Upgraded Dust Collector again!

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Project by GaryK posted 11-11-2011 08:00 AM 7342 views 21 times favorited 22 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I started out with this:

When I bought it about 15+ years ago, I had it installed outside in a small metal building next to my garage when I lived in California. It’s a Taiwanese made Reliant brand.

I built a small room inside my new 1000 sq ft shop I built in Texas for it.

Then I decided to upgrade it about 4 years ago to a canister filter instead of the bag. It made a big difference.

You can see it here:

I friend my mine still living in California (But is moving to Texas next month) built a cyclone dust collector from a plan in Wood Magazine. He mentioned that it never loses suction due to clogged bags or filters.

So I thought that I would upgrade again to what you see above in the project. I do get a lot more suction from the longest run of 50+ feet away. I was surprised by just how much extra there was.

Since my shop was air conditioned for those hot summer months, I exhausted the air that was sucked in the that small room through a cleanable filter you can see in the last picture. I just take it outside and smack it on the sidewalk to knock all the fine dust off.

When I installed the cyclone I incorporated the output of the blower to use it also as you can see in the 4th picture.

If you are interested in making one yourself the plans are in the November 1997 Wood Magazine or you can by the updated version with some improvements from their website here.

-- Gary - Never pass up the opportunity to make a mistake look like you planned it that way - Tyler, TX

22 comments so far

View a1Jim's profile


117128 posts in 3606 days

#1 posted 11-11-2011 08:11 AM

Looks good Gary ,good upgrade

-- wood crafting & woodworking classes

View Joe Lyddon's profile (online now)

Joe Lyddon

10125 posts in 4081 days

#2 posted 11-11-2011 08:21 AM

Hi Gary,

Looks like you’re better & better stuff…

Is there a Dust filter bag somewhere?

What am I missing?

I see the small general purpose exhaust air filter on the bottom-right…

I see the spinning chamber where the heavy chips & saw dust drops down into the can… but I don’t see the finer dust filter bag that is normally connected to the top somewhere.

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

View Sac's profile


268 posts in 3663 days

#3 posted 11-11-2011 12:46 PM

Look’s pretty nice. I take it that is 4” pvc? And looks like you were able to use your same unit from the old system, correct? I love the idea of the small filter for fine dust. Very nice.

-- Jerry

View Ken90712's profile


17563 posts in 3218 days

#4 posted 11-11-2011 12:54 PM

Gary Nice, improvement on the DC. I have been kicking around adding that type of filter to mine as well. Looking good.

-- Ken, "Everyday above ground is a good day!"

View spanky46's profile


995 posts in 3420 days

#5 posted 11-11-2011 01:21 PM

Great Idea Gary! I have a two car garage shop ( see shop photos) and I’m wondering what you jocks would think of me mounting the upper half of this project in the attic above for both noise, space and dust control!
Thoughts and ideas welcome!
Thanks, Larry

-- spanky46 -- Never enough clamps...Never enough tools...Never enough time.

View Napaman's profile


5526 posts in 4106 days

#6 posted 11-11-2011 04:20 PM

looks like a huge improvement…

-- Matt--Proud LJ since 2007

View Dusty56's profile


11819 posts in 3717 days

#7 posted 11-11-2011 06:54 PM

Very nice update , Gary : )

-- I'm absolutely positive that I couldn't be more uncertain!

View IrreverentJack's profile


727 posts in 2872 days

#8 posted 11-11-2011 07:17 PM

Gary, Did you eliminate your canister? -Jack

View lanwater's profile


3111 posts in 2963 days

#9 posted 11-11-2011 09:06 PM

That’s a great improvement that I have been debating myself.

It looks like you vent back into the small room filter again. Is that correct?

-- Abbas, Castro Valley, CA

View GaryK's profile


10262 posts in 4017 days

#10 posted 11-11-2011 10:07 PM

About the filter. It’s an electrostatic filter. I bought it as Lowes and it is made so that you can cut it to whatever size you want to.

Apparently the air rushing through it generated some static electricity which attracts the fine dust particles. It seems to do a good job and until I deem otherwise I will continue to use it.

I have only used it for a day so far, so the jury is still out.

If I decide that I need something better I still have the canister filter that I can use instead.

I don’t have the room inside that little room for it so I would have to attach it to the outside some how.

We shall see.

-- Gary - Never pass up the opportunity to make a mistake look like you planned it that way - Tyler, TX

View NormG's profile


6156 posts in 3033 days

#11 posted 11-12-2011 04:35 AM

It is the little things that seem to make the most noticeable changes

-- Norman - I never never make a mistake, I just change the design.

View Rob Mammen's profile

Rob Mammen

67 posts in 2721 days

#12 posted 11-14-2011 05:34 AM

I built one of the cyclone separators from the Wood Magazine plans back in 1998. everything but the really fine dust ends up in the trash can underneath. It is now only necessary to empty the bag on the jet dust collector every several years or so. That cyclone separator is amazing in how well it works.

-- Rob, You have failed if you have not tried.

View Drew - Rock-n H Woodshop's profile

Drew - Rock-n H Woodshop

644 posts in 2720 days

#13 posted 11-30-2011 12:50 AM

Hey Gary, is the fan motor from the old DC or is it a blower motor from an old A/C/Heater unit?

-- Drew -- "I cut it twice and it's still too short!"- Rock-n H Woodshop - Moore, OK

View GaryK's profile


10262 posts in 4017 days

#14 posted 11-30-2011 02:26 AM

Drew – That’s the same motor. Just mounted on it’s side.

A regular blower motor won’t have near the power needed.

-- Gary - Never pass up the opportunity to make a mistake look like you planned it that way - Tyler, TX

View exelectrician's profile


2327 posts in 2456 days

#15 posted 11-30-2011 08:14 AM

Nice neat and well put together unit. Have you measured the weight ratios of dust in the cyclone to dust collected in the filter? This would give you an idea of the realtative efficiency of your cyclone.
I read your comments on grounding 4” plastic ducting and found them very interesting.

-- Love thy neighbour as thyself

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