Some of the reactions that the chemist may use will just naturally smell bad. Usually if something smells bad then it's probably bad for the chemist to smell it. Some reactions are, by design, supposed to vent bad things that, when unchanneled, have nowhere to go but into the living room of the chemist. Sometimes there is no guarantee that a method will go as planned. There may be a mistake or unforseen side reaction and some of the most deadly shit imaginable can be evolved. That is why the chemist will construct the one thing that may end up saving her life: a fume hood.
In professional laboratories fume hoods are big metal boxes resting on counter tops and are connected by ducts to blower motors on the roof of the facility. The blower motor is constantly sucking the air from the hoods to the outside so that chemists will not be exposed to the vapors of chemicals they are working with inside the hood. The same precautions are taken by non-dead underground chemists.
A fume hood is constructed in the manner shown in figure 6. Strike drew the frame as being made of lumber but it can be made of rebar or, preferably, from PVC pipes and joints so that it can be assembled and disassembled with ease. The frame is enclosed with plastic drop cloths or any semiclear plastic sheeting. The front face of the hood is halfway covered with plastic while the bottom half is exposed to allow one to move objects in or out and to manipulate things. On top of the chamber is attached some clothes dryer duct or some such crap which is led to a leaf blower or blower motor. The exhaust from the blower is led away to the outside.
Although a leaf blower is probably way too strong it may still be adequate at its lowest setting. To insure that a correct airflow is being pulled the chemist holds a lit cigarette about a foot in front of the hood's opening and looks to see if the smoke trail is being pulled into the hood. If so, then the hood works just fine.
Many houses have outside-venting blowers over their stoves. Chemists in these situations can actually drape some plastic around their stovetop to make a perfectly adequate hood. However, chemists who live in apartments never, ever attempt any chemistry at all in their pads. Why? Well, not only do apartment stoves lack an outside vent; but to vent a constructed hood through a chimney or out a window with so many close neighbors living about is just plain stupid. It is also stupid in another very important way. If a chemist fucks up and blows herself up or starts a fire then she is not only harming herself but is also going to put a lot of her neighbors out on the street, in the hospital or in the morgue. No one making drugs has the right to jeopardize others in this manner. That is why drug making is always done in a house, barn, mobile home (watch out for tornados), submarine or cave.
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