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Thread: My Shop Vac Died

  1. #1

    My Shop Vac Died

    Hi There

    My Craftsman shop vac died yesterday. I was bandsawing and suddenly it was much quieter. There was smoke over the shop vac. The shop smelled bad. My was guess it had died, chuckle. I'm a regular Sherlock Holms. It was a Canadian made 12amp Craftsman. Lots of suction. I had used a Lee Valley HEPA filter in it.

    I need another one, about the same . One with a lot of power, high amperage that I can use a HEPA filter with.That's very important. I'm use to wearing ear muffs, so noise level isn't .Any Recommendations for cost effective one. Not Festool or Mirka cost.

    THX

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Michigan
    Posts
    295
    Ridgid makes a nice shop vac. I have both a new ridgid one and an older craftsman- both work great. Ridgid has an optional HEPA filter for their vacs.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2018
    Location
    Lancaster, Ohio
    Posts
    1,423
    I have used a Ridgid vacumn with dust deputy for over 5 years very happy with it.
    this one is close to what I use
    RIDGID 12 Gallon 5.0 Peak HP NXT Wet/Dry Shop Vacuum with Filter, Locking Hose, Accessories, OSHA and HEPA Filtration Kit HD1200E - The Home Depot
    Ron
    Old Codger
    In it for fun

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    SE PA - Central Bucks County
    Posts
    66,387
    I have two "shop vacs", both Ridgid; one was mine and one was my dad's when he was still walking the earth. They are actually identical. For the purpose I use them for (general cleanup), they work extremely well. About the biggest risk with any of these things is that the filers tend to clog up with fines so cleaning them with reasonable frequency is a good idea. I suspect that's the case with any brand. Although I'm less of a fan of the Orange Borg these days, they are ubiquitous and it's easy to get new filters, etc., for these Ridgid machines locally.
    --

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

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2018
    Location
    Lancaster, Ohio
    Posts
    1,423
    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Becker View Post
    I have two "shop vacs", both Ridgid; one was mine and one was my dad's when he was still walking the earth. They are actually identical. For the purpose I use them for (general cleanup), they work extremely well. About the biggest risk with any of these things is that the filers tend to clog up with fines so cleaning them with reasonable frequency is a good idea. I suspect that's the case with any brand. Although I'm less of a fan of the Orange Borg these days, they are ubiquitous and it's easy to get new filters, etc., for these Ridgid machines locally.
    I am still on the first set of filters, the dust deputy takes almost all out, then the paper bag filter, gets the rest. The HEPA catches the real tiny things that only it can. All filters that are needed included in this one. Order online, have it delivered to your house. RIDGID 12 Gallon 5.0 Peak HP NXT Wet/Dry Shop Vacuum with Filter, Locking Hose, Accessories, OSHA and HEPA Filtration Kit HD1200E - The Home Depot Then get the dust deputy wherever you want, makes a great combo.
    Ron
    Old Codger
    In it for fun

  6. #6
    I'm on my second Craftsman in 35 years. For some reason the first one let the smoke out one winter day end ended up the snow. For both the dearly departed one and my current user, I have a Goretex Cleanstream filter. When it gets nasty clogged up with fines I take it out and hose it down in the back yard. After drying out it is as good as new and goes back into the vacuum. It is so efficient that I have used it to vacuum up drywall compound without putting even the slightest bit of a cloud into the room. I highly recommend these filters if you can find one to fit your vac.
    Dave Anderson

    Chester, NH

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2016
    Location
    Modesto, CA, USA
    Posts
    10,335
    Duh, no wonder, shop vac went out of business about one year ago.
    Bill D

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    NE Ohio
    Posts
    7,129
    We have or have had a half dozen of the Ridgid shop vacs and a couple of the Shop Vac brand.
    All were picked up over the years at Black Friday sales.
    HD ran the Ridgid for $25 as a lost leader for years so, every year we picked one up. For a long time they came with a free filter too!

    I believe we're down to 3 or 4 of the Ridgid. The Shop Vacs quit a long time ago.

    My suggestion would be to bite the bullet and get a dust collector and a dust separator instead of another shop vac. I lucked into a used dust collector and haven't looked back since. Other than the Ryobi One vac I picked up. I use that for little stuff and for the track saw.
    "Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans." - John Lennon

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    SE PA - Central Bucks County
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    66,387
    Quote Originally Posted by Ron Selzer View Post
    I am still on the first set of filters, the dust deputy takes almost all out, then the paper bag filter, gets the rest. The HEPA catches the real tiny things that only it can. All filters that are needed included in this one. Order online, have it delivered to your house. RIDGID 12 Gallon 5.0 Peak HP NXT Wet/Dry Shop Vacuum with Filter, Locking Hose, Accessories, OSHA and HEPA Filtration Kit HD1200E - The Home Depot Then get the dust deputy wherever you want, makes a great combo.
    Ron
    For folks using DD because they vac is being use for hand-held electric tools, that does indeed extend filter life and maintenance requirements. I only use the Ridgid vacs for general cleanup, so a DD isn't really practical "for me".
    --

