Beginner's Dust Collection Questions

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Forum topic by FaTToaD posted 02-09-2011 07:32 PM 1459 views 0 times favorited 2 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View FaTToaD's profile


394 posts in 3375 days

02-09-2011 07:32 PM

Topic tags/keywords: dc dust collections harbor frieght question shop small shop garage shopvac shop vac isocket


I’ve started woodworking about 18 months ago and it’s how I spend about 75% of my free time. I’m in the shop pretty much every day I’m tired of cleaning up saw dust. I’m thinking buying a DC unit, probably the HF 2HP unit everyone seems to love, but I have a few newbie questions first.

For background information my shop is a decent sized two-car garage that I don’t share with anything besides a washer and dryer, which is another reason I want better dust collection. My large power tools consists of two table saws, a miter saw, a 6” jointer, a router table, and a drill press. I’m planning on getting a planer in the next six months, most likely a Dewalt 735. I’m currently using a shopvac with an iSocket switch for the table saw, a small shopvac for the router table, and a dust bag for my jointer. This gets me by, but I still spend a lot of time cleaning up saw dust that falls below the table saw, the miter saw, some from the router table, and some from the drill press.

My questions:

1) How loud is a big DC unit like 2HP HF model? Not that it really matters since I’m using a couple shopvacs that sound like jet engines, but I’ve always wondered if it’s quieter.

2) Do most leave your DC unit on while they’re working in the shop or do they turn it on before using a tool?

3) Since all my tools are 110V and run off one outlet (it’s just me in the shop and I’ve got a very limited amount of outlets) can I use the iSocket I have to turn the DC on and off with each tool and just use blast gates to control the airflow?

4) Are there any alternatives I’m not thinking about? I figured by the time I bought a shopvac and iSocket for each of the tools I’d spend more than I would on the HF DC, but I’m open for suggestions.

Sorry for the lengthy post, I’ve been thinking about this for a while. Any answers, comments, or suggestions will be appreciated! Thanks.


-- David

2 replies so far

View Eric_S's profile


1565 posts in 3429 days

#1 posted 02-09-2011 07:57 PM

Hey David, weclome to woodworking.

I’ve been woodworking for about as long as you. DC’s are loud but much quieter than banshy shop vacs. They operate at a lower frequency too. Usually you dont leave them running. I have an iSocket as well and it works just fine as long as your circuit can handle the load required by both the DC and tool. The DC will wait a few seconds after the tool turns on so it doesn’t overload the circuit, but make sure your circuit can handle the tool amps. I have mine plugged into a 20amp GFCI. I have a Delta 50-720CT that I roll around from tool to tool and unplug the tool plug from the iSocket and switch it with whatever tool I’m currently using.

-- - Eric Noblesville, IN

View Roger's profile


20965 posts in 3037 days

#2 posted 02-10-2011 03:19 AM

Get some sort of dust collection period. That stuff will really mess up your health. whatever dust collections system you decide, use ear protection. I actually just received a 1 micron bag yesterday for the 2hp, and I’ve got a 1 micron bag on it’s way for the 1hp. I bought the 2hp dc from harbor frieght a year or so ago for $139, (you can catch em on sale every so often, and there are even 20% off coupons in most wood magazines) and also a 1hp. The 2hp is used for my table saw, miter saw, router table, any sanding, and my lathe. the 1hp is used at the bandsaw, and drill press. If you’ve just gotten into this the past 18months, you’ll do yourself a favor by getting a dc setup. Remember, safety first: Safety glasses, ear protection, dust masks when needed for sure. Your lungs will luv you long time. :)

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

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