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Remember the post a long time back about the BMW airhead?  We didn’t mention the part about cleaning out the bad gas in the tank.  That was my job, and it sucked.  Let’s just put it this way: I figure I took at least a year or two off my life.  What I really needed was one of these powered respirators.  Take my advice now:  If you’d like to live to be an old shop guy, you’ve got to look out for yourself — and that includes avoiding the nasty stuff like as grinding dust, smoke, and spoiled gas fumes. 

Update: See the next post for better fume protection.

The powered respirator pictured above comes from Triton, and protects not just your lungs but also your eyes, ears, and head.  It may be hunter orange and look like something the guys with keys from E.T. would wear, but it will keep your head on your shoulders and your lungs filled with the good stuff while filtering out the nastiness.

A filtered stream of air flows down the inside of the visor, supplying clean air for your lungs. Your head and eyes are shielded from airborne debris by a lightweight hardened plastic hard-hat fitted with a high-impact hinged visor.  You also get hearing protection in the form of built-in earmuffs which rotate and position away from your ears when not in use.

The power pack/filter is carried on a waist belt and filters 95% of dust under 1 micron.  Airflow rate is 5.3 CFM. Respiratory protection conforms to NIOSH N95 standards. While this isn’t a rig built for style — or for spray painting as the paint particles would clog the filter — it can be quite a help to your continued breathing in a hostile shop environment.

Street Pricing Starts at $199.

Powered Respirator [Triton]
Street Pricing [Froogle]


3 Responses to Finds: Triton Powered Respirator

  1. Myself says:

    What’s the battery life like? I wouldn’t mind one of these, and a full-arm-length nitrile glove, next time I have to change the transmission fluid in my Toyota. I swear that stuff is death in a bottle. It’s not even a bad smell at first, it’s sort of pleasant in that automotive-fluid way, then about 3 seconds later all the horrific sticky rotten smell catches up and assaults the mucous membranes, taking up residence there and refusing to leave for the rest of the day.

    Oh wait, it’s for dust only, not chemical fumes. Well then.

  2. Eli says:

    I’m w/ you Myself. Sometimes I’ll be on a job where they have fake snow made from cellulose, or atmospheric smoke, or fuller’s earth, and I’ll wonder, “will I be talking through a hole in my neck someday because of this stuff?”. That’s when I start thinking about personal respirators. But I haven’t seen one yet that seems like the batteries would last all day.

  3. Myself says:

    Eli, the plain old half-mask respirators work fine for most tasks, if you’re clean-shaven and can wear them. Incidentally, that’s why Civil War era war heroes are always sporting manly beards, while by WWI, Johnny is clean-cut: The invention of nerve gas meant soldiers needed to be capable of wearing gasmasks.

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