Why on the ceiling?

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Forum topic by b2rtch posted 01-03-2013 11:57 AM 1434 views 1 time favorited 26 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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01-03-2013 11:57 AM

Topic tags/keywords: question

I am debating about buying a cyclone dust collector to replace my HF dust collector.
The only reason to replace the HF, which works very well for me, is to collect fine dust which irritate and damage my lungs.
Last night I was considering the corner where I would instal it in my shop , and I realized that this thing would take a huge amount of space, another issue.
When I built my shop I had dust collection already in mind and at that time I wanted to install the ducting on the floor and to build another floor on the top of the ducting, an idea that I still like.
In most other shop the ducting is hanging from the ceiling.
What is the advantage?
Is the ducting in the way ?
How can you work on table saw with a full sheet of plywood with a duct just right at the corner?
Thank you for reading.

-- Bert

26 replies so far

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4851 posts in 3015 days

#1 posted 01-03-2013 01:14 PM


-- Bert

View StumpyNubs's profile


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#2 posted 01-03-2013 01:24 PM

Most people duct from the ceiling because it would take a very sharp bend to go from the cyclone inlet down to the main duct line in the floor. And even if you did do that, you would then add another bend to go back up to the machines, many of which have upper dust collection (planers, router tables, etc). But if you run your main duct at the same height as the cyclone inlet, you then only have to bend once to go down to each machine. Less bends, more airflow.

We are actually building a cyclone out of wood on Blue Collar Woodworking right now. And we’re going to be using TWO HF collector blowers on it, which will mean you could make use of your current one and just add a second one used off of Craigslist. I’ve been corresponding with Bill Pentz on the design for several months, so it may be worth checking it out before you make your decision. The first of the three episode series is at, the second one airs next Wednesday.

-- Subscribe to "Stumpy Nubs Woodworking Journal"- One of the crafts' most unique publications:

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#3 posted 01-03-2013 01:28 PM

Bert, IMO ducting above the floor is easier to change when you decide to rearrange your tools. It is also way cheaper than building a second floor that would be a pain to take up when changes are required or if you ever got a clog. My ducting is not in the way, but I have a 9’ ceiling, 10’ would be better. I don’t do that much work with full plywood sheets, however. I dropped the tubing either behind or beside the machine to keep the ducts out of the way. Re the TS, the duct drops to the right of the table that includes a 50” extension. HTH

-- Art

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Fred Hargis

4954 posts in 2460 days

#4 posted 01-03-2013 01:33 PM

I agree with Art, making changes when it’s on the ceiling is a lot easier. I’ve had a hard plumbed DC system since 2000 and I think I’ve overhauled/made major changes probably 7-8 times. I’ve never had a clog, but I suspect if someone did have one under the floor would be a little harder to deal with (just a guess). That said, under the floor does have some advantages like not having the ducting in the way. My ;last shop had nine foot ceilings, so the ducting wasn’t much of a problem….but my current one has 8’ ceilings, and the ducting does kinda get in the way at times.

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

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#5 posted 01-03-2013 01:35 PM

Thank you for your answer and explanation.
Even if I had to buy a new DC from HF that would not break the bank.
Two suckers ( not blowers) also offer more flexibility , one could choose to run only one or two.
I certainly will watch your show ,that I watch most of time anyway ( I am subscribed on YouTube).
I love it.
Did you ever hear of a different ( more efficient) impeller to the HF DC?
Could we make one?

I have 10 feet ceiling so the duct would be way out of the way.
I plan on going on the floor at least for the TS and from there go up the wall.

-- Bert

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4851 posts in 3015 days

#6 posted 01-03-2013 01:38 PM

I think that under the floor also looks better.

-- Bert

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#7 posted 01-03-2013 02:19 PM


-- Bert

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42 posts in 2079 days

#8 posted 01-03-2013 02:21 PM

I purchased a Clearvue cyclone last year and it does a terrific job.I put the duct work in a gutter in the floor and it is way better than from the ceiling. I work with a lot of long material so turning a board with pipes in the way is not good. I built a large 48” high plastic drum under the cone and plumbed my old two bag dust collector to the outside to empty the drum. Now the dust from emptying the drum is outside.


-- Sandblastguy Orangeville On. Creating Art From Nature

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4423 posts in 3709 days

#9 posted 01-03-2013 02:57 PM

People do ducting on the ceiling (most of the time) becase the shop is on a concrete slab, and floor ducting is not workable…especially garages and basements.

Just following the path of least resistance.

-- “The two most important days in your life are the day you are born and the day you find out why.” Mark Twain

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Jim Finn

2647 posts in 2889 days

#10 posted 01-03-2013 03:05 PM

I have a concrete floor in my shop so I ran the 6” duct along the floor, in the corner, under the equipment. I have the equipment arranged to make this work. (Along the walls) The inlet to my dust collector is at this level so I have no elbows near the inlet. Just another approach to this issue.

-- Website is

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4851 posts in 3015 days

#11 posted 01-03-2013 03:10 PM

Jim, “In God We Trust” Amen.
What you did is basically what I want to do but how did get the dust collector inlet at floor level?

DrDirt, that makes sense

-- Bert

View Bluepine38's profile


3379 posts in 3052 days

#12 posted 01-03-2013 03:30 PM

Shipwright ran his ducting under the floor, but he built his shop with this planned. A look at his site is
worthwhile for anyone planning on building a shop and thinking about underfloor ducting. I am curious about
how Stumpy is going to hook up two collectors blowers/suckers (?) on one cyclone, so I will be watching his
site as usual. If you buy a cyclone Clear Vue seems to beat all the others easily. Or if you feel energetic Bill
Pentz has instructions and designs to let you build your own. Please let us know what you wind up with, as
I am trying to improve mine also.

-- As ever, Gus-the 79 yr young apprentice carpenter

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Lee Barker

2170 posts in 2817 days

#13 posted 01-03-2013 05:06 PM

Dust collection wasn’t much evolved when I moved into my leased space 19 years ago. My solution was to cluster the tools needing suckage so as to minimize intrusive tubing. So what you see here are my table saw, edge sander, oscillating spindle sander, planer and 16” wide belt sander all within 6’ of the unit. All have local blast gates.

I ran that 4×6 post vertical (dusty blue, seen in the second image) and lashed everything to the mast. All the electrical travels on it as well.

It looks pretty cobbled but it all works and all the ducting is accessible in the event of the occasional blockage.

The heart of this is an old Murphy Rogers 2hp unit. For a one man shop and typical usage on a professional level, it is more than adequate.

I mounted an air cleaner (the galvanized box in the first image, attached to the mast) close by which is often on in conjunction with the DC as well as when I, properly masked, shake the bag to drop the interior fines down into the barrel and free the ones on the outside.

The bottom line is, nothing on the floor, nothing on the ceiling.



-- " 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"

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#14 posted 01-03-2013 05:12 PM

Thank you Lee.

-- Bert

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Don W

18686 posts in 2535 days

#15 posted 01-03-2013 05:43 PM

I clustered all mine against the back wall were possible. Overhead goes to the planet and jointer. My only real complaint is I put the lead to the TS along the floor. I didn’t want it dropped from the ceiling.

with a concrete floor, its all I could do.

-- - Collecting is an investment in the past, and the future.

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