ClearVue Cyclone Installation #2: Cyclone and Piping

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Blog entry by jmos posted 09-24-2012 08:40 PM 41942 reads 8 times favorited 15 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 1: ClearVue Cyclone Installation Part 2 of ClearVue Cyclone Installation series no next part

Cyclone – The cyclone itself wasn’t too tough to assemble. I do have to admit I would not have minded if the unit had a little less of the erector set feel to it. Everything was well made and solid. All the parts were there. The direction are good, and available online if you really want more detail. I didn’t take step by step photos as they are already included in the directions. I contacted ClearVue a couple of time during the build and the they were great to work with. Got back to me promptly with good answers. I didn’t have any problems that required parts, so I can’t speak to that, but from what I encountered I would expect them to be very responsive.

The assembly was pretty smooth. I did the entire job myself, but a helper would have been, well, helpful. I mounted the unit as high on the wall as I could just in case I ever have a basement flood.

I used the metal trash can for chip collection.

Piping – After the cyclone was installed it was time to move on to the piping. With the PVC this really went fairly easily. The parts held together well once seated, and the 2729 stuff isn’t very heavy. Once I had parts where I wanted them I took self tapping sheet metal screws and ran them through the double layers of PVC to fix them. Occasionally I used a couple of screws if a part was tending to move more than I wanted. Yes, the screw go into the pipe, and may give chips a place to get stuck, but I didn’t glue any joints, so if it becomes a problem I can disassemble and clean.

I put together all the tool drops first and mounted them on the walls. Since I’m in a basement I took some lengths of pre-slotted angle iron and used concrete anchors to fix it to the wall. I then took long electrical cable ties and used them to strap the pipe to the wall. I added a screw into the piping just above the cable tie to prevent the pipe from sliding over time. It seems to be pretty secure.

Once the tool drops were run I started the overhead piping. I chose to run the piping below any obstructions, so I didn’t have to move lights or go around HVAC ducting. It cost me a little headroom, by my basement has high ceilings so its not too bad. The light weight of the PVC really helps putting it up. Again I did it myself and it wasn’t too bad at all. I used plastic hanging strap from HD to support the pipe.

The worst part of the install was mating the cyclone inlet to the piping. The cyclone comes off at about 10degrees. I heat bent the PVC, which was not a neat process. Heating it up enough to bend it wasn’t too bad. I bought a heat gun for the job, and it took some time, but did the work. However, when I bend it, not unexpectedly, the inside of the bend bent, a lot. Although the angle was good, the bend was significantly distorted inside. I use the heat gun to heat up small parts that were really badly buckled and used a 2×4 to bend them back out. When I was done it was a lot better, but it’s sure not pretty. I suggested to ClearVue they should sell a mating fitting. They said they would consider it, and mentioned folks usually use a short piece of 6” hose to connect. I don’t have any 6” hose, and really didn’t want to by a length just for that.

Some general shots of the piping:

Table Saw – I ran 6” into the table saw, making a new flange from scrap plywood. I ran a 4” to my new Shark Guard so I can get some dust collection when I’m ripping.

Jointer/Planer – I ran 6” to the jointer, again, making a new flange out of scrap plywood. I used a 4” with flex hose to the planner; I figure it should work fine since the planner already has a built in blower to help push the chips. Besides, their really wasn’t any way to increase the size of the dust port on the planner.

Drill Press and Downdraft Table – I installed a 2.5” stay-put flex hose to the drill press; it might not be great, but it should be better than the nothing I had before. This is also the same port I’ll use to attach the hose from the sander. From the same drop I used a 4” flex hose to reach my homemade downdraft table. that, along with dust collection off the sander should work pretty well. Haven’t tried it out so, so time will tell.

Bandsaw/Router Table – For the bandsaw I use a short length of 4” flex to the built in port (again, no way to increase size) and also added a 2.5” stay-put flex hose. This setup does seem to work a lot better than my old system. On my router table I built a box that fits over the motor and lift and gives my dust collection, along with the 2.5” hose connection off the fence.

I can’t give a full evaluation yet, as I’ve only had the system set up for a few weeks. I can tell you that the cyclone really moves a lot of air, it’s quite impressive. I’ll post a final chapter to this in a few months with a better evaluation of performance. It’s also really cool to see the chips spinning around in the cyclone.

If anyone has any question, feel free to contact me.

-- John

15 comments so far

View Bertha's profile


13635 posts in 4190 days

#1 posted 09-24-2012 09:08 PM

Nice work, man! You’ve really been busy. I’m a JET guy, too:)

-- My dad and I built a 65 chev pick up.I killed trannys in that thing for some reason-Hog

View NaFianna's profile


537 posts in 4523 days

#2 posted 09-24-2012 09:34 PM

That is going to be a very clean workshop.

-- Cad a dheanfaimid feasta gan adhmad.......?

View GrandpaLen's profile


1652 posts in 3769 days

#3 posted 09-24-2012 09:50 PM


That’s an awesome DC System and should serve you well, even in the event of additional hookups.

Thanks for sharing. – Len

-- Mother Nature should be proud of what you've done with her tree. - Len ...just north of a stone's throw from the oHIo, river that is, in So. Indiana.

View Ryan Haasen's profile

Ryan Haasen

385 posts in 3898 days

#4 posted 09-24-2012 10:25 PM

Nice dust collector, it will look pretty cool with the dust spinning around when running.

