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DGentile

Recommendation: Powered Respirator

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After 15 years of wearing respirators - often the full-face "gas-mask" (industrial) type - for sometimes several hours of grinding a day I finally gave in and bought a 3M VersaFlo System.

 

3m-tr-300-hik-versaflo-industrial-papr-kit-588-p.jpg

 

Simply put for those who don't know what "Darth Vader Light" above is:

The face-shiled is connected to a belt-mounted "blower" with added on filtration system.

The blower forces air into the face-mask at a slight over pressure.

Thus no particles, fumes,... can enter the mask at all.

The advantage is with the comfort and in case you are not cleanly shaven (at the moment got a beard ph34r.gif) then any normal respirator which has to be pulled tightly to your face will be a bit of an epic fail.

The comfort part though is just EXCEPTIONAL (sorry for the shouting ;) )...

there's no more rubber bands pulling a face mask against your face and creating neck-strain, jaw-ache and other related issues.

 

Also there's no need for safety goggles - obviously... also it does NOT fog up, as the blower forces air onto the inside of the face-shield.

it's also very easy to breath (there's no resistance as with a heavy filter setup for a mask).

 

 

I know they are expensive... but so what, it's your health and comfort...

honestly, now that I have one, I hate myself for not getting one years ago - it's that good, truly.

 

And no I don't work for 3M... but trust me if you've been making a daily living at your shop, a bit of comfort and safety goes a long way.

 

 

The filters are changeable ... so there are different types - I use a A3-P3 ... good for anorganic/organic-gases/vapors and very fine particles (P3).

also great for spray painting, chemicals...

 

 

Also good as it allows you to talk normally (I teach a lot of classes...)

it's easy to flip up and have a drink (1second or less) and just as easy to flip down again.

 

 

short: expensive but worth it, very much.

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Good to hear your feedback. I've been "hobby level" for some time - using a 3M 6800 full face mask. If I pull the straps REAL tight it seals around the beard OK. Hmmmmm.

 

I'm assuming that by the time you get all the components you're looking around $1k.

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A good friend of mine is an auto painter and has the same setup. Very nice setup, almost worth it's weight in gold

 

Zeb

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Good to hear your feedback. I've been "hobby level" for some time - using a 3M 6800 full face mask. If I pull the straps REAL tight it seals around the beard OK. Hmmmmm.

 

I'm assuming that by the time you get all the components you're looking around $1k.

 

unfortunately - your assumption about the price is almost on spot (1200$ here in switzerland)... although you can find slightly cheaper models around the net, but by adding taxes and shipment I'm close to the original price but would have no local contact for warranty issues... thus I thought I'd go for the local (if more expensive) route...

 

I used to have a 3M 6800 full face and whilst it was by far the best mask I had (the one I still have is far inferior (a lot heavier) than the 6800)... however I had to tighten the thing so bad that after about 2hrs my jaw would start to ache and after about 3-4 my neck was feeling tired of the thing... gave me headaches if I had to use it 5-6+ hours.

clean shaven it was a good bit better ;) - but I'm often not for clean shaving ;)

 

 

and Zeb...

at least it does not cost it's weight in gold ;)

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I have been on Adflo the and previous models for years.

I highly recommend them.

I now use disposable face shields (£40 a pop) .

all defiantly worth it.

I spend about £300 a year replacing filters screens etc .....

 

have you farted into it yet? having an air filter just above your bum has its interesting moments , unless you have the bad smells filter its a whole level of pure organic vapor experience. the first time is unbelievably disgusting but it gets better.

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I have been on Adflo the and previous models for years.

I highly recommend them.

I now use disposable face shields (£40 a pop) .

all defiantly worth it.

I spend about £300 a year replacing filters screens etc .....

 

have you farted into it yet? having an air filter just above your bum has its interesting moments , unless you have the bad smells filter its a whole level of pure organic vapor experience. the first time is unbelievably disgusting but it gets better.

 

laugh.gifohmy.gif

 

Owen, then I'm very glad that I indeed do have the "bad-smell" filter... especially as today's lunch menu will be chili-&-beans .. enough said.

(mine is a A3=anorganic/organic gases, vapors,... & P3-very fine particle filter unit).

