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Carpet tubes for dust collection ductwork?

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Forum topic by DonnyBahama posted 05-14-2021 04:11 PM 601 views 0 times favorited 16 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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DonnyBahama

231 posts in 3650 days


05-14-2021 04:11 PM

Topic tags/keywords: dust collection question

Any body ever tried this? Or know anyone who has? Even if not, what drawbacks or problems do you think there might be? I’m trying to estimate the cost for a good dust collection system (will be making my own cyclone unit – Bill Pentz design) and the price of even the cheapest drain/sewer pipe seems excessive. And since I can get carpet tubes for free…

-- Founding member of the (un)Official LumberJock's Frugal Woodworking Society - http://lumberjocks.com/topics/29451


16 replies so far

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PBWilson1970

214 posts in 512 days


#1 posted 05-14-2021 04:24 PM

Great idea! Is the inside pretty smooth? If so, I don’t see an issue other than making sure the diameter will fit any standard sized fittings. Pretty clever stuff.

-- I love the smell of sawdust in the morning.

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splintergroup

5284 posts in 2341 days


#2 posted 05-14-2021 04:29 PM

I like this idea!

Free tubing can’t be beat as long as the cost involved in integrating the tubes is minimal.
Certainly for the long/straight runs it should work fine as long as the diameter is correct.
Speaking of which, what is the inside diameter?

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DonnyBahama

231 posts in 3650 days


#3 posted 05-14-2021 04:30 PM

Thanks. I think some of them are slick and others are just “raw” cardboard. (Not slick but still smooth – like the back of a legal pad.) I googled it and found a (very old) post where somebody had done this and he said that standard 4” fittings were just a little bit loose. He got around this with a few wraps of electrical tape and he said that tightened it up.

-- Founding member of the (un)Official LumberJock's Frugal Woodworking Society - http://lumberjocks.com/topics/29451

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DonnyBahama

231 posts in 3650 days


#4 posted 05-14-2021 04:32 PM



I like this idea!

Free tubing can t be beat as long as the cost involved in integrating the tubes is minimal.
Certainly for the long/straight runs it should work fine as long as the diameter is correct.
Speaking of which, what is the inside diameter?


Not sure. Just a smidge larger than the OD on 4” PVC pipe fittings.

-- Founding member of the (un)Official LumberJock's Frugal Woodworking Society - http://lumberjocks.com/topics/29451

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pintodeluxe

6411 posts in 3932 days


#5 posted 05-14-2021 05:53 PM

Availability of fittings that work with a cardboard pipe system will be the limiting factor.
You’ll be fabricating and and modifying at every turn. Not saying it can’t be done, but I wonder how you’ll connect the pipes in a way that won’t fall apart in regular use. Also, ductwork should be easy to re-arrange for new tool layouts etc.

I use metal 26 gauge ductwork special ordered from the big box store. It’s actually cheaper than PVC. No static problems, and it connects with pop rivets and foil tape.

Good luck with it.

-- Willie, Washington "If You Choose Not To Decide, You Still Have Made a Choice" - Rush

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DonnyBahama

231 posts in 3650 days


#6 posted 05-14-2021 06:23 PM


Availability of fittings that work with a cardboard pipe system will be the limiting factor.
You ll be fabricating and and modifying at every turn.

I’ve got a lot more time and creativity than I have money! ;)
Not saying it can t be done, but I wonder how you ll connect the pipes in a way that won t fall apart in regular use. Also, ductwork should be easy to re-arrange for new tool layouts etc.

I could see where longevity might be an issue with cardboard ductwork. From what I read, $’ PVC fittings work but there’s just a little extra room. If it’s small enough that it can be fixed with just 2 or 3 wraps of electrical tape, I was thinking that maybe I could cut a slot in the cardboard tube at the joint (I.e. with a hand saw) Then use duct tape to squeeze the kerf together for a nice, tight fit. (I’d continue to wrap the duct tape until the slot was fully covered up.)

I use metal 26 gauge ductwork special ordered from the big box store. It s actually cheaper than PVC. No static problems, and it connects with pop rivets and foil tape.

That’s interesting. The cheapest suitable plastic pipe I’ve found is about $12 for 10 feet. Is the metal ductwork less than $1 per foot? And what about availability and affordability of fittings? (45 degree bends, Y connectors, etc.)? You said that ductwork should be easy to rearrange… It seems like riveted metal is a lot more permanent than cardboard tubes with PVC fittings.

