limit the amount of temperature controlled air that leaves? Perhaps seal the entry door to the studio is all I can think of.

Thank you for the info on flexible duct resistance! There would be 30' distance from where the exhaust vent would go through the ceiling to reach a gable vent of its own. I think particulates would settle in the ductwork seeing it's such a long distance. What kinds of particulates and how dangerous and/or messy would that be? There only needs to be one part that is flexible and in fact that could be an elbow fitting or two 45 degree fittings to decrease resistance. I will not be moving the worktable.

Last edited by NakedDogStudio; 2017-02-10 at 11:29am.
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  #5  
Old 2017-02-10, 2:21pm
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The make up air part I was thinking of is where the make up air from out side (or in the attic in this case ) is drawn into the ducting to get it TO the work bench. The idea there is so that the exhaust air doesn't get looped back in a circle into the make up air intake.


As for the make air position I have seen it placed to one side of the torch or the other and even inserted in the table with a flush mounted grating like a floor register but that position can tend to swallow anything that slips out of your hand which sucks.


The sizing choice you make for the fan is what is supposed to keep the exhaust air moving fast enough that the particulates don't get a chance to settle in the ducting.
There are pages and pages of discussion about how fast is fast enough and how big the duct work has to be and how long is the maximum length for a given size and length.

If you are stuck with a minimum length of 30 feet you are going to want to go with very very fast fan power (large cfm flow) and with fast fan flow you will need to stay in the bigger diameter ductwork sizes.


The kinds of particulates we dealing with can be classified as hazardous if they accumulate which is why you want to keep them moving until they reach the open air where wind and rain can disperse and dilute them.

There was a big commotion last year when they figured out some of the major glass makers smoke stacks were allowing too much of the particulates to settle on the ground in the surrounding communities. Like to the point that one or two of them had to stop making glass altogether / go out of business bad. I think it was Portland OR.

The stuff that give glass its color and melting characteristics are things like cadmium, sliver, lead and a good dozen others that you really don't want anywhere near humans in any quantity. There are / were even some made with uranium at one time.

You don't want to have to have to hire a hazardous waste company to remove and find a place to dispose of this ductwork if it is contaminated once you are no longer lampworking and you are trying to sell the house so it is important to keep the exhaust air moving fast enough to not let the particulate settle in the duct work.



I know that a lot of folks don't go to all the trouble to make sure they are absolutely safe in every respect with melting glass but I thought you should at least know what your choices are and what they mean when its all said and done.

Just about every situation is going to be unique as is the budget and the individuals tolerance for details.

Good luck and keep asking questions.

A lot of us were educated by others and passing along the knowledge is what being a community is all about.
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Last edited by Speedslug; 2017-02-10 at 2:24pm.
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  #6  
Old 2017-02-12, 12:58pm
NakedDogStudio NakedDogStudio is offline
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The information you have all given is really appreciated. Sure seems to me the safest thing is the shortest route to get the air outside, so that means through the wall and that'll be ok, nothing to worry about then. The makeup air can actually come from a different side of the house because the studio is on the corner of the house. Lots of options for makeup air, certainly not anywhere near the exhaust fan.

Dealing with particulates and the length of duct needed for the attic ventilation is not in my best interest. I have learned alot, thank you!

Ilene
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Old 2017-02-12, 3:19pm
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If you spend the effort in designing the parts properly you can set up a vent through a window in a permanent / removable fashion.

I have my 'make up air' coming in by opening the window at the back of torch bench just a smidgeon and although I did put a hole in my wall to route my 8 inch exhaust duct through I could have set up a pass through at the top of the window with ducting mounted outside to get the ten foot distance I needed to separate the intake from the exhaust.


ETA: I had to shop around for something called an "8 inch blast gate" so I could shut off the exhaust duct line to the outside so the house air doesn't pour out when I am not running my torch.

It's kind of like a guillotine and if you use gravity to close it you'll need a pulley system above it.
I didn't trust it to work on its side without jamming or wearing out.

I used a long length of braided picture hanger wire with a magnet tied to other end and just move the magnet closer or further away to open and close it. I have a metal hood so I have lots of places to stick it to.
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Last edited by Speedslug; 2017-02-12 at 3:37pm.
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