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Thread: Some Questions about Dust Collection / Electrical outlets on Workbench

  1. #1

    Some Questions about Dust Collection / Electrical outlets on Workbench

    Hello - I am in the planning stage of wanting to build a 4'x8' mobile workbench that will house the power tools - table saw, router, miter saw, planer, and drill press. My needs are simple, just DIY home projects for a novice woodworker.
    I was able to find an existing plan on Sketchup that I intend to follow with some modifications. A picture of the dust collection system is shown below.


    pic.png

    I checked the the diameter of the dust ports on the power tools. They are 2 1/4'' for table saw/router table fence/planer, and 1 1/2'' for miter saw. For the handheld tools they are all 1 1/4'' (I will buy the rockler rubber attachments for these to hook to one of the stations). My shop vac is a Ridgid 16gal, with 2 1/2'' dust port. Right now, I'm using filter bags, but maybe I could make a dust separator. I would like to use PVC DWV pipe (unless there is a cheaper option) for routing all the connections.

    My questions:

    1. I see PVC pipe at HD/Lowe's comes in 2'' or 3'' (don't see 2.5''). Would it be better to go with 2'' pipe and then use 2 to 2.5'' adapters at the ends or use a 3'' pipe and use 3'' to 2.5'' adapters? The adapters would connect to the flexible coiled pipes to hook into the power tool dust ports.
    2. Is PVC pipe the correct way to go or should I use something else?

    I would also like to add some electrical outlets that provide power to all of these tools with an emergency stop on each side of the table that will kill power to all the tools. During use, I will connect a power cord between this power strip and the garage wall outlet. The planer/router are rated at 15A.

    1. What kind of power strip do I need to get to ensure the tools are getting sufficient power and won't trip? And how to integrate the emergency stop switches?

    I'm not really sure how the electrical setup should look like. I will see if I can consult an electrician for guidance but any thoughts here would be helpful. Thank you.
    Last edited by pallav gupta; 12-30-2021 at 2:10 PM.

  2. #2
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    Shop vacs are not designed nor intended to be used for dust collection. The motor will get hot and they do not pull enough CFM and when combined with 2" or 3" pipe will not collect dust effectively from the tools. If you are thinking of a centralized dust collection, you should consider getting something that is meant for the purpose.

    As for the emeregncy stop system you suggest. To follow the most basic code, the emergency stop should be within in arms reach of the point of hazard. It does not read like that is your setup. The setup I would suggest is a control box containing a branch rated circuit breaker, 20A (min) contactor with 120VAC coil, and a reset button. The emergency stop buttons would be connected in series and combined with the reset button and contactor in a magnetic starter formation. From the contactor in the control panel, utilize EMT conduit and boxes to house the emergency stop buttons and separate to house duplex outlets to distribute the power to the tools.

  3. #3
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    I used 2" sch 40 pvc, heated the pipe and rammed a fitting (I had in it to expand it.
    Have a cyclone on top of a 5-gallon bucket and never see anything in the vacuum
    20" Bandsaw is only one that doesn't collect dust off of right
    Do have a Cyclone and dust collection systm for tablesaw, planer, wide belt sander, shaper, RAS which works fairly well. largest pipe is 7" down to 3"

  4. #4
    Thank you both for the education on this topic. I will have to study dust collection vs shop vacuum more. Same with the electrical wiring.

  5. #5
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    I use a shop vac with a cyclone. Best I can say is it is better than nothing. It has trouble keeping up with my DW735 unless I start empty. I am thinking about building a "dust house" on the back or side of my shop to add something with more power and free up the floor space the shop vac takes up.

  6. #6
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    So I'm not normally a fan of "shop vac" type extraction for "major" tools for the obvious reason that it's not effective nor suitable to the task under most circumstances. However, for the setup that the OP is proposing that consists of what are essentially "benchtop" tools with small footprints and small extraction ports, it may be the right solution for the intended design. As someone has already noted, there may be a challenge with the thickness planer, but choosing something like the DW735 that has its own fan might help mitigate that. It would be extremely important to choose the best solution for an actual extraction vac. As is often mentioned, many "shop vac" type machines depend upon air flow through the inlet to cool the machine, particularly the lower cost units. So if the plan goes forward, there needs to be an investment in a good extractor. Some form of manifold with accessible blast gates will also need to be configured to keep things to one tool at a time and also endeavor to keep internal hoses/duct as short as possible.

