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Author: Subject: Tour My Lab
Magpie
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[*] posted on 10-11-2005 at 19:56
Tour My Lab


This is a continuation of what I started that ended up with Waldo in Whimsy. My purpose here is to show the lab I built this summer in my garage, i.e., the infrastructure and utilities. I encourage others to show features of their lab. (A thread just on equipment would also be very interesting.)

I often lamented the fact that I had no sink in my garage which I view as a severe limitation for a lab. Then it dawned on me that one wall of the garage is shared by a 1/2 bath inside the house. Therefore, hot & cold water + drain were just inside that wall! So I installed the sink shown below. The sink itself is 10" (25 cm) deep, aquired from a restaurant equipment supplier. (I just love putting ordinary items to a higher use :D).

[Edited on 11-11-2005 by Magpie]

[Edited on 11-11-2005 by Magpie]

EbC: reduced picture size.

[Edited on 26-1-2007 by chemoleo]

lab.jpg - 34kB




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Darkblade48
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[*] posted on 10-11-2005 at 20:25


Very nice! I see that your recently made pellet press is sitting there as well :)

Where, may I ask did you get those wash bottles (I've been looking for some for the longest time), and where/how did you design your water aspirator? I've been meaning to build one for awhile, but I never got around to any good plans :)

Counter top looks nice too, make sure you don't spill any nasties on it ;)
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Magpie
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[*] posted on 10-11-2005 at 22:25


Thanks Darkblade. I just recently bought the wash bottles, a 250ml & 500 mL. Couldn't decide which one I wanted so bought both.

The aspirator is a common chrome plated brass type available for about $15. Then to the hardware store to get the necessary adapters to attach to the faucet.

I hesitate to give wide distribution to valuable sources of supply. They can disappear if abused or embarassed by kewls and the like. I will U2U this to you. ;)




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[*] posted on 10-11-2005 at 22:52


Quote:
Originally posted by Magpie
The aspirator is a common chrome plated brass type available for about $15. Then to the hardware store to get the necessary adapters to attach to the faucet.


Ah, I thought that you built the aspirator yourself, I'm pretty sure some members have done it before =)
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[*] posted on 11-11-2005 at 02:21


Congratulations Magpie!

Wow, is that clean! Glad you got such a nice place.

I saw the other pictures of your lab this week, but when I tried to post something, I could not find the thread anymore.
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Magpie
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[*] posted on 11-11-2005 at 09:19


Yes, Tacho - clean for now. That's the fun of new construction.

When I built my gas cylinders I wanted to leak test them for gas tightness. So I had to get an air compressor. I've needed one of these all my life for blowing out sprinklers, cleaning parts, etc. Somehow I could never justify buying one until the lab came along. :D

It's shown below:

EbC: reduced picture size.

[Edited on 26-1-2007 by chemoleo]

compressed.jpg - 65kB




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Magpie
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[*] posted on 11-11-2005 at 13:11


Here's some more infrastructure: "Do + Able" cabinets, available at your Home Depot if you live in the US. These are attached to a free-standing wall. The wall consists of a 4' x 6' sheet of 3/4" plywood. Mounted to the wall on the backside are shelves for counterbalance. I keep all my glassware and other small pieces of equipment in these. It's also my desk.

[Edited on 26-1-2007 by chemoleo]

lab.jpg - 46kB




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[*] posted on 11-11-2005 at 13:44


Wow! Looks very nice, you're quite the DIY handyman.

You'll be soon building a fully equipped lab with fume hood and all :D
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Magpie
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[*] posted on 11-11-2005 at 19:02


Darkblade you are ahead of the curve again. I am saving the pictures of my crown jewel for last. :D

For those of us who live outside of the equatorial belt a source of heat is necessary if we are to enjoy our lab in the winter. I would likely use mine without one, I'll just enjoy it more and use it more often with the heater. I had to run a 240V line for this. Standard US voltage is 120VAC.

