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28 Dec. 2013

Woodworking dust collector filter bags,tool storage cabinet diy,rustoleum pro finisher wood filler,kinetic wood sculpture plans - Reviews

If your dust collector does a better job of distributing wood dust throughout your shop than actually collecting dust, a new dust bag could solve your problems. Baghouse filters need periodic replacement to maintain top performance and collectors depend on an exact fit to function properly.
Dust collection can be done with anything from a broom and dustpan to an elegant commercial dust collection system.
Government standards left hobbyists, the six out of seven small shop woodworkers, and small shop vendors that sell us our tools and dust collection with no standards or oversight except what we force with our purchases.
The first step toward catching the fine dust at its source is to use tools with good quality dust collection built in. We still need larger dust collectors and cyclones because vacuums do not move enough air volume to be good for capturing dust from machines that emit dust over a larger area. Properly sized vacuum filters that provide good filtering are expensive, plus they clog very quickly. Most will do like me and start with a cheap small garage vacuum then buy at least two more larger vacuum before they realize that getting a good vacuum is a must for good fine dust collection.
Dust collectors consist of a special material handling blower, motor, bag tree with collection bag, and filter.
There are two common types of separators used dust collection, "trashcan separators" and "cyclones" The trashcan separators use a special lid that fits tightly on a trashcan or other large drum.
In spite of what some would like us to believe dust collection cyclones are simple tanks with no moving parts and have been used for wood dust separation for over seventy years. My respiratory doctor already knew air cleaners are worthless for protection while you work because they take hours to get the air clean enough to breathe so you still need to work wearing a good NIOSH approved dual cartridge filtered respirator mask. In following up I decided that if I caught the dust at its source and just let my cyclone run, an air cleaner would not be needed. My bottom line with any dust collection system is does it capture and get rid of the fine, most unhealthy dust. Because small shop filters are not subject to Federal oversight or testing, most small shop firms rate their own filters. I now only trust filter ratings provided by an American Society of Heating, Refrigeration, and Air-conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) certified independent testing laboratory. Early dust collection systems used bag filters where the dirty air was blown into the bags and the bags were kept clean with a shaker that turned off the airflow for a bit and shook the bags out. Many still wrongly say that we must blow from the outside into our cartridge filters, but that is mostly a hold over from the days when cartridge filter manufacture required this approach. With most filters now equally coated and effective when you blow from either the inside or outside, you can build your filter setup either way. Most small shop dust hoods are poor quality, use too small of an inlet port, and will have to be rebuilt to protect, control, and deliver the dust. Dust collectors used in large commercial woodworking concerns are designed to sit outside and move enough air to collect from every woodworking machine running at once. Small shop dust collectors, often called hobbyist dust collectors, are downscaled versions of outdoor commercial dust collectors designed to move just barely enough air to collect sawdust and chips from one machine at a time. There are some significant differences between small shop dust collectors and commercial dust collectors.
Another important difference is small shop dust collectors move a large amount of air at a relatively low pressure. The most important difference between a small shop dust collector and a commercial unit is usage.
Most small shop woodworkers, me included, tend to buy a severely undersized dust collector after finding our shop vacuums are just not big enough. The huge cyclones we see outside of almost every large commercial woodworking facility are agricultural cyclone variations. Woodworking cyclones are engineered to maximize internal turbulence to break the airborne dust free and blow it away outside while gravity drops the heavier material. Small shop dust cyclones, often called hobbyist cyclones are almost all downscaled versions of the same outdoor commercial cyclones that are inappropriate for indoor use. Copying an outdoor commercial cyclone with high built in turbulence is just plain dumb as that high turbulence is only there to break the fine from heavier dust.
Sizing motors and blowers based on dust collector experience fails to provide the horsepower to power the cyclone leaving these units badly air starved. The woven fabric bags generally supplied by a machine’s manufacturer are, at best, a compromise. In an undersized bag (or typical OEM bag) the greater air pressure forces fine dust to penetrate the fabric’s fibers causing “blinding” and preventing the free passage of air.