    Is this a good dust collection setup? No. But it will at least handle chips and accommodate the mobile nature of the multi-tool workstation. The OP should most likely wear PPE when doing dust-producing activities with this setup.
    --

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

  7. #7
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    I don't use blast gates on the shop vacuum system, instead I have mechanical test plugs that I shove in the outlets not being used. plug a hose in one outlet and go to work.
    Have ran the vac for hours at a time and doesn't feel excessively hot to the touch.
    I don't shut the vac down when resawing multiple boards on band saw. cutting dovetails on multiple drawers 6-10, sanding etc.
    I prefer to do one operation as much as possible then move on to the next.
    I am on record here as having an extreme dislike for blast gates they have never worked well for me; I never had the money for high end ones as I was building my system years ago and that may be the whole reason
    I have bought the new style blast gate from woodpecker FULLThrottle™ Blast Gate (woodpeck.com) and am extremely happy with them, they work well for me. Only blast gate I will use
    I have found the need for high airflow with lower vac pressure for the big tools and high vac pressure and low air flow for handheld tools works best for me. The bandsaw is on the shop vac system only because that is how it was made back in the 50's and I have not changed it over to the dust collector system yet.
    Some of the guys have posted about a new dust collector that can serve all tools as long as you are comfortable with the price, 2.5k, I have other tools that I want worse. If I did not have what I have now and starting to build a new dust collection system I would have to give a very hard look and probably go that direction
    Ron
    Last edited by Ron Selzer; 01-01-2022 at 12:31 PM. Reason: add link

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by pallav gupta View Post
    Hello - I am in the planning stage of wanting to build a 4'x8' mobile workbench that will house the power tools - table saw, router, miter saw, planer, and drill press. My needs are simple, just DIY home projects for a novice woodworker.
    I was able to find an existing plan on Sketchup that I intend to follow with some modifications. A picture of the dust collection system is shown below.


    pic.png

    I checked the the diameter of the dust ports on the power tools. They are 2 1/4'' for table saw/router table fence/planer, and 1 1/2'' for miter saw. For the handheld tools they are all 1 1/4'' (I will buy the rockler rubber attachments for these to hook to one of the stations). My shop vac is a Ridgid 16gal, with 2 1/2'' dust port. Right now, I'm using filter bags, but maybe I could make a dust separator. I would like to use PVC DWV pipe (unless there is a cheaper option) for routing all the connections.

    My questions:

    1. I see PVC pipe at HD/Lowe's comes in 2'' or 3'' (don't see 2.5''). Would it be better to go with 2'' pipe and then use 2 to 2.5'' adapters at the ends or use a 3'' pipe and use 3'' to 2.5'' adapters? The adapters would connect to the flexible coiled pipes to hook into the power tool dust ports.
    2. Is PVC pipe the correct way to go or should I use something else?

    I would also like to add some electrical outlets that provide power to all of these tools with an emergency stop on each side of the table that will kill power to all the tools. During use, I will connect a power cord between this power strip and the garage wall outlet. The planer/router are rated at 15A.

    1. What kind of power strip do I need to get to ensure the tools are getting sufficient power and won't trip? And how to integrate the emergency stop switches?

    I'm not really sure how the electrical setup should look like. I will see if I can consult an electrician for guidance but any thoughts here would be helpful. Thank you.
    Here's my successes and failures over a couple decades:

    Started with a miter saw and TS with no dust collection. I added a 1200 CFM/30 mic bag collector and plumbed to both tools with 4" PVC pipe/blast gates. It collected chips, but when sun came through the window I could see airborne dust blowing through the bag. I add Oneida 1 mic bags which helped, but dust accumulated on the outside of the bags and when the collector started the bags threw off dust....a lot, so I always wore a mask.

    Added an air filter hoping to capture airbornes, but I could still see tons in the sun beans. Sans a way to quantify airbornes, all I knew is what I saw and that was my tabletops were always covered.....even with the scrubber running during/after I left the shop. I started seeing Dylos (maker of air quality monitoring devices) mentioned in these forums but thought they're too expensive. I tried to improve collection at each tool but had no way of knowing if there was improvement. At some point I came upon a couple hundred $ and bought a Dylos Pro DC1100 which told me my airbornes were very bad. Wood dust if controversial....it's a personal decision. I worry about breathing wood dust. B4 the Dylos I had no way of knowing if my improvements were successful....now I know. It's a YYMV thing, but IMO if I can't quantify I don't know what's in the air.

