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  • Dehumidifier / heater for small spaces???

    I am trying to think of a good way to keep things warm and rust free in my shop without keeping the whole building heated all winter. I have 2 CNC machines and I am thinking of adding some type heater/dehumidifier to the control cabinets and also a removable box that would cover my tool rack for the CNC router. The router has a 10 tool rack that would be easy to make a wood or metal box to cover the tools when not being used and adding a dehumidifier gun safe rod or an incandescent bulb to keep them warm and dry. It seems to me their might be something better for this application so I am looking for ideas that would work for fairly cheap. The gun safe rods would run me at least $100 for the 5 I need so I am wondering what else I could use?

    Here is a picture of the tool rack that I need to make a box for.




  • #2
    Hello Gundog,
    A little more about the shop may help. Is it insulated do you have a good vapor barrier in the floor?
    Down here in Portland Or. I have a shop that is insulated and a vapor barrier in the floor and have no problem with rust. I let it fluctuate in temp, and just run a heater when I go out to work. I have 2 lathes a mill and steel all over the shop, oh and a car in primer for 6yrs with no signs of rust.
    Can you run the heat at say 50* F with a fan to move air, I did this in an old garage for a few years Not well insulated and general concrete floor no vapor barrier and had no rust with little use of the equipment.
    Im just a weekend warrior, hobbyist, newbie, could be considered dangerous not knowing a lot kind of guy.
    Hope you can resolve your problem.

    Mr fixit for the family
    Chris

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    • #3
      I am just a few miles down I5 from you. The shop is an old pole building tin sides and roof it has trusses on 24" centers with bat insulation stapled between the trusses, the walls do have some type of black fiber insulation sheets 3/4" thick. The building is fairly old and not real tight non insulated doors etc. I have future plans to drywall the ceiling and walls and add more insulation but for now it is what it is, not very well insulated or sealed up. I have a big area heating pellet stove (300# hopper) but I don't like to run it when I am not in the building.

      My last router I had problems with the collets rusting. This machine would probably not work to well if the tool holders got surface rust on them. It would be a nightmare if the tool holder stuck during a tool change. I want to be proactive and keep the tool holders in good shape so this does not happen. My CNC mill control does not like the cold either so I am looking for an inexpensive way to warm up these few components when I am not in the shop.

      Mike

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      • #4
        Hi Mike
        How about one of those heating strips you wrap around water pipes to keep them from freezing for that collet rack?

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        • #5
          Originally posted by RichR View Post
          Hi Mike
          How about one of those heating strips you wrap around water pipes to keep them from freezing for that collet rack?
          That maybe a good idea I will look into that. thanks keep the ideas coming.

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          • #6
            why don't you take the small tool bits inside the house when it is so cold.After all they won't take up much room?Alistair
            Please excuse my typing as I have a form of parkinsons disease

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            • #7
              As an offshoot of the water pipe tape there are heaters for small contained spaces - we have one for our piano.
              An eg here: http://www.leevalley.com/en/wood/Pag...78&cat=1,43456
              Another idea is anti corrosion emitters - look like ant-traps but contain anti-corrosion agents.
              http://www.leevalley.com/en/wood/Pag...67&cat=1,43456

              Usual disclaimers for quoted sources.

              My vertical mill has an lcd readout that would not enjoy well-below freezing temperatures (uncertain but better safe than sorry).
              I simply cover it with a loose plastic garbage bag, put a rust inhibitor puck and a low wattage incandescent bulb inside. Then I use a large cardboard box to create an exterior form (concrete pour style) and stuff the resultant space with fireproof insulation. Add an inspection port and a thermometer. So far (3x winters) no rust & no frozen readout.
              Smaller parts I enclose in plastic, re-useable freezer sacks, along with a good squirt of LPS 3. So far, great results.
              Small digital mics, angle gauges, etc, I remove the batteries & bring into the house for the winter.

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              • #8
                Just thinking out loud here... but how big of area are you covering? Maybe some kind of tent would work for a couple years until you take care of the rest of the building. There's no wind load, so you could use cheap things like EMT (electrical metallic tubing) or even PVC to build a structure and plastic for your walls. You'll definitely need some sort of heater with a plastic-covered tent.

                I have a wood box that goes over a stand pipe faucet in my unheated shed. Heat is provided by an incandescent bulb. When I need to use it, I open the door and connect the hose (which is stored in another building.)

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Alistair Hosie View Post
                  why don't you take the small tool bits inside the house when it is so cold.After all they won't take up much room?Alistair
                  I could take those holders in but I need to keep the control cabinets warm also. For those of you that use heat tape for your pipes in cold areas how much heat do they put out are they about the same as a light bulb? I have never used heat tape but I have some that was left here by the previous owner for the pump shed but I insulated the shed and put a heater in the pump house on a thermostat.

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                  • #10
                    The reptile people have these nifty ceramic heat emitters in a wide variety of wattages. Cheap too.

                    I have never handled one up close and personal, but I imagine the surface should not get overly hot, so if that is true, low risk of fire.


                    Here are some examples:

                    http://www.ebay.com/itm/QZO-Ceramic-...item1e91b68c3c

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by michigan doug View Post
                      The reptile people have these nifty ceramic heat emitters in a wide variety of wattages. Cheap too.

                      I have never handled one up close and personal, but I imagine the surface should not get overly hot, so if that is true, low risk of fire.


                      Here are some examples:

                      http://www.ebay.com/itm/QZO-Ceramic-...item1e91b68c3c
                      I think we have a winner I have some fixtures that would except those emitters. I think 25 or 50 watts would be the ticket. Thanks I knew someone on here would have the answer.

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                      • #12
                        I had to laugh at this add the picture says made in England but it ships from China check it out.

                        http://www.ebay.com/itm/Hot-Sale-110...item4adda0b53a

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by gundog View Post
                          I had to laugh at this add the picture says made in England but it ships from China check it out.

                          http://www.ebay.com/itm/Hot-Sale-110...item4adda0b53a
                          The wording in the description supports a Chinese origin as well.

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                          • #14
                            You wouldn't want to open the box and find snakes now would you?

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                            • #15
                              I bought a temperature controller from China, says right on it "Made in Japan" go figure?

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