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I have wasted a lot of money buying fog machines that do not last for longer than 2 or 3 days. I don't know if I'm doing something wrong or buying a crappy fog machine. So with that said, what is the best fog machine to buy? I'm want the fog to hug the ground, I know I can build a chill box but am looking at both options....also anyone have any tips to keep me from breaking my machines, if that is what I'm doing?
 
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have you tried making a dry ice machine?

I can't really attest to any good fog machines and I never made a fog chiller that produced any really good fog. If you're up for a little DIY here's a video for a dry ice machine. Create excellent ground fog. I've use dry ice and ultrasonic foggers the last few years. Thinking about making one of these this year on a larger scale.

https://youtu.be/xhZ_pn6cR7w
 

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I've long held the best bang for your buck fog machine is the 700W one at Spencers. I've owned 4, and the only trouble they ever gave me was when a downpour took out virtually everything I owned. They still work, but the timers only work manual these days, and the "universal" timers sold separately everywhere are not compatible.

Typically, I find it better to buy 2 of them than 1 BIG machine for general atmosphere.

400W machines just don't work well in my experience.

Now, if you're trying to put down LOTS of fog, or a dense blanket or something, it's go big or go home.
 

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I bought a VEI 960 6 years ago that is still going strong (though I have a 10 year old Spencer's that still works despite making terrible noise). I just empty their tanks every year and store them dry - so far so good.

I think if you get into $200 -$300 price range, you're more likely get something that will last multiple seasons. And at that price, you'll probably get remotes included, continuous modes, and DMX, so they offer better experiences
 

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Discussion Starter #6
My budget is as cheap as possible, but I'm willing to spend a good amount of money if it's worth the buy and I'm not just throwing it away.

Thanks for all of the input, definitely keep it coming, I'm sure I can sure use the help
 
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take a look at the monoprice fogger ... => http://www.monoprice.com/Product?c_id=115&cp_id=11505&cs_id=1150504&p_id=612312&seq=1&format=2

only $60 and comes with both a wired & wireless remotes! they're having a 15% off discount with code HOT15 ... shipping for me looks like $12

1200watts, so it has a good sized heater

although they're not my main foggers, i have a few as backups to my "real foggers" ...

btw, you can probably surmise, the wireless remotes are super convenient ... no more wired remotes & no more timers ... unless it's reheating, you can make fog anytime you want and not when the remote timer times out

amk
 

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A lot of people seem to like the Chauvet hurricane 1300/1301. They put out an inordinately large amount of fog for the price (20,000cfm). They can be had for $15oish or even lower if you catch a good price. There are tons of YouTube videos about them too. I've got one on the way for this year :-D
 

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I've always subscribed to the "I can't afford to buy cheap tools" theory and I bought a Chauvet 1100 four years ago. I clean it per the instructions on the Froggy's website every year and I've not ever had an issue.
 

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You'll see advice to store them wet and other advice that says to store them dry. You'll also see advice to clean them and to never clean them. I don't know what works best. I do have a question, though. For all of you who have fog machines years old, regardless of whether you store them wet or dry or whether you've ever cleaned them or not, WHERE do you store them?
 

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I've stored mine dry in a storage unit in inland California, though now for the past three years I have kept in the house with the rest of my electronics.
 

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take a look at the monoprice fogger ... => http://www.monoprice.com/Product?c_id=115&cp_id=11505&cs_id=1150504&p_id=612312&seq=1&format=2

only $60 and comes with both a wired & wireless remotes! they're having a 15% off discount with code HOT15 ... shipping for me looks like $12

1200watts, so it has a good sized heater

amk
I'd forgot about seeing them on their site a while back. Just ordered one because I threw my two junk pieces away last year.

I should probably just get a quality unit or 2 instead of these other throw-away units.
 

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The instructions on my ground foggers from Target said store dry, so guess what .... they didn't work the next year. First couple of years I left juice in them, no problem. So from now on I store my foggers inside in a closet with a bit of juice, just enough to keep the end of the line covered.

I found a Fogmaster 700 watt machine in the trash one day, & it has been a great performer so far compared to my 400 watt machines. I don't think I want to go higher on wattage due to not enough outlets to handle the higher usage.
 

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Meltyface.
1. Consider the Chauvet 1300/1301, if you have the budget pickup one of the monoprice units as well.
2. To store, pour the remaining fluid out of the tank. Leave it in the lines. If you can find an excuse to run them briefly every 3 months it will help.
3. Could you be losing machines frequently because you are using crappy fog fluid ? If so, stop it will kill good machines too. Get Froggy's or similar quality.
 

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Where did you buy your previous fog machines from? How big were they? Where did you get the fog?

Good fog isn't cheap

Pay for good juice

Pay for a good fogger

As for ground fog....where do you live. Ambient air temperature has a far greater effect on whether fog stays low or goes up. If you have cold halloweens, it's not really worth it becuase you won't know until Halloween eve. Also, wet the grass you want the fog to hug..

Don't buy a fogger that doesn't come with a set it and forget it timer.

The 700 W Spencers fogger that Unorthodox mentioned are great especially for individual props. I use them in my horses. I use a 1000w for my creep.

Being able to blanket the neighborhood is fun, but it sucks up juice pretty quick. Since I've migrated to timers only, I don't have to refill foggers or stand around waiting to push a button and now have the time to do other things on that very busy night.

After Halloween, I empty them and box em back up.
 

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Meltyface, if you have the money, buy a bigger, better, semi-pro to pro machine.
There is a huge gap in performance, quality and reliability between the cheap-o, sad little machines sold at all the retail stores, and a quality fog machine.
(this is said from experience - a couple of years ago I upgraded to a 3000w DMX machine from the little 400w and 700w foggers - I even had a 1000w machine that was good for one, whole, blasted season - what a waste of money)

Cheap is just that: you will get intermittent fog due to wattage (lots of reheat time on the small ones), and the internals are generally good for one or two seasons (just search Halloweenforum for fogger trouble threads).

With my current machine, I always have fog ready for when I want it (I like to do the "manual" thing on fog, as this machine will produce enough to become a safety hazard on my street - I've fogged street traffic to an almost complete stand-still before when it was running automatically).
The only downside is the power draw on this machine - due to idiotic wiring in my house, I have to run a 10 gauge extension cord from the backyard outlet to the front yard for just this machine, or I blow fuses.

I do fire this machine up a few times a year just to keep things fresh inside - I don't want to try my luck on a frozen pump.
 

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Meltyface.
1. Consider the Chauvet 1300/1301, if you have the budget pickup one of the monoprice units as well.
2. To store, pour the remaining fluid out of the tank. Leave it in the lines. If you can find an excuse to run them briefly every 3 months it will help.
3. Could you be losing machines frequently because you are using crappy fog fluid ? If so, stop it will kill good machines too. Get Froggy's or similar quality.
1. After a frustrating first year trying a fog machine last year and going through several machines from 400-900 watts with numerous failures, I ordered the 1301 today. I've got my hopes up again for success and a calm night.

2. Thanks for the storage tips, including "an excuse to run them briefly every 3 months". To keep it in good running order seems like a pretty good "excuse" to me. ;)

3. Although, based on what I've read, Chauvet says to only use their fog juice, I ordered some Bog Fog and Freezing Fog along with the machine. I'm going to try both with and without my attempt at a chiller.

Adding that to my first attempt at a AtmosfearFX Hollusion should make for an exciting or frustrating Halloween this year.
 
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