Woodworking Talk banner

Shop made spray booth

7429 Views 16 Replies 7 Participants Last post by  ianireland
Hi Guys,

I am wanting to make a spray booth with extraction and heaters. Has anyone made a decent booth? I have seen many on google images but nothing that seemed like a good permanent job with good air flow and heating. To buy they are a couple of thousand and I am sure they can be made for a lot less!! So who has done it?
1 - 17 of 17 Posts
I've looked into it a bit, but haven't come up with a viable solution yet.
use an old truck/van body

Someone here used the box off a U Haul truck and made a pretty good spray booth. It had holes in the roof for vents and the door could be left open or closed when finished.
Another idea is those "Garage in a Box" kits from Tractor Supply or the home stores, even saw one at K-Mart around $200.00 or so.
If that's too much, a 2 x 4 frame and some tarps could be made to work.
Beware of using cheap box fans without explosion proof motors in the exhaust stream where a spark could ignite the vapors.
I set up a temporary booth to paint some motorcycle parts, but the principles should be the same. No reason I couldn't have left in place as permanent, but I couldn't spare the space.

Since it was a negative pressure booth with extraction to the outside, it drew in air from the house, which is climate controled (and pre-filtered).

There will be some who insist that this kind of extraction requires an explosion-proof fan. Some rough calculations showed that with decent airflows, VOC concentrations couldn't get high enough to cause a problem. Nothing to prevent using a different fan, though.

If you don't mind wading through the irrelavent pictures, there are a few shots of the booth and some text explaining it about a third of the way down this page:

See less See more
I've made a few spray booths, and had only one that was "legal" to local codes.

For a DIY booth, you'll need an exhaust system, which can be explosion proof fans exhausting to the outside, and a filtered air intake that can flow as much fresh air as what's exhausted. You can drape off the area with canvas type tarps, or visqueen. For a temporary or permanent structure, PVC pipe works very well. You'll need extra lighting and again, it should be explosion proof fixtures.

I've used canvass tarps mounted on a traversing hospital type guide. The one below to the right of the canvas was fairly large...15' x 25', that I also used as a clean room.
Property Room Interior design Building Furniture

See less See more
I see ed_h made his out of PVC which seems to be popular. Would a simple wooden strcuture not be more sturdy and longer lasting. I like the idea of the clear plastic sheeting will certainly be doing that. As for the two fans, where should these be mounted for best circulation? I will be spraying mostly water based lacquer so I shouldn't have a problem with any explosives!! What about heaters??????
I've been considering using one of those pop up tents and attaching clear plastic to the sides....so any reason it couldn't have a small fan on the intake side instead of the exhaust side to negate the need for an explosion proof fan ?
I've been considering using one of those pop up tents and attaching clear plastic to the sides....so any reason it couldn't have a small fan on the intake side instead of the exhaust side to negate the need for an explosion proof fan ?
That might tend to blow dust onto the surfaces rather than draw out the vapors. The vapors are one issue and the other is to prevent airborne dust from entering the booth from the rest of the shop, so it should be sealed off from that space. The commercial spay booths I've seen do not draw air from the rest of the shop area, but have their own inlet and exhaust and have air tight doors. Other ways may work OK, I donno?
Making a homemade spray booth is pretty easy however having a heated one will give you major sticker shock. A heater intended for flamable areas I think starts at ten grand. It would be much easier to filter the dust from your shop so the heat from your shop would be drawn into spray booth with the exhaust fan. For a home shop the booth could be constructed with wood framing and covered with polyethelyene plastic. The rest can be made with common furnace filters. The only real expensive part would be a explosion proof spray booth fan. Just keep all your electrical on the exterior because the light switch will make a spark.
Have made a few,from downright Fred Flintstone(worked great)....to medium sized Binks style.....to small portables.

Your biggest expense is a proper fan unit......and yes,I've made those as well.Imagine a metal tube,it's diameter determines your effective booth size,in it is a pretty sophisticated fanblade.The motor is outside this tube,theres some reasonable fabrication to get the belt/s to pass throught the tube,drive the fan,and be fully shrouded from airflow(hence the explosion proof'ness).

Then theres the filters.You'll have a good chunk of $$ tied up in them.

It's entirely doable........our 600 sq ft booth would suck small children up off floor.But have to say,if I was considering another(bigger/badder)....I'd just buy a used one off e-pay.You either have to have a decent sized wallet,hey you gotta pay to play....Or be extremely patient and vigilant,and willing to travel a few hundred miles.

Edit to add:

See less See more
All interesting stuff folks!! The need for an explosive proof fan wouldn't be high in my case because I'm using water based lacquer!! Is there a formula to work out how big of fans you need for the size of your space?? That's really the only major thing right??
Of course there are formula's.And would strongly encourage you to find them,understand them,apply them.Also strongly encourage some reading on the NFPA site.Further suggest you go talk to "real" spraybooth users.Find out what they're using in your area.Find out who the "go-to" guy is WRT safety inspections.

Above should NOT be viewed as some sort of hassle.Its the proper protocol for building a safe,well designed unit.The term "total loss" system has been associated with woodshops for a loooooong time.We just lost a small sawmill a few months ago here to a fire.It was total loss system,IOWs....NO insurance co would have gone near them with coverage.But that was very well understood.The facility was run for prolly close to 75 years.It burnt to the ground.

So,you either build a total loss system....or do the legwork in 1st paragraph.It should be looked at as a learning experience if you're serious.Otherwise....go buy a used one on E-pay.Look for a used "Binks" style.
See less See more
I was thinking about doing most of that!! Coming from Ireland we would have different standards and things but I'll certainly be looking into it!!
Safety and workplace codes are generally viewed here in the states with a touch of disdain or contempt.And I fully understand where this attitude comes from(guv agency's overstepping).....having grown up in the biz.

But if folks could just get past that....and do some quality research on whatever their subject or desire...they'd be doing themselves a huge favor.

The NFPA site as well as OSHA,"should" be researched proactively.IOWs,don't wait to have a problem to find out you could've made a few changes and saved a world of grief.

Look on you-tube,and other sites for discussions on fire prevention,and how it relates to spraybooths.Also look into air quality.

Dust and fumes are the biggy's in a woodshop.Both are VERY well documented.Best of luck...and we love pics.I'm sort of a tool nut so,what kind of spray guns are you sport'n,haha.
See less See more
Haha I have not got a clue what type of gun it is!! Very old and works well is all I know!! I will document the build and put a few pics up!! EU safety standards are quite strict so I'm sure they will give me the answers I need!! Speaking of pictures, I spent some time working in a factory making furniture in Vietnam!! Bet all you guys would love to see the pictures of those machines!! I'll root them out!!
See if this link works.Images for spraygun cleaning station.

I really want to build one of these.But have been keeping a sharp eye out for a used unit.We sort of have a reasonably "safe" routine for cleaning guns.But,know that it can be really stepped up.....and would be if we were in more urban environ's.

I did all my training with water based lacquer and have dabbled with the cellulose stuff!! Water based is the only way for me, although a mask is a good idea the air is still relatively clean and cleaning of guns is just done with water!! No need for a cleaning station, just a sink :)!!
1 - 17 of 17 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.