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  1. #11

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    I would make sure you darkroom ventilitation is up to snuff before worrying about a respirator. Do the fan/CFM calculation and properly install an exhaust channel and an inlet channel for the air.

  2. #12

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    the ones that look like gas masks are good.
    i have one and got it at home depot 20+ years ago.

  3. #13
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    Even when there is an exhaust fan one of the most common mistakes is to put it directly over the sink so that the fumes come up from the tray, past your nose and out through the fan.

    I have trouble with ammonia and use a mask from B&H with two charcoal filters. My two exhaust fans intake across the sink about a foot above tray level and go outside. Fresh filtered air is brought in through a fan behind me.

    John Powers

  4. #14
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    I think a well filtered source blowing from above with a low exit would be ideal. It would remove vapors downward and also keep out dust, especially if it gives a bit of positive pressurization.
    I do use a digital device in my photographic pursuits when necessary.
    When someone rags on me for using film, I use a middle digit, upraised.

  5. #15
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    It would have to be the darkroom, or photographic chemicals, because upper-respiratory illness is so uncommon in adults, what else could it be?

    Get my point?

    Ventilate your darkroom properly, and you won't need a respirator/hood/space suit. There just isn't that much in the darkroom that's toxic.
    Michael Sebastian
    Website | Blog

  6. #16
    lxdude's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MikeSeb View Post
    It would have to be the darkroom, or photographic chemicals, because upper-respiratory illness is so uncommon in adults, what else could it be?

    Get my point?

    Ventilate your darkroom properly, and you won't need a respirator/hood/space suit. There just isn't that much in the darkroom that's toxic.
    True, but individual people are often sensitive to things most aren't. It doesn't have to be normally regarded as toxic.
    Some people can't be around latex paint until it's completely cured, for example.
    I worked for a very short time in my machinist career doing EDM (electro-discharge machining). The parts are submerged in a dielectric liquid, usually kerosene. The kerosene vapors irritated my lungs so badly I had a constant cough. That was the end of my career in that particular discipline.

    As you say, proper ventilation is essential.
    I do use a digital device in my photographic pursuits when necessary.
    When someone rags on me for using film, I use a middle digit, upraised.

  7. #17
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    I use a bathroom as my darkroom. What I do is work a limited time and take a break. For contact printing I will do three or four rolls (three or four 8by10's) and then take a little time off while the prints are washing, then dry. I wash and dry the prints in the kitchen. I leave the door open to the darkroom whilst I'm taking time off. For making enlargements I usually will only do one, at most two, before taking time off. I don't run the bathroom exhaust fan when in the darkroom.

    A filter mask or respirator wouldn't be my cup of tea. Too confining.

    Works for me.
    Bill Clark

  8. #18

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    The surgical style masks are good for particles, but not vapors. For that you need one of the cartidge types shown on the McMaster-Carr link with the appropriate cartidges on it.
    But, as several folks have said, ventilation is the best first step. If you can't get adequate ventilation in your darkroom, move those processes where it's a problem to some other space you can ventilate.

  9. #19
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    I use my mother-in-law for these jobs.
    Alex

  10. #20
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    I don't have photography specific experience, but in construction I used to refer to 3M's Respirator Selection Guide to select the appropriate cartridges for the chemistry might to be exposed to.

    http://solutions.3m.com/wps/portal/3...esources/Four/

    (choose electronic/printed for a PDF as the on-line selector appears to be off-line)

    Looks like a N95 cartridge for Se and SA (supplied air) for CN.
    Kind of points to extraction via rigged up fume hood to get away from a supplied air type respirator.

    If I could only dream of allergy to sodium sulfite Isn't that the main filler in laundry detergent to bulk up the volume? But dear...I can't do the laundry, I'm allergic to laundry powder.

    Robert
    Last edited by neelin; 07-28-2010 at 06:55 PM. Click to view previous post history.

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