Perhaps a cure for a bad smoking habit

Here I was reading about everyone else that had smoke coming out of their machine and how they were supposed to clean out their exhaust outlet. So this evening I too was watching the smoke meandering about inside the machine and pouring out the lid so l went first to the exhaust system. Now just on a whim I had purchased a brush at Home Depot on a string of flexible fiberglass poles.

I had been more interested in the fiberglass poles at the time, so as it was just sitting there I ran it through the exhaust system and what came out looked more like gray cotton than ash or saw dust. Remembering how engrave leaves not a flat surface on wood but like a 3d print of the wood’s structure with often large fibers going in every direction that gives the wood strength and resiliency. Obviously cutting and engraving sends those fibers out long and thin and can build up quite a log jam. And that seems to be what happened so the entire hose looked like it had been stuffed with cotton so the increased back pressure was (and still is) inevitable when cutting a lot of wood, especially oak.


Can you link to a picture of what you’re talking about? I’m having trouble picturing a string of flexible fiberglass poles. (I’m planning to replace my hose as soon as the new one comes in, but I might need a brush that works.)

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The poles are like you see in those popup tents and the brush simple enough and 4" in diameter which is a handy size. The poles will make many bends if they are not to sharp and tied all together can reach about ten feet or so.


Here is a small wad of the “cotton”…


That brush doesn’t tear the foil?

It us not real stiff and thinking about it probably meant for a drill at the other end as that would also make the turns easier. It says it is specifically designed for dryer vents.

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Cool! I’ll look for one this weekend during the mandatory hardware run.

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I just ordered one off of Amazon the other day thinking it would be good to get into the GF fan area. It was the “Dust Daddy”. I saw a commercial for it earlier in the week and figured it was worth the $15. Supposed to come tomorrow. I’ve been running the forge hard the past couple days so it’s definitely going to be due for a good cleaning!


Is that really a product of engraving or did perhaps a neighbour stuff your vent to reduce the noise?

Very funny, but close inspection shows them to be straight wood fibers vs the curly ones of actual cotton or dryer lint.

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Weird. I thought the laser was supposed to burn or vaporise. How does it manage to release long fibres?

Have you cut any other fibrous material? I.e. something made up of loose fibres so that if you cut the ends they become free.

I would have just assumed a mouse decided to make the vent hose home one night from the outside. Built a nest out of cotton fibers and ran off once smoke invaded it’s space. Found a mouse nest that looked the same in my CNC dust hose yesterday out in the garage. But I’m not doubting @rbtdanforth 's thoughts. Can only go by a blurry picture.


Yeep! Didn’t think of a mouse. :neutral_face:

No mouse would have managed without a gas mask, as Puff has been puffing away and I’m sure the vent stank of burnt wood when he wasn’t. If you look carefully at your engraves you can see that those in wood are not perfectly level on the bottom, and you can see the grain running in two directions even when the engrave is not parallel to them. these are the tree’s transport system of food and water and resist the laser more than the surrounding cells. You can see it best in oak as they are bigger and more coarse than other woods but all wood has to have the mechanism and will differentially be burned.

After seeing the fibers, it became obvious they would be there, but I had not considered it before. In detail, it is very different from cotton as each fiber is perfectly straight, while cotton fibers never are.

This is as good as I can get atm

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Thanks for sharing your discovery. I’m moving this to the Beyond the Manual section so the discussion can continue there.

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