Although there are only three basic types of baghouses - shaker, pulse, and reverse air – there are hundreds of different styles of bags. AFF manufactures all styles of replacement filters from a selection of fabrics suited to address specific applications. With most small shop woodworkers and small shop vendors knowing little to nothing about fine dust collection, small shop tool and dust collection vendors stayed stuck in "chip collection" technology. This means their designs carefully protect the fine dust from any air currents that could blow it away, route that fine dust to the tool hood for capture, and then use good hoods that effectively capture the fine dust and direct it for capture. Vacuums do an excellent job of cleaning up small areas and vacuums are the only way to get good collection and avoid some little known fire risks. Vacuums only provide good dust collection for tools engineered from the ground up with good fine dust collection built in, meaning the tool protects, directs, and delivers all the fine dust right to the vacuum connection before it can be blown away by air streams from our blades, bits, cutters, belts, motors, sandpaper, room air currents, etc. With no oversight except what we exercise with our purchasing decisions, most small shop vendors claim to sell fine filters but instead deliver undersized far too open filters. It also includes the connection ports on our machines and the dust collection hoods that actually capture the dust.
Trashcan separators then use some combination of three different techniques to separate off the heavier dust and chips. As shown in this animated graphic, cyclones are made up of just a few parts, an air inlet, an outer cylinder, an air outlet, and cone with dust chute that connects to a collection bin. Commercial woodworking firms and air engineers have long known the best and least expensive way to get rid of the fine dust is to separate off the heavier sawdust and chips with a cyclone and then blow the remaining fine airborne dust outdoors where it quickly dissipates and settles. I trusted what I believed to be reputable small shop vendors to provide a cyclone and filters that worked as they advertised. Sadly, to improve sales many disreputable vendors play filter rating games similar to the games they play in rating their blower performance. As vendors moved over to using more cartridge filters they were forced by early filter designs to flow the air from the outside in. If we blast an incoming stream of dusty air on a filter surface, that filter will soon become history at least where the air first hits. We should only filter when forced to do so by either local laws, very hot temperatures in air conditioned shops, or extreme cold where a radiant heater cannot keep up with air losses. A filter box makes deep cleaning of the filters easier and reduces noise, but at a cost of making normal cleaning harder and having to build a filter box. Yes, lots of people collect into cardboard and plastic drums, but we are going to be smarter than that! You can look at the dust hood examples (click here) for more information on building dust hoods that will pick up the dust at the source.
In looking at the CFM requirements table it is clear that larger small shop machines need 6" dust port connections or a pair of connectors typically a 5" and a 3.5". In most commercial dust collectors the dirty air after the bigger chips and blocks are removed by the separation ring goes up into a large bag filter. Unlike commercial units, most small shop dust collectors use a lower bag that is also a filter to help make up for the filters being so small in area. Most small shop woodworkers ignore fire and building codes and put our dust collectors inside. In spite of most moving half the air needed for good fine dust collection, these units work so much better than our shop vacuums that few of us realize we have a problem until someone gets ill or we buy a bigger tool that the small collector cannot keep up with. Dust collection firms have for over fifty years relied upon the extensive agricultural cyclone research to size and configure their cyclones to separate airborne dust from heavier material.
Not only is airborne wood dust unhealthy, larger facilities create potentially explosive dust to air ratios so it is important to separate off the airborne dust to avoid explosions. In an indoor small shop system we want to separate off that fine dust, not pay extra for the horsepower to break it loose then pump it into and quickly ruin our filters.
Worse, they continue to strongly sell their smaller motor powered cyclones that do not move enough air for even good "chip collection". Openings between the threads that are large enough to pass air efficiently also pass dust with equal efficiency. In an optimized filter, however, the dust-laden air escapes over a sufficiently large surface area, allowing the dust to enter, slow down, and fall, rather than being driven into the fabric. Singed felt allows a very thin layer of fine dust particles to collect and build on the surface of the bag. Baghouse filters vary in diameter and length from manufacturer to manufacturer, and from model to model.
