Source for heat in darkroom/dryroom?

Discussion in 'Darkroom Equipment' started by kjsphoto, Sep 5, 2004.

  1. kjsphoto

    kjsphoto Subscriber

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    I have another question and I have been having a heck of a time finding a heater.

    What do you all use? This will be an outbuilding 12x24 and it gets down to 0 on ocassion in the winter. Mostly in the lowteens.

    Any suggestions on a heater would be greatly appreciated.

    Thanks again,

    Kev
     
  2. Loose Gravel

    Loose Gravel Member

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    It depends on so many things: insulation, wind, sources of heat in the room. I've always heated my darkrooms with a space heater that is just plugged into the wall. You might try this until you figure out just how much heat you need. Electric heat is sure easy to install and clean. Propane is harder, but if you need lots of heat, it is cheaper. I have a 50,000 BTU propane heater in my studio that is about the size of your outbuilding. I think it will be plenty. I don't have temps as low as you, but I live in a mountain pass and we often have 30+ mph winds and 30s or 40s temps. It is a newer building and very well sealed and insulated.
     
  3. bmac

    bmac Member

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    Down to 0! I'm such a cry baby for not printing when it gets under 50 in my garage :smile: An electric space heatwe will work, but you'll needto make sure it is on its own circut, or at least on a different one than the enlargers. Also some models emit a lot of light, so you will need to figure out how to keep it away from the paper, or get a dark model.

    good luck
     
  4. Aggie

    Aggie Member

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    I have three of the space heaters from Tenn. One is a very nice one that has not light given off. You can have them all if you want Kevin.
     
  5. kjsphoto

    kjsphoto Subscriber

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    About heaters.

    Hello Aggie,

    That is so nice of you! If it is not too much trouble I would like to take you up on the offer :smile:

    I have been away for a few days or I would have responded earlier.

    Thank you again!

    Kev
     
  6. Aggie

    Aggie Member

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    Next time you are down my way, you can pick them up.
     
  7. John McCallum

    John McCallum Member

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    Induction heaters are very efficient (will save on power) and pretty cheap to buy as well Kev. Not withstanding Aggie's offer. All the best.
     
  8. Aggie

    Aggie Member

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    If an induction heater is one filled with liquid that is warmed and gives off heat, that is what he is getting. Silent, cheap to run, and warms very well.
     
  9. John McCallum

    John McCallum Member

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    Ahh - probably right. I meant Convection Heater. Your option sounds better.
     
  10. kjsphoto

    kjsphoto Subscriber

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    I was initially trying to find a propane vented wall heater but when I saw the price I said forgot it as I could not afford to drop $1K just on the heater not including the other stuff I would have to buy. I am only 12x24 so it look like the electric ones will work peachy :smile:

    The place is divided into two rooms. A dark room 10x12 and the other room 14x12 for drawing, painitng, matting, etc... Basically this is going to be a art place!

    I also pickd up a wall mounted exhaust fan that will be placed against an exterior wall. I also pikced up two light tight louvers for the interior vents. Hopefully with the exhaust and the interior vents this will help the air in the darkroom remain warm.

    How many vents do you need? I have 2 but could return one and I dont need them both.

    Thanks again,

    Kev
     
  11. John McCallum

    John McCallum Member

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    hi Kev - may i suggest that you don't actually need much in the way of venting if it is designed well. A cover elevated 20-30 inches over the trays with exhaust fan, expelling to the outside is good enough. The thing is, to have a vent located somewhere that will make the flow of air travel from the inwards vent, across the trays to the outwards vent. Putting the vent in the door is usually easiest.

    To get a little techy: the size (or area across) of the inwards air vent should be the same or larger than the size of the outwards air vent.
     
  12. kjsphoto

    kjsphoto Subscriber

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    Thank you! I went with the fan at 12x12 and a vent 12x12 as well. Should I only need one then?

    I went with 2 of these
    Doran Air-No-Lite Intake Louver 12x12 but I can return one of use one for each side of the opening... Any ideas?

    And for the fan I went with this one form talking to others.

    Doran Air-No-Lite Exhaust Fan Pro-Lab SL/WC which is 12x12 as well and weather proof so hanging outside the building especially when it snows should be no problem.

    I am placing this fan at the bottom of the top plate of the framed wall. Which is about in the middle of where the sink will be. Then on the opposite wall I will place the other one. I am really concerned about the door leaking light though as I will have the enlarger to the left of the door. I bought an interior hollow core door these doors I am not sure how to weather strip them to block the light especially since they have no threshold to help block. I thought about exchanging for a exterior door but man I hate spending the money as those doors are about 4 times more expensive.

