revisiting box fan w/filter

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Forum topic by WoodNSawdust posted 04-15-2015 04:36 PM 914 views 0 times favorited 2 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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1417 posts in 1373 days

04-15-2015 04:36 PM

Topic tags/keywords: air filtration question dust dust collection fan filter

Last fall I rescued 4 box fans from the ally. One was missing the knob, other had a bad switch, the third needed some WD-40 on the bearing, and the fourth worked fine.

This spring I was thinking of hanging them from the ceiling joists on a diagonal for cooling at my 4 most common work stations (table saw, chop saw, workbench, and router table). It seems as I get older I start to sweat at lower temperatures so the cooling will help.

I thought as I was hanging the fans I would tape a filter (claims to be MERV 11) to the inlet side as a very simple and cheap air filter. I realize that it will not work as well as an expensive Jet / Powermatic / Grizzly air filter, but for $10 per fan it may help some. And if it reduces the air flow too much I can always remove the filter.

For those woodworkers that have added filters to box fans how much of an air flow reduction have you noticed? Would a fan 3-4 feet away and hanging from the ceiling be effective? Or would it be better to save my twenty bucks for something better?

Thanks in Advance

-- "I love it when a plan comes together" John "Hannibal" Smith

2 replies so far

View CB_Cohick's profile


487 posts in 1448 days

#1 posted 04-16-2015 05:15 PM

The box fan/filter gizmo I built does draw air through and trap dust, but the air flow on the outlet side is less than breezy. I suspect if your primary goal is staying cool, you may want to leave off the filter or maybe test using a less efficient, more porous, filter.

-- Chris - Would work, but I'm too busy reading about woodwork.

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2893 posts in 2711 days

#2 posted 04-16-2015 05:28 PM

I did this, then took the filters off. At first, it seemed like a good thing. But the fans were fairly powerful, (I use the 20” round ones that normally sit on the floor), and they were pretty good at sucking through the dust, and I found out that once the filters were somewhat filled, the motors began to overheat due to restricted air flow.

Better to put them in a circle if you can, to create a circle of air. I have a garage door that I open, and one is facing in, and on the other side of the shop, I have one facing out. Keeps a lot of the dust airborne and gets the new air in the shop every few minutes.

I should note that I also have two box filter units hanging from the ceiling, (Grizzlies), and they clog up very fast if the big fans are running. They are also set to flow in the same direction, creating the circle.

-- Tsunami Guitars and Custom Woodworking, Cleveland, TN

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