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Thursday, May 30, 2013

Choosing a Dust Mask

A while back, I mentioned that I was trying out different dust masks, looking for the one that seemed most effective and was most comfortable to use.  With all the sanding I do, using a dust mask is a necessity.

I had been using a conventional dust mask, rated N99, and was pretty happy with it.  However, it tended to fog my protective goggles, so I bought a Dust Bee Gone and a Totobobo mask to see if either of them were better for me.  All were recommended by other users.

The Dust Bee Gone needed to be altered, since the medium size was too large for my face.  I removed the blue banding and cut back on the filtering material so it would fit properly.  I found that it was easy to damage the filtering material with the velcro on the straps, and that dust seemed to come through much too easily.  On top of that, my goggles still fogged, even though they were not supposed to.

The Totobobo was much too fidgety for me to use comfortably.  The adjustable straps are a very thin, stretchy plastic, and felt as though they would break at any time.  They didn't, but I felt uneasy every time I adjusted them.  In addition, the plastic would be quite uncomfortable in warm weather, and you needed to keep replacement filters on hand.  And my goggles still fogged!

So, I'm back to using my standard dust mask.  I keep a supply on hand, and am learning to adjust my goggles to control the fogging.  I know that others have been very happy with the Dust Bee Gone and the Totobobo, but unfortunately, I'm not one of them.

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