My Dust Collection (A Cautionary Tale)

My Dust Collection, originally uploaded by rgdaniel.

Call me naive (go ahead, I’ll wait) but I always thought “dust collection” meant having a lovely collection of dust. For woodworkers, this is fairly easy to accomplish. And this particular dust collection is archeologically, or maybe geologically, quite interesting. It’s like examining the strata of an exposed canyon wall, to learn what has happened in the past, and in what sequence. In this case, the interior of my Delta X5 Jointer reveals the history of my surfacing several species of wood, notably cedar, maple, walnut, cherry, and purpleheart.

Seriously, it seems that even with a big-ass dust collector in use, you still have to periodically clear out the insides of your woodworking machines… who knew?

7 thoughts on “My Dust Collection (A Cautionary Tale)

  1. Bob,
    Lots of use on your jointer leading to dust build up? Sounds like a good problem to have. You might want to check out the FWW article aboust dust proofing any table saw. While it focuses on table saws, the theories discussed can be applied to any machine, even a jointer.

    You may also want to add a cardboard & tape shroud to direct dust to the collection hose or try lowering where the hose connects to the machine.

    Good luck.

    1. Thanks for the comment! I’m thinking now, based on somebody who has the same jointer, that there may be a plug of sawdust up near the cutter head… gonna investigate that option, try and clear that plug, before I start modifying the machine… cheers!

  2. UPDATE: well it was definitely a logjam of dust and chips up around the cutter head, which I couldn’t actually see, but could just (barely) feel with my fingers reaching up the dust chute… cleared it with a stick and the shop vac, and it’s like having a new jointer… awesome…

  3. My father-in-law had hoses all over his shop that led to the shop vac. When he started working with any of his tools, he simply turned on the shop vac. Worked for him.

    I now have this dust collection system. I just haven’t connected it.

    1. Thanks for stopping by Katie! I’m learning a LOT about dust collection… it’s a real science… all about the CFM’s and the microns… I’ve got an air cleaner now for the shop, to grab all those invisible particles that want to give me lung cancer… and even my fairly honking Delta dust collector, which is WAY more powerful than my shop vac, is not rated for runs of longer than about 10 feet… Fortunately, I can park it in the middle of my 20-foot shop and I’m good… the shop vac is a help for cleaning up, but is definitely insufficient for the bigger machines…. better than nothing, but not by much… or so I’m learning…

  4. Yes, sorry. When I said shop vac, I meant this big massive machine that doesn’t resemble a shop vac at all but I’ve called a shop vac because it’s like central vac for the shop. In any case, it is still sitting on my shelf (it’s a tall shelf) in the garage. Although I never thought of those invisible particles. Hm, Scott is doing a lot of woodworking right now. Going to have to get him to set it up.

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