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Food Dehydrators & Paint Dryers


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This wo'n't be the "popular" vote but I was looking for a dehydrator and was skeptical of using a household appliance potentially capable of cooking food to dry paint.

So I bought a Dr. Dry Booth from Micromark based on a recommendation from George B

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Here's the review I posted on Micromark:

Great drying booth

I’m usually not one for writing reviews but this was an exception for an exceptional product.

I had toyed with the idea of getting a cheap dehydrator for painting but I was always afraid of potential issues with too much heat and having to modify racks so it would actually hold a model and/or parts. Not the case with Dr Drybooth.

Yes it is a bit pricey when compared to modified food dehydrators but the confidence of knowing the heat is adjustable as it the drying time, I am glad I spent the extra money for a quality product!

I put a thermometer inside and cranked the heat. It warmed up in no time and kept a constant temperature until the timer ran out NEVER going higher 110 degrees.

Simple to use right out of the box and it is everything that the description says it is and MORE!

Try it once is all I can say, you’ll be glad you did!

AND, the price has dropped since I bought mine.

For those that need a longer, larger dryer...Micromark has one of those too...

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Edited by BDSchindler
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On 9/2/2020 at 11:34 PM, BDSchindler said:

This wo'n't be the "popular" vote but I was looking for a dehydrator and was skeptical of using a household appliance potentially capable of cooking food to dry paint.

So I bought a Dr. Dry Booth from Micromark based on a recommendation from George B

.spacer.png

Here's the review I posted on Micromark:

Great drying booth

I’m usually not one for writing reviews but this was an exception for an exceptional product.

I had toyed with the idea of getting a cheap dehydrator for painting but I was always afraid of potential issues with too much heat and having to modify racks so it would actually hold a model and/or parts. Not the case with Dr Drybooth.

Yes it is a bit pricey when compared to modified food dehydrators but the confidence of knowing the heat is adjustable as it the drying time, I am glad I spent the extra money for a quality product!

I put a thermometer inside and cranked the heat. It warmed up in no time and kept a constant temperature until the timer ran out NEVER going higher 110 degrees.

Simple to use right out of the box and it is everything that the description says it is and MORE!

Try it once is all I can say, you’ll be glad you did!

AND, the price has dropped since I bought mine.

For those that need a longer, larger dryer...Micromark has one of those too...

spacer.png

I own the smaller one.  It stopped heating like 3 days ago, and I've emailed them about replacement parts etc but haven't heard anything back.  I've only had it for 11 months and probably used it 4 of those months like 2-3 hours every other day.

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On 9/2/2020 at 11:34 PM, BDSchindler said:

This wo'n't be the "popular" vote but I was looking for a dehydrator and was skeptical of using a household appliance potentially capable of cooking food to dry paint.

Not really.  Dehydrators are specifically design for low-temperature drying (dehydrating or removing moisture) of food -- never cooking.

I have a very simple one. It has a 40W heating element on the bottom, and it uses adjustable vents to control the air flow (and temperature). No thermostat, no electrical adjustments.  I bought it about 35 years ago, and over those years I probably have several hundred hours of use.  Still works well, and the temperature (I have a cooking thermometer in it to monitor temperature) has never gone over 120 degrees (because I adjusted the vents for that temperature). I usually use it around 110 degrees (again by adjusting the air flow vents).

Basically this is what could be achieved by sticking a 40W light bulb in a cardboard box with some holes cut in it for ventilation and air flow.  Can't get any simpler.

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9 hours ago, peteski said:

Not really.  Dehydrators are specifically design for low-temperature drying (dehydrating or removing moisture) of food -- never cooking.

I have a very simple one. It has a 40W heating element on the bottom, and it uses adjustable vents to control the air flow (and temperature). No thermostat, no electrical adjustments.  I bought it about 35 years ago, and over those years I probably have several hundred hours of use.  Still works well, and the temperature (I have a cooking thermometer in it to monitor temperature) has never gone over 120 degrees (because I adjusted the vents for that temperature). I usually use it around 110 degrees (again by adjusting the air flow vents).

Basically this is what could be achieved by sticking a 40W light bulb in a cardboard box with some holes cut in it for ventilation and air flow.  Can't get any simpler.

My guess is we have the same one.  These were marketed under a bunch of other names but I believe mine was a Ronco. They still sell them and if my ever quits I will buy another one.  I cut the grids out of one of the rings to get additional height.  Cut away 2/3s for them for a small shelf.   Been on my bench for about 30 years as well. I also use it to heat rattle cans.  I just keep the Tamiya primer in there and add whatever color I am going to spray when I use it. Zoom in on Angle Zoom. Ronco - 5 Tray Food Dehydrator - White.

