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just brew it!
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Re: Case Dust Filtration

Thu Sep 01, 2016 10:25 am

There are two problems with using cold outside air in the wintertime:

- When you shut the system down, warm ambient room air will get inside, and moisture will condense on all of the cold surfaces.

- If you have any mechanical HDDs, they don't like being run at very low temperatures.
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Anovoca
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Re: Case Dust Filtration

Thu Sep 01, 2016 10:33 am

just brew it! wrote:
There are two problems with using cold outside air in the wintertime:

- When you shut the system down, warm ambient room air will get inside, and moisture will condense on all of the cold surfaces.

- If you have any mechanical HDDs, they don't like being run at very low temperatures.

Valid points though I would argue that the amount of energy to intake the cold air would be fairly minimal (depending on the distance from the entry point and thickness of filter air it has to be passed through, and that the cooling system could remain on at minimal expense. The HDD is interesting but I am curious if the helium drives have the same temperature problems. If so, it is very doable to contain all storage media as NAS or external with necessary local system and application data stored to SSD. If silence is the end goal then moving storage to all solid state or a NAS housed in a different location would already play into the system design.
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Re: Case Dust Filtration

Thu Sep 01, 2016 10:51 am

Anovoca wrote:
just brew it! wrote:
There are two problems with using cold outside air in the wintertime:

- When you shut the system down, warm ambient room air will get inside, and moisture will condense on all of the cold surfaces.

- If you have any mechanical HDDs, they don't like being run at very low temperatures.

Valid points though I would argue that the amount of energy to intake the cold air would be fairly minimal (depending on the distance from the entry point and thickness of filter air it has to be passed through, and that the cooling system could remain on at minimal expense.

Provided there's a way to automatically redirect the exhaust air back outside. I guess you'd need that anyway, for any situations where the exhaust is cold enough that it would be fighting rather than helping your furnace.

TBH, the exhaust from a well-ventilated case is only a few degrees above the temperature of the incoming air, so I'm not sure there's any benefit to be had in terms of "home heating assist" anyway, if you're using outside air for the intake.

Anovoca wrote:
The HDD is interesting but I am curious if the helium drives have the same temperature problems. If so, it is very doable to contain all storage media as NAS or external with necessary local system and application data stored to SSD. If silence is the end goal then moving storage to all solid state or a NAS housed in a different location would already play into the system design.

I don't think it is just the density of the air bearing that is the issue. The lubricant in the fluid dynamic spindle bearings thickens as well.

It also just occurred to me that there's another potential condensation issue -- the outside of the case is going to "sweat" if it is a lot colder than the ambient room temperature. You'd probably need to thermally insulate the inner surfaces of all exterior metal panels to mitigate this.
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Re: Case Dust Filtration

Sat Sep 03, 2016 7:19 am

If all you want is "cheap but effective" then some scrub pads work well for filtering. Used to be popular a ways back before so many cases started coming with built-in filters. These for example, 10 cents per pad or even half that if you source from that one vendor at the local flea market that brings in a uhaul-sized truck full of cheap chinese knockoff goods every weekend.  :wink:

The cheaper they are the better since they are less dense (you can just see through them), heavy duty pads are too thick to use. Even so either the light pads need some spacing between them and the fan intake or you need a high static-pressure suited fan that can deal with the restriction. But the pads are extremely good as filters, they are meant to be washed clean and they will catch more dust than even those cheap home AC fiberglass filters. I don't use them anymore since the case I use now came with filters on everything save the PSU intake.
 
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Re: Case Dust Filtration

Sat Sep 03, 2016 10:23 am

For dust filtration I use a Polyurethane foam with an open cell. Also I recommend the DustEND filters.
Last edited by DustPC on Sat Sep 24, 2016 6:18 am, edited 3 times in total.
 
