dust collection

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Forum topic by shelly_b posted 09-26-2012 05:49 PM 1408 views 0 times favorited 9 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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850 posts in 2355 days

09-26-2012 05:49 PM

I am trying to decide which kind of dust collectorto get and am getting confused lol. I know cyclonics are suposed to work better but when i compare the cfm with the same hp, the cyclonics always have a lower cfm, so how can they work better? Or do they just not get clogged as fast so suction doesnt decrease like the single stage? Thanks!

9 replies so far

View Rex B's profile

Rex B

320 posts in 2488 days

#1 posted 09-26-2012 05:54 PM

The cyclone actually decreases the efficiency of the system due to centrifugal force, therefore lowering the cfm. But the benefits of the cyclone separator are enough to justify a loss in cfm.

-- Rex

View jmos's profile


905 posts in 2607 days

#2 posted 09-26-2012 05:57 PM

This is a hot topic with lots of opinions. Fine woodworking did a feature article a while back (maybe a year) and they concluded that pretty much any cyclone works better than a regular dust collector. Air flow may be a bit lower due to the resistance of the cyclone, but it doesn’t drop off as the filter loads up like a bag/canister type.

Bill Pentz’s site has enough information on the topic to make your head spin, but well worth the time to read.

-- John

View Rex B's profile

Rex B

320 posts in 2488 days

#3 posted 09-26-2012 05:58 PM

To further clarify: the purpose of a cyclone separator is to increase the effectiveness and lifespan of your filter, not to make your DC suck harder. Only a bigger/better motor/blower can do that. Another benefit of a cyclone is that they are usually easier to empty than a DC without a cyclone.

-- Rex

View Fred Hargis's profile

Fred Hargis

5236 posts in 2731 days

#4 posted 09-26-2012 06:02 PM

Good DC requires moving lots of air, and then separating the dust from the air stream. If you have a unit that does that, it really doesn’t matter whether it;s a single stage or a cyclone. Cyclones have a lot of advantages, though. Because they increase drag on the system they often have bigger motors and impellers, but because the stuff doesn’t hit the fan (so to speak) the impellers can be designed for maximum air flow. Single stage impellers have to be designed to withstand impacts. A well designed cyclone will not clog, one not-so-well-designed can send a lot of fines into the filter creating a need for frequent cleaning, mine is such a model. If you haven’t visited the Bill Pentz site, do so. But to avoid spending the next year there trying to catch up on the techno-babble just go to the FAQ section and peruse. Follow up on what’s of interest to you. One tidbit, more than any aspect of woodworking, DC has a broad range of opinions of what’s good and what’s not. That’s because the opinions are formed on expectations that differ greatly, from those who believe the DC is to keep them from sweeping up the floor to those who believe it needs to capture and contain every possible spec of dust. Choose where you are on that span to make your own assessment.

-- Our village hasn't lost it's idiot, he was elected to congress.

View shelly_b's profile


850 posts in 2355 days

#5 posted 09-26-2012 11:20 PM

Thanks thats what my guess was. If i were to get a single stage i would put a seperator on it and make it a 2 stage. I already have tje woodcraft one that goes on the big metal trash can…cleaning clogged filters is not on my list of favorite things to do lol

View Ed's profile


28 posts in 2313 days

#6 posted 09-27-2012 12:23 AM

I’ve had my ClearVue cyclone and Wynn flilters for 2 years and never had to clean a filter. It still sucks like crazy.

Most of the vendors don’t really report usable numbers on CFM. They often report CFM of the fan with no ductwork or load on the fan which is totally unrealistic, but it sells dust collectors to those who do not get into the details.

-- Ed

View kizerpea's profile


775 posts in 2605 days

#7 posted 09-27-2012 12:31 PM

I got tired of all the hype an built my own cyclone..been working two years wid no problems..


View HorizontalMike's profile


7770 posts in 3152 days

#8 posted 09-27-2012 01:28 PM

I built/added a Thien cyclone to my HF DC unit and while it does lower CFM, it also separates the dust/chips so much better that it was well worth the effort. An added benefit is the time saved in bagging your chips when using separator with your DC.

The separator that I built was ugly but works so well that I have never had to replace it.

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

View shelly_b's profile


850 posts in 2355 days

#9 posted 09-27-2012 06:37 PM

thanks everyone:) some day i will build a bigger better one…but so much to do and so little time at this point, i’m just gonna have to use what works for now and upgrade what seems to need it most at the time. It has taken soo much longer to get my shop together than i originally thought, but i am slowly gettinig there. Jointer is the only thing i really NEED. Right now I have 2 shop vacs, and one has a oneida dust deputy on it. It works but dragging it around when I switch tools is a pain…

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