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Thread: Shop vacuum recommendations

  1. #1

    Shop vacuum recommendations

    Okay, I know the Festool CT-22 or one of the Fein dust collectors are my first choice.

    The reality is that I've spent a LOT of money on my shop in the last six months, and would like to find something less expensive. My current ShopVac(r) wet/dry vacuum is about ten years old, and I think it's starting to give up the ghost. It's gotten very noisy (like bearings or something) and doesn't suck worth a darn, even with the filter removed (which I did just to make sure that there wasn't something clogging the filter cartridge that wasn't visible or that wasn't coming off when knocked on the driveway). It's also configured as a pump (we bought it originally to drain our hot tub), and has a relatively huge footprint.

    Can anyone recommend any of the mass-market vacs over any of the others?

    Thanks.
    --Steve--
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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
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    Orange County, Calif.
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    I'm looking at a used Wap. Does anyone have any experience with these? How's the suction, noise, etc. Any complaints? Thanks.
    I am not what I want to be.
    I am not what I hope to be.
    But by the grace of God, I am not what I was.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Burlington Ontario
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    164

    I have Sears and Fein

    Turbo 2 is a awesome machine. Very quiet and very simple to use. I also use a big sears model with the hepa filter on it. Cheap vacuum on the messy jobs and water leaks etc and expensive vac for sanding and chop saw inside a house. Maybe it's me but the older I get the quieter things are the happier I am.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
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    Sylvania, OH
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    I'm also in the market for a reasonably priced vacuum. After researching them here and elsewhere, I've decided on the Ridgid WD1850 from Home Depot. Reasonably quiet, you can get 1 micron filters for it, and well reviewed by those who have it. Now if it would only go on sale

    Dave

  5. #5
    Of the ones out there now in the mass market, the ones I see the most comments on are the Ridgid ones that claim to be quieter than usual.

    IMO, unless you have a dust collector, a shop vac is no place to cut corners.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    Camas, Wa
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    I have the Ridgid 12 gallon one that goes on sale after Thanksgiving for $25. I couldn't be happier with it.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim McCarty View Post
    I'm looking at a used Wap. Does anyone have any experience with these? How's the suction, noise, etc. Any complaints? Thanks.
    I have a WAP. IMHO they are the best vac (now Alto) that you can buy. More CFM, more inches of lift, and only 56 db. It's the most powerful, and quietest vac for workshops that's available. I spent nearly $1k for mine like 15 years ago. Mine is Drywaller version with auto start, and a built in filter cleaning brush. Alto bought WAP and used their technology for the current Alto line. I believe parts are available from Alto, but you should check for the specific model you are considering.

    Also, a good feature set auto start Alto sells for around $700 online new. How much for the used WAP?

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by Jeremy Zorns View Post
    IMO, unless you have a dust collector, a shop vac is no place to cut corners.
    I do have a dust collector and fixed ducting, but the shop-vac gets hooked to the ROS, the router and is used for general shop clean-up as well as "spot" dust and chip collection on the drill press.
    --Steve--
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  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by David Parker View Post
    I've decided on the Ridgid WD1850 from Home Depot.
    Even not on sale, at $150 the price isn't too bad, and the reviews speak well of it.
    --Steve--
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  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    Monroe, MI
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    I have one of these Ridgid 4 gal vacs in my garage which I really like. I've never used it in the shop, but its easily portable and it doesn't take up much space.



    http://www.ridgid.com/Tools/4-Gallon-Vac/EN/index.htm


  11. #11
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Bucks County, Pennsylvania
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    I had to buy a second VAC about a month ago - I wanted something a little smaller than the 16 gal Sears unit that I have owned for about two years. This unit has a motor that can come off and become a blower -- I actually use this feature plus the unit is very light without the motor (the top stays on)

    I ended up with, I think the 12 gal unit from Sears - with the fixed motor. It is very nice -- and powerful -- it also uses the same Gore replacement filter as my other unit. The Gore filters are fantastic and a must have for me.


    All said, last weekend my sister bought a Ridged unit for a little over $100.00 on sale. I was impressed. I always like the squat stance of the Sears units for stability but this Rigid unit was both tall and slim and stable! It also was very quiet -- also a better tone of noise. It may not have had as much power as my Sears units but was every bit as effective.

    The one thing I hate about all of the regular units from all the manufactures is the hose -- they all have that plastic hose that is just too stiff - and gets difficult to work with as it ages.

    I did not check the filter on the Ridged -- but I think I would get that over the Sears next time

  12. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Sawyer View Post
    I do have a dust collector and fixed ducting, but the shop-vac gets hooked to the ROS, the router and is used for general shop clean-up as well as "spot" dust and chip collection on the drill press.
    Well, in that case cut away. If you're using it with your router and ROS, the noise probably won't be much of an issue, as you'll probably be wearing ear protection anyhow.

  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by Jeremy Zorns View Post
    Well, in that case cut away.
    Well, I am looking for good dust and chip collection, so I don't want to COMPLETELY cheap out! And yeah, as to the noise, with machinery use it isn't much of an issue, but I hate to have to put on hearing protectors to vacuum off the workbenches and floors.
    --Steve--
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  14. #14
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
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    It seems like the newer vacs are quieter than ones from 5-10 years ago (I can't believe I'm old enough to talk about stuff I bought 10 years ago) but the Borg vacs seem significantly louder than the high-end vacs. I run that little Ridgid in the house and in the garage without hearing protection. Not say I should, but it doesn't seem bad. Not like my old big Ridgid. It came with a muffler built in, so that might be a difference.


  15. #15
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
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    Here is another vote for the Ridgid 14 gal vac. It has a noise level of less than 80 db, my rusty memory want to say around 76 db, and a person can easily talk over it without yelling. I also like the long power cord; it lets me get around nearly all of the shop from one outlet. The best thing I can say about it is IT SUCKS.
    Last edited by Ken Garlock; 04-26-2008 at 12:33 PM. Reason: correct size of vacuum
    Best Regards, Ken

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