Dust collector pipe size

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Forum topic by barnbuilder posted 06-02-2018 01:02 PM 368 views 0 times favorited 4 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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10 posts in 1466 days

06-02-2018 01:02 PM

I know it’s been covered countless times but there seems to be a lot of misinformation out there regarding dust collector systems and I can’t find exactly what I’m looking for.

I work out of a 20’x20’ garage and my car takes up half of that space. I typically open the door and have a large fan mounted on the ceiling blowing out the door in hopes of blowing most of the fines out while I’m working. I have the HF 2hp motor with the SDD (going to 3hp+ 220v is not an option for me) venting to the outside. So far I’ve been using flex hose and moving it to each machine (TS, router, planer, jointer).

What I have does fine for the chips but I would like to improve it in the hopes of containing the fines better as well as improving the flow for the bandsaw I just added that will be my longest run. The bandsaw has 2, 4” ports and sits about 15’-17’ from the collector. The other tools are less than 10’ each from the collector. I will be making the Rikon impeller upgrade and would like to use metal pipe with blastgates.

My question is am I better served with a 5” main or 6”? Oneida recommends matching the pipe size to the size of the inlet on the collector. The inlet of the motor and SDD is 5”. However, I could open the inlet on the motor to 6” and step up to the SDD XL which is larger and has a 6” inlet. I’ve seen that some folks do enlarge the motor inlet to 6” when making the impeller upgrade. However, the inlet on the Rikon whose impeller we’re using is 5” so why increase it to 6”?

At some point I can go too large with the separator and pipe size for the motor that I’m using. Is 6” too large and is 5” closer to the sweet spot for my setup?

4 replies so far

View ArtMann's profile


1462 posts in 1424 days

#1 posted 06-02-2018 02:25 PM

The Harbor Freight dust collector may be a good value but it isn’t a very powerful machine. Replacing the fan will only provide modest improvement. The problem you will have using over sized pipe is air velocity. You are running the risk of having dust settle inside the pipe due to slow air movement. My opinion is that you should take Oneida’s advice and use 5 inch pipe.

View Rayne's profile


1298 posts in 2148 days

#2 posted 06-02-2018 02:43 PM

You have a 1 car garage space essentially; you really don’t need anything larger than 5” pipes. I have a 20×20 garage as well, but am able to use all of it. 5” pipes is plenty for me.

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10 posts in 1466 days

#3 posted 06-02-2018 02:49 PM

I figured I would get a comment on being limited by the HF motor and completely agree. Is there a step up in motor that runs on 110v? I wouldn’t think there would be much of a gain without going to 220v.

View Lazyman's profile (online now)


4523 posts in 1995 days

#4 posted 06-02-2018 03:01 PM

Dust collection usually stinks for most band saws. You might consider something like the modification that Rob Cosman shows in this video. Seems like more bandsaw makers would try something similar.

-- Nathan, TX -- Hire the lazy man. He may not do as much work but that's because he will find a better way.

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