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I just got a Trend Airshield Pro on Amazon for $368. It's not as good as the 3M, since the motor and filter are in the helmet, not remote. But its the same idea, just not as expensive.

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If any one else is looking for a PAPR like the Versaflo i would check Ebay. There are several similar units hanging around in the 400-500$ range, and i just scored a Adflo (basically the same thing only normally sold with welding hoods)for 244.50.

 

It didnt include the headgear but i can pick up a Versaflo headgear for around 200$ that will work.

 

Mine was unused but even if you grabbed a used unit the parts that you would want to replace (the cap liner and maybe the filters if they are used as well) are not that expensive.

 

~~DJ

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Ebay can be good. Here is a 3m jupiter similar to the versaflow at a LOW start price.

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/3M-Jupiter-Airfed-Respirator-Mask-Charger-Battery-Hose-Turbo-Unit-Strap-/180973313699?pt=UK_BOI_ProtectiveGear_RL&hash=item2a22d99ea3

 

I use one of these and like them as you can buy filters and replacement batteries, £160+ (or buy whole units off ebay again). Do check that you can get parts for any unit you are looking at buying. The first cheap set I bought couldn't get anything. So resold to help buy the jupiter.

Obviously I have no links to the auction just posting for others to see that some bargins are there if you have time to wait.

Andrew

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Just got out of the hospital todayl,,COPD , almost died!!!!!!! WEAR YOUR RESPIRATOR

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Sorry to hear, Arthur! Hope your feeling better, and it don't slow you down too much!

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I learned that "black boogers" are not normal,,that wood dust from handles is worse then metal dust and that dust you don't see is worse then what you do see.......Also that the best ,most expensive respirator you can buy is still cheaper and less painful then medical care........

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Though I never used one, these respirators do look great. Only problem is, I don't have $500+ for a respirator, so I started thinking: If I attach my shop air to the mask through an adjustable valve and a huge filter, would it work? The air cable would be somewhat a nuisance, but it may work for less than a hundred bucks. If someone tried this, I'd be glad to hear whether it is a viable solution, if not, I may give it a shot myself.

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Somebody asked that question over on Anvilfire.com a couple of weeks ago, and the answer was that it's not a good idea. Here's a couple of posts about why.

 

First from Jock Dempsey, the Guru himself:

 

 

A lot of sand blasters use compressed air from their compressor and this is VERY dangerous. Air compressor air can include heavy metals, oil and contaminated water. The only compressors suitable for breathing air are those marked "Approved for Breathing Air". Otherwise use a blower as Thomas indicated.

For a DIY arrangement it does not require a large blower unless you have more than one person on the system. The filter can be a large auto air filter off an old V8 or something with the large round filters. The distribution system can be PVC pipe and the flex hose the cheapest (for light weight) spiral wound flex hose.

Be sure to close it off when not in use because bugs can go into the outlet then get blown out!

and from Jeff Reinhart aka ptree:

 

 

Supplied air respirators and compressors : The Guru is correct, don't use any compressor for breathing air that is not rated and mark for breathing air unless it feeds through a very expensive breathing air purifier. The reason is not heavy metals etc as noted by the Guru. There can be condensate and oil blow by, but the number one reason is carbon monoxide. The compressor lube oil can and will get by the seals and will partly combust and will often produce carbon monoxide. In the asbestos abatement industry supplied air is the norm and the training is very specific on this aspect.

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Arthur - glad you made it through.

Brian - +1 - I've been using a Trend Airshield for a couple of years now and am very happy with it. Positive air pressure so my beard isn't an issue. And room for my "reader" glasses (hey - I'm over 40 - the eyes ain't what they used to be). Good filtering - not perfect but very good (new filters are not cheap but better than the hospital). All-in-one protection w/out a fanny pack. $330-420 purchase price - what are my lungs worth? Available through Amazon or Woodcraft.

Gyuri - eyes and lungs - protect them!

Edited by Michael Kemp

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Looks like it's time to salvage a reasonably sized blower - thank you all for the input. This one is a long term project for me, but I'll post any progress.

Edited by Gyuri

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The 3M system might be great..BUT it is only for use up to 2900 ft above sea level ....this doesn't help the makers who live in the mountains.

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