Dust Collection PVC or Metal? #1: Quick Survey on Material for Dust Collection parts

  • Advertise with us
Blog entry by Bob A in NJ posted 12-19-2012 01:43 PM 1494 reads 0 times favorited 11 comments Add to Favorites Watch
no previous part Part 1 of Dust Collection PVC or Metal? series no next part


Will be making a short dust collection run, about 20 foot, next week to hook up 3 tools. I’ve seen the comments, seems like metal is the better choice but I plan is to use 4” PVC and ground it with copper wire.

Just wondering, what does your system have? PVC or metal pipes?



-- Bob A in NJ

11 comments so far

View a1Jim's profile (online now)


117652 posts in 3992 days

#1 posted 12-19-2012 01:45 PM

I’ve used PVC for years works fine.

View DIYaholic's profile


19803 posts in 3090 days

#2 posted 12-19-2012 01:54 PM

My soon to be installed DC ducting will be metal. I had access to inexpensive, err, CHEAP ($1 for 5’) 4” metal!!!

-- Randy-- I may not be good...but I am slow! If good things come to those who wait.... Why is procrastination a bad thing?

View Cole Tallerman's profile

Cole Tallerman

392 posts in 2600 days

#3 posted 12-19-2012 02:11 PM

Mine uses some of both. They both work great although I have very low ceilings (6.5’) and every time I walk under the pvc I can feel the static. Also, what size is your dust collector? I ask this because just yesterday i read somthing on bill pentz’s site that made me realize how much I was restricting my 1.5 hp dust collector by putting 4” pipes.

If you havent been to his site, it is a must-read for anyone building a dust collection system:

Also, I realize that you are only doing a small system, but the long ranger system ( is a must, even for my small 4 gate system

View Cosmicsniper's profile


2202 posts in 3574 days

#4 posted 12-19-2012 02:30 PM

I think Cole hit on the issue here. For many of us who have DCs in the 2hp or greater range, the ducts should be 5” or greater as much as possible. I use 4” PVC right now, but this was only intended as a cheap, temporary solution. I get the velocity I need at 4”, but a lot of the dust simply isn’t captured at the tool. 5” ducts would solve that problem for me, so I will go to 5” HVAC when do my shop rewiring.

-- jay,

View dbhost's profile


5772 posts in 3647 days

#5 posted 12-19-2012 03:36 PM

I use a mixture, for the 5” section it is metal since that isn’t available in plastic, and I branch out to 4” PVC runs. I don’t bother with grounding it. The subject of static has been beaten to death here, but simply put, I am in coastal Texas, it is so humid here that static electricity doesn’t have a chance. I am more likely to suffer mold in my plastic DC ducting than static buildup…

-- Please like and subscribe to my YouTube Channel

View Mike Gager's profile

Mike Gager

665 posts in 3683 days

#6 posted 12-19-2012 03:49 PM

i use both and didnt bother with a ground. no problems

View Manitario's profile


2759 posts in 3298 days

#7 posted 12-19-2012 04:33 PM

I use 6” metal ducting. I’ve gotten small shocks before from dust running through plastic ducting…

-- Sometimes the creative process requires foul language. -- Charles Neil

View matt garcia's profile

matt garcia

1910 posts in 4087 days

#8 posted 12-20-2012 12:18 AM

No clue!! I use my shop vac!! I’m cheap!!!

-- Matt Garcia Wannabe Period Furniture Maker, Houston TX

View CL810's profile


3937 posts in 3403 days

#9 posted 12-20-2012 02:48 AM

I use PVC sewer pipe. It is thinner than regular PVC pipe and considerabky less expensive. I’ve been using it for 3 years and it has performed well.

-- "The only limits to our realization of tomorrow will be our doubts of today." - FDR

View Alan72's profile


221 posts in 2448 days

#10 posted 12-20-2012 03:06 PM

For dust collection I’ve never been so happy since I switched to pvc drain pipe. It’s so much cheaper for pipe and fitting compared to type that is made for woodworking. I have less leaks with the pvc than I did with the metal furnice pipe.

View JesseTutt's profile


854 posts in 2526 days

#11 posted 12-20-2012 03:45 PM

My old 1hp penn state dc had plastic pipes (4”) with copper wire. When I got my new 2hp harbor freight I decided not to add the copper wire. I do notice static build up on the plastic flex tubing. The DC itself is grounded.

-- Jesse, Saint Louis, Missouri

Have your say...

You must be signed in to post the comments.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics