Best Fabric for computer dust covers?

G'day folks,

I need to get 200 computer covers made for my network. The environment is a dusty one so I need a fabric that will keep out fine dust as well as be durable as I expect my IT technicians to cover the computers every night. Has anyone had experiences with this or would like to recommend a good solution?



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ECNSSMTConnect With a Mentor Commented:
thinking about static electricity; the specific time it becomes harmful is when its discharged on the components themselves, if there is a discharge onto the plastic (or metal) housing it is of no consequence.  I can't imagine a situation where static charges are built up to the point where everything is zapping everything else.  This would imply that during a work session someone has the potental of damaging a computer or one of its components.  

CRTs would be the primary source of static electricity; the screen can collect a decent charge while in operation.  An anti-glare screen with a proper ground would be most helpful in this situation.  

Any cover will do the trick; just for the sake of keeping sand / dust or any malevolent particles out.  During a work session on the computer, the particles (of sand) will fly in and can have a very negative effect on the equipment.  Cleaning the equipment on a periodic basis should minimize the potential for any damaging effect.  In my situation, depending on manpower vs the number of devices I'd at least have my equipement clean (blasted with compressed air) once every 1 to 3 years.  You may be doing this considerably more frequently than me.

shuboarderConnect With a Mentor Commented:
Good antistatic plastic covers are the best as unlike fabric material they will prevent dust from filtering through.

For example:
plastic preferably transparent.
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Probably with zips so that you can zip and unzip each side of the cover when you want.
I checked Ebay to see the kinds of dust covers that are being offered.

One seller makes them custom fit. His covers are made of soft polyester/cotton cloth material and are machine washable. Being machine washable seems to be an advantage.

Those made by Fellowes and sold at many stores are made of anti-static vinyl to protect against dust and spills

There are some made by Basic Needs Inc. Their's are made with nylon.

It sure looks like a variety of fabrics can be used and are safe for your equipment, keep out dust, and protect against spills.
If the environment is dusty by default, during normal operationing hours the dust will get in to the chassis just because of the internal fans.  The dust covers will be of superficial value as it will cover the computer from settling dust during the night hours.  You may want to augment the covering with a periodic cleaning with compressed air and you may want to try to reduce the airborn contaminants by way of an active filter like an air purifier (or run the air conditioner, central, wall and window airconditioners have filters, and depending on the level of contaminants, they will have to be cleaned out with frequency)  

We won't talk about conductive particles...

Also depending on the levels and types of dust; it may be a health hazard breathing the particles in; especially if you are in an industrial setting.

Sorry didn't mean to degress from the thread.

err digress not DEgree; duh
The other concern about covers is heat.

If the users fail to remove the covers, lack of air flow can cause failure due to over heating.

Also,unlike the old days, there is not a lot of stuff in today's computers that the dust will bother.  Hard drives are sealed, and all the other components are solid state.

Your best solution is to have filters in place over the power supply fans, then you can clean them without having to crack the cases...
Why not use fanless PC's ? no filter needed.  Only drawback is the cost, but it can give you some ideas
davistevAuthor Commented:
The 200 PCs are located in Khartoum, Sudan, Africa which is a desert environment. The dust is pretty fine and does get into everything. A major reason is cleanliness of the machines. But I am concerned about static. All PCS are HP 7600 small form factors less than 1 year old.

then your best option is antistatic plastic vinyl as posted in my first post.
I guess it could be worse and the equipment is "battle hardened".  I don't think I've ever been in a 0 humidity environment.
thanks for the points...
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