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117 Dust Collection Systems


This article is from the Woodworking FAQ Collection 2, by multiple authors.

117 Dust Collection Systems

From: wrg@ihlpe.ATT.COM (Garbe)
Date: 16 Dec 88 23:44:06 GMT

In response to an earlier query (my machine is unable to recall the
original message) about dust collection systems here is what I am

I too was tired of having my entire shop coated with sawdust (this
in spite of using - yes - a Sears shop "vac"). So I went shopping
for a "real" dust/chip collector. Without any real knowledge about
the subject I boldly bought a Grizzly dust collector (I got it on sale -
one of those deals you can't pass up). My only option was
whether to buy the 1hp or 2hp version (the 3hp seemed to be too large
even for me). The following figures show the approximate suction
power of these machines (these figures can be attributed to other
manufacturers machines of the same horsepower):

1hp = 600 cfm
2hp = 1200 cfm

Having once graduated from the school of "Overkill" I naturally went
for the 2hp model. After wiring the machine and an outlet for 220 volts
(and some assembly of the machine itself) I immediately put the machine
into system test. Wow! You have to see/feel 1200 cfm to appreciate the power.
In my opinion the noise level was just as awesome. So I proceeded
to install the machine in a closet under a stairway to muffle the noise.

Naturally that meant a lot of piping (i.e. to a jointer, radial arm
saw, router table, and sanding area). I am using 4" PVC pipe for all
connections because it is cheap and easy to work with. The "pros" use
metal pipe. I plan to wrap the pipe (in a long spiral) with wire to
siphon off any static electrical charge that might be generated by
the sawdust flowing through the pipe at high speed (I'm not yet aware
that static elec. is a problem but I think it will be). Besides piping,
I am building "hoods" for collection points at each tool location.
At this point it's worthwhile to note that each input point must have a
gate to control the air flow.

In addition, I noticed during my test phase that some fine dust penetrates
the exhaust bag (the top one on the two bag systems) - although I'm not
surprised given the amount of air that must be exhausted. So, I'm piping
the output of the machine to a separate containment area so that any
escaping dust will be confined.

If this doesn't sound like a lot of work your wrong. But at least
I'll have a dust free environment. By the time I get done with this
I will have easily doubled the cost of the machine - something to
consider when doing a deluxe/permanent installation.

Now for the interesting part. I really didn't need 2hp. Besides
being two powerful for my needs, it makes a lot more noise then the
1hp version. The 2hp model is capable of handling two tools (of
high chip volume) simultaneously. According to the "pro's" my highest
dust producer is my radial arm saw and that only needs 550 cfm (including
the factor for piping).

Who are the "pro's"?

358 Bishop Avenue
Bridgeport, CT 06610

1-203-336-0533 (in Connecticut)
1-203-336-0427 FAX

These guys have a complete catalog of products for dust collectors.
I ordered one elbow (they are very expensive - I think they deal
mostly with industry) and recieved a handy slide rule to compute
air velocity/pipe diameter/pipe length/etc.


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