Acidicheartburn
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Re: Case Dust Filtration

Sat Sep 03, 2016 5:55 pm

So I took a trip to the hardware store (was actually there to buy something to kill off the pine scale afflicting some of my pine bushes) and picked up a pleated furnace air filter for 4 bucks.  Something like this:

 Image
It seems a little too thick for computer case fans to really produce good airflow through, but I thought I'd give it a try on the large side panel of my case (my front panel has a pseudo-dust filter already to my recent discovery).

The panel in question:
Image

The first step was getting the pleated filter out of the cardboard.  This wasn't too terribly hard, though it was a lot more time consuming than I expected, as the filter material is actually spot glued to the cardboard in numerous places.  The glue wasn't too terribly troublesome as the glue spots were small, but there were a lot of them.  I had to take care not to bend the chickenwire and tear up the filter material.  Otherwise, this was pretty easy.
Here's the filter freed from its cardboard prison:

Image

The next step was the most time consuming and required the most patience.  I had to flatten out the portion of the filter I intended to use.  I had to resort to a combination of a heavy book, rolling pin, and good old elbow grease.  I probably spent half an hour wrestling with the material trying to get it as flat as possible.  After I achieved the flatness I was looking for, I measured, traced, and cut out the desired piece.  The dimensions for the mesh panel including a little overlap on each edge were 300mm by 223mm (yes, mm, I am a man of SCIENCE).

Here's the result of measuring twice and cutting once (and a heck of a lot of flattening and straightening):
Image

It was a perfect fit on the first try:
Image

After marking and cutting holes for the fan I was able to mount the fan directly onto the filter material without needing washers to prevent the fan blades from touching the mesh, likely due to my diligence in making this as flat as I could.

Here's a shoddy picture of the end result:
Image

I haven't bothered sealing around the edges yet as I'm not sure if I'll keep this dust filter.  I'm going to keep my eye out for something better that has a little more air flow but is similarly rigid and durable for easy removal and cleaning. I would have used some of those scrub pads but I can't find any that are large enough for the size of this mesh panel without having to sew, tape, or glue them side-by-side.

Feeling with my hand, I can already tell there is less airflow moving through the side panel and also out the top of my case, but it does still seem to be maintaining positive pressure.  I'll watch my case temps and see if they seem elevated much, though I don't have a pre-filter baseline for comparison.
 
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Re: Case Dust Filtration

Mon Sep 05, 2016 5:46 am

It definitely is going to heat the PC but if it is doing its own job well done then I might consider it worth having. Any updates about temps?
 
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Re: Case Dust Filtration

Mon Sep 05, 2016 7:11 am

@Acidicheartburn -

You should block off the top part of the filter (the part not covered by the fan). Since you are using the side vent as an intake, you don't want air exiting through it as well, since that just reduces your overall effective airflow.

Those types of filters are not designed to be re-usable. Vacuuming won't remove tiny dust particles trapped down in the microfibers, so airflow will not be restored to original levels. You will probably need to replace it every time it gets dirty unless you are willing to live with drastically reduced airflow from that fan.
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Acidicheartburn
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Re: Case Dust Filtration

Mon Sep 05, 2016 11:00 pm

just brew it! wrote:
@Acidicheartburn -

You should block off the top part of the filter (the part not covered by the fan). Since you are using the side vent as an intake, you don't want air exiting through it as well, since that just reduces your overall effective airflow.

Those types of filters are not designed to be re-usable. Vacuuming won't remove tiny dust particles trapped down in the microfibers, so airflow will not be restored to original levels. You will probably need to replace it every time it gets dirty unless you are willing to live with drastically reduced airflow from that fan.

Yeah, I figured this is more of a temporary solution until I find something more ideally suited for life in a PC case and re-usability.  As far as blocking off the top part, I figure that the air in the case is going to follow the path of least resistance and exit out the rear fan and/or the top of the case instead of trying to leak back out through the filter.  I realize this isn't an ideal scenario, but my computer runs cool enough that I don't feel the need to excessively (for my needs) optimize the airflow in it.  You certainly have a good point, though, there's no denying that.

