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Thread: less than $1500 DC setup that "sucks"...

  1. #1
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    less than $1500 DC setup that "sucks"...

    ... in a good way I mean :-)

    Many of you helped me directly (responding to my questions) or indirectly (as I read so many other threads) and my DC setup is now operational and working nicely. A buddy woodworker asked me to write up some tips for him as he looks to largely copy what I've done, and I figured I'd paste it here in case it helps someone.

    Disclaimers about my setup

    - Probably not fully up to Pentz standards
    - Intended for those budgeting to be under $1500 total
    - Cobbled together and effective (as opposed to a work of art)

    That said, my system does feature 3hp blower, 6" ducting to stationary machines, shop made blast gates and connections, adjustments to tool ports (e.g. 4" at router table, 6" at jointer etc.), minimal flex hose, minimal 90's, cyclone separator (Super Dust Deputy XL), Wynn environmental cartridge filter, grizzly air cleaner, a shop vac, and respirator.... and a broom

    Anyways, I'm just hoping that someone lost, just getting started, or overwhelmed on the $$$ this topic can bring may find this as a useful starting point.

    The pricing in the subject line assumes that you can find a 3hp DC used in the $300-400 range (which I find to be commonly true) and all other items bought new / shop made. I'm at $1500 including the new shop vac I just added even, but then I'm uncommonly "Yankee Frugal" (aka resourceful and cheap).

    My email to buddy follows:

    =======================================

    I did a version of this, and my steps below will guide you (but you can go off script wherever you like/need). https://youtu.be/75SkuQ9oS0w

    The blower will sit with suction side facing down, and exhaust side facing to wherever you want your filter to be (hopefully in “dead space” out of the way). A bracket from 2x4’s firmly affixed to studs is the goal. The blower is quite heavy, and will sit on the bracket.

    The suction port currently has a 3-way 4” port on it. We want to remove that in favor of a 6” piece of PVC or a fernco. I used PVC (and some silicone caulk) to marry that port to the Super Dust Deputy XL (SDD XL).

    Underneath the blower (under the suction port) is where the SDD XL will be affixed as noted above. I supported the bottom of mine with a plywood shelf with a hole cut in it. Sealed again with silicone. Aim the infeed side of the SDD XL towards your primary/main duct run.

    Underneath the plywood shelf I put a 17 gallon barrel with a short piece of 6” flex duct running through the lid (again, silicone caulked too) – just enough to allow you to get the lid off. FB Marketplace to find barrel. If you have enough ceiling height to go with a bigger barrel, do it. 30 gallon would be nice. 50 gallon starts to get pretty heavy and bulky. As a point of reference, I empty mine about every 2-3 weeks (and I’m out there a lot).

    The exhaust side of the blower… we’ll disassemble all those trunks/rings and ideally re-use one of the rings (without the trunk). It looks to me like it’ll attach right onto the blower exhaust as is. This will be our plenum box basically (and save us the $$ and effort of having to built a plenum box from scratch). Good read: https://wynnenv.com/filters-for-cyclones/plenum-boxes/

    Cap the top by cutting a plywood circle that will fit inside the inner diameter of the ring, and affixing to a 2nd piece of ply that sits on top of the ring.

    Same thing on the underside of the ring, but with a 10” hole cut. The filter will be bolted over that hole.

    Under the filter, the gamma seal lid and 5 gal bucket will be your removeable fine dust catch. Buy at lowes or HD or amazon. Install like this: https://wynnenv.com/filters-for-cycl...mma-seal-lids/

    To mate flex hose to PVC… cut a 6” piece of pipe, and then cut a little slit out of it so that you can perfectly fit inside a non-cut piece of pipe. This smaller diameter fits perfectly inside the flex hose, and once a host clamp is added is very strong. If you can’t picture this, I’ll show you some examples.

    Note… 6” and 4” metal ducting (at lowes etc.) fits really nice with flex duct. Expensive though, and not really worth it in most situations in my opinion.

