I know that many people have modified the HF-DC but I just wanted to put my spin out there. I have been doing a lot of research on the many different styles of updates/modifications that have been done and holy cow there are a lot. But, most of them rely on the Thien principle that seems to be pretty simple. On the Thien blog there is a guy that tests and records many different modifications with different setups. I am going to set-out to make my entire system buying the least amount as possible. I already had a plastic 55G barrel and the HF-DC, so now its just time to start the crafting.
From the pictures you can see the standard 55G white drum that I will be using for the separator/collector side. Unfortunately the barrel I had didn’t have a removable top so I had to do some modifying.
To do so, I took my jig saw with a long blade and cut right along the black line that I put onto the container. I tried to keep this so that I would have a flat spot to attach my screws for the wooden top ring. One tip for attaching the top ring if you barrel is a little out of round (like mine was). Take a long clamp and using a couple blocks of wood to pressure the barrel, squeeze it in the longer direction to make the shorter dimension widen out to round. If you don’t, I don’t think it will affect the performance, just will have a bigger overhang in some areas.
To create the wooden ring I did something that I have been nervous of doing for a long time….I cut a circle on the table saw. I have hesitated to do this before due to the dangerous nature of this task, but after carefully doing it a couple times in this project, I think it will be something that I use in the future to cut some perfect circles. (I would have used my band saw but the table isn’t big enough and it would have taken a lot more to mod the table than to make this jig for the table saw.) Here you can see the barrel with the wooden top ring attached. I used 2” screws into the barrel side doing my best to keep the screws inside the lip. I did have a couple slip out the side, but just backed them out, put some silicone in the hole and angled them a little more. After I had this top ring attached, I ran a healthy bead of silicone around the inside and outside of the barrel right where the plastic and MDF meet. The wooden ring for my base is 1-3/4” but that is all dependent on how big you want the ‘top-hat’ separator to be. Mine will turn out to be just about a 20” inner chamber.
Now, next steps are to create the chamber and I hope to have that up and posted later this week. I might also try to do a video on the cutting of the circles on the table saw…. Until then….