    Thanks again,

    Kev

    Thanks again,

    Kev
     
  13. John McCallum

    John McCallum Member

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    Unfortunately I'm not so familiar with the Doran excessories Kev. But I don't think you would go wrong.
    It shouldn't be too hard to stop it leaking light. Perhaps cut a snug fit, then rasp it out to just the right size to let the vent in (right side up of course!) All the best.
    John.
     
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  15. Les McLean

    Les McLean Subscriber

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    Kev,

    I live in the Cheviot Hills in the Borders of England and Scotland where the temperature drops as low as 0 too. My darkroom is 20ft x 10ft shed, totally insulated, walls, floor and roof, with 3" of fibre glass insulation and 1" insulation board. I also have a 180watt electric greenhouse heater running permanently during the winter months that keeps the temperature above freezing. When I work in the darkroom I have a 2 KW Convector heater running with the thermostat set to 24c. I've had no problems in 20 years, the temp is constant in the winter and the enlargers and electrical equipment have not suffered with humidity or dampness.
     
  16. kjsphoto

    kjsphoto Subscriber

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    Thank you for the respnse. Also this building will dupe as a art studio as I have two room and I need to make sure it doesnt get damp as I will be also having computer, mat boad and canvas for oil painting.

    Hopefully the electric heaters will do the trick....
     
  17. MurrayMinchin

    MurrayMinchin Membership Council Council

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    Bump!

    Hi Kevin - I see it's been a couple years now since this thread and I was wondering, how are things are going heating and venting your darkroom? Did the oil filled electric heaters work during winter with the fan running?

    I'm a couple months from starting my own darkroom project and I'm finding the APUG advanced search function a gold mine of information :smile:

    Murray
     
  18. kjsphoto

    kjsphoto Subscriber

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    Hello Murray,

    Yes it did. The heaters worked excellent! Keeps everything at temp. I went with the Doran fan in the wall and it works awesome.
     
  19. MurrayMinchin

    MurrayMinchin Membership Council Council

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    That's great Kevin :smile:

    You have the same cold snaps as I do, so it's good to hear they worked. That's one more piece of the darkroom construction puzzle into place. Thanks!

    Murray
     
  20. kjsphoto

    kjsphoto Subscriber

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    Oh one thing is insulate the floor. hat has really helped me also and wrap the pipes. If I would have don tit again I would have used copper piping but i went with ABS I think that is what they call it.
     
  21. MurrayMinchin

    MurrayMinchin Membership Council Council

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    Good tips Kevin, thanks.

    Our 26x13 garage that's built onto our house is where the darkroom and matcutting/framing room are going. I'll have the luxury of putting the 'fresh air' vent into our downstairs hallway...that should give the heaters a bit of help when it's 0 degrees F, or in my case, -20C outside.

    I haven't even started thinking about how to insulate the floor yet...

    Murray
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 12, 2007
  22. jeroldharter

    jeroldharter Member

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    Just a note that 0 degrees in Scotland is not the same as 0 degrees in the Sierras.

    My darkroom is above a garage that is unheated. In the winter, when it can be -20F, my water lines can freeze. Fortunately the lines are PEX and don'r rupture. Now I use a small oil heater in the garage and it keeps it remarkably warm. I suggest using one or more of the oil heaters (I think that is what Aggie mentions) because they are silent, effective, and give off no dust or air current.

    http://www.northerntool.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/ProductDisplay?storeId=6970&productId=1017209&R=1017209
     
  23. jeroldharter

    jeroldharter Member

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  24. jeroldharter

    jeroldharter Member

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    For the garage floor you might try this radiant heating product if you are handy, have time and money, and want a tile floor. We had stuff like this in our former bathroom and it worked very well over a slate floor. I am not sure how energy efficient it is for a large space. Might be usable for parts of the floor also.

    http://www.tileheater.net/
     
  25. fotch

    fotch Member

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    Yikes! Thats not a oil heater, its an electric room heater that heats oil in a radiator. Expensive to operate. While lower in initial cost than a fuel burning heater, will cost more. Add proper insulation in any case.
     
  26. PHOTOTONE

    PHOTOTONE Member

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    When I was just getting started with my commercial photography I built a darkroom within my 2 car garage. Completely free-standing except one wall, common to garage. I installed a small window-type air-conditioner in a custom-cut hole in the wall, which vented out into the garage, and of course outside if I opened the garage door. I also had a simple electric space heater, thermostatically controlled. The soft red glow of the elements didn't fog paper, and I turned it off when I loaded film briefly.
    I did find, in the winter when I was heating, that I also needed to run the air-conditioner on low to dehumidify the air at times.