Friday, February 20, 2009

Dust Collection Upgrades

So now I have this huge dust collector – for what we’re envisioning it should be great for our setup. The key thing is our tools are multipurpose.

One thing that Peggy was very intrigued with was the Ringmaster that came with Shopsmith #2 – the 510 model.

(Read the stand-alone review here on LJ— Ringmaster)

I’ve been reading a lot on Bill Pentz's dust collection site and it was a good wakeup call. Peggy and I both got sick just about the time of the beginning of December and battled constantly until just recently with sinus issues. I think we both originally attributed it to the weather and close proximity of my wife to sniffling kids. (She’s a reading teacher.) In retrospect I was thinking and the Christmas present work was a bit later, but then I thought back and realize we had started the trash can project back before that. Hmm.

The poor MGB bears witness to the dust issue when working with wood.

(Ok—ignore the fact that it’s also a “catch-all” for things right now in it’s non-operational state . . . one project at a time!)

So proper dust collection is definitely very high on my priority list. A stand-alone cyclone emptying outside the house is the best case scenario from what I’ve read on Bill’s site, but not all practical for how we will be working. Both Shopsmiths are mobile and as multi-purpose tools, they wouldn’t need the complexity of a huge dust collection piping system. Instead I think I’m going to go with a combo system that will be a good compromise.

The first part of that will be a chip/dust extractor from Thien Cyclone Separator Lid plans. My idea is to use a similar idea but simply scale it up a bit more. I’m going to put 6” piping from the inducer side of the compressor to the top of two garbage cans stacked together. The top can will have the floor duct to make an air transition and a baffle. The bottom can will serve as the primary collector and will be removeable. I’m envisioning the entire thing being attached to the existing Grizzly dust collection cart. It will probably be just a bit bigger in both dimensions.

The second part of my plan involves using a pleated air filter for the Grizzly dust collector.

One thing that I’m thinking on is efficiency of collection and I’d like to experiment with applying some “hot rod” type things to the dust collection setup. I know that the use of a velocity stack helps transition the air greatly and I think it might be very helpful here because I’ll need all the CFM I can keep for removing the bad dust. The faster the dust enters into the cyclone, the greater the probability is that it will spin out of suspension and fall into the collector. If it’s slowing down and getting turbulence it’ll probably wind up in the air filter and risk clogging it.

Another option I was kicking around was building my own cyclone like this one. The problem is that it’s designed for solid mounting, and again, I’d like some freedom in where the DC goes. I suppose making something like that mobile wouldn’t be too big of an issue, but my biggest liability is TIME. I don’t know that I’d have enough time to rebuild what we already have to build this. From some of the results I've been seeing, I think the separator approach is definitely worth looking at.

So . . . this weekend . . . more projects to come! :-)

No comments: