As The Shop Turns #4: Dust Collection What do I really need?

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Blog entry by Natalie posted 410 days ago 780 reads 0 times favorited 4 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 3: I'm actually making a bit of progress. Part 4 of As The Shop Turns series Part 5: Revised Dust Collection Question »

This is not a question of what brand to buy, and I already know that I want a cyclone with the micron filter canisters. My question is about how much power do I need for my shop. I don’t want to get something that is good enough but not great. I want great performance without overkill.

My shop is just shy of 500 sq ft and I will have the typical tools. I don’t expect too many times when there will be anyone else but me in the shop, so essentially I will be using one tool at a time. I have a dedicated 220 outlet for the DC and I have 100 amps going to my shop. I am thinking that 2.5hp will be powerful enough. I have also considered 3.5 and 5hp systems. The ratings say that a 2.5hp is adequate for a 2500sq ft shop. So really, do I need anything more than that with all things considered?

Thanks Natalie

-- Natalie - My mind is like a bad neighborhood, I don't like to go there alone.

4 comments so far

View stefang's profile


12428 posts in 1921 days

#1 posted 410 days ago

My shop uses one 16 amp breaker switch. All electric in Norway is 220DC. This works for my 2hp bandsaw while running my 2hp DC. Like you. You need enough to power your vacuum system, your highest HP tool, and your lighting/heating with a little safety margin. Soft start tools help too since they do not switch on to full power all at once and they don’t use their top rating while running. I know zilch about electrics, so this is just from my personal experience. An electrician can give you the best advice.

-- Mike, an American living in Norway.

View grizzman's profile


6715 posts in 1890 days

#2 posted 410 days ago

good morning, if you dont get anyone with know how to weigh in, ask topamax, he is a good electrician..i hope your doing well…are you now able to move on with shop work ?

-- GRIZZMAN ...[''''']

View Roger's profile


13989 posts in 1391 days

#3 posted 407 days ago

Many things to consider. Duct-work vs. roll-a-bout collector. It works both ways. If you got enough space I’d stay with a roll-about. That’s my .02

-- Roger from KY. Work/Play/Travel Safe.

View exelectrician's profile


1448 posts in 1014 days

#4 posted 406 days ago

When designing my dust collector I came to the filter question and pondered this fact, dust is particles from extremely fine to chunks and everything in between. The finer the filter the finer the dust particles I get to breathe into my precious lungs, they are getting old and do not work as well as they used to. I seems that the more money (finer filter) the finer the dust that gets through, resulting in and ever escalting no-win situation.

My solution – put the filtered air outside my shop.

-- Love thy neighbour as thyself

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