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I would like to know what kind of mask is better for protection against soldering fumes and dust. And since I have glasses I think it would be troublesome to find appropriate protective goggles.

Are there goggles that are designed for people with glasses?

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  • \$\begingroup\$ @stevenvh re: incidentally deleted comment "possible duplicate - Are solder fumes bad for me?" is definitely a related question, but it doesn't touch the issue of goggles or masks, which seem important to Boris here. \$\endgroup\$ – Kevin Vermeer Sep 19 '11 at 10:01
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Kevin - That's why it's a possible duplicate. BTW, the answers to the other question also cover protection measures. \$\endgroup\$ – stevenvh Sep 19 '11 at 10:03
  • \$\begingroup\$ @steven - We're in agreement. I'm not sure if the upvoter of your comment or the two close-voters are in agreement with us, though. Close votes cleared. \$\endgroup\$ – Kevin Vermeer Sep 19 '11 at 15:05
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Boris - I've added a reference to eye protection to the title; solder fume protection typically focuses on inhalation. Also, the solder-mask tag is used for questions about the (typically green) PCB covering film that protects traces from solder, not a mask for your face. \$\endgroup\$ – Kevin Vermeer Sep 19 '11 at 15:11
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    \$\begingroup\$ Just close your eyes while soldering. \$\endgroup\$ – Olin Lathrop Sep 19 '11 at 16:24
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Use a smoke extractor, don't lick your fingers, smoke or suck solder. Wash your hands afterwards. Sweep the bench and dispose of any debris in a waste bin (or a hazardous waste system if you really really really care).

The smoke is essentially wholly fumes from the flux. Any hazards from the lead (if you use lead based solder) come from getting metallic lead into your body. The risks are very small indeed if you use even basic common sense.

Many solder fume extractors and some more.

Even something this simple works well enough for most purposes.

enter image description here

What sort of extractor you need depends on how worried you are about the affects of the flux smoke. I have occasionally used fans similar to the one shown but in most cases have done substantial hand soldering without any sort of fume extractor. Others would probably not consider soldering without one.

A small desk fan will usually be more effective than a room's ceiling fan. A room fan will disperse smoke to some extent but tends to blow air rather than to suck and the air stream is lower velocity than you will achieve with a desk mounted fan. Ideally you would exhaust via a filter but an unfiltered fan as shown which simply keeps direct smoke away from the user will greatly reduce inhalation.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ Can't i just use room's fan? \$\endgroup\$ – Boris_yo Sep 19 '11 at 12:43
  • \$\begingroup\$ Good answer, I'd like to add that the goggles are only to avoid getting splatter in your eyes if you desolder a wire that whips up and throws it at you, it's mostly harmless, as the water in your eyes cools the tin quickly enough that your eyes will be fine anyway, so if you are already wearing glasses you'll be fine. \$\endgroup\$ – dren.dk Sep 19 '11 at 12:50
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Boris_yo - What sort of extractor you need depends on how worried you are about the affects of the flux smoke. I have occasionally used fans similar to the one shown but in most cases have done substantial hand soldering without any sort of fume extractor. Others would probably not consider soldering without one. A room fan tends to blow air rather than suck and the air stream is lower velocity than you will achieve with a desk mounted fan. Ideally you would exhaust via a filter but an unfiltered fan as shown which simply keeps direct smoke away from the user will greatly reduce inhalation. \$\endgroup\$ – Russell McMahon Sep 19 '11 at 13:32
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I believe any fan system should be set up to suck the fumes through a filter, the harmful solids being deposited in the filter. The fume extraction input appature(s) or nozzle(s) need to be in close proximity to the soldering work in order to divert fumes from the operator, and any others.

Merely sucking or blowing the fumes with an ufiltered fan or system is simply sharing the fumes with your work collegues.

If a building exhaust fan system is also employed, a suitably dimensioned and filtered air intake must also be provded to reduce dust ingress.

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