Chip collection picks up the same heavy sawdust and chips we would otherwise sweep up with a broom. That machine has a hood that needs to be placed and shaped just right to control then capture the dust as it is made. Festool and a few others have shown that if we can totally capture the airflow all around the working area of a tool that even an oversized vacuum will provide good fine dust collection. The problem is at low dust collection pressures air is virtually incompressible, so any small opening acts like a partially closed water valve and kills our airflow.
With almost all small shop tools using older tool designs that have little if no fine dust collection built in, we need to modify our tools far more than is practical to get good fine dust collection with the airflows that vacuums provide.
The vacuum motor blower assembly normally is sealed on top of the collection tank, often with ball valve to shut off the vacuum if the bin becomes full of water or the unit falls over. They force dirty air to turn a sharp corner forcing the heavier particles to be slung off for collection. The ASHRAE standards require a filter when new to capture 99% of the particle sizes claimed at full airflow without any cake.


As cartridge filter technology matured, that stopped becoming necessary allowing blowing the dirty air either from the outside or from the inside. We also must have enough filter area to handle the volume of dust to keep the filter from too quickly plugging or failing. We can either stack the filters or put them side by side and blow the air into the center of the filters.
Be aware that a collection can that is too short or too close to a dust port will often end up with enough air currents inside that the fine dust will just blow out and into the filters. Also, the various Internet woodworking forums have many excellent homemade dust collection hoods in their archives.
Because the small shop industry remains in the "dark ages" in terms of only going after the same dust we would get with a broom, most small shop workers will have to upgrade their machine dust ports themselves. These filters are often made of very open weaved fabric or felt that lets almost all of the finest airborne dust sized about 30-microns, roughly a third the thickness of a human hair blow right through into the outside air. This is terrible news as most small shop dust collectors come with the very same wide open filtering material designed to pass almost all of the fine airborne dust right through. Moving about half the air needed for good fine dust collection lets far too much of the finest unhealthy dust escape capture also contributing to most small shops testing with dangerously unhealthy airborne dust levels.
The smaller the cyclone diameter the larger the blower needed to overcome the resistance and the better the fine dust separation. On average airborne dust makes up 15% by weight of the woodworking byproducts we collect, so virtually all commercial woodworking cyclones blow this 15% by weight of airborne dust right through. It takes about 1 hp larger motor and roughly 2" larger diameter blower impellers to get a big enough "bite" of air for a cyclone to move the same air volumes as a dust collector.
A tighter weave may trap smaller dust particles, but will also restrict airflow, creating backpressure and reducing suction substantially. By using the proper air-to-cloth ratio for your collector, it is possible to achieve filtration of dust particles down to 1 micron. This “dust cake” then does the actual filtering of subsequent dust blown into the bag and prevents the bag from blinding.
We can cross reference most filters or duplicate your sample to provide an exact match on baghouse filters. Without protection the odds are close to 100% that you and even those close to you will eventually develop some fine wood dust related health problems.
Government requirements forced large commercial woodworking facilities to leave "chip collection" behind in favor of fine dust collection in the late eighties.
