|Project by Jeremy Greiner||posted 05-12-2012 01:37 AM||14506 views||39 times favorited||18 comments|
I posted about building a Thien baffle or tophat separator in the forums and gfadvm posted about his drop out separator he made from shopnotes issue #55. I’ve seen this issue, and I’ve seen his separator and it just seemed too simple to work.
Mostly out of impatience, I decided it was easy to knock out in an afternoon and I should give it a try. I figured it would most likely be a temporary solution anyways since I really want to run 6’’ ducts to my machines, but I’m still moving things around on a day to day basis so planning out ducting is a bit hard and I was tired of cleaning the dumb bag that comes with my Jet DC1100.
I made my own adaptations, so it would easier suit my needs, and make it a little faster to build. Instead of glue and screws I used glue and 1 1/4’’ brads for most of it. Screws seemed like overkill since the glue was involved, but I didn’t want to wait for the glue to dry in many cases.
The center baffle piece is melamine, if for no other reason than I had a 16’’ by 19’’ scrap of melamine and I needed a 16’‘x18’’ piece so it used up some scrap wood and I think the melamine might make less resistance for the air (though this may be a bad thing who knows).
I used metal ducting connectors for the in and out ports, the trick they had about slotting and cutting down the PVC seemed like a good idea, but the metal duct connectors where already exactly the size I needed. I originally was going to cut the hole with a harbor freight hole cutting bit. That almost ended disastrously as the bit flew apart on my drill press (I had everything as tightened as humanly possible). I picked up a hole saw, but I didn’t have the right sized center pushing for it so I decided to follow gfadvm’s advice and just cut the holes out on a bandsaw and glue the kerf together.
This actually worked out really well because I used an angled shim to spread open the kerf so I could slide in the metal duct connector easily enough and then I clamped the kerf together and it made a nice tight fit around the duct connector. I used polyurethane glue for this part because it will glue together wood and metal, but it expands unlike epoxy so I thought it would help seal in any gaps in my not so perfect circular holes.
Once I got it all built, I emptied out my dust collector’s bags to clean them out, and to see how well this thing could work.
Here is the sawdust from the lower bag:
This is the fine sawdust that was in the upper bag:
After emptying I sucked up all the dust with the separator to see how much actually gets separated.
Here is what was in the trash can:
This is everything that made it through the separator, and into the bag (sorry not the best picture):
A considerable amount of dust was captured by the sepator, and when digging through what made it into the bag, it was pretty much all fine dust.
It seemed to separate about about 90-95% of the dust, I don’t know how that compares to the thien baffle systems but from what I’ve read or seen they do a bit better than this.
Though not truely scientific since I don’t have a thien separator to compare too, I think it would perform better than this drop box style separator. With that said, this does a good job, and I’m glad I made it and will use it until I figure out my final dust collection system. If you don’t have a dust separator and want an easy one that gets most of the dust, I recomend this one without a doubt.
The major advantage, is my top filter bag doesn’t get overflowed with dust right away like it did without the separator, which I think will improve it’s performance until I get myself a wynn filter.
-- Easy to use end grain cutting board designer: http://www.1024studios.com/cuttingboard.html