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My only suggestion on Dehydrators would be to get one with adjustable heat ranges. I have found out the hard way that many of the older plastic models had a lower temp at which it would start to change shapes. I lost most of the interior and the dash from an AMT '57 Bel Air done in the brown plastic. Best to go at a lower temp for a longer time kind of like a good steak.  

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3 hours ago, espo said:

My only suggestion on Dehydrators would be to get one with adjustable heat ranges. I have found out the hard way that many of the older plastic models had a lower temp at which it would start to change shapes. I lost most of the interior and the dash from an AMT '57 Bel Air done in the brown plastic. Best to go at a lower temp for a longer time kind of like a good steak.  

I like the Dr Dry Booth, and at that price it is very tempting to buy it, as I really like that front loading, without have to fidgit with rack height al the time, and leave the bodies on the paint stands etc. 

If you have one with no thermostat , (like I do as my wife found one unused at a garage sale I believe) and the temp cannot be reduced to the 105 to 110 as it is, you can use one of these to adjust the element if the vent holes are not enough. As others have said, I use a candy thermometer to see the temp where the parts are. 

Philmore 30-10194 AC Plug-In Dimmer Switch Light Lutron, (can be had for just over $10) or use a Dremel rheostat if you have one. 

Philmore 30-10194 AC Plug-In Dimmer Switch Light Lutron - SPECIAL!!!

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6 hours ago, Pete J. said:

My guess is we have the same one.  These were marketed under a bunch of other names but I believe mine was a Ronco. They still sell them and if my ever quits I will buy another one.  I cut the grids out of one of the rings to get additional height.  Cut away 2/3s for them for a small shelf.   Been on my bench for about 30 years as well. I also use it to heat rattle cans.  I just keep the Tamiya primer in there and add whatever color I am going to spray when I use it. Zoom in on Angle Zoom. Ronco - 5 Tray Food Dehydrator - White.

Similar design, but not identical.  I don't recall where I bought it. It was likely one of the online cooking gadgets catalog, and I ordered it by mail (pre-Internet times). There is no brand name on it.

I also cut out the trays from all the intermediate sections to clear enough room for car and truck bodies.

Pete-workshop-2.jpg

It is sitting on the shelf, with a cooking thermometer stuck in one of the vent slots.

Edited by peteski
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18 hours ago, Modelbuilder Mark said:

I like the Dr Dry Booth, and at that price it is very tempting to buy it, as I really like that front loading, without have to fidgit with rack height al the time, and leave the bodies on the paint stands etc. 

If you have one with no thermostat , (like I do as my wife found one unused at a garage sale I believe) and the temp cannot be reduced to the 105 to 110 as it is, you can use one of these to adjust the element if the vent holes are not enough. As others have said, I use a candy thermometer to see the temp where the parts are. 

Philmore 30-10194 AC Plug-In Dimmer Switch Light Lutron, (can be had for just over $10) or use a Dremel rheostat if you have one. 

Philmore 30-10194 AC Plug-In Dimmer Switch Light Lutron - SPECIAL!!!

Thank you for the info on the rheostat.  With this I may be able to again use my dehydrator without fear of melting bodies and parts.  

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22 hours ago, Pete J. said:

My guess is we have the same one.  These were marketed under a bunch of other names but I believe mine was a Ronco. They still sell them and if my ever quits I will buy another one.  I cut the grids out of one of the rings to get additional height.  Cut away 2/3s for them for a small shelf.   Been on my bench for about 30 years as well. I also use it to heat rattle cans.  I just keep the Tamiya primer in there and add whatever color I am going to spray when I use it. Zoom in on Angle Zoom. Ronco - 5 Tray Food Dehydrator - White.

That looks exactly like mine....in use from the early 1990's. I cut the floor out of one ring. $10  very well spent. 

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11 hours ago, espo said:

Thank you for the info on the rheostat.  With this I may be able to again use my dehydrator without fear of melting bodies and parts.  

Glad I could help with some useful info. Just grab the candy/cooking thermometer from the kitchen, toss it in, where your model parts would be sitting, close the lid, and experiment with the rheostat dial until you get the temp you want. I usually go for 105-110. Once you get it right, I put a tic mark on the dial for future reference. 

Edited by Modelbuilder Mark
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