Unfortunately, few tools come with good fine dust collection engineered in from the ground up. This also greatly slows the speed of the air in our main ducts leading to ducting dust piles and plugging. Our blades bits and cutters launch dust often at over 100 miles an hour but our dust collection systems only move air at about 45 miles an hour. The sucked air generally enters the side of the collection tank and is often directed to swirl around inside the drum causing a little cyclonic action that minimizes the amount of dust that goes to the filter. Similarly, games can be played by removing filters, using oversized hoses, leaving the collection bin off, etc. Also, woodworking makes so much dust and chips that buying a small vacuum means you spend lots more time emptying the vacuum. Almost all large commercial woodworking facility cyclones are agricultural cyclone designs that cause this incoming air to crash hard into the air already spinning inside the cyclone. Not wanting that to ever happen again I stupidly threw money at the problem letting the highest rated cyclone vendor configure my shop with their top of the line cyclone, filters, and ducting. Engineering practices rate filter performance when clean and new and rate filter resistance when the filter builds up a semi permanent cake of fine dust that lodges in the filter strands. Because filter testing is very expensive, most vendors pass on the ratings of the filter material they buy and do not independently test each of their filters except for HEPA filters that require each filter to be independently tested and contain a unique certification test number. Since the larger chips and blocks destroy cartridge filters, most vendors put in place a cyclone or other type of separator to protect their filters from material hits. We also must ensure we have ample filter area so that the filter does not add a lot of resistance which kills overall airflow. We need to ensure no airflow directly hits any filter material and provide clearance around the filter material of roughly the filter diameter divided by four. Be careful of the advice you get on these forums, much of what you will hear is from people who are still on their first round of dust collectors and so enamored that they will defend their relatively ineffective designs and systems nearly to the death. Unlike our commercial units that adjust airflow with pulleys, most small shop dust collectors bolt the motor shaft from a fixed speed 3450 RPM induction motor directly to a material handling impeller. As awareness of the dangers of long term fine dust exposure increased, many vendors of this equipment began offering finer bag and cartridge filters.
Sadly their dust collectors and cyclones are so bad most will not let our shops pass even easy air quality tests. As of late 2005 not one mainstream small shop cyclone vendor offered a 2 hp or smaller cyclone that moved the air needed for good "chip collection". The solution is to replace worn and ineffective OEM bags with larger, optimized felt dust bags. When the dust cake becomes heavy, it sloughs off the surface of the bag and leaves behind a thin layer to continue this self-cleaning process, thus the filter maintains high airflow and allows your collector to work at its full capacity.
If you do not care, then ignore all the rest and go buy at least a 1.5 hp dust collector or larger depending upon your shop size and ducting. With no similar requirements and no pressure from small shop woodworkers, small shop vendors continue to sell equipment that keeps the chips and heavier sawdust off the floor, but lacks either the needed airflow or filters to capture and control fine dust. The dust port then connects to either ducting or a flex hose that is large enough in diameter to move the needed volume of air. Most of us instead use small shop and older tool designs that need significant work to keep from spraying the fine dust all over before it can be captured. We see the result as our vacuums will not collect unless we get the collection nozzle right next to what needs picked up.
Sadly, when we started testing with our meters, we found all the major name ceiling mounted air cleaners came with filters that do a great job getting rid of the visible dust that ruins our finishes, but most freely pass the unhealthiest fine invisible dust. Unless you set up your cyclone system so the air coming out of the filters blows in a directed stream at close to ceiling height, what happens is the air creates a narrow racetrack between whatever gate is open and the cyclone filters without doing a good job of cleaning the rest of the air. That unit had even more airflow problems than my first, plus the filter soon self destructed as it needed cleaned constantly. This cake of dust does not normally go away with normal filter cleaning, so a new filter that starts will end up building about five times its initial airflow resistance. Unable to find any small shop certified dust collector bags and knowing that most bags have so little surface area that they need constant cleaning which exposes me to the very dust I must avoid, I personally use industrial 0.3-micron certified dust collection cartridge filters with a cyclone to protect those filters. At the bottom of the filters we make a container to capture the fine dust when it falls off the filters, plus equip this catch basin with a blast gate connected to a standard sized port. There have been some very funny, in a sad sort of way, wars on the forums as people get more concerned about addressing the fine dust. Most commercial dust collectors have multiple bags arranged into what is known as a bag tree. These fixed speed motors make it near impossible to adjust airflow, so most vendors build their dust collection blowers as a compromise.
These filters almost always start off doing a much better job and their much smaller fibers allow more airflow, but soon these filters fail.
