After years of trial and error, hardware store visits, plumbing purchases, design iteration after design iteration. I have found a way to get consistently distributed fog, that inherently is low lying (no ice needed) in an outdoor environment. This system is intended to be modular, where you apply the basic concept and its configurable to your needs.
How-To Video Coming October 2021!
Vinyl Tubing (1" ID x 1 1/4" OD --or-- 1/2" ID x 5/8" OD... I use the brand "HYDROMAXX" for Black Vinyl Tube and "Lxpercy" for Clear Vinyl Tube)
Galvanized Landscape Staples (1-in x 6-in)
Fog Distribution Mounts, Adapters and Diffusers (3D Printed... See 'Fog Distribution Links' below for details)
Split Top Storage Bin
Fog Machine 500w-700w (To Get more consistent fog 2 fog machines are needed)
Everything custom in this post around Fog Distribution is publicly posted Open Source (CC BY-NC-SA) so people who have the resources to 3D print these parts can (Cults3D / Thingiverse). I also offer all the parts on my Etsy page and do offer coupons for people that take the time to read my wiki or my Etsy profile (10% off $50 or more coupon... "10PERCOFFORDER").
50MM X 15MM BLOWER TO 5/8-IN VINYL TUBE ADAPTER MOUNT (Cults3D)
FOG DIFFUSER TO 5/8-IN VINYL TUBE ADAPTER (Cults3D)
FOG DIFFUSER TO 5/8-IN VINYL TUBE ADAPTER (PLATFORM BASE) (Cults3D / Thingiverse)
Its pretty simple with how this system works. Fog is pushed into a chamber... personally I am a huge fan of split top bins (you never loose the lid), plus they seal pretty well to trap in the fog… then a blower fan in the chamber pushes the fog through vinyl tubing to a diffuser. The diffuser then slowly releases the fog. If your system is designed right in terms of pressures you will get a natural low lying fog due to the fog cooling as it travels through the tubing... the low lying fog was a total accident, it was something I wanted but did not expect it without some sort of extra cooling!
Some things you should know when designing your system.
You want to have negative pressure in your system. Positive pressure will cause your fog to be more noticeable as it exits the diffuser. AKA you want more diffuser area than the area of the inner diameter of the hose. You will then get super creepy fog that disperses from your diffuser outlets.
Most of the adapters and diffusers I have designed have holes on the bottom of the devices. That is to relieve fluid build up in the lines. You are essentially pumping a mist through the tubing. I learned that unless you want to go out with an air compressor and blow your lines out every 5ish days by simply giving areas for the fluid to seep out it lowers the regular maintenance of your system. To give an idea of how much fog fluid I push through 8 fog machines... 20 gallons in 30 days.
Calculating your area vs the diffuser output is important. Below you will find details on the vinyl tube and diffuser output area in square millimeters. In terms of ratio of tube area to diffuser output you want to have at least a 1:1 with a max of 1:1.1 tube area to diffuser ratio. If you can not achieve that ratio with a run either you will have to deal with a more aggressive output or if you have the ability to slow you blower fan down to reduce the pressure in the line you will achieve the same.
For the 3D printable parts that I have posted the 1/2-in tubes are designed around a 18cfm blower fan and the 1-in tube around a 38.5cfm blower fan. Further details will be posted in October 2021 around the 1-in line with the higher CFM and the output ratio it can handle.
Just like in the diagram above you need a chamber to push the fog into for distribution. I am a huge fan of split top bins but really any storage bin that can relatively seal the fog in will do. (Ignore the ice below, this was a bin I originally built as a fog chill that was later converted to be used as a fog distribution chamber)
Your bin might be swiss cheese when you are done but with a purpose. You will need 3 types of holes in your chamber... 1. Holes for the fog machines to push fog into the chamber. Use 1-1/2in PVC tube to connect the fog machine output to the inside of the chamber. Use a tube of silicone to hold the PVC in place as it goes through the opening in the bin. Make sure you place the holes at the right height 2. Smaller Holes in the base of the bin that will drain any fluid build up. 5mm (3/16in) holes are perfect size and placement is best in corners and low points. Depending on the size of bin you want 4-8 holes. 3. Holes that your vinyl tube can pass through. These holes you want to be big enough to pass the tube through but small enough that you don't loose a ton of fog. Using a step drill bit is ideal to getting the right size.
This step is pretty straight forward... you are going to place your blower fans into the chamber, run the vinyl tube through the holes previously drilled and hook the vinyl tube to the blower fan adapter. Then plug in your fan's power supply(s).
Again, this step is pretty straight forward... Connect your diffusers and adapters as you see fit to the vinyl tube that is running out of your chamber. That completes building the system.
Every application will vary so plan before you build and even do some proof of concept for what you are trying to accomplish. This has been an application 3 years in the making with a lot of trial and error.
Please reach out to me on twitter (@malamaker86) if you have any questions or to share your build!