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Thread: Dust collection advice for my tiny basement shop

  1. #1

    Dust collection advice for my tiny basement shop

    After buying a Laguna 14BX and Miter Saw this year, I need to prioritize dust collection for my tiny basement shop. My shop vac and Dust Deputy work great for track saws and other small tools - but that won't cut it for the new toys and I don't want to ignore proper capture of fine dust. I have concern around space and cost. Are there any good options for a 2 stage unit with canister filter (I don't want a bag) that won't eat up too much space in my 14 x 14 shop?

    From initial research, it looks like the wall mount 1250cfm Dust Right would be a nice setup paired with a cyclone and canister - but it'll be a while until my wallet recovers from the previous purchases.

    - There are lots of Harbor Freight and similar units on FB & CL - anything to be wary of with these?
    - What about retrofitting other used DC units with a cyclone (like a Super Dust Deputy) and canister? Is this a legit way to go or does it represent a compromise from a system designed as a unit (like an Oneida)?

    Trying to do this right as my shop is adjacent to the mechanical room (furnace blower!).


    Many thanks for your input!

  2. #2
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    What is your budget? I personally think Oneida is the bees knees. In my opinion a dust collector is the most important tool in the shop. For your shop I recommend the mini-gorilla. It’s powerful, mobile, captures small particles, is a cyclone and a small footprint.
    Last edited by Michael Burnside; 12-07-2023 at 6:47 PM.

  3. #3
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    I have the harbor freight dust collector in my basement shop. It's great for the price point. It's not the end all be all, but it does what I ask of it. The best thing I did to it was buying a wynn filter, but there are other budget options for reusable filters available, such as the bulldoze air filter.

    I also have a grizzly air cleaner hanging from the ceiling. That captures anything airborne the dust collector won't, mostly sanding dust. It's made a notable improvement to any dust buildup around the shop on shelves and such.

    Finally, my shop is also adjacent to my furnace and hot water tank. For me I was able to put up a wall around them. On the shop side it has a set of bifold doors to let me remove the furnace and hot water tank if needed, or access for any repairs or maintenance. On the front (finished basement) side it has louvered doors to allow combustion air in. One note if you do this, the manuals for those will spell out minimum clearance requirements to walls and combustibles. I also believe code requires a 1" gap around the main duct run from the furnace. I left 1" there for that reason and to prevent noise from the wall touching the duct as it heated up and moved a little. That small gap has not had any notable effect on dust getting though to the furnace and hot water tank.

  4. #4
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    +1 for the mini gorilla. I don't mind swapping between machines and the hose on the floor, if you think that will bother you then the mini gorilla isn't a good option. I have to agree with Mr. Burnside -

    the dust collector is the most important tool in your shop. Up your game and ditch the shop vac, especially if any sanding is to be done.

  5. #5
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    There are two dust collectors mentioned here as recommendations: Oneida Mini-Gorilla and the Rockler Dust-Right 1250CFM. Both are 1.5HP motors with 13" impellers, so I think their performance will be close. However, I believe the Rockler unit may yield more CFM because the inlet size is 6" (larger than the 5" on Mini-Gorilla) and it looks like the output filter has more surface area. That being said, it is possible that the Oneida cyclone design will separate the dust better so that less dust is being sent into the output filter. The Oneida takes up less floor space.

    If you have a 220V outlet available for the dust collector, I would seriously consider the Jet 2HP cyclone model:
    https://www.woodcraft.com/products/j...-collector-2hp

    It is slightly larger than your oneida/Dust-Right models and $300-400 more, but it has a larger 14-1/2" impeller and will definitely pull more CFM.

    Be careful with the wall-mounted dust collectors. If you are mounting to a concrete wall, you are fine. But if you are mounting to drywall with studs, the natural resonance of the motor/impeller will cause the drywall to vibrate at a low frequency. This will turn your wall into a big subwoofer and increase the bass noise and ear fatigue in your shop.
    Last edited by Aaron Inami; 12-08-2023 at 1:17 AM.

  6. #6
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    I have the 1250 on my CNC and it's great for that purpose. But, I'd still choose the mini. A friend of mine has the mini and I can't really tell a difference in suction. I probably would have done the mini had I known. The 1250, IMHO, is junk without a cyclone attached, especially for efficiency and keeping the filter clean. This makes the overall footprint of the 1250 slightly larger and still isn't mobile, which I would think is necessary in a small shop...maybe not for the OP.

    If you have 240V then a lot more, albeit more expensive, options exist. My main DC is an Oneida Supercell. It's a monster with 2.5"-4" ducting and there is no tool in my shop it cannot keep up with and the footprint is half that of most DCs. IMHO there is no better DC and it's made right here in the US.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Burnside View Post
    The 1250, IMHO, is junk without a cyclone attached, especially for efficiency and keeping the filter clean.
    FYI, my comments above were definitely on the cyclone version of the Rockler 1250.

    Yes, there are definitely better dust collectors, but much more money. The OP's budget appears to be around $1700-1800, but he might be able to stretch to the $2100 for the 2HP Jet Cyclone.

    The Oneida Supercell is a great compromise if you have tooling that has really small 2" to 2-1/2" ports, but it's not going to pull as much CFM as the larger traditional dust collectors. For a bandsaw and miter saw, I would go with traditional DCs.

  8. #8
    Thanks for the info and recommendations guys. The mini-gorilla does seem to fit the bill for size and looks to have a great vortex - but I wonder if the 600cfm will leave me short on suction.

