Re: [gardeners] Only Semi OT:Need suggestions for respirator with

Dan Dixon (
Wed, 30 Jul 2003 13:50:09 -0500

Sharon Gordon at wrote:

> Hi, I need to get a respirator with full face mask and and airline.  It will
> get used for processing dry gourds from the garden as well as other things.
> And I seem to remember that some people on the list are involved in
> industrial level safety precautions, so I thought I'd ask.
> The ones with the nose and mouth covering and disposable filters don't allow
> enough oxygen through for me.

Cartridge respirators let in the same amount of oxygen as you would get with
normal breathing, so unless you are working in an oxygen depleted
environment, the mask shouldn't make a difference. Some people experience a
sensation as if they are suffocating in devices that cover their nose and
mouth, even though CO2 is exhaled through a valve in the bottom so it
doesn't build up in the mask. The masks do take slightly more diaphram
exertion to inhale and exhale. Facial sweat and condensation buildup can
also be disconcerting, but this is probably true for full face masks as
well. Is it the extra effort required with cartridge respirators that causes
you problems, or is it a sensation of suffocation? The former probably
requires assisted air feed; the latter can be overcome by getting used to
> What kinds are good to get?
> I think I'd like one that I can plug in so I am not always having to get new
> air tanks, but have never used anything like this before, so welcome advice
> as to how to choose.

North, 3M, Willson, etc all make quality respirators. 3M also makes a
variety of portable battery powered respirators. The important thing is to
select the correct filter for the contaminant. I presume that dry gourd
processing involves fine dust and maybe mold spores?

Dan Dixon