-- Ryan

View longgone's profile


5688 posts in 4805 days

#5 posted 09-24-2012 10:31 PM

Very nice setup. I look forward to your future updates of its capabilities.. Is that one really long filter you have or is it 2 that are fastened end to end? With the silver seam in the middle I am guessing it is 2. How are they fastened together?

View jmos's profile


918 posts in 3866 days

#6 posted 09-24-2012 11:01 PM

Thanks all for the comments.

Greg, yes they ship two filters. The instructions show an old style that had flanges with gaskets that you ran screws through to connect them. The new style are smooth metal end caps, no gaskets. They provide a strap with a bolt and a wing nut to clamp them together. I used some HVAC duct tape first, then used the strap. You caulk the bottom filter to the cleanout box at the bottom, and at the top you run some drywall screws through the transition flange into the top of the top filter, then seal with tape of caulk. I taped.

You just want to make sure there aren’t any paths for the fine dust to be thrown back into your shop.

-- John

View guitar1999's profile


15 posts in 3811 days

#7 posted 11-01-2012 11:36 PM

Very nice system! I’m wondering where you acquired the fittings from the pipe. Did your local supplier have those as well? I’m especially curious about the 4 to 2.5 couplings.

-- Jesse - Cape Cod, MA

View jmos's profile


918 posts in 3866 days

#8 posted 11-02-2012 12:41 AM

Jesse, thanks!. I got the 4×2.5” fittings from Peachtree Woodworking. The fit was a bit sloppy on some; I used some silicone caulking to seal them. Overall they’re working out pretty well.

The 6” and 4” fittings came from the irrigation pipe supplier.

-- John

View MJCD's profile


628 posts in 3868 days

#9 posted 12-11-2013 08:52 PM


I’m late to this party, but very interested in your work, and experience.

I’m having the CV1800 delivered within the next month, and am looking at the 6” PVC Schedule 40 – this is the thick stuff, I believe. Is this what you used, both dimensionally (6”) and thickness (the ‘Schedule’) or is yours something lighter? Now, a year+ into your installation, what is your experience – both with the suction and the piping?

Thanks for posting this.

View jmos's profile


918 posts in 3866 days

#10 posted 12-11-2013 09:13 PM


The 6” schedule 40 stuff is expensive, thicker than you need, and much heavier to work with; but it is readily available. I used thin walled ASTM-2729; this is much cheaper, thinner, and lighter to work with, but harder to find. I struck out at a big box store, and at a private store, but finally found it at a local irrigation supply house.

After using it for a while, I have no complaints. It has no issues handling the vacuum, The static is minor; rarely even get a slight shock. The suction is great. The piping has held together perfectly. The blast gates work without issue. The strapping I used to hold up the pipe has held up well. No issues; all is good.

Love the cyclone, still don’t have more than a thin layer of dust at the filter cleanout.

Any other questions, feel free to ask.


-- John

View BobR's profile


136 posts in 5481 days

#11 posted 07-16-2015 02:45 AM

Just found this thread – very informative. I am currently going down the same path. I notice your ClearVue setup is installed in the shop. How do you find the noise.

-- Bob

View jmos's profile


918 posts in 3866 days

#12 posted 07-16-2015 01:27 PM

It is loud, no question. It rivals the table saw for noise, but I think that’s to be expected with a 5hp motor. I would strongly recommend hearing protection while it’s running, but I figure I always wear hearing protection whenever I have a power tool running, so no big deal. I could build an enclosure to cut down on the noise, but I never bothered.

-- John

View therusticJAR's profile


5 posts in 2833 days

#13 posted 03-23-2016 11:54 AM

I am from MD i did a very similar set up I got my fittings and pipe from NORTH EASTERN Plumbing supply good prices and ton of options, What part of MD are you in.


I m late to this party, but very interested in your work, and experience.

I m having the CV1800 delivered within the next month, and am looking at the 6” PVC Schedule 40 – this is the thick stuff, I believe. Is this what you used, both dimensionally (6”) and thickness (the Schedule ) or is yours something lighter? Now, a year+ into your installation, what is your experience – both with the suction and the piping?

Thanks for posting this.


-- The Rustic J.A.R.

View dadztoy's profile


3 posts in 2926 days

#14 posted 01-16-2020 03:48 PM

Curious, you have the exhaust in a corner, down at floor level. How bad is the “wind” at that point? I am mounting my motor and squirrel cage in the next room, as to reduce the noise, and returning the exhaust back into the shop as to not loose the heat in the shop. I am using a Grizzly 2300cfm unit.

View jmos's profile


918 posts in 3866 days

#15 posted 01-16-2020 05:00 PM

Dadztoy, the ‘exhaust’ is the entire surface of the filter stack. When you take the volume of air the system moves and spread it out over all that area, you can barely feel any air is moving. So, no wind.

At the bottom of the filter stack is a trap, in case any larger particles get through, and a cleanout. It also seals the bottom of the filters. No air normally flows out there.

Since you are talking about running ‘the return’ back to your shop, I’m not clear from your comment if you are installing chip collection (a blower and separator with no filter, or a full-on dust collection system, with a filter after the separator.) I would not recommend the former as it will only spread around the small, and most dangerous, dust particles. If you’re doing a full dust collection system, you would want to place the filters in you shop to recover the conditioned air.

As far as noise, my whole set-up is very loud; usually louder than whatever machine I’m using at the time
(after all, it’s a 5hp motor.) If you put the motor in another room, I doubt the noise from the air return will be noticeable over you machinery, but I can’t say for sure. I also can’t comment on how much motor noise will get carried by the duct and air into your shop area, but I’m sure it will drop the noise level some.

-- John

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