deciding on DC is hard...
Ok, so here is my life story, back in the late 70s and early 80s, I was a cabinet maker, small shop with 2 employees and we did ok. Of course back then Dust Collection was for wussies and my lungs gave out, I had to sell the shop and find something else to do for a living. I now only woodwork occasionally for house projects and if I don't use my DC, my asthma acts up pretty quickly. My DC is a very old Delta 50-181, a barrel thing with a canvas bag on the outlet. It collects a lot of dust and throws out a lot via the canvas bag, I actually don't use it most of the time especially because the 30+ year flex tube is barely flexible making it a pain to use.
Ok, my shop is both large and small, its 24x42, quite nice size for a single hobby shop. But I restore cars for a hobby, so there are 2 lifts in the shop taking up floor space. I have metal lathe, a mill, a TIG and a MIG and oxy/acet welders taking up space. I reload for my gun hobby so there is a dedicated space for reloading and storing powder/primers away from sparks when grinding/welding/etc. For wood, I have a 8" jointer/12 Planer combo, disc and belt sander, 10" table saw, band saw and a router table. Because I use my shop for various hobbies, my tools are all on wheels except for the metal lathe and mill, when doing car work like right now I move my wood tools up against the wall. I move the wood tools back into the middle when doing wood projects. I know this has a been a long read so far, I felt you needed to know to help me plan my DC. My next car has a wood frame underneath a flimsy alloy skin, so tons of woodworking over the next year and I want a DC.
I kind of fell in love with the Laguna PFlux in 1.5HP since its 110v and I thought I would wheel it around to my tools and use it, but it requires 30amp 110v so that makes it less moveable in my mind as I will have to wire a plug for it somewhere. I have 5 220V 50amp and 5 more 220V 30amp drops already in the shop so I can move my welders or table saw anywhere I want but all my 110V's are 20amp. So I am looking at the 2hp or 3hp Pflux. and NO permanent piping in the shop, just a long flex hose. I know you lose suction that way, but i will only hook up one tool at a time. My wife is kind of pushing for a permanent installation like a ClearVue CV1800, still with no piping just a long flex hose. I don't want to give up floor space to a non-moveable item but its a thought, with a CV1800 I would likely plumb one pipe out to the middle of the shop and then one flex line drop to the tools and move from one tool to the other.
Since our original budget was "lets stay under a $1,000" we are obviously way over that and I am looking at much cheaper alternatives, I even considered using the DC I have and removing the bag and Mickey Mousing a filter on it or exhausting it to the outside.
I have 2 concerns, one is noise, I chose the PFlex over the CFlex because of the noise reduction. I am worried about the CV1800 noise, if its too noisy I bet I would just turn it off and not use it, yes I wear hearing protection at all times but because of my hobbies I have hearing loss and I try to keep shop noise to absolute minimum to keep what hearing I have. Second is, if I really get into woodworking again (which I would love to do) I need really good dust collection due to damaged lungs and I am concerned that moving one hose from one machine to the other will get old rather quickly. I really don't see how to run permanent pipes in my shop due to the fact that I move my machines around based on the project, my table saw maybe at this end of the shop this week and the other end next month.
A lot to read, I know, but I am looking for suggestions that I may not have thought of. All the welding and lead work (yes, I use old school lead) is done and I am in the final body prep stage of my current car, so shop is filled with Bondo dust but final color coat will be on before Thanksgiving and car done by Xmas holiday, so I want to have my DC in the next few weeks to get ready for next car.
I just play with wood in order to make sawdust, I make the very best sawdust.
Last edited by mikeyr; 11-01-2019 at 04:28 PM.