Down Draft Box

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Project by Jim Jakosh posted 04-09-2016 11:49 PM 1466 views 7 times favorited 30 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I thought I’d try eliminating some of the dust in my shop due to sanding by making a down draft box to sand on. I wanted it light weight and able to store under my work bench so it finished at 21”x21”x 3 3/4” high. The box frame is 5 /16” Baltic birch plywood with 1/4” pegboard on top and 3/16 plywood for the sloping bottom. The inlet is turned from a stack of 1” Baltic birch plywood. I put some walnut spines in the corners because the corners are just mitered and glued and I though it might need some strength in case it gets dropped. There are three 1/2” x 1 1/4” braces that go across but I did not have the camera in the shop when they were installed.

I will be trying it out on a project tomorrow. I hooked the shop vac to it and it makes that good sucking sound but I think the better vacuum is up front by the port so that is where I’ll do the most sanding. I’ll put a piece of white shelf lining material on top to eliminate scuffing on the down side of the part.

This is the project by ldl that inspired mine:
Cheers, Jim

-- Jim Jakosh.....Practical Wood Products...........Learn something new every day!! Variety is the Spice of Life!!

30 comments so far

View Bob Collins's profile

Bob Collins

2261 posts in 3105 days

#1 posted 04-09-2016 11:56 PM

Great idea Jim and a neat looking box. Lets know how it works when you get it operating.

-- Bob C, Australia. I love sharing as long as it is not my tools

View Todd Barrone's profile

Todd Barrone

792 posts in 1693 days

#2 posted 04-10-2016 12:11 AM

Nice job, looks very handy.

-- "The Cedar King"

View kiefer's profile


4873 posts in 2088 days

#3 posted 04-10-2016 12:29 AM

Good set up to keep the dust under control and I can attest to that as I have been using my setup for a bit now .
I may suggest to taper all the holes and put an enclosure around three sides and the top to catch even more of the dust and I am contemplating to put a low barrier along the bottom of the front opening .
The mat to put on top is a good idea also but I found the suction holds the work piece pretty much in place .
I find that this also works quite well for routing .


-- Kiefer

View HillbillyShooter's profile


5811 posts in 1714 days

#4 posted 04-10-2016 01:04 AM

Looks good. Let us know how it works.

-- John C. -- "Firearms are second only to the Constitution in importance; they are the peoples' liberty's teeth." George Washington

View UncleStumpy's profile


707 posts in 1734 days

#5 posted 04-10-2016 01:21 AM

I tried one of these once and it didn’t cut the mustard – don’t know what I did wrong. Maybe not a big enough vacuum.
Nice job on the connection port!

-- "They don't want it perfect - they want it SPECIAL"

View tyvekboy's profile


1309 posts in 2434 days

#6 posted 04-10-2016 01:35 AM

Nice down draft box. I need to make me one too. I think I’ll attach the 4 inch hose from my dust collector if I make one … more suck.

The only suggestion I could make is you could paint the top with that TOOL DIP stuff they sell at any big box store for coating tool handles. That would protect the project and keep it from moving around when you sand.

-- Tyvekboy -- Marietta, GA ………….. one can never be too organized

View Hawaiilad's profile


2885 posts in 2442 days

#7 posted 04-10-2016 02:09 AM

It looks to me, since there is no bottom, you set it on your work bench when sanding. If so, do you have a problem with it moving around or do you clamp it down?

-- Larry in Hawaii,

View doubleDD's profile


5064 posts in 1464 days

#8 posted 04-10-2016 02:29 AM

Nice down draft table Jim. I believe it should work great. Let us know. What’s the hp on your vac?

Custom fit to fit on the shelf. That’s thinking ahead.

-- Dave, Downers Grove, Il. -------- When you run out of ideas, start building your dreams.

View BobWemm's profile


1727 posts in 1347 days

#9 posted 04-10-2016 03:31 AM

Good job Jim,
I do most of my sanding on the lathe, but am starting to do other stuff so will keep this in mind.
Love it.


-- Bob, Western Australia, The Sun came up this morning, what a great start to the day. Now it's up to me to make it even better. I've cut this piece of wood 4 times and it's still too damn short.

View Festus56's profile


806 posts in 649 days

#10 posted 04-10-2016 03:35 AM

Good job Jim, they do work well. I made one almost identical to yours and used it for a couple years until I got my big one made with the metal top with grommets. Then I added rubber push in bumpers to keep the wood from moving around and made a few holes bigger it works even better than before and is portable unlike my big cabinet mounted one. Works equally well with either the shop vac or the big dust collector.

-- Mark -- Really we're not crazy, just "Limited Editions" -- --

View Joe Lyddon's profile

Joe Lyddon

9325 posts in 3474 days

#11 posted 04-10-2016 05:42 AM

Very COOL, Jim!

Looks just like one I made a few years ago… :)

Sometimes, a little direction control is needed to make the suction more EVEN throughout the area.

It works… !!


Yours is better than mine… I just drilled a hole in the side for the Hose… :) :)

Thank you.

-- Have Fun! Joe Lyddon - Alta Loma, CA USA - Home: ... My Small Gallery:"

View majuvla's profile


8714 posts in 2289 days

#12 posted 04-10-2016 08:51 AM

Interesting project, but I don’t know if I will put myself into it. My orbital sanders have their own vacuum system sucking dust into attached smal plastic container.Anyway good idea.

-- Ivan, Croatia, Wooddicted

View Diggerjacks's profile


2090 posts in 2560 days

#13 posted 04-10-2016 09:11 AM

Hello Jim

Interesting project

In my favorite for the future

I like the idea to put it under the workbench

Thanks for sharing

-- Diggerjack-France ---The only limit is the limit of the mind and the mind has no limit

View Cliff 's profile


857 posts in 1145 days

#14 posted 04-10-2016 10:36 AM

Jim, most interesting. Dust sure is a problem, particularly Rosewood as you previously mentioned. Lets see if I fully understand this down draft method of dust control… it for using when sanding a board and if the board is just on a bench or on the floor the dust goes everywhere? Therefore the Down Draft Method sucks the dust down the holes before it gets a chance to blow about the shop? If the board covered the entire surface of the device, would it still suck up some of the dust? Great Project!!!



-- Cliff Australia : Snoring is good. It blows away all the Sawdust.

View Roger's profile


19714 posts in 2225 days

#15 posted 04-10-2016 12:46 PM

Nice one Jim. Let us know how it does.

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

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