Venting the GF to the outside world


Started thinking about something. Getting a Pro with the filter system addresses a lot of the problems of various substances released during lasering. But sometimes I think I may want to vent via the “dryer hose” into the outside air to preserve the longevity of the filter system – and this made me think about what is being released into the atmosphere. I know it will be relatively miniscule, but I did start to wonder if anyone thought of developing a kind of slip-on filter for the window end of the “dryer hose” just to keep the air as clean as possible, too. Just wondering…

Outside smell

Worried that just outside the window will become an EPA Super Site? :grin: - Rich


Panythose. :relaxed:

Just kidding. I was considering hardware cloth, both to keep critters out and keep bits from blowing out.


That will keep the critters out, but are you thinking fine mesh? If @rand is thinking pollutants, then he needs activated charcoal like the GF filter. - Rich


Yeah - wouldn’t work for odors, just keep larger bits of paper and whatnot from depositing under the window if it gets picked up and blown out.


Yeah – it was more the pollutant aspect that I was thinking about…


I imagine that the particulates released in to the air via the external hose are no worse than those coming from your dryer, your oven/stove (if vented), or especially your fireplace (assuming wood-fires). I wouldn’t worry about it personally.


Any filter placed at the end of the dryer duct that does any significant filtering will need an extra fan boost to get through it. Pantyhose won’t though! :grinning:


Thanks – I hadn’t thought of that.


There is an industrial laser-cutting outfit about a block away from me.
I don’t know what, if any, filtration they use. I was just outside, and I could smell that they are cutting some kind of plastic right now. From a block away. Stinky.


This was an article recently posted on a site I frequent. It follows along what @chrgeup said about actually limiting pollutants.

DIY fume and particulate filter


I plan on venting not just outside, but far away enough outside that I shouldn’t have to worry about any discoloration to the house around the vent. Anyone else worried about possible discoloration from vent fumes?


Oh they do got filtration systems, but they are quite expensive. Miller’s 130 fume extractor $1500, wellers WFE2ESKIT1 $1k, and many more… Not including the exclusive expensive replacement filters… I can’t find any products out there uses household hepa fillters though


Opinion: If you plan on cutting a lot of plastic, you should get the filter that is engineered to work with your GF. If you make you’re own, you could reduce flow out of the unit and A) cause extra strain on the blower motor and shorten it’s life drastically B) cause smoke/soot to accumulate on your mirror and it might ruin your head. Not to mention you could void your newly extended warranty by altering it’s normal/engineered performance.
You really need to know what you’re doing in order to successfully modify your very expensive investment without damage or shortening it’s life.
This is not a makerbot cupcake, this is a high tech precision laser cutter. If I was going to make any mods to mine, it would be long after the warranty expired and with a lot of data and monitoring.


Thank you. Would placing a filter on the outside end of the venting hose have that kind of impact on the GF? I had planned to use the GF filter for any plastics etc., but was thinking about wood, cardboard, etc. if it would affect the GF at all negatively, perhaps you are right and just go ahead and use the underneath filter for everything…


Unfortunately, any blockage on the input or output is the same strain on the blower.
I bought the filter for both home and work units. In the distant future, I was thinking about trying to build a chamber outside that the vent hose would go into with unimpeded flow in and out, but the chamber would be filled with cold water vapor. I would use a household humidifier that uses ultrasonic to create the vapor instead of heat, like this:
I would have to put in a check flap in the vent line or just be really religious about closing a damper in the line to avoid the vapor back-flowing into the Glowforge. Still haven’t decided if it’s worth it, and I’d still probably wait until after my warranty expires.


Maybe a boost fan to go into one a bubbler chamber, like they have for indoor dryer venting (yes, among the stupidest things in the world but sometimes better than the alternatives)


Hmm… Smoke bubbling through water. Seems like I’ve seen this before… :innocent:


That was my first thought a while back, but then I remembered that I’d have to match the fan speed perfectly in order to not pull the blower blades of the GF faster than it’s motor. if you’re booster fan is too powerful, it could harm the system. if the booster is too slow, it could harm the system. so I abandoned the idea because I didn’t want to do the hard work of synchronization…cause I’m lazy :wink:. that’s when I came up with the vapor absorption theory. I’ll have to do some tests in order to confirm it’s plausibility or usefulness.


If I had a need for this (and maybe I will next winter, being in vermont and all) I might try to build some kind of damper/check valve/flappy bit/controlled leak just upstream of the booster, so that you you never pull a vacuum, and could leave the booster on throughout your session. Also, while I’m on the advice that’s probably replicating your early design thoughts, what about a bunch of mister nozzles like at supermarkets, rather than the cold humidifier? I don’t know whether you would get better effectiveness from droplets or from vapor that wanted to condense when it got lots of nucleation sites in it…