It is adjustable and I can aim it right down the aisle to my workstation. :D

EbC: reduced picture size.

[Edited on 26-1-2007 by chemoleo]

4000w.jpg - 36kB




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[*] posted on 11-11-2005 at 23:27


Quote:
Originally posted by Magpie
Darkblade you are ahead of the curve again. I am saving the pictures of my crown jewel for last. :D



:o That means you have a fume hood designed/built already! Stop beating around the bush and show us the goods! ;)

I like how the heater is called "The Hot One", though the line that runs to the heater doesn't look like 240V (power cable seems too small in diameter).
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Magpie
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[*] posted on 11-11-2005 at 23:59


Darkblade all in due time - you are getting spoiled. :P I'm also worried that you are spending too much time on the forum with all those tests coming up.

On the power cable: you have that backwards. The higher the voltage the lower the current and required wire size. The plug really faked me out as it looked about like a 120VAC plug in size. But one prong was turned 90 degrees. There is an outlet box; its just too high up to be seen in the picture (in the attic). I didn't have to run wire into the wall that way.

Actually, the main reason the cable is so small is that 4kw really isn't that big of a heater - just four big hair dryers. ;)

[Edited on 12-11-2005 by Magpie]




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[*] posted on 12-11-2005 at 01:43


Quote:
Originally posted by Magpie
Darkblade all in due time - you are getting spoiled. :P I'm also worried that you are spending too much time on the forum with all those tests coming up.


Shh, I only have a few tests left...I'll manage, I just need to sleep less so I have more time for the forums :)

Quote:
Originally posted by Magpie
On the power cable: you have that backwards. The higher the voltage the lower the current and required wire size. The plug really faked me out as it looked about like a 120VAC plug in size.


And now you know why I'm not an electrician ;)
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[*] posted on 12-11-2005 at 09:20


Nice Stainless Steel sink you got Magpie....

Just be careful not to flush halogen acids thru' it.
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Magpie
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[*] posted on 12-11-2005 at 11:04


Thanks gsd and thanks for the warning. I have already seen stains from iodine on stainless steel (not on my sink though ;)).



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[*] posted on 12-11-2005 at 11:54
Lab


Nice looking setup ! I'll be moving in the spring from an apartment to a mobile home.
This will give me more privacy - especially when I run my still ! :D:D:D




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Magpie
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[*] posted on 12-11-2005 at 12:54


Thanks MadHatter. Speaking of stills a friend and former colleague wants to start making his own ethanol for fuel for his cars. He has located an 8' stainless steel distillation column w/pot & piping for $350. :o He has told his wife that that is what he wants for Christmas. :D I have told him that the economics aren't good. He says he's going to do it anyway as I think he wants to play, and also be in a knowlegeable position when the petroleum crunch really comes. I have been providing him free lab support for analysis of his fermentation product. I may have to start charging him.



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Magpie
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[*] posted on 12-11-2005 at 19:31


Here's 3 pictures of my homemade fume hood. These have been resized to a maximum dimension of 550 pixels so hopefully Taaie can put away his Dramamine. (Thanks Taaie for the software guidance ;)).

The hood dimensions are 41.5" H x 48"W x 28" D. (1" = 2.54cm). It is made from 14 gauge aluminum (1/16";). Inside is epoxy coated, except for the removable baffles (2 ea). There is a removable stainless steel pan with 1" high sides.

The blower is 120VAC, 1/4HP, 1000 rpm, squirrel cage, open one-end estimated to move 400-500 ft3/min. The ducting is 8" IPS 63 psi irrigation :D PVC with schedule 40 fittings.

The outlet plenum is 16 gauge stainless steel. Both sheet metal pieces were fabricated by local shops to my drawings.

[Edited on 13-11-2005 by Magpie]

The 4' x 7" fluorescent light rests on a tempered glass piece silicone caulked to the aluminum frame.

