Contractor Table Saw Dust Collection Upgrade

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Blog entry by Eric_S posted 01-18-2011 01:32 AM 33308 reads 5 times favorited 8 comments Add to Favorites Watch

After cleaning up my shop my next task was I wanted to keep it clean. I did this first by building an enclosed router table that I already blogged about, and my next area I needed to improve was my table saw.

All of my other tools have dust collection except for my uber cheap Ryobi BTS10S. I’ve made a few improvements for it with jigs I made a project about a while ago, but the one thing it was still lacking was dust collection. My wife, Ren, sewed a canvas dust bag for it that did a decent job for the first year while I was still learning about setting up a shop. After using it for that long though I thought DC on the TS could be greatly improved. Too much super fine dust was making its way out of all the gaps around the TS.

First task was to seal these gaps that were surrounding the top with about a 1 1/2” clearance in an cheap fashion to complement the cheap table saw. The top was a cutout design so I had to plug them.

Then, I cut a hole out of a piece of 3/4” particle board and mounted an angled box inside of that with a 4” opening on the back. Notice the extra table space I gained with this. It isn’t much since I didn’t want to add more supports, but at least my push stick and fence now have a better place.

The angled box is 1/2 walls with a 3/4” back where the port is. Everything was cut with a jigsaw and glued and screwed and then sealed with caulk all edges.

Here it is after attaching the TS to it. I used 3/8” thick closed cell foam insulation table between it and the wood to hopefully help with vibrations and seal it even better to get that vacuum working.

It sucks really well. Much better than a passive DC bag I had before that only got the heavy stuff.

-- - Eric Noblesville, IN

8 comments so far

View NBeener's profile


4816 posts in 3174 days

#1 posted 01-18-2011 01:38 AM

Wow !

I’m somewhere between (attribution to PurpLev) “Ghetto” and “Whiz-bang” on this one !!!

Whatever it is, though … I like it—particularly the liberal use of tape—a personal favorite.

I don’t think I knew you had a Ryobi TS. Is that one of the ones with the non-standard miter slot ?

Creative approach, and—apparently—an excellent result. Incidentally, what micron filtration did Ren’s approach achieve, or … wasn’t that outlined in the original RFP ? ;-)

Very nice work ! Your lungs will thank you !

-- -- Neil

View NBeener's profile


4816 posts in 3174 days

#2 posted 01-18-2011 01:40 AM

Incidentally, you have openings—like mine—that are arcuate, on the front and back of your saw—for bevel cuts. Mine are taped up with blue painter’s tape.

Not sure you should tape yours, though, because … you may NOT have enough input to avoid straining the motor if you close off any more orifices ;-)

I’m not even sure how you’d know … unless … an ammeter on the Delta DC would be sensitive enough to show the motor straining, if flow WAS inadequate….

[I tend to overthink these things ;-)]

-- -- Neil

View NBeener's profile


4816 posts in 3174 days

#3 posted 01-18-2011 01:41 AM

One more thing.

Your … um … insulation on your garage door … is calling for you ;-)

-- -- Neil

View Eric_S's profile


1565 posts in 3195 days

#4 posted 01-18-2011 01:49 AM

Thanks. I was debating the front openings and decided it would need at least some airflow. I can feel the suction through it very well.

Yeah, i have one of those cheap Ryobis with the non-standard slot. So I use a crosscut sled instead and added some wood sides to the fence to beef it up a bit. I never rely on the ruler on it and always measure front and back to fence when ripping.

It was the first big tool I purchased when I just got into Woodworking before I knew any better. I’d love to
upgrade it but I won’t be able to do that for a few years with the ones I’m looking at.

Rens bag was made of heavy canvas. As far as micron goes, I’d guess anywhere from 30-5 lol. It collected all the big stuff, but then the floor would be covered outside that area with a fine dust the next day. It worked well for my first year but I thought I’d include it in shop upgrades since I have lots of left over shop wood.
I tested this new DC out and the only bit I get is from the top of the TS, the floor is clean :) Now I need to add a mobile base to it though since its much heavier.

And the insulation was meant to add sound dampening to the wood door but I realized I wasted money and didn’t really need it. I need to take them off thanks for reminding me.

-- - Eric Noblesville, IN

View Jim Bertelson's profile

Jim Bertelson

4174 posts in 3164 days

#5 posted 01-18-2011 02:15 AM

I am in the process of dust control on my old Delta Contractor’s saw. If I hadn’t purchased it new 20 years ago, I probably would have just gotten something better when I gingerly entered the realm of hobbyist woodworking 18 months ago. Actually I didn’t want to invest a lot until I was sure I wanted to do it. Now I am sure, but the saw is pretty well hot rodded and works good. So dust control is the last thing, along with an overhead guard/dust tube. I am half way through the project.

I plan to bring in air from the overhead guard, and pass it by the back of the blade under the table, and then out the bottom through to the DC. I am going to totally enclose the dangling motor. The metal box the top sits on is totally enclosed except for the back, which will require a big box, with an outfeed table top afixed. I will have some adjustable slots to adjust airflow.

You don’t have the problem I do with the dangling motor and belt, although in theory, it is a better motor I guess.

What caught my eye was the arcuate openings Neil talked about. I figured out a way to close those up and still allow the tilt. It involves crisscrossed slotted boards, actually hardboard. I hate tape, OCD you know… is strickly a compusion thing for me…........(-: I will be blogging about this very soon. You may need yours for air flow. FWW had an article about dust contol, and they used a piece of wood attached with magnets to cover the slot as appropriate for air flow.

If you are going to replace that saw, then the tape is the way to go for the openings at the top of the box, I used wood (again, OCD takes the day)

Well, thanks for reading my rambling prose…......just had an idle few minutes at work. Besides I counted and I wrote more words than Neil did…......(-:

Have a good one, your project is one dear to my heart…......I have been possessed by it for a while now…....


-- Jim, Anchorage Alaska

View superstretch's profile


1531 posts in 2693 days

#6 posted 01-18-2011 06:39 AM

Hahah Neil, you crack me up. Although I think the term you’re looking for isn’t ghetto… There’s tape involved.. its clearly redneck

-- Dan, Rochester, NY

View Eric_S's profile


1565 posts in 3195 days

#7 posted 01-18-2011 01:20 PM

Living in Indiana for 10 years may have rubbed off on me. Lol before that I was raised outside Washington dc my whole life so either term is appropriate. Call it what you will, I call it improvising.

-- - Eric Noblesville, IN

View hhhopks's profile


651 posts in 2377 days

#8 posted 04-08-2012 03:13 PM

Whatever works. All things can be done. It only takes time & money.
I am usually short on both.

-- I'll be a woodworker when I grow up. HHHOPKS

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