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Automatic Dust Collector Switch #1: Automatic Dust Collector Switch

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Blog entry by DaveTPilot posted 01-14-2011 07:52 AM 2624 reads 3 times favorited 19 comments Add to Favorites Watch
no previous part Part 1 of Automatic Dust Collector Switch series Part 2: Schematic »

Back by popular demand.

Please note the following disclaimer:

This is a prototype design. The purpose of the video is to demonstrate a system that began in my head and materialized in my wood shop as a test platform. The system works as conceived but in no way represents proper wiring techniques or local code compliance. The system is in no way meant to be duplicated. Please consult a qualified electrician before attempting to install any electrical device in your home.

Original Post:

There are many differing opinions and ideas regarding automatically switching on/off your dust collector. In my shop, I wanted the best of 3 worlds:

1. I wanted the DC to turn on when certain tools were switched on such as the table saw, jointer, planer, band saw and router table and automatically switched off when those tools were switched off.

2. I wanted to remotely turn on the DC and have it continuously run for machines that may be started and stopped multiple times in a short period of time…i.e. the miter saw.

3. I wanted the option of turning the DC on manually for those occasion when I’m working in the shop with my 11-year-old son. He could be running the random orbit sander attached to the DC and I could run other tools without the DC switching off every time I pushed the stop button on said machine.

Although there is nothing wrong with these methods, I wanted to avoid:

1. Pressing a remote control switch every time I wanted the DC to switch on and off. I found myself holding a full 4×8 sheet of 3/4” plywood on the table saw only to find that the remote was out of reach one too many times. :)

2. Closing a dust gate to switch the DC off.

Can it be done? Of course it can. I’m originally from New England and we New Englanders believe in a little something call Yankee ingenuity. :)

:

-- How valuable is time to a person who spends his disparaging the beliefs of others? --David Berthelette www.pilotwoodworks.com



19 comments so far

View NBeener's profile

NBeener

4806 posts in 1898 days


#1 posted 01-14-2011 08:03 AM

Dave:

WHIZ-BANG !

And it WORKS !!!

Very cool. I love a good wiring project.

Well done !!!

-- -- Neil

View RonPeters's profile

RonPeters

708 posts in 1604 days


#2 posted 01-14-2011 08:28 AM

Isn’t that something! What a neat idea. Quite the dust collection system you have there!

-- “Once more unto the breach, dear friends...” Henry V - Act III, Scene I

View Craftsman on the lake's profile

Craftsman on the lake

2409 posts in 2161 days


#3 posted 01-14-2011 03:16 PM

Beyond many of us to accomplish without detailed directions for the x10 mods but a way cool implementation. Bravo.

Hey, how about a blog showing those mods?

-- The smell of wood, coffee in the cup, the wife let's me do my thing, the lake is peaceful.

View DaveTPilot's profile

DaveTPilot

271 posts in 2022 days


#4 posted 01-14-2011 03:40 PM

”Hey, how about a blog showing those mods?”

I was actually thinking about doing just that. It’s going to take some time to put it all together but I’d love to share the idea with all who are adventurous enough to do something like this.

I would also consider putting together “ready to install” unit packages if anyone is interested.

-- How valuable is time to a person who spends his disparaging the beliefs of others? --David Berthelette www.pilotwoodworks.com

View SteveM's profile

SteveM

108 posts in 2891 days


#5 posted 01-14-2011 03:41 PM

Very nice and looks like one that can be added to an existing house or even a rental. I was VERY lucky and met a fellow LJ named Jim who had designed and built a unit that seems to be similar. My PC crashed and I can’t find his email but will search further if anyone so desires.

His fits in a box, has auto and manual settings, has a timer so you can delay the dust collector shut down (like when using a chop saw) and uses a toroid to detect current flow. As such it can work on one or twenty circuits. He sold me a prototype at a very reasonable cost and was seeking a patent. Also, very helpful with advice.

Wish I was as smart as you guys with electronics.

View DaveTPilot's profile

DaveTPilot

271 posts in 2022 days


#6 posted 01-14-2011 04:03 PM

I think I saw his posts here on LJ some time ago. Sounds like a great system. Does that system have the remote control option as well?

My system will also work on limitless circuits if the current sensor was placed in the breaker box and I used existing, easily replaceable technology. If anything fails, it is very inexpensive to replace the components.

-- How valuable is time to a person who spends his disparaging the beliefs of others? --David Berthelette www.pilotwoodworks.com

View JimDaddyO's profile

JimDaddyO

288 posts in 1803 days


#7 posted 01-14-2011 04:04 PM

No strain relief for the sensor
unarmored cable too close to floor (orange one)
no slack or support for orange wire
exposed mar connector junction
Good idea, but should be executed with more safety in mind. I would bet there was no permit pulled for this wiring, as it would fail inspection. Therefore, fire insurance is null and void.

-- I still have all my fingers

View DaveTPilot's profile

DaveTPilot

271 posts in 2022 days


#8 posted 01-14-2011 07:55 PM

”No strain relief for the sensor
unarmored cable too close to floor (orange one)
no slack or support for orange wire
exposed mar connector junction
Good idea, but should be executed with more safety in mind. I would bet there was no permit pulled for this wiring, as it would fail inspection. Therefore, fire insurance is null and void.”

