Dust Collection System #1: Dust Collection Duct Work

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Blog entry by nightdiver5 posted 07-30-2011 08:07 PM 4150 reads 1 time favorited 5 comments Add to Favorites Watch
no previous part Part 1 of Dust Collection System series no next part

I’ve been working on putting together a dust collection system for my garage/workshop. I couldnt turn down the great deal on the Harbor Freight 2 HP dust collector and then of course since I saved so much I just had to make up for it by throwing on a Wynn cartridge filter.

I was having a hard time deciding on 6”, 5” or 4” duct for the ducting system. The HF dust collector has a 5” Impeller plate opening so going with 6” didnt seem to make sense as the system would be constrained by where it necks down to that 5” opening and going with 4” seemed too small for main lines. I had finally decided that 5” would make the most sense and started researching the best place to buy metal ducting.

After a lot research I finally came across Penn State Industries. The prices quoted on their website are lower than anyone else I checked, but even better, if you just email them the list of what you want, they come back with a quote that is substantially lower than what the internet pricing shows. Then they ended up invoicing me at price that was even lower than that. Total internet cost from a couple of others for what I wanted was approx. $1200. Internet cost from Penn was approx. $1000 but they ended up invoicing me $688 plus freight. Best of all, they only charged me $79 to ship all the stuff from Philly to my house in OC Cali which is actually cheaper than the sales tax I would have paid if I bought it local (and dont get me started on Cali taxes). Last, they will also take a look at your plans and make suggestions.

The above pricing was for 6” ducting with reducers down to 4” and 4” blast gates for each machine connection. The reason I ended up with 6” was that when I mentioned my dilema in deciding what size ducting to use, the casual answer was, why dont you go 6” and just change the impeller plate? “Huh? You can do that?” was my response. The answer is yes, they have a 14” impeller plate that fits the HF dust collector and has a 6” inlet opening. Cost is a whopping $15. It isnt a slam dunk because it does require drilling new mounting holes since the new impeller plate is slightly larger than the old one but not a major deal. Oh and for those who are very anal, the impeller plate color is red instead of the HF green but what the heck, I kind of like the two tone look.

Ok, now the next step is to try and put the whole thing together.


-- Jeff, SoCal

5 comments so far

View jockmike2's profile


10635 posts in 4269 days

#1 posted 07-30-2011 10:48 PM

Sounds like a great deal. I also have the HF 2hp collector I haven’t even put together yet. So this gives me some great ideas. Thanks, mike.

-- (You just have to please the man in the Mirror) Mike from Michigan -

View therookie's profile


887 posts in 2850 days

#2 posted 07-31-2011 04:25 PM

very great deal


View David Murray's profile

David Murray

187 posts in 3137 days

#3 posted 08-01-2011 01:14 AM

I’ll be interested to see some pics of the assembled system. I have a Delta 1.5 HP unit with 4” PVC pipe as the main line. It works pretty well but I was considering up sizing to a 6” main. Keep us posted.

-- Dave from "The Sawdust Shed"

View funnylikefozzie's profile


8 posts in 2078 days

#4 posted 01-28-2013 06:09 PM

I am currently setting up the dust collection in my garage, and have read nearly all of Bill Pentz website on dust collection. It seems 6” ducting is the minimum to get adequate “dust” collection.

Do you happen to know the part number for the new impeller plate with the 6” port?

View nightdiver5's profile


21 posts in 2716 days

#5 posted 01-28-2013 06:53 PM

Sorry, I dont have the part number for the plate.
I spoke with Bill at Penn State Ind.(800.377.7297 Told him I had the Harbor Freight Dust Collector and the diameter of the plate. They had one that would fit with a 6” port for $10.95. Installing the plate wasnt difficult. It required drilling some new mounting holes on the side of the impeller chamber, then double back tape around the edge of the plate for a seal before screwing it to the chamber with sheet metal screws. By the way, Penn State had the best ducting price of any of the places I checked.
Only real problem I have with the system is I’m getting new roll up garage doors so of course part of the system is located right where those doors are going to travel. Have to dissasemble part of it and resite some of the ducting.
I’ll see if I can post some pics in the next couple of days.

-- Jeff, SoCal

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