Hand made blast gates, upgraded dust collection

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Project by MikeSpanky posted 05-13-2015 09:42 PM 10141 views 27 times favorited 6 comments Add to Favorites Watch

This was not my idea originally. I took mine mostly from of Glass Impressions on YouTube, especially the ball bearing and spring tension part.

My shop the past year has been a headache to work in. Seemed I was always needing to vac the floor. Without a true dust collection system, I was finding out how much time I was truly losing just cleaning up. Plus there was always micro particles in the air. So two months ago I began to overhaul from pulling down everything on the wall and re-insulating to rearranging for more room to adding a new Grizzly dust collection system. There’s still a lot of work to do but I’m on my way.

The blast gates are primarily made of 1/2 plywood with 4” PVC couplings cut in half and epoxied to each side. I chose to use a 4” hose coupling from Rockler which fits tight inside the coupling. I used all thin wall sewer PVC for long runs until I reached the station. Some machines would take 4” and others needed to be adapted to 2-1/2”.

Picture #2 shows me placing the 1/4” spring and ball bearing inside the add on board where there is a hole drilled through one side. You see how Glass impressions made his at this link ( . I thought the screw would be used to adjust but I discovered if the right tension is found in the spring the screws need only hold it in place.

Making the blast gates was the most time consuming part. I’m not sure if it was worth it or not but was enjoyable.

-- There's no crying in woodworking. Just measure and cut again.

6 comments so far

View MrFid's profile


791 posts in 1324 days

#1 posted 05-14-2015 01:47 AM

Nice looking setup! I’ve been thinking about making those Glass Impressions blast gates for a while too. Someday…

-- Bailey F - Eastern Mass.

View Grant Davis's profile

Grant Davis

760 posts in 3328 days

#2 posted 05-14-2015 10:49 AM

Very nice set up. Thanks for sharing.

-- Grant...."GO BUCKEYES"

View Elyasaf Shweka's profile

Elyasaf Shweka

79 posts in 945 days

#3 posted 05-17-2015 07:27 AM

Great setup, fine implementation.
I was wondering: On the 3rd picture of the overall setup, i see a hose that goes up. I assume this one goes on the ceiling, all the way to the table saw, somewhere in the middle of the shop. but i don’t see a blast gate, maybe you have done it closer to the saw. but isn’t it an inefficient way, which takes some of the power of the grizzly dust collector? or does the length of the hose doesn’t really matter, as long as its closed at the end?
I’m setting up my own dust collecting system, for same exact reasons, and I’ve built the same exact thein baffle on top of same trash bin, and was wondering about this issue myself. I always wish i had stronger dust collector (mine is similar to yours), and I’m trying to get the most of what I have, since my workshop is in my apartment, and i cant fit anything bigger than what i already have.

-- Only by the 4th time I realized how it was suppose to be done in the first place.

View MikeSpanky's profile


177 posts in 783 days

#4 posted 05-17-2015 08:47 PM

Elyasaf yes I did run my pipe on the ceiling and split it to my tablesaw and bandsaw. You can see more in another of my posts. So far as long at I only have no more than two blast gates open at a time it works well.

-- There's no crying in woodworking. Just measure and cut again.

View MikeSpanky's profile


177 posts in 783 days

#5 posted 07-04-2015 04:11 AM

Update after two months: the epoxy did not hold up where I used it to glue the coupling to the plywood. After two failed I turned to construction adhesive and have no more problems with them separating. As for how well they slide and close, I couldn’t be happier.

-- There's no crying in woodworking. Just measure and cut again.

View Roger's profile


19711 posts in 2224 days

#6 posted 08-21-2015 01:04 PM

Very good. Home made blast gates are sure less expensive than purchasing.

-- Roger from KY. Work/Play/Travel Safe. Keep your dust collector fed.

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