Overarm table saw dust collection on the cheap, and other goodies

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Project by peterrum posted 12-06-2011 07:44 PM 22152 views 27 times favorited 14 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I have finally got around to getting my dust collection system going and as part of it I always wanted to have an overarm collector for the table saw blade. I looked at a few of the products out there and there seem to be some good ones but they cost a few sheckles, more than I was wanting to fork out. So of course I thought a bit about it.
I am lucky that my shop has a laminated beam running right down the length of it and directly over most of my power equipment. I used this to support my dust collection pipe and it works well over the full 20 ft. length.
I also used the beam to support the overarm dust collector. I made it out of baltic birch, a bit of jig hardware, a clear plastic lid, a two and a half inch blast gate, a few screws and some machine bolts which attach the blast gate, plywood, and plastic lid together. I have the slide working so that when it bottoms out the collector cover is 3/4 inch from the table saw. To raise it higher I just loosen the two black knobs, slide the unit up, tighten the black knobs and I am good to go. The only problem is I cannot move it laterally left to right which would be nice to do if I am making small cuts close to the fence. I will have to work on that. Other than that it works great. I am quite happy with my $30 investment.
I also made a couple of other things to help with the dust control, a small sanding table which is moveable and can be tucked away until I need it and the last item is on my bandsaw. I have an older Delta bandsaw which had about a 1” port on it for dust collection. This was virtually useless. I removed the lower cover from the bandsaw, drilled a pilot hole, then used a jigsaw to cut a 4” hole in the steel. Then I attached a 4” 90 degree flanged elbow with some small machine bolts. Much better than what I had before which was virtually nothing.


-- Carpe Diem

14 comments so far

View Gene Howe's profile

Gene Howe

12367 posts in 4587 days

#1 posted 12-06-2011 08:37 PM

You are lucky indeed to have that beam there.
I want to build one also, but mine will have to be free standing….sort of.
I like your sanding box, too. Should serve you well.
The port on the band saw is also an excellent up grade. I used a toilet flange. A 4” DC hose fits nicely.
BTW, I bought the flange new. I’m cheap, but not THAT cheap.

-- Gene 'The true soldier fights not because he hates what is in front of him, but because he loves what is behind him.' G. K. Chesterton

View Rembo's profile


408 posts in 4109 days

#2 posted 12-06-2011 09:07 PM

lost faith in the one hundred percent removal of dust. and do not want to see pictures swept with a broom.
you want to say that the protection of the saw will go up without locking?
although all looks wonderful!

View peterrum's profile


153 posts in 3837 days

#3 posted 12-06-2011 09:48 PM

Hi Rembo, I don’t think that any system is 100% nor is mine but it is significantly better than it was. I think that is all we hope to achieve. Not sure what you are asking about the protection of the saw, can you clarify. Very funny Gene.

-- Carpe Diem

View Rembo's profile


408 posts in 4109 days

#4 posted 12-06-2011 10:03 PM

OK. I have attached a very powerful vacuum cleaner in the JET saw and I do not have a clean table)) with a protective cover my work was not easy and I do not think your way to protect more convenient.
although I’ll try your method. understand that your protection from dust extraction goes ahead and commits.
Thank you

View peterrum's profile


153 posts in 3837 days

#5 posted 12-06-2011 10:34 PM

I have a 2HP DC, a 4” hose at the bottom of the tablesaw and the 2 1/2” hose for the top as described. I will tell you where it works fantastic, on sheet goods, whether its plywood or mdf, and on long boards that I take from my mill and clean up the edges. Basically anything longer or wider than 6”. Anything smaller than that and I have to get the collector out of the way.


-- Carpe Diem

View Jim Jakosh's profile

Jim Jakosh

26438 posts in 4264 days

#6 posted 12-06-2011 11:03 PM

I love it. Very ingenious design!! thanks for sharing!!.................Jim

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

View grumpy749's profile


228 posts in 3536 days

#7 posted 12-07-2011 01:29 AM

I love it too Peterrum. Everybody has there own ideas on how things should be built and how they work. Sometimes its just personal preference. Its whatever works for you. Like Jim said very ingenious.

-- Denis in Grande Prairie. Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mistery, but today is a gift. That is why it is called the present.....Pink !

View Robsshop's profile


923 posts in 4133 days

#8 posted 12-07-2011 04:22 AM

Very nice build Peter ! I am in the process of putting something like this together Myself . I have intentions on hanging my system from over head as well but with lateral adjustment along with a canter lever design. I really like Your Idea of putting the blast gate at the hood, I may just steal that feature if possible. I have also wanted to put together a down draft table such as Yours. I can’t tell from the pic if You took the time to bevel all the holes, supposedly it improves the desired effect on suction ! Once again nice upgrades and thanks for sharing


-- Rob,Gaithersburg,MD,One mans trash is another mans wood shop treasure ! ;-)

View peterrum's profile


153 posts in 3837 days

#9 posted 12-07-2011 05:09 AM

Hello Rob, steal away and yes I bevelled the holes, read about that somewhere that it improves performance. I was sanding a cutting board today and the suction from the holes held the board tight. It didnt move a bit while I sanded away. I installed a couple of boards inside the draft table and they slope from the top towards the 4” opening to assist with the air movement. Read about that somewhere too. Good luck with your project.

-- Carpe Diem

View Dusty56's profile


11863 posts in 4847 days

#10 posted 12-07-2011 05:56 AM

Very well done : )

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

View kiefer's profile


5852 posts in 3826 days

#11 posted 12-07-2011 06:49 AM

Thanks for sharing the great post and pics !


-- Kiefer

View eddie's profile


8565 posts in 3772 days

#12 posted 12-07-2011 07:08 AM

i like it im going to favorite it im doing the same thing just a little different but basically the same very nice and cleaver

-- Jesus Is Alright with me

View Ken90712's profile


18051 posts in 4347 days

#13 posted 12-07-2011 06:37 PM

Well done!

-- Ken, "Everyday above ground is a good day!"

View mikeberry's profile


59 posts in 4246 days

#14 posted 12-17-2011 05:39 PM

Very well done

-- It's hard to plane a door when you have to use the crack of your ass for a vise

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