    Considering the Dylos readings, I bought an Oneida SDD and moved away from the bags. Broke down my 1200 CFM collector and used it's motor to build 2 stage collection exhausted outside. Helped tremendously, but I still had an unsafe level of airborne, so contemplated a second air filter. In my research I came across articles on shop built air filters and built my own...links below. After building the air filter, adding an overarm to my TS and enclosing my miter saw, the Dylos tells me I only need a mask when sanding.

    For the hobbyist, PVC is cost effective solution. With a heat gun/worm gear clamp you can mold it to fit you needs. However, DO NOT burn PVC as it creates toxic fumes. Use the heat gun to WARM the PVC and stretch it or clamp it down if you need it to be smaller. You want to have a smooth surface inside your ducts. Flex hoses normally have ridges that create drag and slow the flow of air....you'll have to use some flex at tools, but keep them to a minimum. Also, try to avoid right angle bends with you connectors....you want gradual smooth turns. All "Y" connectors should be pointed toward whatever collector you use so the flow is moving in that direction. Use blast gates to isolate each tool to improve CFM. PVC is also controversial btw...

    I made a big electrical mistake when I built my shop. Only added two 20amp circuits.....since I already had two 15amps I figured I'd be good....WRONG! I also didn't think I'd need 220....WRONG! Gets worse.....I ran the two 20amps to opposite ends of the shop 30ft apart. Since TS needs to be close to the DC for good collection, AND both require a 20amp circuit, I run a 12/3 extension cord across the shop (tripping hazard/PITA) so each have dedicated 20amp. It gets worse....I'm in the market for a new TS, but without 220, my options are limited to 1.75hp /110 machine when the better choice is 3hp 220, or I can traverse 3 cross-bases and run circuits which is a monumental effort.

    The only way I use a power strips is for a handhelds like drills/routers.

    I'm not an electrician so only highlighting my mistake and how it boxed me in. I think a consultation with an electrician on motor requirements/circuits/kill switches is a good move.

    -Here's a comprehensive study on dust collection via a shop vac. I never went down that road as I find it impractical for my shop.
    -You can read some on my air filter here and here.
    Thanks,
    Fred

    Seasoned professional possessing unremarkable proficiency at innumerable skills.

  9. #9
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    4 ft x 8 ft is pretty big. Have you thought about having several smaller rolling cabinets for the different power tools.
    My first bench was a Monster (probably 3.5 x 7) it is a bear to work around in limited space. I set it up to be able to store lumber underneath. Dang near impossible to move.
    Think about work flow and having space around the different tools. You can standardize on a bench height so the other carts can be outfeed/infeed tables for the all the different tools.

    John

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by fred everett View Post

    ) so each have dedicated 20amp. It gets worse....I'm in the market for a new TS, but without 220, my options are limited to 1.75hp /110 machine when the better choice is 3hp 220,


    Change the breaker and receptacle or have an electrician change the breaker and receptacle on the saw dedicated circuit to 220volt. Easy change
    Started out in my basement shop with dedicated circuit for the table saw and jointer as only use one at a time. Then went to a 220 saw and moved it over to share 220 circuit with planer. 5yrs later upgraded jointer and changed that dedicated circuit to 220 and added 20" bandsaw

    Ron
    Last edited by Jim Becker; 01-02-2022 at 10:33 AM. Reason: fixed quote tagging

  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by Ron Selzer View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by fred everett View Post

    ) so each have dedicated 20amp. It gets worse....I'm in the market for a new TS, but without 220, my options are limited to 1.75hp /110 machine when the better choice is 3hp 220,


    Change the breaker and receptacle or have an electrician change the breaker and receptacle on the saw dedicated circuit to 220volt. Easy change
    Started out in my basement shop with dedicated circuit for the table saw and jointer as only use one at a time. Then went to a 220 saw and moved it over to share 220 circuit with planer. 5yrs later upgraded jointer and changed that dedicated circuit to 220 and added 20" bandsaw

    Ron
    Unfortunately, the other 20amp circuit is 30 feet away and the 20amp the TS uses is shared with my jointer and drill press. Converting that receptacle would leave the jointer/DP without power. I don't see any way around this without pulling wire.
    Last edited by Jim Becker; 01-02-2022 at 10:35 AM. Reason: fixed quote tagging
    Thanks,
    Fred

    Seasoned professional possessing unremarkable proficiency at innumerable skills.

