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Thread: sealing a cabinet saw for dust collection plumbing

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2016
    Modesto, CA, USA

    sealing a cabinet saw for dust collection plumbing

    A have a cabinet saw that I will be hooking up to a dc soon. It has a 6" diameter pipe out the back. The motor cover has a 5" hole over the motor to let in cooling air which I may close off. I know I need to allow makeup air to enter the cabinet. Should I basically close all the openings, like where the elevation handle arc slot is, and let air in the table to cabinet gap. Should I try to close off the table to cabinet gap with foam or something like that jammed in there.
    Theoretically I could close all gaps and there would be no airflow except a tiny bit around the blade slot. Obviously this would not do much for dust collection.
    Bill D

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Highland MI
    Blog Entries
    I plugged up the most obvious places for leakage, but left enough to get adequate airflow to carry chips down the duct. The big slot in front where the elevation crank exits is covered with a big magnetic sign that can move as you turn the miter crank.
    NOW you tell me...

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    SE PA - Central Bucks County
    "Optimally" the area of the outgoing duct and the incoming air are the same or slightly skewed to the latter. That's the dance with something like a cabinet saw when you don't have a blade shroud arrangement like many current higher end saws have moved to. You also need to consider where the air is coming from because otherwise, you'll leave debris in the corners to build up anyway because there will be no air movement to clear it toward the DC hood. This is the same thing we have to deal with when we design enclosures for routers under a table...

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

  4. #4
    My PCS has a blade shroud and just a single 4 inch port. The angle slot on the front is open as are the other openings. I have not changed it from that point of view. I only get a little dusting of sawdust on the bottom. I got a lot more when I did not get the flexible hose within the saw hooked up right but as long as it is connected it works without sealing up the cabinet. I use a 2hp HF DC (i.e nothing special).

    My previous saw was a Ryobi BT3100. It had if anything a better dust shroud. But the port in the back was only 2.5 inch. It helped the dust collection on that saw to cover the openings.

    So it depends. But you need airflow to move the dust out. DCs need low resistance to move the most air. So I don't think you should seal it up too well.

  5. #5
    On my old Unisaw, I used 1/4 thb to make a ramp from the ventilated front cover angled dow to the bottom of the DC intake. I then made side ramps angled down onto the lower ramp. Taht greatly reduced the build up in the cabinet and the ventilated front cover acts as an air sweep. I was pretty happy with it.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2017
    Santa Cruz, CA
    This worked really well-I grabbed some of those corrugated plastic yard signs, after one election day, and shoved magnets into the corners (they fit perfectly), and used them to cover all of the holes in my powermatic.
    Last edited by scott lipscomb; 05-23-2020 at 3:22 PM.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Lake Gaston, Henrico, NC
    I use magnetic sheets over the tilt slot like magnetic signs are made from. Air entry is a box with slide in 12x12 HVAC filter in place of a motor cover-not enough air flow down through a zero clearance insert. The filter is just to keep stuff from getting thrown out. It works amazingly well.

  8. #8
    My '04 unisaw has a sloped bottom inside the cabinet, and with a shark guard my DC gets all the dust, unless a stick falls into the cabinet and plugs the outlet. Don't need to mess with the air flow. The Hammer saw, gets some dust inside the cabinet, as some escapes the shroud.

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