Sunday, January 24, 2010

Dust. Collected.

While I'm really itching to start a project, (I've got several pending) I have a tick list of workspace things I need to get finished before I get rolling. My bench was an important step, it's nice to finally have a permanent place for all my hand tools - I've never had that before. I built a tool board for chisels & planes, and was starting to build a row of little cubbies for misc. bench crap when I was forced to change directions. I was rough milling some mahogany for said cubbies when my allergies got the better of me. I've always had mild allergies but over the last few years they've gotten considerably worse. Dust, smoke, stuff like that can stuff me up for days. It sucks.

Anyhow, I bought this 2hp cyclone dust collector almost a year and a half ago but never set it up. Right now my machines are set up in my little garage but initially I thought it might be temporary, I hoped to convert one of the numerous outbuildings into a larger, more functional space for a shop. I figured I would just hang on before setting up the dust collector. I didn't want to run all the ducts and whatnot just to pack up and move. It so happens though that my garage has turned into an adequate space for now, and I doubt if I'll move out of it anytime soon. A couple weeks back I finally bit the bullet and started setting up the cyclone.

I hummed and hawed over a location for the dust collector, as it has quite a large footprint. Finally I decided to set it up outside. It's less than ideal, but it's quieter out there and doesn't take up any shop space. And besides, 'less than ideal' is beginning to be my motto!

Obviously I'll have to build an enclosure around the dust collector before it starts raining in the spring. For now I throw a tarp over it when not in use. Duct shopping proved to be a frustrating experience. Initially I looked at normal HVAC ducts and it looked like the duct work was going to cost more than the dust collector! Eventually I found a company in Edmonton that manufactures their own ductwork and fittings, and it ended up being considerably cheaper. I gave up trying to find actual 'dust collection ducts', that shit seems to be a myth! Anyhow, I ran all 26 ga 6" spiral ($1.99/ft) and bought most of the fittings at Rona. I bought blast gates at Busy Bee.

The setup is pretty simple, the main is teed right off the machine. One line runs to the tablesaw and one goes across the roof, tees again, and down to a manifold that branches off to the bandsaw, jointer, planer, and a sweep. I capped the other side of the tee but hope to run it to my chopsaw and router table... eventually. I was dissapointed to see that my 'industrial' tablesaw only has a 4" collection fitting that only goes up to the shroud that covers the arbor, there's no actual dust collection for the cabinet itself. I guess we'll see how it goes.

I built a shroud for the underside of the bandsaw table from a side take-off, but it needs some tweaking. I want to hold it in place with rare earth magnets, so it can just be popped off for blade changes and table tilting, but the magnets I used weren't strong enough to support the weight of the hose. I'll get some bigger ones to try, but if they don't work I might have to think of something else. I guess I could just use some tie-wire, that's pretty farmer-ish though!


teal and gold said...

I wish i could put my dust collector outside, my neighbors wouldn't been happy. I'm interested to see what you do with the dust collection on the d&w.


Nick Brygidyr said...

wow im pretty jealous. my one stage dust collector is gonna die one day, i just know it, so i guess thats when i get myself a cyclone...and a new shop!

Aric Hartley said...

Hi Cody,

Where did you find the spiral at 1.99 a foot that's a pretty good deal. I would go to edmonton to pick some up.

Cody said...

Actually, I think maybe it was $2.99/ft. I'll check the invoice to confirm that. I do remember though that retail was $5.50/ft, so going straight to the manufacturer is definitely worth it. I got it at a place called ECCO Heating Products. I was pricing out ducts at an HVAC supplier and the order guy said 'I don't know why these cost so much, I think they're made here in the city', so I kept looking around and ended up at ECCO. Anyhow, there's two places in the city, north and south side. Where are you from?

jbreau said...

looking good cody.
how do you heat your shop? did you think about putting the filter cartridge inside so that you can get your warm air back?
did you get your saw stop yet? is that the one that doesn't have adequate dust ports, or is it your older saw still?

Cody said...

Damn, I never thought of that Jacques. Huh, do people do that? I have a little woodstove that heats my garage, but it's so full of holes it'll fall apart any day now, burning the whole works down!

Yup, I got a sawstop and I highly recommend it my short-fingered friend! I am a bit disappointed in the dust collection though, apparently the issue has been addressed on the new professional saw. It's still a huge step up from my old tablesaw though, which had more of a 'fall on the floor' type of dust collection.

Cody said...

Oh, I double checked my paper work, and the duct work was $1.99/ft.

jbreau said...

yup, some people have the air return going back in... i saw that in the tauton press book on dust. a pretty good idea. i like that you have the possibility of creating a big pile of dust outside. pretty nice setup.

Cody said...

Thanks Jacques. I wonder if there's any issues with extending the 8" hose that runs from the impeller to the cartridge filter? I'd have to triple the length of it to move the filter inside. That's a good thought though, I could probably minimize the enclosure around the collector if I did that, since there wouldn't be a filter to worry about getting wet.

How's your shop coming Jacques?

Aric Hartley said...

Hi cody thanks for the info I am in calgary but it's not that far to edmonton though it seems to be uphill all the way.