Mitersaw Dust Coll: shop vac vs. dust collector

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Forum topic by dakotawood posted 12-21-2011 03:41 PM 5344 views 1 time favorited 5 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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199 posts in 2206 days

12-21-2011 03:41 PM

Topic tags/keywords: mitersaw dust collection mitersaw station

For everyone that has a mitersaw station with some sort of dust collection, do you prefer using your dust collector or shop vac?

I have a d/c and can easily add another blast gate for a mitersaw station. Or I can easily buy another shop vac to house inside my future mitersaw station cabinet.

The plus of the d/c would be a far superior suction. The plus of the shop vac is having it switched on with the mitersaw – so ease and speed of turning it on and off with the mitersaw and not having to mess with the blast gate everytime switching btwn tools.

Need help now so I can design my cabinet around the source of dust collection. Thanks!

-- Travis, South Dakota

5 replies so far

View richgreer's profile


4541 posts in 2497 days

#1 posted 12-21-2011 04:38 PM

IMO, the mitersaw is one of the hardest tools to capture dust from.

I have decent results by building a box behind the mitersaw and connecting my dc to it at the bottom via a 4” line.

My theory is that with high air flow from the DC, I am creating a downdraft around the mitersaw that captures most of the dust. The picture below is not great but I think you can get the idea. Inside the lower portion of this box are 2 angled side pieces that create a funnel towards the center. I’ve experimented with a few design variations and this seems to work the best.

I say it works because if I don’t turn on the DC I get a lot more dust floating around the shop.

In my situation, a DC is much more effective because, relative to a shop vac, the DC creates a lot higher volume of air flow.

-- Rich, Cedar Rapids, IA - I'm a woodworker. I don't create beauty, I reveal it.

View ChunkyC's profile


856 posts in 2677 days

#2 posted 12-25-2011 05:39 PM

I like the shop vac a little better. I find the higher suction presser that I get from a shop vac picks up better than a DC does. Also, I have an automatic switch on mine so that I don’t have to remember to turn it on or remember to open the blast gate.


-- Chunk's Workshop pictures:

View Lee Barker's profile

Lee Barker

2170 posts in 2273 days

#3 posted 12-25-2011 05:53 PM

I’m not answering your question, Travis. I’ll take door #3: None of the above for my Makita LS1040. I gave up trying and just vacuum around it periodically. If I keep the bag no more than 3/4 full, it’s a condition I can live with.



-- " his brain, which is as dry as the remainder biscuit after a voyage, he hath strange places cramm'd with observation, the which he vents in mangled forms." --Shakespeare, "As You Like It"

View Mike's profile


406 posts in 2110 days

#4 posted 12-25-2011 06:22 PM

As several people have said, the miter saw is difficult to collect dust from. I have tried the dust collector with a 4 → 2 reducer and a shop vac. Even with all the blast gates closed except the miter saw, the vac still does a better job. The only problem is that the filter gets gunked up way to quickly causing a drop in suction.

-- look Ma! I still got all eleven of my fingers! - -

View HorizontalMike's profile


7064 posts in 2337 days

#5 posted 12-25-2011 06:37 PM

On my 12in Mitersaw I use a 16gal ShopVac with a Grizzly separator lid on a 33gal trash can PLUS a Hepa filter in the ShopVac. I probably collect ~85-90% of the dust generated. What dust that is NOT collected tends to adhere to the ShopVac due to static attraction. I am very pleased with how this has worked out for me. For the rest of my shop, I drag the HF DC-unit w/separator 4in hose to the tool needing it at the time.

You can see my Miterbox ShopVac DC-sytem at the left in THIS image of my shop.

-- HorizontalMike -- "Woodpeckers understand..."

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