[Edited on 13-11-2005 by Magpie]

hood side view - resized.bmp - 664kB




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[*] posted on 12-11-2005 at 19:45


2nd picture:

blower - resized.bmp - 665kB




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Magpie
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[*] posted on 12-11-2005 at 19:54


3rd picture:

The window is a vinyl framed tempered glass double pane, 4' x 5'. Special order from Home Depot as it has only one sash ( this really puzzled them). Design intent is to have constant flow regardless of sash opening.



[Edited on 13-11-2005 by Magpie]

hood full frontal - resized.bmp - 665kB




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[*] posted on 12-11-2005 at 22:34


Yes! I knew this day would come! :D

Amazing, simply amazing. I like the design, though the pictures somewhat cover up the fact that the aluminum panelling inside is epoxy coated (could have fooled me).

Seems really nice, in the third picture are the lights on or off?

Also, on the far left hand side of the fumehood in the third picture, I notice what appear to be 3 small brass nipples, and in the first picture, one of them appears to be attached to some rubber tubing.

I'm guessing that this is attached to the water aspirator that is in your sink that you also recently setup. Vaccuum filtration available and all ;)

I have a feeling that for air, you're going to make good use of your air compressor as well :)
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Magpie
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[*] posted on 12-11-2005 at 23:37


Yes Darkblade the nipples are exactly as you say. One is for a vacuum line from the aspirator at the sink. I ran it in 1/2" CPVC and you can see it in the blower picture. The other two nipples are for cooling water supplied by an ice bath/pond pump. If I get to using a bunsen burner very often I'll put in a nipple for propane.

I can't remember if I had the lights on or off - probably on. The picture is deceiving but with the 2-30w lamps the lighting is very good.

The two baffles directly on the back wall are removeable so I didn't paint them. They can serve as corrosion coupons. I may wish to adjust their spacing also as this controls the air flow pattern in the hood.




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[*] posted on 13-11-2005 at 10:02


This is nice Magpie! Very inspiring :)
Now I really wanna remake my polyethylene overdrawn hood to more solid one like yours. Though I'll go cheaper with something like plywood..

So if I got it correctly the air intake inside is destributed to top and bottom parts of the hood, like in commersial designs?
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[*] posted on 13-11-2005 at 10:13


Wow looking very nice. But what to test it with? Ever thought about setting off a smoke bomb to see if this hood is doing what it is supposed to be doing?
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[*] posted on 13-11-2005 at 11:10


Thanks frogfot - that was my hope - to inspire. Space is just space - you can make it into what you want.

I studied the shapes of several hoods on the internet to learn the salient features. Directing flow seemed most important. The baffles do this via 3 gaps. At the bottom is a 2" gap, in the middle a 1" gap, and at the top the baffle is bent inward at a 70 degree angle. There is a 1.5" gap at the top that doesn't show in the picture. This bent end extends out past the 8" duct outlet.

Fleaker I have thought a smoke test would be very useful. I lit a candle then snuffed it out to make smoke. It showed good flow but I mostly just made a mess with all the dripping wax. If you hold a kleenex at the window opening it is pulled to a horizontal position. I don't do this anymore from fear the Kleenex will get away from me, go up the duct, through the blower and get pasted on the outlet screen. This screen is about 1/8" mesh to keep out the wasps. I don't want to have to tear into this area to get the kleenex out.

[Edited on 13-11-2005 by Magpie]




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[*] posted on 13-11-2005 at 11:14


I once tested our professional fumehood with ammonia, and beta mercaptoethanol. If the fumehood is open about 30 cm, and you hold either bottle 25 cm in front of it, I couldnt not detect any smell at all - knowing that both are easily detected. I tried the same with a yellow bunsenflame - you can visibly see how well it is sucked in. Fumehoods are very efficient, I was quite impressed. No more I have a worry about dealing with nasty solvents in the fumehood - nothing gets out at all!



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