Is a Ridgid 5HP/12gal vacuum enough to power a dust collection system for a table saw and a router?

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Forum topic by MiniMe posted 10-19-2019 06:31 PM 657 views 0 times favorited 4 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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153 posts in 596 days

10-19-2019 06:31 PM

Hi guys

I have a RIdgid TS 3650 and a small Mastercraft Maxim router that will work attached to the table saw
I do not know if I will ever get a planner a band saw or drill press. I can afford them but I can’t justify them as I can’t do it with a off the shelf dust collection system, I will have two three seasons of heavy work (by that I mean mostly during the winter months) and then I expect the work to diminish. If you check my previous threads I have a list of things that I want to do …and then I will slow down. I like wood working but I do not know what I am going to do after I am done with that list so I have no reasons to invest in adding things to my shop that will have no load after that.

I am planning to use a Ridgig 5HP/12Gal dry wet vacuum in my garage for dust collection
Is this going to be enough ? How does one size the vacuum depending on the distance between the tool and the vacuum? What other things do I have to consider when I build a DIY Dust collection system ?
Is it save to use this in a garage ?

4 replies so far

View BattleRidge's profile


120 posts in 760 days

#1 posted 10-20-2019 03:21 AM

I have a Craftsman 8 gallon 3.5 hp shop vac connected to a Dust Deputy cyclone and was able to get by for a while with my band saw and some other tools. It did a sufficient job of collecting the dust from individual machines (even when adapted to a 4” collection hose), but isn’t a true substitute for a ‘real’ dust collection system – though collects the sawdust sufficiently enough to operate the shop equipment. I since upgraded to a Grizzly G-0548Z which is a lot more effective, though I still use the shop vac / Dust Deputy combo for my oscillating spindle / belt sander, portable router table, scroll saw, various handheld tools and for general shop clean-up (at some point may plumb the collection into my main dust collection system).

I don’t think I would try to plumb a shop vac to several woodworking machines and it would be best to keep the connection between each individual machine and shop vac as short as possible.

I highly recommend incorporating a Dust Deputy (or similar model) cyclone in conjunction with your shop vac, otherwise you will find that the filter clogs VERY quickly with a rapid decrease in suction capability. It is amazing how much dust collects in the disposal bucket with the cyclone and how tiny the amount of sawdust that makes it to the shop vac – and how long the filter lasts without needing any attention.

You might keep an eye out on Facebook Marketplace and Craigslist for an actual dust collector and there can be an occasional bargain to be found – which will do a much better job. Also, keep in mind that you can eventually sell the dust collector at some point down the road and recoup some (if not all) of your investment into it. I would also recommend aiming for a canister style dust collector and to avoid the bag style if possible to provide much better air quality in your shop.

I was fortunate to find a brand new 2hp Grizzly G-0548Z with 1 micron canister filter for $200 on Facebook Marketplace. The owner had purchased it new, but before placing it in service he bought a larger unit at an auction and the Grizzly sat unassembled in the corner of his shop until he needed the space for something else and listed it for sale. He was unable to find some of the unassembled parts but I was able to order the parts from Grizzly for $40 (shipping included).

Additionally, keep in mind that a shop vac’s rated horse power and capability is in no way near that of the horsepower rating and capabilities of a real dust collector. There is a notable difference.

View JohnDi's profile


79 posts in 1978 days

#2 posted 10-20-2019 11:10 AM

I have the same table saw and use a shop vac for it. The dust collection on that saw leaves a lot to be desired unless you enclose the base.
The shop vac can certainly handle it.

View controlfreak's profile


294 posts in 146 days

#3 posted 10-20-2019 11:42 AM

I use a shop vac (large but don’t know the size) and bought the cyclone from rockler. I built a table above the shop vac to hold the cyclone so it would keep as small of a footprint as possible. I added a 25’ hose to make is easy to move frome tool to tool and even out the door for when I take the table saw outside. I was worried that my new Dewalt 735 planer would clog up the hose but the vac setup has handled the load fine.

View Jeff's profile


512 posts in 3739 days

#4 posted 10-20-2019 11:56 AM

Really depends on what your expectations for dust collection are. If you want no airborne dust at all then it’s no where near a solution. My current setup is a Ridgid 6HP vacuum with a Dust Deputy. It’s on a rolling cart like the one in Battleridge’s picture. I can move it around to where I’m using a tool. The vacuum by itself was OK for my 3650 table saw and the sander. For my 735 planer the Dust Deputy was absolutely required. It also attaches to my Dewalt palm sander. It’s just OK on my router table. There is no simple solution for my drill press or lathe. Regardless, I know there will always be cleanup after a job. If I’m particularly worried about dust then I wear a dust mask or respirator.

By the way I found the hose that came with the Ridgid vac to be useless. Spring for the longer orange version (it’s a Ridgid but not sure of the model number). It’s way more flexible.

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