Bulb syringes, also known as nasal aspirators or snot suckers, can be useful in the shop. A year or two ago when I bought a new fountain pen from Goulet Pens, I really liked their tip (via YouTube) about how to use a bulb syringe to flush out ink converters. I swapped colors in some of my older cheapo pens, and a bulb saved me a LOT of time manually filling and flushing the converters.
Since then, I used my bulb syringe for a few other things. They don’t really work well as blowers, but they can be convenient for flushing out crevices and specialty parts with water or other fluids. I don’t think I have ever used a bulb syringe for a sucking-up task, aside from trying to decongest our newborn’s nose, but I’m sure I will eventually think of something.
Bulb syringes are quick and easy ways to squirt a little water onto wet/dry sandpaper as well, and things like sharpening waterstones. There are other ways to squirt a little water here and there, but as long as I have a bulb around in my tool box, I’m going to use it.
Bulbs are priced at about $2.50 to $5, depending on where you buy them. You can typically find these at pharmacies, and of course online.
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I typically use my tool box-dedicated bulb syringe for squirting water with control and precision, at least for tasks that don’t require me to step up to a syringe with applicator needle. If you’ve used these in your shop, what types of things do you use them for? If you have never considered bulbs for shop use, what could or would you use them for?