Question about a dust collector

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Old 09-29-17, 05:25 PM
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Question about a dust collector

Hi everyone,

I'm preparing to be able to work on my basement during the winter. No problem with the workspace, I have a well insulated and heated double garage to work in. My concern is the amount of cutting that I'm going to have to do in a confined space. I've been searching locally for a used dust collector and came across what appears to be a pretty solid commercial unit. I was hoping for some feedback on the unit if possible but also, are there any recommended cleaning and maintenance routines that you can suggest before I have look at it. I have never owned one before in fact, I'm embarrassed to admit I'm not even sure how to empty the bags!

Here is a picture of the unit, it is a Master Machinery 3HP 220V.

Thanks!
 
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Old 09-29-17, 05:40 PM
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I have to say, I'm no Pro, but that's a heck of a machine and probably way overkill for your needs. Looks more like something you'd see in an active cabinet shop. Likely extremely noisy as well.

A serious woodworker friend had a nice setup, single bag with some sort of fine dust filter, remote control, quieter than a shopvac and his work area was spotless. It was hooked to his cabinet saw, planer, joiner, miter saw and drum sander (all his stationary tools were Jet and Powermatic) and the dust collector got it all even on 20 and 30 ft runs.
 
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Old 09-29-17, 05:46 PM
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That looks like an excellent collector.

I have a buddy that does a lot of wood work in his basement and even though he has gone to extreme effort to seal off the room he still says that dust throughout the house is evident when he's working.

He's going to get the dust collector, his is a cabinet style, moved outside which should help.
 
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Old 09-29-17, 05:54 PM
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Interesting comment about the noise, I hadn't thought of that. A majority of the cutting that I'll be doing is sheets of MDF. That stuff produces such crazy fine dust it's incredible. Here are a couple of other units that I had run across but was concerned that a 110V motor wouldn't have the oomph. Funny thing is the commercial unit is selling for $150, the other two are at $300.
 
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Old 09-29-17, 08:00 PM
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No matter what dust collector you get I would HIGHLY recommend adding an inline cyclone separator! Even fine dust will get dumped into a garbage can instead of making it to your collector. No changing of bags. I have a Dust Deputy for my shop vac and it will even separate drywall dust from the air!

One other thing suggest is to make sure to have the dust collector in the same room as where it is pulling the air, or at least have a easy path back to the shop. Otherwise you will be removing the heated air from your shop.
 
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Old 09-29-17, 08:28 PM
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The common complaint i see from woodworkers is that the bags don't catch the fine particles, which then get blown into the air for your lungs to catch.
There are upgrade bags available, or pleated cylindrical cartridges that do a better job. These are expensive upgrades, however, but your lungs are worth it.

A 3600 rpm blower isn't quiet by any stretch but it's WAY quieter than a shop vac.

To protect lungs & ears some elect to place the blower in a small shed outside, or even just exhaust it outside via a portal. You waste some heat or AC but unless you run it for hours per day it might not make much of a dent in your bills.
 
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Old 09-30-17, 06:22 AM
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If you put it in a shed outside just install some type of return with some good quality filters on it to catch the fine dust. A dust collector like that will have a CFM rating of 1500 or more. That is a lot of air to be tossing outside. Plus it being in another room with no return will reduce its efficiency.
 
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Old 10-01-17, 10:08 AM
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This is all great input guys, thank you. It sounds like there will be upgrading to do regardless. Are the bags/filters universal? I think the unit is old enough that finding direct parts will be difficult. When you say costly, what are we talking? As you can tell, I am completely new to the idea of collection.

I get get what you’re saying about an out building unfortunately that won’t work in my situation. When you say vent outside, is there a vent port after the filters that I can pump outside?
 
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Old 10-01-17, 10:25 AM
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The top bags are the pass through for the air that the collector moves and are the "filters". The dust and bits fall into the bags below. My FiL always just heavy duty garbage bags for the bottoms and they worked very well. Just can be a challenge to replace them alone. You need 3-4 hands.

IMO that looks like a good unit for a cheap price. For $150 I would jump on it if it runs.
 
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Old 10-01-17, 01:32 PM
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Any recommendation on a cyclone separator? A quick google and I’m overwhelmed.

Going to have to “settle” for a smaller 110v unit. The big one first shown above sold on me. I’m thinking with an upgraded filter and this separator I should be okay.
 
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Old 10-01-17, 04:34 PM
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As I mentioned above, I use the Dust Deputy on my shop vac and it does a tremendous job separating the dust/chips. Oneida is one manufacture that has been in the cyclone separator biz for a long time. They also make a "Super dust Deputy" the performs the same function but for larger 4" machines. (My shop vac it 2") I think any dust collector will work well with a separator in line. Even a HFT one. They are about $200 or less if you use a 20% coupon
 
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Old 10-01-17, 07:28 PM
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My dust collector uses heavy duty plastic bags. To install bag I use blue painters tape to hold it in place before I put clamp on.
 
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Old 10-02-17, 08:12 AM
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I'm always dubious of the Chinese tools sold at Harbor Freight but there are some good deals there. The 2HP single-stage DC does get good reviews on the woodworking forums.

A cyclone separator like the Dust Deputy is a good idea for ANY DC but especially for a single-stage machine. Besides spinning out almost all the dust before it even gets to the bag it also catches chunks & screws that can damage the DC fan.
 
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Old 10-03-17, 10:32 AM
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Awesome guys, thank you. This has been a bit of an ordeal with the added pressure of a big snow fall last night. I need to get this taken care of.

I've zeroed in on a unit and what appears to be a stand up seller. Normally I wouldn't think twice about buying new tools but I don't see me using this more than this winter. Thank you for advice. I'm in Canada so sourcing a cyclone will be a bit of a challenge but seems worth the effort - here's an example of amazon outrageousness https://www.amazon.ca/s/ref=nb_sb_no...er+dust+Deputy.

A little searching and this seems to be a solid DIY approach that I may give try.
https://makezine.com/projects/cyclone-dust-collector/
 

Last edited by Gouie; 10-03-17 at 11:01 AM.
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Old 10-04-17, 07:44 AM
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I see you've lucked into some discussion of various types of separators--including the Thien baffle. There's a discussion group that takes their DC design & testing very seriously here.

A blog you might enjoy is at Woodgears (link is to his Thien test--there are many more DC versions he's built & tested). He's Canadian and has lots of very clever DIY ideas.

I built a Thien separator similar to the one you linked and can vouch that it works very well for such a compact design. The body is a section of 22" diameter concrete form I was able to buy from a supplier (by the foot). It sits on top of a Rubbermaid "Roughneck" garbage can. Picture is of the inlet & outlet before it was buttoned up by attaching the Thien disk to the bottom.
I've never had a Dust Deputy to compare it to but in general the comments I've read about the DD performance have been impressive.
 
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Old 10-04-17, 05:35 PM
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I think making your own separator is a great option. DIY almost always wins if you have the time.
 
 

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