Ventilation issue

Discussion in 'The Darkroom' started by Youngun, Mar 10, 2005.

  1. Youngun

    Youngun TPF Noob!

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    So I just went to the local Fine Arts Center and had my first taste of B&W developing. I'm hooked, and I would love nothing more than to have my own darkroom. In the basement there's an unfinished room that would work perfectly. No light other than a single door. My problem is that I've heard that the area needs to be well ventilated, and well, this place isn't. I was curious if anyone had any creative solutions? Thanks in advance...
     
  2. oriecat

    oriecat work in progress

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    I will fully admit to not ventilating mine. But it's fairly good size (about 200 sf) and not enclosed. Low odor chemicals? :D
     
  3. Hertz van Rental

    Hertz van Rental TPF Noob!

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    Ventilation is very important in a darkroom. It removes the acidic and caustic fumes from the chemicals, as well as the dust from dried chemicals.
    The rule of thumb is an airflow of 1 cubic foot of air per minute per square foot of floor space.
    How the fumes and dust affect you is largely dependant on any medical conditions that you have or may be susceptible to.
    But it's your health so you decide if ventilation is important.

    If you want me to give you a full list of the hazards posed by darkroom chemicals - just ask. But I warn you that it makes for frightening reading (rather like reading a medical dictionary).
    Although I am very hot on H&S in the darkroom when I am teaching I must admit to being very cavalier about my own safety in these matters. To give a sense of proportion - I have been splashing photochemicals all over myself for more than 30 years and I'm still.....aaaark! (thud)
     
  4. panchromatic

    panchromatic TPF Noob!

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    Right now my darkroom is still in what I call "stage 1" Its fully functional, but when i get back from italy in the summer i'm moving the darkroom around (its also in my basement, i'm going to put the ventilation in, also put something on the ceiling to prevent dust from falling and such, and finally I am installing a new sink and new plumbing setup (to be more efficent)

    BTW

    If anyone would like to post pics of there darkroom, i'd love to see how you have things set up.

    --Ryan
     
  5. oriecat

    oriecat work in progress

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    I think a couple of us posted pics before, I wonder what thread that was... hmmm...
     
  6. terri

    terri Administrator Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Mine's a converted upstairs bedroom. It doesn't ventilate properly to the outside. We're putting a new roof in this spring, and when we do we might cut a corner out of the ceiling and fit in something appropriate.

    Right now, I simply turn on my ceiling fan and step out of the room about every 20 minutes or so, leaving the door open. Not the greatest, but hey, I have to work. :)

    I guess if I were in there for hours, every day, I'd think of it as a more serious concern. But I figure the couple times a month I actually get in there for a few hours at a time slows down whatever carcinogens I'm breathing in. :drool: mmmm, fixer..... :lol:
     
  7. oriecat

    oriecat work in progress

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    My basement had a fan installed when I bought it, but it vents into the crawl space. I would prefer the chems to linger in the basement than to waft throughout the whole rest of the house, so I don't use it for now. I am hoping to eventually figure out how/where to move the venting to, so then I can begin using it.

    Hertz, keep your fingers out of the selenium, ok? :wink:
     
  8. Hertz van Rental

    Hertz van Rental TPF Noob!

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    Selenium toning used to be a standard practice of mine. This has made me feel better about using the stuff: http://www.iom.edu/report.asp?id=8511&referrer=Google - but not much.

    The one to watch is Potassium Bromide. It builds up in the dev as a by-product and gets into your body through skin absorption. It causes, in men, what we came to refer to as 'printers droop'.
    Once we figured out why our performance was suffering latex gloves became very popular.
    Never found out if it had the same effect on girls, though. :lol:
     
  9. panchromatic

    panchromatic TPF Noob!

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    Note to self.... get rubber gloves

    --Ryan
     
  10. Youngun

    Youngun TPF Noob!

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    Thanks guys. After all these warnings I just might break out the scuba gear. lol.
     
  11. DocFrankenstein

    DocFrankenstein Clinically Insane?

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    What's the medical name for "printers droop"?
    Could u please? :)

    I love reading medical dictionaries.
     
  12. Hertz van Rental

    Hertz van Rental TPF Noob!

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    a) Impotence.

    b) In process of preparation. It will not be a medical dictionary, merely a list of the chemicals in use in the darkroom and the hazards they pose.
     

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