There seems to be no lack of criticism on this site anymore. (Said tongue in cheek.)

Thanks Jim for pointing all of that out. I should have mentioned that this is a prototype and in no way was meant as an example of how to permanently wire things in your home or shop. I wanted to share it with my LJ friends to demonstrate the theory behind the design.

The items you pointed out are accurate but to be honest, I’m not sure you could get this system to pass an electrical inspection regardless of how “Code Compliant” friendly you tried to be. I have dealt with many inspectors and it really comes down to the individual. I supervised a construction project a few years ago. Some inspectors failed wiring in one building and other inspectors passed identical wiring in others. Anyway, I digress.

I had planned to rewire the entire system to meet code compliance as far as the electrical wiring is concerned. What goes on inside my magic box and the current sensor is something entirely different in deed and may not pass an inspection. It just depends on who inspects it.

I am pulling the video off the site so as not to offend the safety police. If anyone is interested in learning more about this, send me a message and I’ll be happy to help. The cost for this system, not including the wiring and boxes was about $50.00 if you buy all the components yourself.

-- How valuable is time to a person who spends his disparaging the beliefs of others? --David Berthelette www.pilotwoodworks.com

View NBeener's profile

NBeener

4806 posts in 1898 days


#9 posted 01-14-2011 08:18 PM

Can I make a suggestion ?

Leave the vid up, AND put all the asterisks, disclaimers, and safety warnings that … anybody can come up with.

#1: it IS a very cool design

#2: this IS a woodworking site. Most of what is discussed here CAN cause serious, if not mortal, harm to a person—done wrong

I think starting a thought process, by showing US what YOU did … is valuable, AND … that you can “protect yourself” by loading your post with caveats and Surgeon General warnings.

Win-win, sez me ;-)

-- -- Neil

View DaveTPilot's profile

DaveTPilot

271 posts in 2022 days


#10 posted 01-14-2011 09:27 PM

LOL good suggestion Neil and thanks for the compliment. I’ll put another video up with all the disclaimers and I’m thinking of putting together a complete set of how-to-build instructions, also loaded with disclaimers, and resources for the parts. My system is the easiest, least expensive and most comprehensive one I have seen thus far but we do need to be safe.

While on the subject of safety and code compliance, if you read your local fire codes regarding dust collection, you might find that most of us violate fire codes daily. Just a thought. :-)

In all seriousness, it can be a dangerous hobby and safety if very important. Constructive criticism is always welcomed.

-- How valuable is time to a person who spends his disparaging the beliefs of others? --David Berthelette www.pilotwoodworks.com

View SteveM's profile

SteveM

108 posts in 2891 days


#11 posted 01-15-2011 12:39 AM

I’m with Neil. Thanks for the post! There are often opportunities to criticize (I do it a LOT to my stuff but refrain from doing so to others because I’m certainly no expert and have no idea from where they come as to skill/tools/good luck/etc.) but I like seeing what other LJs are willing to share. Even if there are perceived improvement opportunities in skill/style/???, I have the opportunity learn and may not see the same “flaws” others perceive.

I have yet to sell any of my pieces and am reluctant to give them away due to the flaws I see in them. That said, I’ve also turned down quite handsome offers of cash after reluctantly giving a piece to someone so I guess others don’t see the same blemishes as the maker.

Anyhow, lets all keep sharing what we make and the ideas we have.

View JimDaddyO's profile

JimDaddyO

288 posts in 1803 days


#12 posted 01-15-2011 05:00 AM

I would agree with Neil too. I did not mean to offend you in any way. Sorry if that happened. I would just like to be sure fellow woodworkers stay around so they can share more ideas.

-- I still have all my fingers

View DaveTPilot's profile

DaveTPilot

271 posts in 2022 days


#13 posted 01-15-2011 09:14 AM

I reposted the video with a disclaimer regarding the temporary nature of the wiring.

Jim, no worries, I’m not offended. Your statements were…albeit blunt…quite correct, as I stated above. I didn’t mean to stir the hornets nest but lately I have been reading too many, “Don’t do this” or “Don’t do that” types of comments (directed at other LJ’s) on this site with little regard to diplomacy. Your statements were very much based in fact. Sadly, the same can not be said for many other comments I have been reading lately.

I too want to do right by my fellow woodworkers. This is the best forum of which I have had the privilege of being a member. If the majority of us continue to exercise the art of civil discourse, it will remain that way.

Thanks again everyone for your thoughts and comments.

-- How valuable is time to a person who spends his disparaging the beliefs of others? --David Berthelette www.pilotwoodworks.com

View JimDaddyO's profile

JimDaddyO

288 posts in 1803 days


#14 posted 01-15-2011 03:30 PM

Well, not the first time I have been told I am blunt. But I admit that I am not the sharpest tool in the shed too….lol

-- I still have all my fingers

View DaveTPilot's profile

DaveTPilot

271 posts in 2022 days


#15 posted 01-15-2011 03:40 PM

Now THAT’S funny! LOL thanks for the laugh this morning.

-- How valuable is time to a person who spends his disparaging the beliefs of others? --David Berthelette www.pilotwoodworks.com

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