@seankay - My best guesstimate is that it seems like my GPU temps are a little higher during gaming than before, averaging around 67 C after an hour of gaming in Warframe.  I'm not entirely sure what it used to sit at before, but I hear the GPU fans spin up a little more now.
 
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Re: Case Dust Filtration

Tue Sep 06, 2016 9:22 am

Or, you know, you could've bought actual case fan filters (like the ones I linked earlier) for the same price as you spent on that furnace filter.  They're cleanable, reusable, and require zero fabrication to install.....just sayin'
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Re: Case Dust Filtration

Tue Sep 06, 2016 6:38 pm

DPete27 wrote:
Or, you know, you could've bought actual case fan filters (like the ones I linked earlier) for the same price as you spent on that furnace filter.  They're cleanable, reusable, and require zero fabrication to install.....just sayin'

Without a doubt the premade fan filters are easier and much better suited for computer case filtration.  But this $4 furnace filter could cover at least three of my computer's case worth of fans, and didn't require any shipping.  Besides, DIY projects are fun, even when they don't always work out perfectly.
 
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Re: Case Dust Filtration

Wed Sep 07, 2016 9:24 am

Ah, my bad.  I was estimating the furnace filter at around $13 or so.  I suppose a PC fan filter doesn't need to be as high quality as the filter that all the air in your house passes through.  This might be a situation where the cheaper the filter the better.  You want maximum airflow while being able to catch large dust particles, not necessarily smoke/microscopic allergens/odors. 

Not bashing the DIY side of this.  Good on ya.
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Acidicheartburn
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Re: Case Dust Filtration

Wed Sep 07, 2016 11:27 am

DPete27 wrote:
Ah, my bad.  I was estimating the furnace filter at around $13 or so.  I suppose a PC fan filter doesn't need to be as high quality as the filter that all the air in your house passes through.  This might be a situation where the cheaper the filter the better.  You want maximum airflow while being able to catch large dust particles, not necessarily smoke/microscopic allergens/odors. 

Not bashing the DIY side of this.  Good on ya.

The filter I bought definitely seems too restrictive - after extended gaming sessions my Corsair H60's radiator fan actually starts to spin up, which it normally never does unless I'm running AIDA64's stress test.  I kind-of figured this could happen with the filter I bought, but at $4 in store it was an impulse buy, and I had fun with it.  I'll probably rip out the filter I made and head back to the hardware store to pick something else up.  I may try one of the fiberglass air filters (which look like this) that are also similarly cheap.  They seem to have more air flow and are probably better for cleaning and re-using, however, I have concerns about the filter material shredding apart when I cut it.  Not sure when I'll get around to this though.  I'm curious to leave the air filter in place and see how much dust it has collected so far, but I doubt I will notice any in the filter until it's been a few months at least.
 
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Re: Case Dust Filtration

Wed Sep 07, 2016 12:09 pm

Acidicheartburn wrote:
DPete27 wrote:
Ah, my bad.  I was estimating the furnace filter at around $13 or so.  I suppose a PC fan filter doesn't need to be as high quality as the filter that all the air in your house passes through.  This might be a situation where the cheaper the filter the better.  You want maximum airflow while being able to catch large dust particles, not necessarily smoke/microscopic allergens/odors. 

Not bashing the DIY side of this.  Good on ya.

The filter I bought definitely seems too restrictive - after extended gaming sessions my Corsair H60's radiator fan actually starts to spin up, which it normally never does unless I'm running AIDA64's stress test.  I kind-of figured this could happen with the filter I bought, but at $4 in store it was an impulse buy, and I had fun with it.  I'll probably rip out the filter I made and head back to the hardware store to pick something else up.  I may try one of the fiberglass air filters (which look like this) that are also similarly cheap.  They seem to have more air flow and are probably better for cleaning and re-using, however, I have concerns about the filter material shredding apart when I cut it.  Not sure when I'll get around to this though.  I'm curious to leave the air filter in place and see how much dust it has collected so far, but I doubt I will notice any in the filter until it's been a few months at least.