    Don’t ever reduce to 2.5 inches. The smallest you ever want to go with this DC is 4”. And keep it at 6” where possible.



    • 6” flex duct – 20 feet
    • 4” flex duct – 20 feet
    • 6” hose clamps
    • 4” hose clamps
    • Blast gates (or make your own.. I have some cheap bought 4” from Harbor Freight which have been fine, and made my own 6” which work great.. made from scrap for a total cost of $0)
    • 100% silicone caulk (probably about 4 tubes)
    • Window flashing tape (for sealing the PVC… or use silicone for this too if you like… I used 4” rubber flashing tape which is strong as hell and adds rigidity to setup)
    • Pipe strap (plastic roll with holes in it used to hold pvc pipe in place)
    • 6” pvc SD (sewer/drain… thinner/lighter) and fittings (opting for 45’s over 90’s wherever possible)…
    • You’ll probably want a little bit of 4” too (maybe 10 feet worth) and a couple of 6 to 4 reducers
    • Gamma seal bucket lid (for under filter)
    • 5 gal bucket (for under filter)
    • Flanged filter from Wynn – part 13F230NANO
      • Read their page / watch their youtube videos


    I'll post better pics later if anyone is interested, but these (for some reason sideways) work-in-progress pics will get you started

    new dust runs.jpgcyclone 2.jpg
    Last edited by Bob Riefer; 02-08-2020 at 9:16 AM.
    - Bob R.
    Collegeville PA (30 minutes west of Philly)

  2. #2
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    Bob I like the way you think and figure out how to do things. Well done.

  3. #3
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    Thanks!! Side note, the air cleaner was used too. Forgot to mention that above
    - Bob R.
    Collegeville PA (30 minutes west of Philly)

  4. #4
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    I just built something very similar (using a cannibalized 1.5HP delta single stage over a SSD XL into 6" PVC mains). It works pretty well. I'm getting around 450 CFM which is both insufficient and awesomely better than shop vacs.

    The other pieces of advice I'd add would be

    1) "Actually Do It". I lived without proper DC for years and now really regret the errors of my youth.
    2) The remote on/off is well worth it. I use a long ranger in the 220v model and it's great, super convenient. Magnetically mount it to your table saw on switch.
    3) Ambient air cleaners are wonderful.

    One thing worth considering: If I had it to do over again, I'd go with 5" mains and drops. The main reason is that a lot of the "cheap" single stage blowers actually have a 120mm input duct not a 6" duct intake. So I run through all that 6" main to still need to funnel down to 120mm between the SSD and the blower intake. 5" the whole way through would have increased the velocity (FPM) to keep more stuff suspended while not really dropping overall CFM all that much. In my case, my K3 also has 120mm ports and 5"; the whole way through would have made some things easier.

    Note the 5" blast gates are harder to find as is 5" PVC and fittings, so there's downsides too. Both will work. Both are vastly better than no DC.

  5. #5
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    I agree with the sentiment of diving into the DC world, and my rationale for starting this thread is that it can be a very overwhelming topic... especially when there's so much else to learn in this hobby (or profession for some).

    That said, I do think that the recipe I listed above (with the four most important things being 3hp blower, 6" ducts, a good separator, and Wynn filter) are worth trying to achieve right out of the gate (as opposed to trying to make smaller motor, ducts, and lower efficiency separator work).

    The reason I think that... I've tried both ways. You can achieve a lot cobbling together and trying to optimize less-than-needed components (in my case it used to be a HF 2 hp unit with 4" duct and a Thien baffle setup) but it really just will never be that great... Since the cost to achieve the recipe above is really achievable, I'd recommend heading straight to more power, wider duct, a solid cyclone option, and a great filter.