Also airborne dust quickly breaks down as soon as it gets wet, so the preferred method for getting rid of airborne dust has been to vent outside since the 1920s. Most sized with 3 hp motors do not move the air needed for good fine dust collection at our larger tools.
I believe all small shop woodworkers should protect ourselves and those close to us from fine dust. As a result, much of the advice from fellow small shop workers and even small shop vendors is geared to collect the same stuff that you would get with a broom.
Air engineers fortunately already did most of the work to show us both what we need to do to modify our tools for good fine dust collection and how much air these modified tools will need to collect that dust.
Connecting smaller tool ports to a dust collection system is dangerous because the restricted air flows builds piles and plugging that the slightest spark can turn into a nasty ducting fire. Moreover, because most stationary tools leak dust careful testing by air engineers shows we need closer to 1000 CFM for effective fine dust collection at our larger and dustier tools to pull in the slow moving dust before it gets dispersed by normal room air currents. Filter makers provide one rating which tests the filter material when clean and new as required by ASHRAE and a second rating of the expected filtering when the filter is fully seasoned meaning it contains all the dust it can car through a normal machine shaking type cleaning cycle.
As a result ceiling mounted air cleaners do a poor job of cleaning our air and actually contribute to a build up of the unhealthiest fine invisible fugitive dust that keeps escaping collection. Moreover, a good air cleaner uses a small motor, meaning my dust collector would use more power and cost far more to run, plus is noisy.The meter tests were so bad I ended up selling my ceiling mounted air cleaner and instead made my own far more efficient unit.
At my vendor's advice I replaced their garbage internal cyclone filter with an even bigger and finer top quality filter than they offered.
This enables us to clean out our filters without having to take all apart or get a "dust bath" while cleaning. Because the filters on these units so quickly clog with a thick cake of dust most larger commercial dust collectors come with an automated cleaning system that either shakes the filter bags clear or uses blasts of air to regularly clean the filter bags. To keep their small shop dust collectors from moving more air than their motors were built to handle, vendors carefully size the inlets and outlets to restrict the airflow so an open air condition does not cause the motor to burn up. It also means that you should never reduce down a dust collector pipe to fit a small machine, but instead should use a shop vacuum on smaller machine ports because only a shop vacuum will have the pressure needed to pull ample air through the smaller port openings.
The finer filters clog far more quickly so need a much greater filter area or some way to separate off much of the dust before it can reach and clog the filters. In addition to the airborne dust cyclones also blow right through things like strings and long shavings that have lots of surface area. I know from personal experience that over time fine wood dust is very unhealthy and that small shop woodworkers get far more fine dust exposure than full time large facility woodworkers. This traditional approach makes for a very nice looking shop, but exposes you and yours to dangerously unhealthy levels of fine dust. Most of us use a blower built into either a dust collector or cyclone based dust collection system.


Because most of these tool designs use very large open areas that need a high volume of air for good collection, good fine dust collection often takes almost triple the airflow that it does to just collect the chips. Unlike our dust collector and cyclone blowers vacuums use much higher pressure blowers that can pull enough through our smaller tool ports to get good collection without these risks. This explains why our shop vacuums that on blow will stir and move dust all over our shops can only vacuum up dust up from a couple of inches away. It takes a typical small shop filter about a year to get fully seasoned during which time it spews fine dust all over. I rarely need a wet vacuum so went with a very good quality dry vacuum for my woodworking and picked up at a garage sale a small wet vacuum for occasional use such as cleaning out my air conditioner condensation pipes.
The blower housing outlet then directs the collected air and chips into a bag tree where it spins in a center separation ring.
