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Thread: Vapor respirator recommendations?

  1. #1
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    Nov 2016
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    Vapor respirator recommendations?

    I use good, old-fashioned oil based finishes. The "standard" respirator is really getting old, literally and figuratively. I'm interested in maybe a full face type respirator that uses something like a hard hat type suspension system. Or, maybe a hood with supplied air, I think they're called PAPR? Will be used in the finish shop only so wood dust particulates aren't an issue. I do wear eye glasses so anti/non fogging would be a must. Filtering vapors/fumes such as mineral spirits is a must, comfort is highly desirable, good visibility is highly desirable.

  2. #2
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    I recently replaced my very old respirator mask with a new one ordered from Lee Valley. But it's not the full face type you ask about and while it's an organic filter, my primary need is for particulates from spraying water borne finishes and shellac. I don't really use oil based products, but when I have, I haven't felt the need for a respirator. Hopefully, someone can address your question with better advise than I can give.
    --

    The most expensive tool is the one you buy "cheaply" and often...

  3. #3
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    First, buy a recognised brand that is approved by OSHA or a similar regulatory body. There is so much rubbish on the market that is cheap and a waste of the planets resources.

    Supplied air hoods are good but you have to drag an extra hose. Self contained helmets are also good, just watch your wallet empty really fast. I also wear glasses and usually use a Sundstrom half face with at least an A1 organic vapour cartridge and profiler. I do work in a very well ventilated booth as well, which is your primary control.
    If using supplied air from your compressor, you must have breathing air rated hose and an air filter, because the plastic from the wrong hose and the oil from the compressor are as bad as anything you spray. Cheers

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
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    Courtice, Ontario Greater Toronto Area
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    I use 3m organic vapor respirators. oil paint, denatured alcohol, zinser bin etc etc. I don't notice any vapor coming through, zero vapor.
    The mask must fit and seal perfectly to face profile, the large does for me.

    I have a high quality full face respirator and it filters equally as well, but looking through the plexi is annoying so I don't use it often.

    I purchased 4-5 of the 3m units over 8 years. The straps wear out and there is one version that doesn't have replaceable cartridges and one version that does. I also where this unit for dust. Face dust masks - no comparison.
    Last edited by Joel Wesseling; 07-14-2017 at 9:11 PM.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Joel Wesseling View Post
    I use 3m organic vapor respirators. oil paint, denatured alcohol, zinser bin etc etc. I don't notice any vapor coming through, zero vapor.
    The mask must fit and seal perfectly to face profile, the large does for me.
    I use replaceable 3M vapor cartridges, with a couple of full face masks including one of these (bought when it was $60 though):
    https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B007JZ1M10

    I use them when spraying and handling chemicals. While cutting a fire break with my tractor a few years back I discovered they are great for keeping smoke out of my eyes as well. I haven't used them for finishes. For dust I use P100 filters with half face masks.

    JKJ

  6. #6
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    John, that full face respirator in your link is one of the better ones. For those who aren't familiar with it, you can also get tear off lens covers for it that protect the main lens. Unfortunately this type of respirator doesn't help those who wear glasses otherwise I would be using one myself. Cheers

  7. #7
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    I have a 3M PAPR (the GVP) with a belt mounted blower that I bought used, though in perfect condition. It is similar to the Trend except the blower/battery are mounted on a belt and air is delivered to the helmet via a hose. It works reasonably well and I use it primarily for sanding fiberglass and spraying. The NiCad battery on mine lasts all day, but I noticed they have a new model (TR-300-HIK) with Lithium batteries. The new model is unlikely to be offered at much discount at this point. At list price, the Trend would be considerably less expensive, however on the used market the 3M is more competitively priced. The release of the new model has caused many professionals to upgrade and dump their GVP models, and great deals can be had at ebay and other resellers on the older model. 3M offers a variety of canisters for the GVP some very specialized for instance Ammonia or Organics. 3M also carries consumables such as face shields (lens cover Wayne mentions), neck ruffs and suspensions.
    "the mechanic that would perfect his work must first sharpen his tools. Confucius

  8. #8
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    Nov 2016
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    Thank you all for your responses. I was hoping to find a better solution to the hang-on-your-face organic vapor filter mask. I like the idea of a full face apparatus but it doesn't look like an organic vapor filter is available until you get into 3M's TR-600 level which is more than I'd care to spend.
    Thanks again!

  9. #9
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    The 3M PL-3MRGVP-441 or 443 are organic vapor masks for the GVP series and retail for less than $100 (NIB on ebay for $25+/-). The GVP is available on ebay for ... well I see one (2 avail/7 sold) for $225. Used of course is not for everyone.
    "the mechanic that would perfect his work must first sharpen his tools. Confucius

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bill Adamsen View Post
    The 3M PL-3MRGVP-441 or 443 are organic vapor masks for the GVP series and retail for less than $100 (NIB on ebay for $25+/-). The GVP is available on ebay for ... well I see one (2 avail/7 sold) for $225. Used of course is not for everyone.
    Bill, thanks for that info. It helps a lot!
    Tim

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