Inline fan AND filter?

I posted this on the FB group as well… apologies to those in both groups…

About to install inline fan today. No question it’s the thing to do. (Edit: 6" version) Planning to add a “Y” for the compact filter. Only reason I got the filter was for leather and acrylic, which both stink. The question is, with the inline fan, do I even need the filter at all? I’ve read good things about both items, but not about either or… (I’ve read, of course, that the filter is hella expensive to use often.)

I will have a fairly short run, about 2 feet to the inline fan and then elbow out of the house immediately after the fan. (The Y would go in that 2 feet before the fan, and the filter would be less than 2 foot away from that on the floor. About 3-4 feet total to the filter, or out the exhaust port.)
And to be clear, I wouldn’t be running them at the same time. Filter only for acrylic and leather.

Any leather and acrylics forgers out there with the inline fan? Is it gettin’ the stink out well enough?

What say you all?

Did you get a 4" or 6" fan? Several folks have reported perfect results with the lower CFM of the 4" variety, but I found that I needed the bump to improve smoke evacuation.

If you’re well-sealed in the positive pressure segments leading outside you should get great results. Just leave the machine’s fan off and the inline fan on constantly. Give it a few extra seconds to clear out the smell before you open the lid.


Thanks. I did go with the 6" fan, from all of the posts as you mentioned. I’m leaning towards no filter. Just want to get a feel from the community at large.

If you’re venting outside, no filter is needed. Technically, no inline fan is, either, but many prefer the noise reduction using one instead of the internal exhaust fan.


Understood. I’ve had a GF for over 2 years. Just now getting the inline fan set-up. Been venting outside the entire time with no real problems with most smells.

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Inline fan works great, it’s all about making it air-tight. Have a roll of aluminum tape and seal every joint; you’ll be good.

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Well… Thanks everyone!

I opted to not include the filter in the system. (Figured I COULD add it later, if I really wanted to.)

Jarvis seems very happy with his new set of lungs. I know I am! The fan is a little louder than I thought it would be, but still about a quarter as loud as the internal. Amazing difference. Very weird to suddenly hear all of the whirring from the head movement.

Only one cut so far (it’s getting late) but I am STOKED. I’ll test with leather later this week and report back again.


With all due respect, that only applies “downstream” - on the exhaust side.

On the inlet side, you don’t need a perfect seal.

I’ve run a 35’ exhaust duct with a 4" vivosun fan for 2 years, didn’t use any tape, just clamps. Had no smoke or odor.

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No doubt. My inline fan is actually really close to the Forge so the majority of the length is downstream. Tape upstream certainly can’t hurt, of course; you want it pulling air from the forge as much as possible; but even if there are some gaps the air’s going in, so the smell’s controlled. And hey, tape’s cheap. :smile:

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I did have a small hole up stream at a seam… tape was required because it whistled. :wink:

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Hello! I just got my Glowforge a couple months ago so am still figuring things out. I was wondering- with the inline fan, do you shut off the Glowforge fan or can you run both at the same time (venting outside). Thanks for the help!

I suppose you COULD… but there’s no reason to run them both. It’d be even louder. You turn off the internal fan using the user interface… “compact filter attached” and that turns it off automatically.

I ran both for two years.

Thanks for the reply. My husband and I got the inline but I didn’t know what configuration was best. I think we will try it with and without the Glowforge (depending on material) and see what works best.

Thanks! Good to know that is an option!

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