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

  10. #10
    Join Date
    May 2018
    Location
    Lancaster, Ohio
    Posts
    1,423
    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Becker View Post
    For folks using DD because they vac is being use for hand-held electric tools, that does indeed extend filter life and maintenance requirements. I only use the Ridgid vacs for general cleanup, so a DD isn't really practical "for me".
    I understand Jim. I prefer my vacuum in a fixed location with 2" pvc scd 40 pipe network, then I hook up a hose from a port to hand held electric tools, use a longer hose for cleanup, especially when my granddaughter wants to clean the floor for me. I do not like dragging a vacuum around. Did that for 40 yrs before building the system I have now. Still drag/carry a vacuum around at work, from van to inside a building and back out again. The extra plus of not changing/cleaning filters is a big plus.
    Ron
    Old Codger
    In it for fun

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    New Westminster BC
    Posts
    3,168
    I use my Dust Deputy/Rigid shop vac for both hand held tools and general cleanup in my two car garage shop. I have a 20ft hose from Lee Valley and a set of hooks in the ceiling so I can easily reach anywhere in the shop without moving the vac or tripping over the hose. The vac is in a sound insulated enclosure using some scrap foam and an old carpet runner to keep the noise down. I have a second slightly smaller Rigid shop vac w/o DD for use outside the shop. The hooks in the ceiling are also handy for power cords and my air compressor hose (which sits on top of the Rigid shop vac in the sound insulated enclosure).

  12. #12
    I guess I'm messy sort, as I rarely emptied my larger drummed Craftsman that much, so a dust deputy's loss of floor space never appealed to me.In my shop that's a very scarce commodity. I recently added dust collection to my shop as concerns over air quality factored heavily. It's piped outside. My 500cfm is still only 50% of the 1000cfm suggested.

    Following you guys' advice, I picked up a Ridgid 10gal 10amp shop vac. As luck would have it, I had made a mistake and had picked up some generic 8gal bags hoping to fit them to my Craftsman, which they didn't. They do fit the Ridgid, though.. I gather to get HEPA level of filtration, you need both bags and filter. The HEPA filter added half again to the price. I don't want to be buying them regularly. This gets the track saw, router and sanders hooked up again.

    My first shop vac I inherited from my Dad. It was one of the first Shop Vacs. They were quite a revolution in vacuum cleaners. The quality of the accessories of each shop vac has gotten worse. Considering where they started from, it's hard to believe that was possible. I went through a couple of dust brushes until I got a good one , a Sears Kenmore at a thrift store. It has real bristles. It took the 1 1/4 " hose. I switched over mostly to using a long smooth walled 1 1/2" hose from Lee Valley.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Location
    Lake Gaston, Henrico, NC
    Posts
    9,372
    I have several of the Rigid's. We've been using 8 or 9 of the Cleanstream filters since 2008. I don't think I've ever had to throw one away. There are extras to use while the last one is drying after rinsing. They get used a Lot working on the old houses. I don't remember how old they are, but they're all old enough to be made before Rigid started using bags. I also have one Shop Vac that keeps a yellow bag in it. I did find that the aftermarket yellow bags are not worth buying because they slow up the suction too much.

    I think the Rigids were the same as Craftsman for a long time, but not sure where that stands now.

  14. #14
    All of my vacs have a bag inside as well as the filter. For fine dust I use the yellow drywall dust bags. For sawdust I use a cloth bag from a Clarke floor sander. I have a Rigid that is OK after being modified to have a dust bag inside. Using a bag prolongs the life of the vac.

    IMG_2055.jpg IMG_2056.jpg IMG_2059.jpg
    IMG_2061 2.jpg IMG_2060.jpg
    The yellow ones can be reused and old pillow cases work too.
    Last edited by Maurice Mcmurry; 06-23-2024 at 6:50 PM.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Location
    Lake Gaston, Henrico, NC
    Posts
    9,372
    There is also what I call a last chance foam filter up inside the motor housing, at least on the old ones. If you turn the motor over after removing it from the top, there are three or four screws that hold the bottom cover over the motor. Take those out and when you pull that bottom cover off you will see the foam filter in there. If needed, pull that out and rinse it out.

    When sanding old plaster if we wait the least bit too long to change the yellow bag it will suck a hole through the bag and get dust up inside the motor. I did that several times until we learned to time the sanding with the 8" pole sander.

    None of my old Rigids have ever had a bag in them. I can't complain with any of them if I need to dispose of one tomorrow. I know one that ran all day every day for two weeks cleaning out between ceiling joists in an 1828 house, and that was just one use. My helpers would take it outside, change the filter, dump the barrel, hose it out, and it went right back to work.

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