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Old 01-18-2009, 01:19 AM   #11
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Default Re: Cyclone Separator for shop vac

Sorry guys, I got the Cyclone, it looks nice, but I have had no time for to adapt it to the Shop Vac.

I'm behind schedule on my mill CNC conversion and I need it to do my parts for Team Build 2. So I have a strict rule that 100% of my shop time goes to the mill until it is up and running.



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Old 01-19-2009, 12:11 AM   #12
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Default Re: Cyclone Separator for shop vac

I made a quickie version this morning in a fit of shop-cleaning and I'm liking the concept. This one is a super-basic design-- a 5 gallon bucket lid with a central pipe descending about 6" into the bucket with a screen over the end and a 90-degree elbow over on one side. I used PVC and heat-warped & turned it to fit shop-vac hose (it's annoying they and PVC don't agree on sizes). I suspect it won't be nearly as good as the real ones for collecting sawdust since that blows around a lot more, but it works well for metal. Chips and swarf stay in the bucket, dust and dirt go into the vac.

Here's a top and inside view

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Old 02-20-2009, 07:27 PM   #13
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Default Re: Cyclone Separator for shop vac

I decided to divorce my cyclone separator from my small, rigid shop vac and make it a stand alone unit. Went to Harbor Freight and used my 20% off coupon to buy their mini-dust collector ($80 + tax after the discount). I just used the motor unit and the dust collection bag. The 4" input fit perfectly into the top of my cyclone separator. Works great! It won't suck deck screws out of oak planks, but it has plenty of suction for swarf, sawdust and like.

Now I just have to put it on casters so it will roll around. Bob W, you should consider one of these HF units.

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Old 02-21-2009, 03:32 AM   #14
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Default Re: Cyclone Separator for shop vac

This is mine:


It's based on Phil Thein’s design.
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Old 03-22-2009, 01:13 AM   #15
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Default Re: Cyclone Separator for shop vac

I built the Thein Cyclone separator on top of a drywall compound bucket. I was very impressed, even drywall dust was trapped!

I also Made his circle routing jig; (from metal of course)


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Old 03-22-2009, 01:04 PM   #16
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Default Re: Cyclone Separator for shop vac

If anyone's interested in building their own true cyclone dust collector, Better Homes and Gardens published an excellent article with complete plans, including full size drawings for the sheet metal work, in their November 1997 issue of Wood Patterns. You can download this article from: http://www.bhg.com/bhg/store/product...id=prodwp00068 or, do as I did, go to your public library, have them retrieve this issue from their archives, check it out and copy the entire article. It is actually designed for a bit bigger blower assembly but I scaled down all the plans slightly to make it more suitable for Harbor Freight's 1hp portable dust collector (which is frequently on-sale). As recommended by the article, I used galvanized metal flashing for the cyclone. I'm sure not a sheet-metal worker, but these plans and the directions made it quite easy.

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