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Dust collector? I use my leaf-vac instead.

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Forum topic by Adam D posted 03-05-2012 09:30 AM 2566 views 0 times favorited 11 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Adam D

80 posts in 939 days


03-05-2012 09:30 AM

Topic tags/keywords: surface planer planer dust collector leaf vac leaf blower resource tip

This is my first post :-D

I’ve found that reading is my best friend when it comes to woodworking. No matter what problem I’ve got, someone’s been there before, and they’ve probably written about it. I’ll be damned if I can find the author of the article who gave me this idea, but I thought I’d pass it on to you.

My workshop’s in the basement, but my wood-stack and 15” DC-380 planer (heavy mother!) lives in the garage. I didn’t want to have to buy a second dust collector just for the planer, and so I just turned my leaf-vac on its side to make a great substitute. I just have a small piece of string strung through the leaf vac’s power-cord stress-relief thingy.

The only issue I’ve had with it is that the leaf-chute has become a little “loose”, and so the safety-switch (to make sure you can’t get your hands near the fins) cuts off the power sometimes. I may have to bypass it if it gets any worse.

Excited to be on here! :-)

-- Adam, Rochester NY


11 replies so far

View ChrisK's profile

ChrisK

1166 posts in 1746 days


#1 posted 03-05-2012 01:40 PM

Looks like you get almost all of the large chips. The real dust, the stuff you do not want breath is going to blow right through the bag and back into the air. Slowing the high velocity air leaving the blower is going to be a real challenge. The noise must be a problem to.

It would be better to direct the exhaust outside, away from people,pets, etc.

-- Chris K

View MrRon's profile

MrRon

2846 posts in 1908 days


#2 posted 03-05-2012 05:18 PM

I’ve seen this same leaf blower setup before; shows Yankee ingenuinity for sure. Planers produce a lot more chips than fine dust, but it’s pretty noisy. You might want to add a pre-separartor before the el-Toro and direct the exhaust to the outdoors. This will eliminate all fine dust and since planers don’t produce that much fine dust, blowing it outdoors shouldn’t bother neighbors, if any.

View Bertha's profile

Bertha

12951 posts in 1358 days


#3 posted 03-05-2012 05:26 PM

Adam, I use mine to clean my shop. Never thought of hooking it up, lol. Seriously though, for handtool guys, the leaf vacs really grab up the shavings. I’ve bought two over the years.

-- My dad and I built a 65 chev pick up.I killed trannys in that thing for some reason-Hog

View Adam D's profile

Adam D

80 posts in 939 days


#4 posted 03-05-2012 05:34 PM

I’m not too concerned about dust. I always have to open the garage door anyway to have room to plane anything—just an 8 foot board requires at least 20 feet of room to plane after all, and I’ve got some 13 foot planks of black walnut! With the door open, I’m more concerned about pollen having a go at my allergies than sawdust ;-)

Noise is inevitable when planing, and so with or without the leaf vac I’d need to wear ear protection. I’m happy to hear so many people concerned about safety though—you guys certainly focused on the important stuff!

-- Adam, Rochester NY

View RobynHoodridge's profile

RobynHoodridge

126 posts in 994 days


#5 posted 10-19-2013 12:10 PM

I’m about to buy a blower / vac for this type of thing, and so much more. I hope it all works out, but i plan to use it to
- clean the floor; car; machinery
- pull chips / dust / shavings from tools and pump the air stream through a drop out box and then to the great outdoors
- blowing into a homemade forge
- drying .. things
- maybe even clearing up the garden

The one i’ve ordered is variable speed for exactly the reason that ChrisK mentioned (270 km/h wind speed). But then maybe it’s best to just have a massive separator and run it at full speed?
If it works in all the ways i hope then i will post a writeup.

-- Never is longer than forever.

View GFYS's profile

GFYS

711 posts in 2136 days


#6 posted 10-19-2013 03:53 PM

Oh wait…I see it is a vac not a leaf blower

View distrbd's profile (online now)

distrbd

1151 posts in 1111 days


#7 posted 10-19-2013 04:28 PM

I use a dust pan and a broom for big chips and a shop vac which I use for a few minutes to clean up the rest .I like all others don’t like to inhale the fine sawdust but using a dust collector or leaf blower that does not have one micron filter is just like purposely blowing extra fine dust in the air and that can not be good.

-- Ken from Ontario

View RobynHoodridge's profile

RobynHoodridge

126 posts in 994 days


#8 posted 10-20-2013 12:49 PM

distrbd, do i really need to suggest again that the fine stuff should be blown away (outdoors)? I agree that’s not “good”. Maybe the neighbours will complain? But it’s not breathing it in either. It just sounds like you’re saying there is no solution cause it wouldn’t fit with your system.
In fact if i do this i will probably mount the blower / vac outside altogether (also for noise reasons).

-- Never is longer than forever.

View Adam D's profile

Adam D

80 posts in 939 days


#9 posted 10-20-2013 01:10 PM

For everyone here that’s opposed to doing this even outdoors, I have to wonder: are you opposed to using leaf-vacs in general? Like, even for leaves? If the filter isn’t sufficient for wood chips, then it arguably isn’t good enough for other tree products (leaves), right? Do leaves not break down into as fine of a dust particle as wood? O_o

-- Adam, Rochester NY

View distrbd's profile (online now)

distrbd

1151 posts in 1111 days


#10 posted 10-20-2013 01:39 PM

Creating fine dust in a enclosed environment like a small garage where the dust has nowhere to escape can not be good to your health,the same thing goes for solvents, other chemicals.if you guys have found a way to to contain the fine particles in your garage more power to you but I’m sure you at least agree with me on that point.
Adam ,at the very least I would wear a quality dust mask when using that gismo in the shop.
Robynhood,no you don’t need to suggest that the fine dust should be blown away ,again.it sounds like we’re on the same page.
With low quality dust collection we only achieve a false sense of protection.even the Thien separator is best to be connected to a vac.that has a good filter /bag in it.
Gentlemen if you think the points I was making didn’t make sense,please go ahead with what you were doing and ignore me.

-- Ken from Ontario

View higtron's profile

higtron

194 posts in 1342 days


#11 posted 10-20-2013 02:57 PM

Adam you’ll learn that anytime you post something your going to get as many negative posts as positive. In my opinion a planer doesn’t create a lot of fines so I think your approach is just fine for this purpose but, if you were using it to hook up to ROS than I would have to agree with others, have fun and don’t listen to all the noise and I’m not talking about the leaf blower.

-- If I cut it too short I can scab a piece on, but if it's too long what do I do?

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