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Thread: venting dust collector outside???

  1. #1

    venting dust collector outside???

    I don't heat or cool my shop normally. In the winter the typical temp is 55* F or 12* C so there is no need to heat unless I am finishing peices. If I am finishing I am not running there DC.

    So venting outside is an option, but I have neighbours very close to my shop wall and I don't want blow dust all over their house.

    For those who vent outside, how much of a mess does it make? (I will be using a super dust deputy cyclone and 2hp blower with 12" impeller)

  2. #2
    We're lucky enough that our can is in s very isolated, contained nook. If not, this mess would blow all over the place.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    fayetteville Arkansas
    It kind of depends on how much material you are running through your machines. I vent out into my yard and have about a 12-15' diameter of chips falling on my yard. It decomposes and does not build up because I'm just a hobbyist and run a limited amount of material each week. Some weeks I do not run any. If you have a lot of material like Johnny's photo, no way would you vent that out into the open. My closet neighbor's house is about 50', no complaints.

  4. #4

    I'm currently running a grizzly cyclone, and other than the obnoxious sound like a clothes drier running a little too loud you would not know it was working. Generally cyclones will collect enough dust that what's blow outside is so minimal you'd need a surface that was flat and smooth to notice. With single stage collectors you might end up with other issues.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    New York, NY
    Quote Originally Posted by jeff norris 2011 View Post
    For those who vent outside, how much of a mess does it make? (I will be using a super dust deputy cyclone and 2hp blower with 12" impeller)
    I've the same arrangement blowing outside at my place in the Catskills and the minimal bit of discharge is some flour-like sawdust. Certainly preferable to have the fines outside as opposed to floating around the shop space.

    If you forget to empty the dust bin and overfill it when planing it'll be a different situation.
    Last edited by Peter Kelly; 01-07-2020 at 1:49 AM.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2015
    San Diego, Ca
    I too use a separator and vent outside. (My separator is a home built Thien baffle.) It probably catches 98 or 99% of the "stuff" and what goes outside is usually very fine. The only time that I can see a discharge is when I stuff a suction hose into a larger pile of sweepings. It must temporarily overload the separator. I suspect that if you use something like a dust deputy (which is even more efficient) and vent outside that you'll be happy. I put on a 5" dryer vent with a flap that directs the airstream downwards and outside.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2018
    Cambridge Vermont
    When I was a kid we would play in the wood chip pile at a local mill. They separated the dust (which went into a trailer) while the chips went to a huge pile behind the building. When they were planning lumber it was like snow falling. The pile would easily get up to 40 feet tall. To answer your question, you can do it and depending on where you live you don't even need to put a drum to catch the chips. However, like Julian said, if you do a lot of work the pile could get real large so you'll want a way t move it (small tractor with a loader would be ideal). A large pile can be a fire hazard if it stays too long as heat will build up in the center.

  8. #8
    If you are running a cyclone then the only chips that would come out of the outside venting pipe are when you overflow your barrel. It is noisy though. I had mine hooked up to a filter inside for a few years and decided to vent outside. One of the biggest benefits is it cuts down on the DC noise substantially. The other benefit is if you forget to empty the bin it doesn't stuff your filter. Mine use to take 45 minutes to clean out if I let the bin get over full.

    I heat and cool my shop. So I only run the DC when it's needed. In the cold part of the winter I can feel the cold air coming in after about 20 minutes of running the DC. In the summer with the AC going I don't really feel the heat coming in, but I do feel the humidity rise.

    I find it's worth it. Between the reduced noise levels and not having to worry about over filling the bin I'm pretty happy.

  9. #9
    With a cyclone there is little to no dust.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Collegeville PA (30 min west of Philly)
    When I previously vented outside, I found that my homemade thien baffle caught most material, but that the fine dust AND the noise outside were enough to do something about.

    So, I built a muffler that was very effective...

    Basically, my exhaust to outside my building was piped into 50 gallon barrel with lid. The barrel had a very large louvered vent cut into the side facing away from my neighbor, and that vent was covered with filter material inside the barrel.

    This setup cut noise WAY down. Each time I would empty my main chip barrel, I would check the exterior muffler barrel... over time there was about a coffee can worth of dust in there and I would just empty it into the mulch pit.

    Since I have added heat/cooling to my shop, I no longer use this setup, but it worked nicely for quite awhile.
    - Bob R.
    Collegeville PA (30 minutes west of Philly)

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Sacramento, ca.
    I use a super dust deputy and a 1hp harbor freight blower. The vent is directed under my garage door, I raise the garage door about 1ft to exhast into the driveway. Nothing collects or can be seen coming out of the exhast. I have 1/3 of a 3 car garage to use for my hobby. Total run of the 4in duct work is about 12 ft. connected to 4 outlets all with blast gates.

    " You are a square peg in a square hole, and we need to twist you to make you fit. " My boss

  12. #12
    Thanks, sounds like the noise might be an issue. My neighbours (who I really like ) house is about 10' from where my cyclone is. Even with my dc inside I am careful not to run it or other loud tools too early in the day or too late at night as not to disturb anyone.

  13. #13
    I think not making a lot of noise at times when people may be sleeping is a good idea. But my HF DC is by far not my noisiest tool. I think routers are the worst. My lunchbox planner is pretty loud too. I don't worry about the DC noise. The only place I see dust on the outside (after the super dust deputy) is on the vent. It isn't covered but there is a little visible dust. So something is coming out but not enough it shows up on the ground or the bushes.

  14. #14
    I may try a hybrid system with a blast gate to vent outside so I have both options.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    SE PA - Central Bucks County
    Even if my climate was compatible with this, I'm not sure I'd vent outside due to noise...some days, my cyclone runs all day. Literally, when I'm using the CNC for long or multiple jobs for clients. And given I do use HVAC in both cold and warm months, no way. I did think about a bypass as just mentioned a few years ago (pre-CNC and pre-MiniSplit) but never bothered to implement it.

    The most expensive tool is the one you buy "cheaply" and often...

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