Harbor Freight Rikon Impeller Upgrade – Is It Worth It?

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Blog series by clagwell updated 12-11-2019 07:43 PM 5 parts 16486 reads 12 comments total

Part 1: Intro and Bottom Line

12-01-2019 05:00 PM by clagwell | 1 comment »

As many other people have already done I swapped my 10” HF impeller for a 12” Rikon replacement. Performance is subjectively better but I wanted to know how much improvement I actually got. There were several questions I wanted to answer and I’ve done a lot of testing that’s resulted in quite a bit of data. I’m using the blog format to help organize the presentation of that data. I won’t make you wade through all of the up coming posts to get to the bottom line t...

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Part 2: Airflow Measurement Setup

12-03-2019 01:25 PM by clagwell | 2 comments »

Test DuctMy test duct is a 10’ length of 6” PVC drain pipe (ASTM 2729). This is the type of duct often used for dust collection in home workshops and will most likely be repurposed for that in the future (after I plug all of the holes!). At the midpoint of the pipe is a measurement port for a hot wire anemometer or pitot tube. There are three pressure ports located at 17” from the duct inlet, 57” from the duct inlet, and 22” from the fan. Performance curves...

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Part 3: Help! My motor's smoking!

12-03-2019 08:35 PM by clagwell | 1 comment »

Well, no, it’s not really. I was just afraid that no one would look at a post with a boring title like “Temperature Rise”. Temperature rise may be boring but it’s important to the life of a motor. In fact, it’s critical to the lifetime of nearly everything electrical and electronic. Insulation weakens with age. It ages faster at higher temperatures. The hotter a motor runs the shorter it’s life. The same for an extension cord. When operated at i...

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Part 4: Performance Curve Comparisons

12-10-2019 08:17 PM by clagwell | 1 comment »

Part 1 of this blog has a chart showing a comparison of the original impeller versus the Rikon. Here’s a more detailed view of the performance of the upgraded unit. This is only an impeller and inlet size change, it’s otherwise completely stock, including the bag filter. Future posts will look at other modifications. Pressure is corrected to a standard air density of .075 pound per cubic foot to allow comparison with other published data. I’ve added actual data ...

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Part 5: De-Constructing the HFDC

12-11-2019 07:43 PM by clagwell | 7 comments »

This is the fun part where I remove parts of the dust collector and see how much the flow increases. Baseline The baseline configuration here is the stock DC modified with the Rikon impeller and a 6” inlet: -- The performance curve was shown in the previous post but here it is again. Note that the CFM axis has been extended to 1200CFM. We’ll need that later. Remove the Filter Bag Of course the first thing to do is remove the filter bag. -- Internet wi...

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