Making a small charcoal filter for craft shows?

Hey guys, so I’ve been thinking about bringing my laser to craft shows starting this fall. I would like to have a bunch of keychain blanks pre-made and then just score around peoples hand drawings with a light score. It will produce almost no smoke at all but would still like to filter it. I was thinking about making a small attachment to put on the back vent. Basically a container that has a couple cloth filters with activated charcoal between the cloth filters and clamp it onto the back vent. Just enough to filter out the smoke. Any reason why this wouldn’t work? How much air obstruction can the fans take? Sorry I know it’s a little bit vague but just spitballing here trying to come up with a solution that won’t involve buying and lugging around a thousand dollar filter. :joy:

This reminds me of the cheap, fast, and high quality problem. You can pick two.

In this case I think it’s cheap, portable, works well.

i would think at a minimum you would need an inline fan to make up for the air obstruction. i don’t think the internal fans can handle that much (based on what i’ve seen in my own machine with any obstruction).

that said, have you tested exactly how much smoke it would generate to score around people’s hand drawings? it may still be more than you expect, especially in an enclosed area.

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Thanks guys!! Basically what I was thinking too. Think I might still give it a shot and see what happens.

Vivosun has both filters and inline fans that cannot handle huge volumes but could do as you want.


iPower 4 Inch 190 CFM Duct Inline Fan with 4" Carbon Filter 8 Feet Ducting Combo for Grow Tent Ventilation

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There’s another thread or two about taking your GF to craft shows/events–please read that as lots of good tips on to dos & avoids, apart from the actual filter construction.

Key is make sure the show organizers for where you’re going knows what you’re bringing, that there is actually power available (not all events provide power, or require you to order a drop), know whether wifi is provided (and it’s good enough to support the GF GFUI AND all the sales transactions) or plan to have your own hot spot, and be considerate of other vendors who can’t leave the area near you for noise/exhaust!

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I’ve done cheap & fast for your exact use case multiple times both indoor & outdoors. I take the hose and toss it into a big Rubbermaid tote. It’s a short hose run (couple/three feet). In the tote I toss a crumpled up older cloth tablecloth I’ve used as a table covering to fill up the tote. I haven’t needed to use another inline fan.

I cut at home a lot of things like luggage tags, earbud holders, etc. I have people make their drawing on a piece of paper that I put in with the item to be engraved. Then I do a scan, drag it over the tag and engrave. I have a large monitor so folks can see what I’m doing in the GFUI and then they can look in the GF to watch the magic. :slightly_smiling_face:

Would anybody in Canada really notice the smell of a campfire :canada::fire:?

Also, anodized aluminum key chains.

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ooh, or little tiny 1-2" tiles to engrave (and then they can use marker/magic eraser to color them). zero odor. i wish i’d thought of this before maker faire.

damn. even more thinking about how this would have been better for MF. no preprepping things. just buy a couple of big sheets of 2" square/hex tiles, engrave, hand over and then the kids get a little hand work to color them.


That’s a great idea. I may use it for my next one.

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