    Now, from this recipe there's are tons of ways to go even bigger and better.... but those come with a price tag $$$$ that many of us have a hard time justifying. My intent is to save people lost in analysis paralysis, or considering cobbling together a system that will often prove to be lackluster or inconvenient, by offering an option that will work very well at a price point that can be budgeted by even our most frugal
    - Bob R.
    Collegeville PA (30 minutes west of Philly)

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Matthew Springer View Post
    I'm getting around 450 CFM which is both insufficient and awesomely better than shop vacs.
    Well said. More people need to go ahead and shoot for this as opposed to waiting a year while they dive into way too much info. When it comes to your respiratory system, something is better than nothing. Its easy enough to slap on a respirator too for now as opposed to waiting to acquire the ultimate system.
    Who knows what stands in front of,
    our lives; I fashion my future on films in space.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Matthew Springer View Post
    ... If I had it to do over again, I'd go with 5" mains and drops. The main reason is that a lot of the "cheap" single stage blowers actually have a 120mm input duct not a 6" duct intake. So I run through all that 6" main to still need to funnel down to 120mm between the SSD and the blower intake. 5" the whole way through would have increased the velocity (FPM) to keep more stuff suspended while not really dropping overall CFM all that much.
    So you're have a lot of trouble with the duct clogging? What kind of dust are you trying to move?
    Beranek's Law:

    It has been remarked that if one selects his own components, builds his own enclosure, and is convinced he has made a wise choice of design, then his own loudspeaker sounds better to him than does anyone else's loudspeaker. In this case, the frequency response of the loudspeaker seems to play only a minor part in forming a person's opinion.
    L.L. Beranek, Acoustics (McGraw-Hill, New York, 1954), p.208.

  8. #8
    I have bought several 25hp interior DCs with air locks for well under 1500.

  9. #9
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    Lol. Well that’s probably not in the spirit intended in this thread. But thanks
    - Bob R.
    Collegeville PA (30 minutes west of Philly)

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Bob Riefer View Post
    Lol. Well that’s probably not in the spirit intended in this thread. But thanks
    Just saying....I usually have to pay more for smaller ones.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by David L Morse View Post
    So you're have a lot of trouble with the duct clogging? What kind of dust are you trying to move?
    I actually am not having any trouble at all with clogging in the ducts.

    The main issues i'm having are the really terrible DC pickup design of the bandsaw (Laguna 14/12) and to a lesser extent the Hammer K3 both of which seem to be not really picking up as much dust as they really should. I'm not sure if it's a velocity issue or a suction issue or what. I had assumed a higher pipe velocity would help.

    I built a little magnetically mounted pickup shroud for under table bandsaw and that helped a lot. Before that, the bandsaw actually had positive air pressure coming out the blade slot (ie: air pressure was pushing the dust OUT of the blade slot in the table).

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Matthew Springer View Post
    I actually am not having any trouble at all with clogging in the ducts.

    The main issues i'm having are the really terrible DC pickup design of the bandsaw (Laguna 14/12) and to a lesser extent the Hammer K3 both of which seem to be not really picking up as much dust as they really should. I'm not sure if it's a velocity issue or a suction issue or what. I had assumed a higher pipe velocity would help.
    If you were to get a bigger dust collector and increase the velocity that way it would certainly help. A bigger dust collector (really, a larger fan diameter) generates more pressure which causes a higher flowrate (CFM). That flowrate results in more velocity in the pipe and, most importantly, more velocity at the intake point. That's where you need it, pushing the dust into the intake.

    Decreasing the pipe size also increases the velocity in the duct. It does that by moving the operating point up fan curve to a higher pressure and lower flowrate. The lower flowrate results in less velocity at the intake unless you also reduce the intake area. But of course reducing the intake area alone would give you even more intake velocity, as I think you've already discovered with your bandsaw modification.

    Increasing the pipe size would increase flowrate but the lower velocity in the pipe also slows down dust movement in the pipe.
    Beranek's Law:

    It has been remarked that if one selects his own components, builds his own enclosure, and is convinced he has made a wise choice of design, then his own loudspeaker sounds better to him than does anyone else's loudspeaker. In this case, the frequency response of the loudspeaker seems to play only a minor part in forming a person's opinion.
    L.L. Beranek, Acoustics (McGraw-Hill, New York, 1954), p.208.

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