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Vortex Dust Collector Modification using a 14" wok #2

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Blog entry by Toolz posted 08-08-2011 07:43 PM 8403 reads 5 times favorited 8 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I gave the DC a real workout this morning. I have a couple of 5/4 16”x12’ pieces of mystery wood I got at an auction about 4 years ago. Initially I thought it might be American sycamore but now I have my doubts.

I cut, milled and sanded the wood. The wood cleans up like pine, burns like pine on the drum sander at all but the slowest feed settings, it has very few small (between 1/4” and 5/8”) very tight knots. It doesn’t have any pine pitch, and doesn’t smell like pine. It does have a distinct “sweet” odor when sanded though. As a result I have about 6-7 inches of dust in the bottom of the DC bag. I pulled off the canister to see if the WOK made any difference. The results so far are mixed. There was more sawdust in the canister than I expected but not as much compared with the canister before the modification. I think I may have the WOK sitting too far below the opening of the ring. The article I referenced yesterday said he mounted his using 1 1/2” copper tubing as spacers. Using those measurements the WOK is directly in line with the air flow coming into the ring that separates the top canister and the bottom bag.

In then near future I plan to remove the copper spacers and see if that results in better performance. I’ll keep you posted. Thanks for the comments. Larry

-- Larry "Work like a Captain but Play like a Pirate!"



8 comments so far

View GregD's profile

GregD

618 posts in 1802 days


#1 posted 08-08-2011 10:56 PM

I am trying a Thien-inspired baffle at the bottom of my separator ring, also with the hopes of keeping stuff out of the canister. And, like you, I was not impressed with the results after the first bagful of dust. But maybe I pushed it too hard. First, I might have waited too long to empty it. Second, the last thing I milled before emptying the bag was a batch of raised panels with a large diameter router bit that generated lots of long fluffy shavings that liked to form big wads around my router like nothing else I’ve seen before. Every panel or two I’d pull out the wads and send them into the DC. Since then I’ve been mostly sanding & finishing, and will be for some time to come, so it might be a while before the dust bag gets full enough for me to check again.

-- Greg D.

View Toolz's profile

Toolz

1003 posts in 2408 days


#2 posted 08-10-2011 07:43 PM

I tore it apart again this morning and removed the copper tubing. I’ll post again after I see if that helps.

-- Larry "Work like a Captain but Play like a Pirate!"

View Toolz's profile

Toolz

1003 posts in 2408 days


#3 posted 08-11-2011 07:52 PM

Still haven’t reached final conclusions but the first thing I would do differently is NOT to use shellac as a rust preventive. I plan to remove it and just wax the wok liberally with paste wax and then buff the hell out of it. Why; you ask? I noticed that although the shellacked finish felt smooth to the touch it really seems to attract dust to the wok. Stay tuned…Larry

-- Larry "Work like a Captain but Play like a Pirate!"

View b2rtch's profile

b2rtch

4338 posts in 1714 days


#4 posted 11-23-2011 09:02 PM

SO what happened after you removed the spacers? I would like to know.

-- Bert

View Toolz's profile

Toolz

1003 posts in 2408 days


#5 posted 12-06-2011 02:43 PM

Bert, removing the spacers was a definite improvement! Sorry I hadn’t posted this sooner but I have had a few medical issues.

-- Larry "Work like a Captain but Play like a Pirate!"

View b2rtch's profile

b2rtch

4338 posts in 1714 days


#6 posted 12-06-2011 02:58 PM

Larry,
Tahnk you for your reply.
I am very close to do the same thing on my DC.
I looked at the picture above: if you remove the spacers, would the wok not completely close/block the opening?
As I see it you need to have some spacers, no?
I am thinking about using a cheap plastic salad bowl to do that.

-- Bert

View Toolz's profile

Toolz

1003 posts in 2408 days


#7 posted 12-06-2011 07:01 PM

With the WOK the opening is not blocked at all. Ideally you would use a pointed cone but the wok was the best solution I found. You may have the same problem with a plastic bowl as I experienced with the shellac namely static attracting the dust to the top of the bowl surface. When I removed the shellac and really waxed the bowl I didn’t have much of a problem anymore. You really want the top surface of whatever you use to be really slick. Hope this helps.

-- Larry "Work like a Captain but Play like a Pirate!"

View tenontim's profile

tenontim

2131 posts in 2410 days


#8 posted 01-28-2012 04:02 PM

Larry, thanks for posting this mod using the wok. I just updated my Shop Fox 1 1/2 hp dust collector to a JDS canister filter and after watching the dust tornado in the plastic bag climb right up into the filter, I added the wok modification. After mounting the wok, the dust and chips just swirled around the bottom of the bag.

I used a heavier, metal bracket to mount the wok, so I have a little different set up, but the wok is about 1-2” below the opening. From my observations, I don’t think the location of the wok is too important, just as long as it’s there to stop the dust cloud from swirling up into the filter. The only time I really get any heavy accumulations of dust is when I’m running my drum sander.

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