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Old 05-16-2007, 03:58 PM   #1 (permalink)
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VForce mask fans...

I just finished this today.

Like a lot of us I wear eyeglasses, and unfortunately they fog up. I've made some custom mask fans for my JT mask before and it was a success ( Link to thread ) so I figured why not try to put a couple of fans into a new VForce mask as well.

This time I went for simple and compact. No speed control, just 2 small fans working with 4 AAA batteries.

These are the smallest fans I could find. They're 20mm and as you can see, they fit the VForce mask just right.



You could even mount them inside the mask if you wanted...



However, one of the big problems with mounting a fan right on top of the mask like that is that the turbulence from the air creates a lot more noise. It's also not that efficient, since only a small portion of the actual fan area is being utilized.

So, in order to eliminate the noise from air turbulence and to maximize the efficiency of the fans, I needed to raise the fans above the mask surface.

I broke out the Dremel, looked around for some scrap plastic and made up a couple of "spacers"...



Then, I stuck them to the fans using double sided tape by 3M. The same kind of double sided tape that's used to stick trim on a car. I highly recommend having a roll around, you'll find a lot of uses for it.



As you can see, there is a good amount of space now under the fans...



Everything's starting to come together...





I used the same method of securing the fans to the mask that VForce uses to secure the visor to the mask. Quite a clever method I must say...



Now, just secure the battery holder with a couple of zip ties...



(It doesn't really stick out much at all)



Solder in a switch, zip ties, heat shrink yadda yadda...



Oh yeah...I also closed up the hole at the back of the fans with some more scrap plastic to make a duct, so the only air going through the fans were being drawn through the mask. If you don't do this, then a lot of the air that goes through the fan will be drawn from *around* the fan.

This time I used a microwave macaroni and cheese tray for the thin scrap plastic lol...



And there ya' have it...



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Old 05-16-2007, 05:10 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Nicely done!

Where did you score the fans? I have a couple of sheets of styrine that would work for that quite nicely.
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Old 05-16-2007, 05:17 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Let us know what sort of run time you get with the four AA's on those fans.

Also, there is a really tidy 4AA battery pack with included on/off switch with a plastic body that would also be a neat way to secure power for your rig.

The fans I used were bigger than the ones you found, but I was disappointed by how quickly I drained those 4 AA's with them.

Good luck,
D>
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Old 05-16-2007, 05:33 PM   #4 (permalink)
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i run my 12 volt fans with dual 9volts tucked under the strap
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Old 05-16-2007, 07:20 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Robertsr View Post
Where did you score the fans? I have a couple of sheets of styrine that would work for that quite nicely.
I had bought them from All Electronics last year, but they don't have any more 20mm fans in stock at the moment. I did take a quick look at Digikey and they have some available. They're out there.

For the record, here is the exact ones I used (low speed):

Link to product detail page

These have an operating range from 4.5-6volts. 4x disposable batteries will give it 6 volts when they're fresh so it should take a while until they drain to the cut off voltage. I'm using AAA cells right now but if those drain too quickly, I'll move up to AA cells.
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Old 07-15-2007, 08:07 PM   #6 (permalink)
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This works VERY well. I was playing with Jaan at Airsports in Ludlow, MA. I was talking to him about how my mask was always fogging and he let me use this same exact mask. I wear glasses and after putting some Extreme Rage lens cleaner/anti-fog, I didn't have any fogging at all. Now I've gotta do something like this to my Brass Eagle Sentry mask.
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Old 10-26-2009, 09:36 AM   #7 (permalink)
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How much did rasing the fans off the mask help with the sound?
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Old 02-22-2010, 02:04 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by BIGNUGLY View Post
How much did rasing the fans off the mask help with the sound?
Sorry for the late reply...I just noticed this.

The sound difference was noticeable, but not huge, although I had just bench tested it. I'd say maybe 20% louder right up against the plastic.

There was also another big reason I wanted to raise the fans...in the orientation I wanted, sucking heat up and out of the mask, there's no "guard" on the underside and having the spinning hub of the fan close to the plastic might cause it to jam.
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Old 02-22-2010, 01:51 PM   #9 (permalink)
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have you done any testing with hits to the battery pack yet. I love the idea but just wondering if one hit might mess the pack up.. i realize then you would have to go fix it, and clean up. But will that plastic take more than a couple direct hits?

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Old 02-22-2010, 04:08 PM   #10 (permalink)
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The battery box is made from a semi-flexible plastic to hold the batteries in with a type of clip action. It would be hard to break with your own hands if you were trying, it would just kinda bend.

I've never gotten a direct hit, but a replacement box costs about a dollar. I'm not too worried
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