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Thread: Bad ventilation in darkroom

  1. #1

    Join Date
    Jun 1998
    Location
    Jerusalem
    Posts
    150

    Bad ventilation in darkroom

    My darkroom suffers from pretty inadequate ventilation at the moment. Up till n ow, it hasn't really bothered me, but last week after a long session, I found my self feeling a bit giddy. I'm planning to put in a much stronger fan, but in the meantime I was thinking t hat wearing a mask might help. Will it? Thanks in advance

  2. #2

    Bad ventilation in darkroom

    That depends a lot on the type of mask you wear. One of those little painter particulate masks might not help too much, but one designed to filter fumes would help more. A citric acid stop bath instead of an acetic acid stop bath will help cut down some of the fumes.

    Dave

  3. #3

    Join Date
    Jun 2000
    Location
    Redondo Beach
    Posts
    551

    Bad ventilation in darkroom

    You need a respirator and you need to check out which particular cartridge will filter out the chemicals you'll be exposed to. Even with the respirator on, some chemicals can have toxic effects with long term exposure to your eyes, hands, and bare skin.

    You need to quit working in your darkroom until the ventilation issue is resolved, and you should consider a respirator, gloves, and eye protection(some of this stuff is bad news if you splash it in your eyes). Above all, you need to research the recommended handling protocols for the chemicals you're using.

    Sounds like your body is just beginning to tell you 'Hey this isn't cool'.
    Jonathan Brewer

    www.imageandartifact.bz

  4. #4

    Join Date
    Dec 1999
    Location
    Forest Grove, Ore.
    Posts
    3,725

    Bad ventilation in darkroom

    Do you have an inlet, so that air can get into your darkroom as it's removed by the fan?

  5. #5

    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Location
    SF Bay Area
    Posts
    2,438

    Bad ventilation in darkroom

    I would suggest that you forget the mask and concentrate on improving the air. Place the exhaust fan so that the fumes are pulled away from you and be sure to have an adequate fresh air vent. You will feel better, live longer and be more productive.

  6. #6

    Bad ventilation in darkroom

    Ok, get an organic vapor/acid gas respirator, and a half face mask. BUT keep in mind that these respirators exhaust after a period of time, if you get them wet, you have to replace them, they are hard to find and not cheap, I think you would be better off if you make a venting system somehow. In the end you will end up saving money!

  7. #7
    David Vickery
    Join Date
    Oct 1998
    Location
    Texas, USA
    Posts
    216

    Bad ventilation in darkroom

    Hello, You might also consider changing the chemicals that you use. Take a look at The Film Developing Cookbook(Anchell & Troop) or The Darkroom Cookbook(Anchell). There are some formulas that will help cut down the odors. I don't even use an acidic stop bath anymore. If you don't want to mix your own stuff you can get kits from Artcraft Chemicals or Photographer's Formulary.
    Sudek ambled across my mind one day and took his picture. Only he knows where it is.
    David Vickery

  8. #8

    Join Date
    Jun 2000
    Location
    So. California
    Posts
    191

    Bad ventilation in darkroom

    If you suited up in all the garbage that has been suggested, why would you want go into darkroom? Pat

  9. #9

    Join Date
    Jun 2000
    Location
    Redondo Beach
    Posts
    551

    Bad ventilation in darkroom

    Nobody has said anything about 'suiting up' in anything, but if one wanted to suit up so what. Because you deal with toxic chemicals in an area that's ventilated does not mean complete protection. A repirator is additional protection for your lungs, and the idea of wearing one, or gloves, or eye protection whether you're in a darkroom or doing something else with chemicals is neither silly nor garbage.

    I would encourage anybody to wear what they want, use as many safeguards and protection as you feel comfortable with. The idea that one would belittle the use of this safety gear is ridiculous.
    Jonathan Brewer

    www.imageandartifact.bz

  10. #10

    Bad ventilation in darkroom

    Make sure you have a fresh air inlet. An exhaust fan without a fresh air inlet can cause a partial vaccuum in the darkroom which seems to cause the fumes to be worse. Also, in my darkroom, which is relatively small, I put a large fan in the open door to fill the darkroom with fresh air before I start setting up. It helps a lot.

    Regards,

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