3D Printable USB Air Purifier / Fumes Extractor




The purpose of this project was to design a 100% printable structure that allows to easily change filters and it works in a desk (compact and powerful USB device).

This air purifier can be used as fumes extractor (for soldering) or simply as air purifier. By changing the kind of filter you will get different results.

In this instructable I use 2 activated carbon filters. But it works well with a HEPA filter and a carbon filter (one for each drawer).

All designed in Fusion 360.

Browser view and project download

Step 1: What You Will Need

3D Printer or a friend with a 3D printer or even a 3D printing service.

12x12 cm USB fan (or a 5V Fan and a USB plug)

13x13 cm Activated Carbon Filter or Hepa Filter (or other) 12x12cm and 1cm height.

4 M4 50mm bolts and nuts

4 M4 30mm bolts and nuts

Soldering iron

Electrical Wire

Step 2: Print the Parts

First of all, this was the only PLA that I had available for this project. Nice sweet and anemic salmon color... Sushi style!

You will need one of each parts except for the drawers, you will need 2 of them.

1 x BODY.stl

1 x FRONT.stl

1 x BACK.stl

2 x DRAWER.stl

My printing method was as shown in pictures, but you can change it and find a better printing solution (and you can share it in comments - thank you in advance :)

I've only used supports in BODY.stl and for the holes in FRONT.stl.

My printing parameters:

2 outside layers with 0,5 nozzle

0,2mm height

5 top and lower layers

7% to 10% infill

60mm/s printing speed

Step 3: Prepare the 12x12cm Fan

As my fan came with the USB installed, I had to cut it and solder after the fan installed. This is because you need to pass the wire through a hole designed for it.

So, cut, wire and solder.

Step 4: Install the Fan

Now that you have your wire bigger (mine have 1m long), pass it through the hole and use 4 M4 30mm bolts to screw the fan to the body.stl (notice the fan air flow!).

You have a gap between the body.stl and back.stl so you can have a nut in (as shown in pictures).

Solder the USB plug to the wire.

Step 5: All Together Now!

Assemble everything.

Insert the nuts on the nuts holes.

Stack the 3 parts and screw it all with the M4 50mm

Step 6: Drawers and Filters

Insert both filters, one in each drawer .

Insert each drawer in the body (as shown in pictures).

Front drawer faced back and back drawer faced to the front (this avoids to get a filter jamming the fan).


Plug it to your laptop or any other USB source and enjoy it.

Any ideas or suggestions are very welcome.


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    27 Discussions


    2 years ago

    Nice! Simple and elegant!

    How did you link the 3D model viewer to the Instructable? ( Sorry I'm a VIRGINstructable and new to this :)


    2 years ago

    Not sure if this got posted. Sorry for duplicate if it is.

    I have a question about the STL file. I can print the trays separately without a problem, but I cannot seem to get the body to ungroup into its component parts for printing. Am I missing something? Suggestions? Thanks!

    1 reply

    Reply 2 years ago

    Hi mbates5!

    The body it's single piece. You don't need to ungroup anything. Print it as it is. You will need supports (as shown in pictures): https://cdn.instructables.com/F68/BQ2U/J0COLAQW/F68BQ2UJ0COLAQW.LARGE.jpg and https://cdn.instructables.com/FTF/AIG7/J0COLAVD/FTFAIG7J0COLAVD.LARGE.jpg

    You have to print the font, body and back one time, and the drawer two times. Then assemble them in the same order. After assembling the 3 pieces, one drawer will fit between the body and front and the other drawer will fit between the back and body. I hope it helps.


    2 years ago

    This seems the right place to post a warning: There is someone selling fake activated charcoal filters on eBay. Example: http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/10PCS-Black-Square-Unive... The headline/description ends in a weird character. Whoever is doing it has tons of listings under different accounts with different ending characters.

    These are much larger than the genuine 13cm square ones. I bought some, got suspicious and tried to measure their electrical resistance (carbon will conduct, in fact the filter pads can be used as crude weight sensors - compressing it reduces its resistance). No conduction at all in the fakes.

    1 reply

    Reply 2 years ago

    Yes. This is true and a problem. There are some fakes HEPA filters selling on ebay too. You have to be careful when buying them.

    The link in this instructable are real carbon filters, tested by me. I got electrical conduction from one end to the other (1/4). You can even remove the charcoal from the sponge with your nails. The hard thing is to know if the charcoal is really activated (and the activation method)...

    There is also a large discussion about activated charcoal filters duration. From 3 days to 3 months, I've seen it all...

    Well that could be a totally different instructable ;)

    The point here is to have a good 3d printed structure that allow you to insert any kind of filter you want, with any kind of fan (with the size limitation, but you can always scale it ;)

    Anyway, thank you for your warning.


    Reply 2 years ago

    Less than 10€ with fan.

    It will depend on how much you filament costs.


    2 years ago

    Have you used this to extract 3d Printer fumes? If so, how'd it work?

    5 replies

    Reply 2 years ago

    This is a great design, thanks for sharing!

    I've been looking at various solutions to managing the fumes from 3D printing. The challenge is that some of the particulates are extremely tiny. So far my, limited, research is finding that we need a U15 HEPA filter to catch those particles, which are hard to find and require a pretty hefty fan. I've since changed my approach and will be putting my printer in an enclosure and venting outside with an window adapter kit for portable AC units.


    Reply 2 years ago

    I just opted to take the whole thing outside on the porch :).....


    Reply 2 years ago

    This design is a table air purifier. You could use it near your printer but I think most of the fumes will dissipate thought the room before being catch by the extractor.

    This fan is silent and it works good in a long run.

    If you change the fan to a more powerful one, maybe you can extract some fumes from you 3d printer. But the idea to catch most of a 3d printer's fumes, is to do it near the fumes source, or else, near the nozzle.

    I'm working on a easy to print fumes extractor solution for 3d printers using 2 fans, but it is only an idea for now.

    This extractor works very good to clean particles in a room. It works good extracting fumes from anything nearby (like a solder iron). But I don't thing it works efficiently as a 3d printer fumes extractor.


    Reply 2 years ago

    I would be very interested in the easy to print fume extractor for 3D printers.


    2 years ago

    I have bad issues with dust in my house most so in the room with my computer would this catch some of the dust before it gets where it shouldnt ?

    2 replies

    Reply 2 years ago

    Of coarse it will catch the dust you want it to just make sure the filer area is sufficient and the airflow is good you don't need hundreds of cubic feet, but you do need it filtered properly then make sure you have some additional cool air aimed at the nozzle (you may want to separate that! +print a special funnel nozzle for this. )


    Reply 2 years ago

    I'm sure it will catch some of the dust. I don't know if it will catch the quantity you need ;)

    Always remember: you can increase the fan's power and catch more dust and fumes, but it will make more noise. The fan I've used in this project is absolutely silent. So you can't say if it is working or not. Only that way I can have it near me.