A drop box simply runs a dirty air stream into a large enough volume that the airspeed drops below what can keep the larger particles suspended airborne or entrained as dust collection engineers say. Because filter material makers also give the filtering level on fully seasoned filters, many vendors claim that as their filtering level. Fire codes and building codes generally require commercial dust collectors to be placed not only outside, but in strong containment because fine wood dust when mixed with the right amount of air not only burns, it can explode violently. When confronted with the added overhead resistance of our tools, hoods, ducting, and filters, these restrictions leave these dust collectors running at less than half their maximum rated capacity. The cost to add an automated cleaning system is prohibitive and manual cleaning quickly wears these filters out. The heavier material gets spun to the outside of the cyclone and gravity pulls this material down to fall into a collection bin. Air trapped in the fast moving impeller slings out the sides out creating a very high suction in the center that keeps drawing more air in through the filter. It also explains why we have to move so much air to get good fine dust collection because it takes a lot of air to ensure pulling in the fine dust before normal room air currents disperse it.
Moreover, even though the trapped dust increases filtering, the trapped dust constantly migrates through turning most shop vacuum filters into dust reservoirs that badly contaminate our shops every time we use our vacuums. Although the most powerful and perhaps the nicest are the larger Festool vacuums, I instead recommend the slightly less powerful but still expensive big Fein vacuums with the cartridge filter. In theory this ring makes the heavier blocks and chips fall permitting only the lightest dust to go up into the upper filter. If I did not have a legal requirement to not blow outside, I would setup a wye with blast gates that would let me blow the air from my cyclone directly outside without filtering most of the time. I don't ever want my family or me again exposed to the under 30-micron airborne fine wood dust that causes maladies from allergies to cancer. There is roughly a twenty to thirty fold difference in how fine a filter will strain when "fully seasoned" versus new. Unfortunately, when a cyclone's dust bin gets full, all including pretty large blocks go right through the impeller then slam into the filters.
Worse, as these filters get caked with dust, the pressure increases enough to push the finest dust right through tearing open the filter pores. A cone too short causes the airflow to dip into the collection bin and suck the dust right out. In woodworking these odd shaped pieces make up just over 1% by weight of the material we collect.
Look at the Dust Collection Introduction followed by Medical Risks and Doc's Orders for more information.
Most small shop dust collectors and cyclones do not move enough air to amply collect the fine dust from our larger and dustier tools even after they are repaired with better hoods.
Older style trashcan and most small shop cyclones are designed to save us from having to clean our filters so often, and to keep blocks of wood, sharp chips, etc.
Caution, vacuum impellers cannot take material hits so never run a vacuum without its filter. Unless you replace the stock filter on most shop vacuums with a top quality fine cartridge filter, in spite of advertising claims our test meters show almost all vacuum filters freely pass up to 50-micron sized particles which turns our vacuums into "dust pumps" that keep the most dangerous fine dust circulating. Unlike the Festool units these do not need the expensive paper bags that constantly need replaced and still produce far more pressure than almost any other small shop vacuum. In practice the airflow inside a dust collector is so violently turbulent that chips and even small blocks constantly crash into and frequently poke holes into our filters. Since average wood dust is about 85% heavier sawdust and chips with about 15% by weight made up of light airborne dust, makers of trashcan separator lids often claim close to 100% chip separation meaning almost all heavier dust and chips. The less honest vendors make things worse by making up their own filtering claims and forgetting to include the needed airflow information. Between frequent cleaning, holes punched by flying chips, and pushing the fine dust right through, even the better cartridge and bag filters rapidly open to pass most airborne dust.
A cone with walls either too wide or too narrow creates a wandering vortex like the bottom of a tornado that sucks the separated dust off the walls then pushes it right into our filters. As a result most commercial woodworking cyclones end up being about 84% efficient by weight.
Most of our fine filter bags and cartridges provide a false sense of security because they make our shops look cleaner while freely passing the finest dust shown by medical research to case the worst long term health problems.
Moreover, unlike dust collectors, the air most vacuum impellers move also provides the motor cooling, so any blocked airflow kills motor cooling and will quickly burn up motors. The larger small shop vacuums pull about 60" of pressure and use 2.25" diameter hoses allowing them to move about 90 CFM which at twice as much air as small vacuums provides much better collection. My doctor agrees and he personally uses a big Fein Stainless vacuum with upgraded HEPA filter in his own woodworking shop.
