Affordable automatic dust collection?

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Forum topic by mcg1990 posted 02-13-2015 01:43 AM 1185 views 1 time favorited 9 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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159 posts in 1490 days

02-13-2015 01:43 AM

I’ve finally amassed all the large tools I need and now the only thing holding me back is lack of dust collection.

I’m going for the HF 2hp – it’s powerful, has incredible reviews and the 20% coupon means it’s only $167. My shop is only 22’ x 13’ so it’s power should be mooore than sufficient throughout the shop.

I’m planning (i.e. mind can be changed per adice) on 4” hose to permanently hook up to my table saw, jointer and planer, and of course I need to allow for future purchases – I’m assuming/hoping it’s as easy as cutting the hose and adding a junction for the extra hose and blast gate. Am I right on this? Then, I may also have another length ‘dangling’ around my workbench for quick hook-ups to hand-held sanders etc.

So with that out of the way – is there really a simple way to automate the start-up of your dust collection unit? My walls aren’t up yet so I can easily add some wiring. Some people advocate remote switches, but they’re very expensive. Others say you can wire in some kind of relay that detects when your stationary tool has started up and then the DC kicks in. This is what I would like.

If anyone here has done something equivalent please chime in with your advice. I don’t really care about how long it takes to install, so long as it’s not incredibly expensive. I wired my shop myself and I’ve not killed myself yet so I’d say I’m proficient enough for the task. Any links to affordable materials/components would be much appreciated.

Thanks for any/all input!

9 replies so far

View JAAune's profile


1850 posts in 2514 days

#1 posted 02-13-2015 01:54 AM

I have a relative looking into a DIY version for my company’s shop. If that works out I’ll post pictures and information. Not sure when it will be done if at all. He’s got ideas but nothing 100% sure as of now.

-- See my work at and

View Rob's profile


704 posts in 3268 days

#2 posted 02-13-2015 02:12 AM

The iVac and i-socket are along the lines of what you’re thinking, but they top out at 15A according to the advertised specs, and reviews suggest it’s actually lower than that. I don’t think they’ll work for the HF DC.

Here’s a rough tutorial on how to build your own (including the delayed shut-off), but I don’t know if it will actually work:

The iVac Pro system looks like it uses a receiver box for the DC and separate transmitter boxes for the tools. It’ll set you back $60-$70 per connection, not including blast gates.

Remote-controlled is a pain but not too expensive at $60.

-- Ask an expert or be the expert -

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344 posts in 1620 days

#3 posted 02-13-2015 02:17 AM

View mcg1990's profile


159 posts in 1490 days

#4 posted 02-13-2015 03:00 AM

Holy shhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh…

The iVac is exactly what I want at precisely 100 times an affordable cost. Well, not precisely 100..

I think I’ll have to go for the route where the opening of the blast gates turn on the machine. I wish it had the 6 second delay that the iVac has though, it seems like it’d be really valuable.

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10699 posts in 1683 days

#5 posted 02-13-2015 03:10 AM

If you can wire up a system that will turn on when you open a blast gate, then a time delay relay should be easy to hook up.

-- Shooting down the walls of heartache. Bang bang. I am. The warrior.

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2387 posts in 3744 days

#6 posted 02-13-2015 04:59 AM

Your OP seems to suggest you dont have interest in a wireless setup, however that is what I did with my 5 hp Delta which is set up outside of our shop. The set up was very very easy and very inexpensive. I simply bought a contactor with a 110v, bought 110v remote outlets off ebay, got 4 remotes, plugged my contactor into the wireless 110v recept. Now when I push on botton anywhere in my 40*80 my DC comes on. Cost me around 80.00 total and is awesome. Setup takes about 30 min or less.

But low voltage switches could be purchased and installed on your blast gates if that is your desire, it will be more work running low voltage wire from machine to machine. You could also do 3 way switches at each machine but again you will be running wire. But my wireless setup is awesome and very easy to set up for cheap.

-- .

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Fred Hargis

5171 posts in 2690 days

#7 posted 02-13-2015 12:14 PM

Jerry’s approach (contactor and cheap remotes) are the way I went after having 2 different commercial remotes fail. Like he said, it’s cheap, and the industrial grade contactor is bullet proof. If the cheap remotes fails you simply plug in another one ($10 or so each). I’ve seen the contactor for about $12 on Amazon, another $15-$20 for an enclosure, and some wiring odds and ends (plus the remote) and your done. This is about the only approach for larger motors, since the commercial aren’t usually built for the current draw of 5 HP.

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

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776 posts in 2681 days

#8 posted 02-13-2015 01:14 PM

I use the Long Ranger Remote purchased from Pennstate. It operates 220v and is about $75. Works anywhere in my shop. Sender has a clip which I clip on when I go into shop. It becomes a habit to turn your collector on and off. Works every time.

-- I,ve had amnesia for as long as I can remember. Vernon

View mcg1990's profile


159 posts in 1490 days

#9 posted 02-13-2015 01:23 PM

After some more research – and reading the replies here – I think I was misinformed previously on how the wireless setups work. I like the idea of the opening of the blast gate triggering the DC start up, and will probably go with this:

Seems pretty straightforward. May not be as cheap as doing some parts myself but it sure looks a lot simpler.

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