Making my own Cyclone dust collector

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Project by hans2wiz posted 11-27-2011 05:28 PM 4954 views 3 times favorited 16 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I make wood dust, not very much, but I use mostly plywood and MDF. In my small workshop it can be big trouble for me, tools and stuff. Regular vacum-cleaner was not an option and so I started to check what are alternatives. I found many cyclone-type dust collectors from internet and few from this site. First time I didn’t believed that this will work. How can all that dust go to collector and nothing to vacum-cleaner filter. But lets try!
Wheel base was designed for wet-dry vacum cleaner, but firstly I used an old home vacum-cleaner and waited until it surrended. Material used there is plywood, pvc pipes, plastic waste bin, fiberglass and epoxy.
First time when I used it, I was very surprised. All dust goes to waste bin and it can be from saw or sander, except very fine dust. For me this is even more curious because I didn’t followed any calculations or drawings and all info is from pictures and descriptions. Also this old vacum-cleaner is not very powerful and sucked air amount is minimal. Only noise is loud :)
Now I use it with my Circular and Jig Saw, Orbital and belt sander, clean my workshop from dust and etc. In the future I will make adapter also to Band Saw. I’ll try it with Thickness Planer too, but for that I need thicker hose. I’m very happy with result and suggest cyclone-type dust collector to everyone. Next step is bigger waste bin.

Here is also demo video:

-- -- Hanno -- small steps, long way to go

16 comments so far

View kiefer's profile


5689 posts in 3230 days

#1 posted 11-27-2011 05:37 PM

Good job HANS and it looks like it’s working well .
Use it everywhere you can !


-- Kiefer

View Dusty56's profile


11854 posts in 4251 days

#2 posted 11-27-2011 08:48 PM

Very good build and demo.
Thank you

-- I'm absolutely positive that I couldn't be more uncertain!

View Michael Wilson's profile

Michael Wilson

588 posts in 3053 days

#3 posted 11-27-2011 09:29 PM

This is great! I’ve got to get off my butt and make one of these soon.

View GeorgZudoff's profile


22 posts in 3253 days

#4 posted 11-28-2011 12:26 AM

Very good construction. I’ve made some kind of dustpicker from old plastic can, but your cyclon is better. One advise – you wrote that your old home cleaner was surrended – so this is damaged, yes? My couple old cleaners go to damaging every 3 weeks so I bought a new workshop cleaner, but repared the old ones too. For reserve or for others purposes. I mean it will good if you will keep old vac too,

View Jim Jakosh's profile

Jim Jakosh

23609 posts in 3668 days

#5 posted 11-28-2011 12:42 AM

Good job. I was going to make one too but I bought the Dust Deputy instead and it works good too.
Thanks for sharing…...........Jim

-- Jim Jakosh.....Practical Wood Products...........Learn something new every day!! Variety is the Spice of Life!!

View doncutlip's profile


2832 posts in 4119 days

#6 posted 11-28-2011 01:22 AM

Great job controlling the dust; that MDF is nasty for dust.

-- Don, Royersford, PA

View Towtruck's profile


70 posts in 3172 days

#7 posted 11-28-2011 02:33 AM

I built mine a little over a year ago. I went with a 7 gal. bucket and a 4 hp shop vac. Works well for most dust and chip cleanup, but can’t handle the volume from my planer.

-- I cut it off 3 times and it's still too short!

View NiteWalker's profile


2739 posts in 3139 days

#8 posted 11-28-2011 03:41 AM

Nice job!
I need to make or buy one of these. I spend wayyy too much on shop vac bags.

-- He who dies with the most tools... dies with the emptiest wallet.

View shimster's profile


96 posts in 3569 days

#9 posted 11-28-2011 04:42 AM

If you had to estimate your time into this project what would you guess? How about parts cost? The vortex is $70 at Rockler, and yours would have taken me hours to build. Just trying to weigh my time value of money.

-- Less is More.....expensive

View NiteWalker's profile


2739 posts in 3139 days

#10 posted 11-28-2011 08:07 AM

Shimster, I’m in the exact same boat. Can I do it for less than $70 in materials and time? I’m not so sure…

-- He who dies with the most tools... dies with the emptiest wallet.

View exelectrician's profile


2339 posts in 2990 days

#11 posted 11-28-2011 09:46 AM

I checked out your video, all I can say is…WOW!!! Excellent job, and works well – almost perfect! I was amazed when you showed how litte dust came out of the filter.

-- Love thy neighbour as thyself

View hans2wiz's profile


31 posts in 3255 days

#12 posted 11-28-2011 12:56 PM

GeorgZudoff, I can take another old vac from the shelf or borrow our home vac for a day or two. This old vac in the video is a full junk and flyes out with next biggest cleaning. Yeah, who I’m cheating :) All old stuffs goes to back-up shelf.

shimster and NiteWalker, I haven’t count cost of material and time. For me it was just an experimental project. Material cost was less then 70 $/€ surely and my free time is priceless, but on failure I can criticise only one person.

-- -- Hanno -- small steps, long way to go

View thedude50's profile


3611 posts in 3041 days

#13 posted 11-29-2011 10:52 AM

i want a big one for my 2 hp dust collector so i don’t have a huge mess in the bags the dust deputy has a couple of sizes i will have to call them to see if they make a big one i dont want to be dumping that more than once a day

-- Please check out my new stores and

View dubsaloon's profile


622 posts in 3356 days

#14 posted 12-01-2011 12:32 PM

Do you happen to have’s plans fur us that is not so smarted? What is the explanation of how it works?

-- The works of evil people are not the problem. It is the "Good" people standing by and watching not speaking up. Dubsaloon

View Abe Low's profile

Abe Low

111 posts in 4409 days

#15 posted 12-03-2011 08:34 AM

Great work. A word of caution though, The small amount fo fine dust that gets through the cyclone seems to be getting trapped by the bag in your vac but the ultra fine stuff doesn’t get trapped by anything but lungs. I bought my first shaper from a guy that used a lot of mdf without adequate fine dust collection. He was too nice a guy to be sucking oxygen while being in a wheel chair. I suggest you and others check out a site that has LOTS of info on cyclones, dust toxicity, air filtration, etc. Do a search for bill pentz and read what is on his site.

-- Abe Low, Fine furniture, Sacramento, CA

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