In commercial units placed outdoors where the fine dust that escapes gets blown away into the outside air these open filters work well, but when brought indoors these units build up dangerously high levels of airborne dust.
These heavier particles continue to slide downward and eventually exit out a dust chute into the collection bin. They know that if they plug a filter enough they can "prove" any level of filtering they want. Even if the impeller survives, the heavier chips and blocks punch cartridge filters full of holes and can ruin them in seconds. Our using the outdoor units inside traps this fine dust inside where it lingers for six months or longer before dissipating. The cyclone theory shows our ideal cyclone sizing for maximum fine dust separation in a typical small shop that only collects from one machine at a time turns out to be a 13" diameter cyclone powered by a 7.5 hp motor where the unit ends up standing over nine feet tall.
Unfortunately, this leads to some interesting advertizing claims where many firms ignore the airborne dust and simply claim 99% separation efficiency in spite of their cyclones freely passing close to 100% of the airborne dust and odd shaped things like long shavings right through. Keeping our dust collection equipment inside traps this fine dust allowing it to build our airborne fine dust concentrations to dangerous. Fortunately, most shop vacuum brands can be reconfigured with these somewhat pricey fine cartridge filters.
Both of us use six inch diameter cyclones of my design to minimize the junk that goes into our vacuums and filters. The dust chute is sealed tightly to the bottom of the cyclone with no air leaks to stir up the collected dust. Sadly, my personal testing and testing by a number of other university professors shows most small shop vendor fine filter bags and cartridge filters freely passed between ten to twenty times the sized particles claimed and stop passing the air we need for dust collection long before reaching a third of their claimed filtering levels. This is why I recommend if you want to maximum filter life to either constantly check your dust bin level or buy an automatic detector that lets us known when it is time to empty our bins.
During this time airflows from our tools, dust collection equipment and air compressors launches this growing volume of previously made dust explaining why almost all small shops test with dangerously unhealthy airborne dust levels. Many high end commercial cyclones used for indoor fine dust separation are exactly this size, but none of the small shop vendors offer anything even close. Unfortunately, making repair becomes our problem because even buying the best recommended solutions leave you just where I was, getting far too much fine dust exposure. We then either blow the dirty air outside or run that air through a filter before it is returned to the shop.
That means any dust collector over about 1.0 HP will have problems with a trashcan separator unless the airflow to that collector is strangled by using far too small 4" ducting that limits the airflow.
A full dust bin or bad air leak causes the cyclone to pump all right through with little or no separation. Add most vendors making their fine filter bags the same size as their open filters and the problems just get worse.
If you don't learn what you are doing starting with what the equipment is and how it works, the odds are you are actually going to make your dust problem far worse than if you did nothing. Using a 1 HP blower with 5" or larger ducting increases the airflow and keeps the dust from separating. It also can be expensive to blow our heated or cooled shop air outdoors, so most use filters to return cleaned air to the shop. This plugging kills our needed airflow, plus drives the pressure up enough that the fine silica (glass) particles that trees use for strength end up getting pushed to cut and tear their way through turning our fine filters quickly into wide open sieves that pass most of the finest unhealthiest dust. The blower connects either through a muffler or directly to the filters with a cleanout below to return clean air to your shop or the blower vents outside. My 1.5 hp system with a trashcan separator worked fine until I upgraded to 6" ducting after realizing my 4" ducting was strangling dust collection airflow.
The following provides more information on each of these basic dust collection equipment components.
We could build a much bigger trashcan separator that would work, but for the 1000 CFM we need for good fine dust collection, we end up needing a 5'2" wide trashcan that sits ceiling high. Without trashcan separators we are left with a fairly expensive and difficult to clean multistage filtering system or using a cyclone to provide ample separation.


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