Beware the dreaded .... ChupaCaja

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Project by NBeener posted 02-22-2011 01:20 AM 4519 views 2 times favorited 31 comments Add to Favorites Watch

The Latin American Suck Box.

Allegedly, it’s taken the lives of dozens of innocents.

In this case it’s being accused of things that are FAR less loathsome and macabre.

It’s a roll-about air cleaner.

Okay, so …. CraigsList had an ad for a explosion-proof fan [see SPECS, below] for sale.

Hundred bucks.

It goes for $700, new

So … I picked up a couple sheets of 3/4” ply, used a bunch of scrap, bought two 3M Filtrete Furnace Filters, grabbed one of my “used” 5” pleated media filters, and …. got busy.

12-1/2” hole cut with the jigsaw. Got lucky, first time. All the joinery is “glueing blocks—” the vertical and horizontal 30×30” pieces of ply are screwed into common blocks at the joint corner—about 2×2x18” long. No glue was harmed in the making of this film.

The fan frame (16×16”) is screwed into 4×1x20” cleats, on the back of the front panel. It’s rock solid.

There’s a center divider panel, on the interior, made of 1/8” ply. It slips into blocks arranged as upper and lower guide tracks. In the ply, I cut a 19×23” opening. That’s the way the air is forced through the filters, and outward from the fan.

In the forward (fan) compartment, I have a couple sheets of Prodex foil-backed reflective insulation, for a modicum of sound dampening.

There’s a shelf in the rear (visible in the pics) that elevates the filters to … nearly central to the box. I actually do NOT need the filter access door, so … while cute … it’s inoperative. I cut the rear opening large enough to simply change the filters through it.

Suction keeps the filters securely in place.

I bought a 15’ appliance (14/3) extension cord, simply hacked off the female end, and used the remainder AS my power cord. I’ll splice the switch into that cord … when I get to it ;-)

This thing is rather rough, but … the Suck Box is known for its stealth, and its effectiveness, NOT its elegant good looks.

The last step—I jumped ahead, out of a desire to see it work—is to wire in the switch—a 12-hour timer switch. Maybe later this week. For now, straight electrical cord.

I’m doing what I can to keep the shop a little cleaner, my sino-pulmonary system … free from dust bunnies, and the upstairs (basement shop) looking noticeably different from my wood shop.

It seems to work … beautifully, and … I’m not sure, but … it MAY be quieter than my joist-mounted JDS filter, even when the JDS is on low.

So … the dust can run, but … it cannot hide. NO PLACE is safe … from the legendary CHUPACAJA !!!!


SPECS: Dayton Fan Specs:

Exhaust Fan, Hazardous Location, Propeller Dia 12 In, CFM 0.000-In SP 1263, 0.125-In SP 1125, 0.250-In SP 980, 14.1 Sones 0.000-In SP @ 5 Ft, 115/230 Volts, 60 Hz, 1 Phase, Full Load Amps 3.9/2.0, Motor HP 1/4, Bearing Type Ball, Motor RPM 1725, Motor Type Capacitor Start, Motor Insulation Class B, Height 16 In, Width 16 In, Max Depth 14 13/16 In, Mounting Position Vertical, Number of Blades 4, Frame Material Steel, Propeller Material Fabricated Aluminum

-- -- Neil

31 comments so far

View Dandog's profile


250 posts in 3014 days

#1 posted 02-22-2011 01:37 AM

I I I I I I I I I I ! chingow! no I tierra !!!

-- life an woodworking is one big experiment

View ellen35's profile


2739 posts in 3672 days

#2 posted 02-22-2011 01:38 AM

cyclops lives!

-- "Don't let the perfect be the enemy of the good." Voltaire

View SASmith               's profile


1850 posts in 3227 days

#3 posted 02-22-2011 01:46 AM

Nice CL score. How is the fine dust collection with it sitting on the floor? I need one of these though it will probably go on the ceiling.

-- Scott Smith, Southern Illinois

View ChunkyC's profile


856 posts in 3494 days

#4 posted 02-22-2011 01:48 AM

I believe that’s explosion proof, not bomb proof. If it bomb proof, you could sell that to the military for big $$!

-- Chunk's Workshop pictures:

View PurpLev's profile


8548 posts in 3889 days

#5 posted 02-22-2011 01:51 AM

nicely done. just for heavens sake – cover that hole to the spinning metal thingy… ;)

the good thing is – in case of bombing, we know one project will survive it for sure!

-- ㊍ When in doubt - There is no doubt - Go the safer route.

View NBeener's profile


4816 posts in 3414 days

#6 posted 02-22-2011 01:55 AM

Chunk: LOL ! Changed it. Thanks.

Sharon: the seller has, and—when he can—will get me the “shutters” that came with the fan:

Scott: I already have one hanging from the joists:

I’ll use this at the “other end” of my shop. I figure … the fines are probably just as likely to be pulled down as pulled up, so … I’ll go at ‘em both ways.

Ellen: It’s only fair, since … technically … I have about SIX eyes at any given time :-)

-- -- Neil

View NBeener's profile


4816 posts in 3414 days

#7 posted 02-22-2011 01:56 AM

Dandog: Obviously, a man familiar with the legend =)

-- -- Neil

View jm82435's profile


1285 posts in 3982 days

#8 posted 02-22-2011 01:57 AM

man, what a sucky project… Looks like it could double as a woodchipper too… be careful with that one. :-)

-- A thing of beauty is a joy forever...

View Stonekettle's profile


135 posts in 3144 days

#9 posted 02-22-2011 01:57 AM

Wouldn’t the appropriate monster here be the Chipacaja?

-- Jim Wright, Stonekettle Station

View Dennisgrosen's profile


10880 posts in 3355 days

#10 posted 02-22-2011 02:04 AM

:-) sucker of the day :-)

thank´s for sharing the monster
now we can take approbiate steps against it if it show up in the neighbourhood

take care

View lilredweldingrod's profile


2496 posts in 3347 days

#11 posted 02-22-2011 02:21 AM

Neil, don’t go in the shop with out back up. I think those things are kin to bigfoot.

View 1yeldud1's profile


301 posts in 3282 days

#12 posted 02-22-2011 02:22 AM

As a thought – could you make the height so it could be used as a table saw out feed table when one is needed – Ive been looking to fashion as out feed table and your fan project probably will be incorporated into what I will build – thanks for inspiring my thought process !!!!!!!

View SASmith               's profile


1850 posts in 3227 days

#13 posted 02-22-2011 02:38 AM

Thanks Neil. Now you make me think I need 2 and I don’t even have 1.

-- Scott Smith, Southern Illinois

View NBeener's profile


4816 posts in 3414 days

#14 posted 02-22-2011 03:46 AM


So noted ! I’m waiting to see if it starts rolling around on its own, from the fan pushing so hard, and the box being on casters :-)

1yeldud1: good thought. I did think about that, but … a) It was already getting pretty big, and b) I din’t put locking casters on it. Having it move easily would be a negative for an outfeed table. I thought about a set of blocks on the outer corners of the box’s top, making it easy to set a small “table” on the TOP OF the box, and matching its height to the height of my workbench, if need be.

It IS either pretty versatile, or pretty cumbersome—depending on how you look at it.

SASmith: you came to the wrong place, if you’re looking for ways to SAVE money :-)

-- -- Neil

View fernandoindia's profile


1081 posts in 3184 days

#15 posted 02-22-2011 05:32 AM

Good job Neil. When you move that tank try not to scratch your new bench, :)

-- Back home. Fernando

showing 1 through 15 of 31 comments

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