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*Step by Step* Light Proof Mounting of an Axial/Box/PC Fan

  • by Rumpleforeskin
  • Jul 31 2006 01:51 AM
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Posted 31 July 2006 - 01:51 AM

After posting a few pictures of my grow, I got a load of request on how I mounted my axial fans. I only use small fans in my clone room, but the need to be light proof is the same as my main grow room.

Here are the two fans mounted in my clone room:

The tough part in plumbing any fan/blower, is finding a sturdy flange that fits. I was able to make a flange for most sizes of axial fans (called PC fans by many) out of PVC drain grates. Lowes and Homedepot have loads of them in all shapes and sizes. Because of the wide range of pipe diameters, they had to make a grate to fit most of them.

I am showing the basic stuff you will need to make a working flange. Depending on your needs, you can improve on the construction.

This is a 4" square grate from Lowes (that is a "2*" on the top of sticker).

I used a white 3" elbow. I found its much better to find a black one if possible. I had to paint the inside of that elbow to light proof it. This grate can fit four pipe sizes.

Slelect a grate that fits your fan. Place your fan on top of the grate and drill out the four holes. Use a drill bit at the same size as the mounting holes in the fan.

I like to install the bolts through the holes as they are drilled. It makes it easy to line up holes.

If you need max air flow, then you might want to cut out the spokes. You can leave them in as well. Just about any cutter or small saw can help remove the spokes. I used the hole saw.

Hard part is done. Now lets make a mess. Seal your fan to the grate with some silicone by putting a bead along the outside edge of the grate. Install your fan to the grate and tighten the four bolts. Whipe off all excess silicone.

You can attach your flange to your elbow with PVC glue, but that stuff is strong and you wont be able to save your flange if you need to make adjustments. I just use silicone. It will allow me to rotate the elbow if needed

Now your ready to install your assembly into your grow room's plumbing. Every grow is different, so I can't tell you how to plumb it through your wall. I just used a male adapter fitting stuck through the hole in the other side of the box. Time to smoke a fatty and marvel at your genius. :yay:

I hope this has added to your options when it comes to mounting a blower or fan. I have seen grates that will fit large blowers at a fraction of the price of the hydro store.


Now to attach it to the wall:


For a thick wall of more then 2", just cut a piece of 4" PVC pipe about 2" longer then the thickness of your wall. Drill your wall so your pipe fits snug to the hole. Place your pipe through the wall, allowing an inch or so to hang out on each side. Glue an elbow on to each side, pushing the elbows against the wall while the glue dries. Calk or silicone any gaps.

For a thin wall made of wood. Drill your hole so the small end of a 4" male adapter (no threads) fits through snug. Stick the male adapter through the wall and glue an elbow onto the other side. Calk any gaps.
Some pictures below might help explain it better:








Or like this:

Peace, R.

Edited by Rumpleforeskin, 03 August 2014 - 09:09 PM.

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Replies (88)

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Posted 31 July 2006 - 08:39 PM

Nice.Good detailed guide:hello:

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Posted 31 July 2006 - 10:02 PM

Hey man what a great idea that is!

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Posted 08 November 2006 - 05:24 AM

awesome idea i need something like this however how did u wire the fans electricity if not hooked up to a comp mother board??

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Posted 09 November 2006 - 05:55 AM

Any 12V converter will work (.3amps or more)

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Posted 20 January 2007 - 11:33 PM

I like hunting electronic and general surplus stores were items like this are less than $1. I scavenge everthing. If I can't build it.......I don't want it. Rumple you seem the same. I would really dig sitting and shooting the shit with you. Over the years I've built everything imaginable. From freezedryers to isomerizers. Everything in between. Its hard to find good conversation these days with the masses being mentally disabled........barring Grasscity folk. You be safe out there my brother.

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Posted 21 January 2007 - 05:30 AM

I tried to build my own water chiller out of a dorm room fridge. That idea did not work out at all **why am I telling you this?**


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Posted 23 January 2007 - 03:08 AM

you should go into more detail of '' WHY YOU PAINT THE INSIDE OF THOSE ELBOWS'' a newbie, may overlook a most important aspect, because it wasnt truly highlighted..

hed be wondering why light travels down his pipe, because he forgot to paint the inside elbow!!!;)

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Posted 23 January 2007 - 10:03 AM

Thanks Chicken, your right about the paint. Sorry I missed that.
You fixed it for me.
Peace, R.

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Posted 27 January 2007 - 06:28 PM

+rep thanks alot for putting this up!

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Posted 27 January 2007 - 08:35 PM

hey man
thats a great idea, i think ill ad one like that to mine, the dryer hose is kinda a pain in the ass, falls every time i move the light .

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Posted 31 March 2007 - 06:08 AM

+Rep... Man great step by step guide... I know I am a little late to the post... but I am now thinking of adding something similar in my closet... What kind of paint did you use to paint the inside of the elbow... Im a newb.. I cant tell where you painted and why??? Thanks...


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Posted 01 April 2007 - 07:12 AM

Use what ever kind of paint you have handy. I used black primer spray. White will allow light to travel around bends. If left white the light will leak out. You can use black pipe. Black pipe works great. I like everything in my grow to be white of silver.

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Posted 01 April 2007 - 09:21 AM

Great guide, Rumple :). I'm setting up a grow room this next week, using axial fans for venting. +rep

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Posted 30 August 2007 - 03:33 PM

nice man, this will help. THANKX for the post

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Posted 29 September 2008 - 11:26 PM

How did you hook up that fan? I have a computer fan but no idea how to hook it up

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Posted 30 September 2008 - 12:43 AM

Go to radio shack and bring the fan in with you and ask the guy there to find you an A/C adapter for it.

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Posted 30 September 2008 - 09:24 AM

Yeah, like Jim said.

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Posted 08 November 2008 - 08:30 PM

If you want to get wicked DIY on the fans, you could adapt a power supply from a computer to run them. It helps to use a PS with a switch or to wire it into a switch because the fan will be hard wired.

To rig up a power supply so that it can be on without a motherboard you need only to find the green wire in the 20/24 set of wires that usually plugs into the motherboard and connect it with any of the black wires. Then connect the red and one of the black wires of any of the 4 pin molex connectors and you're good to go.

If you want to get fancy you can open up the PS and cut all the wires apart from the ones in use real short and then close it back up. Makes for a cleaner look.

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Posted 08 November 2008 - 08:50 PM

Yeah, you could use a 300Watt PC power supply to run the 12volt fan that only requires .5 amps. Or just use your cell phone charger. I know what one I would use.

Good try MacGyver

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