    Michael - regarding my budget... well that's always the question isn't it. I quickly realized that ~$500 is wishful thinking for even a used 1000cfm 2 stage with canister. There are plenty smaller and questionable units, but I don't want to buy something that doesn't do the job right with fine dust. For now I'm building an under-table enclosure based on The Thoughtful Woodworker's design to improve dust collection with my shop vac & Dust Deputy, and will wear a mask and ventilate the room outside when working.

    Miles - good suggestions thanks. Lots of HF units on Facebook Marketplace (FBM) - but few have a vortex and canister, so I'd have to add those anyway. I do need to get an air cleaner too eventually. For now I'm making do with a furnace filter/box fan.

    Jim - I'm don't mind swapping the hose for now. I can always look into ducting if it becomes an issue.

    Aaron - Thanks for the excellent points. Unfortunately I don't have 220 at this time, so I'll be sticking with 110 for now. After looking at all these models (including the cool Oneida Supercell) I notice most 110v collectors hover around the 600cfm range - which makes sense. The 1250 Dust Right lists 1250 - but that's likely measured without a canister and vortex. Also a good point about mounting to drywall. My shop room is finished (drywall) but I actually thought about cutting out a corner, embedding the collector (mounted direct to the basement wall) and then enclosing it. The other advantage is it would save about 6" of floor space in both directions.

    Actually, I wonder if the under-table mod will increase efficiency enough to get away with 600cfm. Hmmm...

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aaron Inami View Post
    ...
    The Oneida Supercell is a great compromise if you have tooling that has really small 2" to 2-1/2" ports, but it's not going to pull as much CFM as the larger traditional dust collectors. For a bandsaw and miter saw, I would go with traditional DCs.
    Compromise? No way. There is no tool in my shop that can provide more chips than the Oneida can consume. I'll just trust that you've never seen one personally in action.

    P.S I missed the fact you were suggesting a cyclone on the 1250, apologies. I agree there.
    Last edited by Michael Burnside; 12-08-2023 at 8:23 PM.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Daniel Alcini View Post
    Thanks for the info and recommendations guys. The mini-gorilla does seem to fit the bill for size and looks to have a great vortex - but I wonder if the 600cfm will leave me short on suction.
    ...
    Daniel, Oneida is much more honest about CFM compared to a lot of the other jokers. As I said, I have the 1250...it's laughably not even close to 1250 unless you measure at the impeller LOL. Plus it will drop with a cyclone which is a must IMHO. You should not have any problem with the mini-gorilla on any typical 4" tool. The same is true of the 1250, it's just that I'm giving you my honest opinion seeing both working in a real-world shop and understanding the total footprint/flexibility as well. Plus, with the mini you can keep the hose a little shorter and bring the DC to the tool. Thereby realizing more CFM compared to a stationary model. I asked my buddy if he wanted to trade me my 1250+cyclone for his mini and he said no LOL.

    Anyway, just my 2 cents.
    Last edited by Michael Burnside; 12-08-2023 at 8:22 PM.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Burnside View Post
    Compromise? No way. There is no tool in my shop that can provide more chips than the Oneida can consume. I'll just trust that you've never seen one personally in action.

    P.S I missed the fact you were suggesting a cyclone on the 1250, apologies. I agree there.
    You may feel that the Supercell performs well in your shop (I am not arguing against the performance and quality of this item). However, the specification is only 475 CFM and the inlet to the cyclone is only 4". I am sure that the 2 HP jet cyclone will pull a lot more air with its 14-1/2" impeller and 6" inlet.

    The real benefit of the Supercell is if you have a lot of tools with small port (i.e. 1-3/4" to 2-1/2"). The larger traditional dust collectors perform very poorly with small ports (it's almost not worth it), but the Supercell is designed differently. That's why I am stating that it is a compromise between the smaller Festool type dust extractors and the larger traditional high-CFM dust collectors.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aaron Inami View Post
    You may feel that the Supercell performs well in your shop (I am not arguing against the performance and quality of this item). However, the specification is only 475 CFM and the inlet to the cyclone is only 4". I am sure that the 2 HP jet cyclone will pull a lot more air with its 14-1/2" impeller and 6" inlet.

    The real benefit of the Supercell is if you have a lot of tools with small port (i.e. 1-3/4" to 2-1/2"). The larger traditional dust collectors perform very poorly with small ports (it's almost not worth it), but the Supercell is designed differently. That's why I am stating that it is a compromise between the smaller Festool type dust extractors and the larger traditional high-CFM dust collectors.

    Agree to disagree until you’re talking about 5+HP models. I’ve owned a Lanua C Flux 1 and I still have the 1250. Both have “bigger” numbers and pale in comparison on any 4” tool I own, which is all the usual suspects. And as you say, 2.5” hoses the Laguna and 1250 are absolute crap.

  13. #13
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    For the fine dust, get high static pressure on lower CFM. For chips, it's higher CFM, lower static pressure. Having different collection systems working in tandem reduces airborne dust. Putting an externally vented 2" vac line on a sander, and an externally vented dust collector 6"-8" pipe on a planer, makes sense.

    If you make much dust at all, putting the collectors outside the work space lessens dust. Every time you clean out a dust collector, dust goes everywhere. doing that in a space that is not where you also breathe air helps.

  14. #14
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    Aaron, 475 CFM is about what a 4" port can actually support at the average velocity achieved, regardless of what DC is being used. Oneida works hard to be accurate/realistic so that's a good number.
    --

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

  15. #15
    Excellent information - thanks again guys. I have a lot more confidence to look at the Mini Gorilla given Michael's first hand experience and being able to relate it to the 1250cfm Dust Right. It sounds like 583cfm @ 2"SP is probably the non-vortex equivalent of the 1000cfm recommended by Laguna for my BS so I feel comfortable with this unit. I also love the compact size. I don't see any other vortex units with this small of a footprint.

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