Sears Dust collector problem

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Forum topic by Fridgecritter posted 04-23-2014 06:56 PM 1279 views 0 times favorited 7 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View Fridgecritter's profile


176 posts in 2079 days

04-23-2014 06:56 PM

Topic tags/keywords: question

I recently bought a house with a 17 by 13 wood shop in the back, and the previous owner left most of the tools and things there for me to have. He ran vacuum tubes along the wall and hooked them up to a Craftsman dust collector, the upper and lower bag type. It has a 4 inch hose at the machine, but the guy put 2.5 inch pipes on it for the whole system. There are several 45 and 90 degree couplers and three open and close gates to use the system at different places in the shop. None of them are glued or have gaskets in them.

The problem is I get hardly any suction. It won’t even pick up a 2 inch deck screw. The guy left a Shopsmith Mark V as well, so the dust collector may be just as old. Do you think gluing the joints making them airtight will be worth it, or should I look into a new dust collector? At the base of the unit where the 4 inch hose is coming out, pieces of wood like a half inch by one eighth of an inch round cutoff pieces of wood get stuck there, which leads me to believe the system itself just has no suction.

-- "Anyone can post a quote on the internet and attribute the quote to a famous person." -Abraham Lincoln

7 replies so far

View hoosier0311's profile


706 posts in 1988 days

#1 posted 04-23-2014 07:20 PM

I think I would make sure the filter was all cleaned out and the tubes were not blocked someplace. Then maybe try some duct tape on the joints. See what effect that has on the whole thing before spending money on new stuff? Maybe check the belt that drives the impeller also.

-- atta boy Clarence!

View Shawn Masterson's profile

Shawn Masterson

1325 posts in 1911 days

#2 posted 04-23-2014 07:21 PM

Its not the DC. By hooking it to a 2” line you are choking the DC. you can use the pipe for a shop vac, but not a DC. You need 4” line for a DC.

View woodchuckerNJ's profile


1269 posts in 1597 days

#3 posted 04-23-2014 07:26 PM

What Shawn said.. dead on.
A shop vac will work well. I have a similar setup as well as a DC. The vac works well for most machines
Sanders with 2” port
Miter saw 2” port (not great on getting all the chips, but you only have a 2” port on the saw, so using a dc for that is useless).

Tablesaw.. I have a contractor saw with a pyramid in reverse so the vac sucks out the bottom of it.
Band saw.. 2” port
Router table 2 ports 1 behind fence, and one at the bit.

DC is connected to planer, jointer (at times for heavy work) and bandsaw (in addition to the 2” port which is at the blade) the bs does it at the bottom of the wheel.

-- Jeff NJ

View bob101's profile


321 posts in 3413 days

#4 posted 04-24-2014 01:08 AM

the upper bag is probably choked with dust and the smaller diameter is killing your dust collectors capability. the larger the diameter the more air you move! I would take off the hookup at the machine where the impeller is and clean it , check belt etc, and then change out the bags if you can get same size replacements. most woodworking places sell a variety of upper felt and lower material or plastic bags(lee valley) if the upper bag is clogged it will impede the overall performance of the machine, plus its probably only a 5 micron upper filter and the newer ones are 1 micron( better filtration) I just replaced both of mine for about seventy five dollars, you cant beat free tools that are working especially a dust collector there isn’t much to them. good luck.

-- rob, ont,canada

View Whiskers's profile


389 posts in 1990 days

#5 posted 04-24-2014 02:08 AM

Think your getting good advise here so far, go to the source and disconnect the machine from the hose and check for suction, clean and or replace the filters. Remove the filters to check for suction if necessary. You do not need filters to look for suction. Solve any problems at the source than rip that 2” pipe out and get some cheap 4” schedule 20 DWV pipe and re-plumb. If the motor roars and deafens your ears, the problem should be easily solvable for cheaper than a new system.

View Fridgecritter's profile


176 posts in 2079 days

#6 posted 04-24-2014 08:21 PM

All good stuff… That’s why I love this site. I will disconnect the filters first and check at the 4 inch pipe to see what kind of suction I’m getting, because I’m thinking that’s probably it since little bitty half inch pieces of wood are sitting at the bottom elbow where sawdust should be flowing up and into the bags. I have a feeling it’s the bags. I never thought of PVC for plumbing the tubes either… I was automatically tuned in my mind to look for shopvac hoses… the spendthrift in me should have known better.

There are a few tools I use that have 2 or 2.5 inch hose ports still, but my shop is only 17 by 13 so I may just tear out the plumbing and walk the few steps across the shop, hook up the 4 inch hose or put an adaptor on there when I need it for the 2.5 or 2 inch hose.

When I put my hand over the end of the hose right now, the motor doesn’t even bog down, which leads me to believe all that plumbing is taking away from it as well. I may just leave the plumbing there for the smaller tools and hook my Rigid shop vac up to the smaller pipe. It has a 2.5 inch hose.

-- "Anyone can post a quote on the internet and attribute the quote to a famous person." -Abraham Lincoln

View Shawn Masterson's profile

Shawn Masterson

1325 posts in 1911 days

#7 posted 04-24-2014 11:41 PM

Dust right sounds like a perfect solution for you. I have the 21’ er and it works great. Pvc is great for DC. I used 6” pvc, it was costly but well worth it.

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