Sealing the electronics box air tight?

Hi there

I’ve been building an MDF enclosure for my TAZ for a while now. It’s almost complete, but the issue of ventilation still remains. I have a hole on the side of the enclosure that is vented directly to the electronics box as intake for cooling. I need to exhaust that air too, obviously, but the problem then becomes that when I print with something like ABS that releases styrene, the exhausted air will also be contaminated.

Long story short (happy to share more details if requested or needed though!):
I’m looking to make a separate, isolated “air passage” for the electronics enclosure. The important thing here is that all the air that goes into the electronics box for cooling is exhausted without mixing with the air from the rest of the enclosure. Is this feasible in any way? Assuming that my enclosure is otherwise sealed air tight, of course. I was thinking of using something like a garden hose to exhaust the air.

Obviously the electronics box will need to be insulated for this. Would something like sillicone sealant do the trick perhaps?

I’ve made a Paint drawing trying to depict what I mean.

Could this work?


That would work, sort of. A garden hose would be far, far too small. You need a tube about the Same size as the fan to get sufficient air.

What do you mean by “sort of” exactly? :slight_smile: Is there a better way to do this?

Ahh yes, makes sense the hole must be bigger. No biggie. Another challenge would be making a detachable (so the printer can be easily removed from the enclosure for upgrades/repairs etc.) system for this while still keeping it air tight. Or maybe just unscrewing the electronics case when removing the machine? This is starting to seem overly complicated.

It would work with a bigger air path. The idea is sound, the garden hose idea part isn’t. Another option is to bring in cold air into the box, but use the positive air pressure to vent the heated air directly out the sides to help heat the enclosure. You want a bit stronger fan to try that approach, but it can work well.

You can make a detatchable fitting setup using PVC pipe and quick disconnect fittings. There are also computer case mod ducting kits tjat would be the right size that have special fan tubes and disconnect fittings. used to carry them, they might still. You can also just do the compression seal method. make a silicone gasket to press up against the printer cold air intake and just squish the printer against it. that can backfire if the printer ever accidentally moves though so you would need to also secure the printer in place with clips or something.

Excellent - thanks for the clarification.
Assuming I go the pipe with quick disconnect fittings route, will sillicone sealant do the trick in terms of sealing the box?

Yes, it should be fine. For this application you aren’t necessarily going for completely 100% airtight. The positive airpressure from even the stock cooling fan will be enough to keep the warmer air from re-entering the box in most cases.

Hmm… a garden hose seems like restriction compared to the fan on the enclosure.

If possible, butt the electronics box against the enclosure side and cut openings appropriately for the fan intake. Or print a simple conduit for the fan intake and cut an opening at the appropriate height in the MDF. Something like this (designed for TAZ5, but could be applicable to the elongated enclosure of the TAZ6):

Heated exhaust from the electronics can contribute to the heated enclosure environment.

While I have not started on my enclosure box, my intent is to have the entire electronics box outside the box with the left side of my TAZ 6 being permanent.

I have read others have/intend to separate the box from the left side, and reconnect it with longer screws and separators to put the left side of the enclosure on the outside of the main TAZ 6 unit. This would allow for a thermal break between the enclosure and the power supply, but I’m not sure that’s really necessary.

However, my intention is to separate the back and front left half, connecting each to the aluminum extrusion frame, and a small part to cover the top of the left side. For the TAZ 5, it may be easy enough to just go over the power supply. I was also thinking of printing some parts to fit into the front and back aluminum extrusion rails to allow an easy connect of these left side panels.