Thanks for the input! I appreciate the points you made.

-- Founding member of the (un)Official LumberJock's Frugal Woodworking Society - http://lumberjocks.com/topics/29451

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JackDuren

1600 posts in 2078 days


#7 posted 05-14-2021 06:43 PM

Keep in mind large carpet tubes make great veneer rails fixtures too…

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Fred Hargis

7024 posts in 3612 days


#8 posted 05-14-2021 07:22 PM

Well, 4” soil pipe is $1 a foot….doesn’t seem to be unreasonable, though the fittings will jack that up quite a bit. But you’ll have to buy fittings anyway, and I’ll bet those tubes weigh quite a bit more than soil pipe. Anyway, I haven;’t tried it, but I have seen that question a few times over the years. No idea what those folks ended up doing.

-- Our village hasn't lost it's idiot, he was elected to congress.

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1thumb

442 posts in 3275 days


#9 posted 05-14-2021 07:23 PM

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patron

13722 posts in 4460 days


#10 posted 05-15-2021 02:51 AM

do wrap it with some wire
the static electricity
makes the dust cling to the inside of any tube except metal

-- david - only thru kindness can this world be whole . If we don't succeed we run the risk of failure. Dan Quayle

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SuperCubber

1193 posts in 3403 days


#11 posted 05-15-2021 03:07 AM


Is the metal ductwork less than $1 per foot?

- DonnyBahama

Got mine (5” 26 gauge) for about .70/ft through an HVAC supplier.

The 45s and 90s were about $3-4 each. The wyes were about $12 each.

-- Joe | Spartanburg, SC

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Jim2020

89 posts in 357 days


#12 posted 05-15-2021 03:38 AM

How heavy is the pipe wall? Thin cardboard might collapse under the vacuum of the fan. Free is nice, but how much money do you spend on straight pipe? A $100, $150? The cost is in the fittings, blast gates, etc. How do you plan on making all the bends a system needs? If you want to make your own ducts, maybe making them from wood might be a better idea, or maybe you could incorporate your cardboard tubes into a self made wooden system. Something to think about. Jim

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Madmark2

2841 posts in 1707 days


#13 posted 05-15-2021 01:26 PM

Cardboard absorbs moisture from the air and wIll soften and sag over time. The unfinished surface of the inside of the tubes will attract and hold dust. Being rigid and opaque the tubing will make localizing and clearing clogs troublesome.

There is a reason you don’t see cardboard used in dust collection systems.

If your shop is soo large that you have huge dust producers everywhere you should be able to afford the cost of hoses and ducts. If not then the cost of ducts should be minimal.

Get one flex hose attached to a central DC and connect to individual tools as required. No ductwork needed at all. Use those quick connect hose fittings Rockler et al sell.

-- The hump with the stump and the pump!

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DonnyBahama

231 posts in 3650 days


#14 posted 05-15-2021 01:34 PM


Cardboard absorbs moisture from the air and wIll soften and sag over time. The unfinished surface of the inside of the tubes will attract and hold dust. Being rigid and opaque the tubing will make localizing and clearing clogs troublesome.

There is a reason you don t see cardboard used in dust collection systems.


Now THAT’S what I was looking for. Thank you, Madark2 !


Got mine (5” 26 gauge) for about .70/ft through an HVAC supplier.

The 45s and 90s were about $3-4 each. The wyes were about $12 each.


Looks like this is the way to go. Thanks, SuperCubber!

-- Founding member of the (un)Official LumberJock's Frugal Woodworking Society - http://lumberjocks.com/topics/29451

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SuperCubber

1193 posts in 3403 days


#15 posted 05-15-2021 04:48 PM


Got mine (5” 26 gauge) for about .70/ft through an HVAC supplier.

The 45s and 90s were about $3-4 each. The wyes were about $12 each.

Looks like this is the way to go. Thanks, SuperCubber!

- DonnyBahama

I should have mentioned that the wyes I used were plastic ones from Woodcraft. You can also get them from Amazon (brand is PowerTec). They fit perfectly inside the 5” HVAC pipe, which isn’t ideal for flow in all cases. For those situations, I chamfered the lip to help smooth the flow of air.

The metal wyes are typically for air flowing the opposite direction, so they really don’t work well. You can find reverse flow wyes (sometimes called flue wyes), but they are extremely expensive and difficult to find.

-- Joe | Spartanburg, SC

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