  12. #12
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    [QUOTE=fred everett;3165290]
    Quote Originally Posted by Ron Selzer View Post

    Unfortunately, the other 20amp circuit is 30 feet away and the 20amp the TS uses is shared with my jointer and drill press. Converting that receptacle would leave the jointer/DP without power. I don't see any way around this without pulling wire.
    How about putting both dedicated circuits together on a 20amp 220 vac circuit breaker feeding to a 6 circuit subpanel in your shop, you would need to move the cables in the shop so both were together at the subpanel. Then run new circuits to where needed, 220 to table saw, 220 to dust collector, 120 to jointer/drill press. You still would only have 20 amps 240vac power to the subpanel however depending on actual amp draw might be able to make this work. What are your actual amp draws on the dust collector if converted to 240vac and the 3hp table saw? Would probably need to start your table saw first then the dust collector.

    adding after getting some sleep
    What about changing the one for dust collection to 220 and then extending the 220 circuit over to the tablesaw area?
    Comes down to total amp draw used not necessarily total motor listed amp draw
    Ron
    Last edited by Ron Selzer; 01-02-2022 at 10:39 AM. Reason: add

  13. #13
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    It might not work, but try just adding an outlet on the same end that you have one already. You would be running two machines off the same 20a line - but a pretty good chance you dont really use 20a on each machine since you arent loading it. (and a non issue if not using two machines at once - there is no reason you cant have multiple machines plugged into the same line/breaker)

  14. #14
    [QUOTE=Ron Selzer;3165291]
    Quote Originally Posted by fred everett View Post

    How about putting both dedicated circuits together on a 20amp 220 vac circuit breaker feeding to a 6 circuit subpanel in your shop, you would need to move the cables in the shop so both were together at the subpanel. Then run new circuits to where needed, 220 to table saw, 220 to dust collector, 120 to jointer/drill press. You still would only have 20 amps 240vac power to the subpanel however depending on actual amp draw might be able to make this work. What are your actual amp draws on the dust collector if converted to 240vac and the 3hp table saw? Would probably need to start your table saw first then the dust collector.

    adding after getting some sleep
    What about changing the one for dust collection to 220 and then extending the 220 circuit over to the tablesaw area?
    Comes down to total amp draw used not necessarily total motor listed amp draw
    Ron
    Very interesting thoughts Ron. What stinks is all roads lead to bringing the two 20amp circuits together. If it were just opening/closing walls I would go for it, but I'd have to pull new wire. If I did that I'd just pull new circuits and 220. Sounds like I'm a lazy a$$ (prob true) but you would be shocked if you saw what it takes to pull wire to my shop. No way I'd pay somebody as it would cost bundle.


    Quote Originally Posted by Carl Beckett View Post
    It might not work, but try just adding an outlet on the same end that you have one already. You would be running two machines off the same 20a line - but a pretty good chance you dont really use 20a on each machine since you arent loading it. (and a non issue if not using two machines at once - there is no reason you cant have multiple machines plugged into the same line/breaker)
    Thanks Carl. I've pretty much tried this by plugging both the TS/DC into the 20amp receptacle. My old TS had an FLA of 18 amps, the DC 12. The DC started up fine, but the TS bogged at startup with the DC running. The TS would eventually come up to speed with the DC running, however once a load was put on the TS (cutting wood) it would bog as it pulled additional current to compensate for the load. Depending on the wood species/thickness either the breaker would trip the TS motor overload protection.

    I'm not an electrician so these terms may not be correct, but even as a layman it's was obvious what was happening. I'm a open to suggestions from those with more knowledge than me....I understand the basics but not much more.
    Last edited by fred everett; 01-03-2022 at 12:05 PM. Reason: spelling
    Thanks,
    Fred

    Seasoned professional possessing unremarkable proficiency at innumerable skills.

  15. #15
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    Central vac piping is what you need.

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