If it takes a few weeks to get noticeable dust on the filter, then you have a very clean house and probably don't need to worry with filters anyway. It takes about a week to a week and a half for noticeable dust to show up on surfaces in my office. A tight filter on the intake fans on my workstation take significantly less time. Note that I'm not talking about needing to clean it, just being able to tell where parts of the frame block airflow and things like that -- a dust shadow.

--SS
 
Acidicheartburn
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Re: Case Dust Filtration

Wed Sep 07, 2016 2:00 pm

SecretSquirrel wrote:
Acidicheartburn wrote:
DPete27 wrote:
Ah, my bad.  I was estimating the furnace filter at around $13 or so.  I suppose a PC fan filter doesn't need to be as high quality as the filter that all the air in your house passes through.  This might be a situation where the cheaper the filter the better.  You want maximum airflow while being able to catch large dust particles, not necessarily smoke/microscopic allergens/odors. 

Not bashing the DIY side of this.  Good on ya.

The filter I bought definitely seems too restrictive - after extended gaming sessions my Corsair H60's radiator fan actually starts to spin up, which it normally never does unless I'm running AIDA64's stress test.  I kind-of figured this could happen with the filter I bought, but at $4 in store it was an impulse buy, and I had fun with it.  I'll probably rip out the filter I made and head back to the hardware store to pick something else up.  I may try one of the fiberglass air filters (which look like this) that are also similarly cheap.  They seem to have more air flow and are probably better for cleaning and re-using, however, I have concerns about the filter material shredding apart when I cut it.  Not sure when I'll get around to this though.  I'm curious to leave the air filter in place and see how much dust it has collected so far, but I doubt I will notice any in the filter until it's been a few months at least.


If it takes a few weeks to get noticeable dust on the filter, then you have a very clean house and probably don't need to worry with filters anyway.  It takes about a week to a week and a half for noticeable dust to show up on surfaces in my office.  A tight filter on the intake fans on my workstation take significantly less time.  Note that I'm not talking about needing to clean it, just being able to tell where parts of the frame block airflow and things like that -- a dust shadow.

--SS

Well I really don't have a clue how long it will take.  The filter is a white papery-cloth material so it may take a while before I start noticing the dust.  We'll just have to wait and see.
 
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Re: Case Dust Filtration

Mon Aug 21, 2017 4:42 pm

juzz86 wrote:
Yep, pantyhose work well.

Also, DEMCi if you need custom-fit gear. They're not cheap, but very good.

http://www.demcifilter.com/c29/CARBIDE-500R.aspx


I have the same case as the OP and got the DEMCi filter for the large intake fan on the side. Have had my filter for 4 years and it works really well and is totally worth the money if you are keeping the case for a while.
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Re: Case Dust Filtration

Mon Aug 21, 2017 5:03 pm

Count this as another vote for DEMCi filters.

If you get the kits, it comes with adhesive magnetic strips that stick to the side of the case. The filters are held in place by the magnets.

The magnets are just strong enough to hold the filters on. They pull off very easily for routine cleaning. I ordered a 120mm 4-pack---two for an older case and two for the NCASE M1. They stay attached to the bottom intakes with no problems.
 
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Re: Case Dust Filtration

Mon Aug 21, 2017 6:18 pm

They are fantastic.

I used to have a 350D and got the custom kit for it. Still in service with my sister - amazing what those filters catch.

The number of people running 'custom' gear in my family is dwindling a bit (thank God), but wherever it's still in service, it's with DEMCi filters. Couple of Corsair cases, couple of older CM HAFs.

Funnily enough, the custom 80mm ones also fit the front of some older OptiPlex's pretty well. The custom little bit for the back of the 350D against the PCI slots is also the perfect fit the rear mesh!
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