Harbor Freight Dust Collector - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
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post #1 of 17 Old 01-12-2019, 10:28 PM Thread Starter
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Harbor Freight Dust Collector

Iím looking to purchase the harbor freight dust collector. Iíve seen the hf dust collector hooked to a dust deputy system. What are the benefits of hooking up a system like that? Could I just not use a system like that? I have a very small 16í x 16í shed and would probably only be using one tool at time. Would probably have one line coming off the dust collection and then hook to whatever tool Iím using. All are my tools are portable and I have to move them around to use them. At most one line to my miter saw and the other to other tools.


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post #2 of 17 Old 01-13-2019, 12:14 AM
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A dust collector may be over kill for you .....

The combination of the HF collector and a Dust Deputy will take a large foot print in your shop. As long as you're Ok with that, fine. If not, a good shop vac should work with your portable tools. Understand that saw dust is different than chips, like from a jointer or planer which are larger and may clog a shop vac hose. The better planers "force feed" the chips out which helps. The dust deputy is a means to keep your shop vac filter clean, for less maintenance. However you still have to empty the container frequently.

https://www.finewoodworking.com/2011...ur-dust-deputy

I have 2 Jet 1100 dust collectors and 4 shop vacs in my shop. The shop vacs are permanent hooked to the bandsaws, the RAS, the router table and one is free to keep the floor clean. The Jets are swapped between the tablesaws and jointer, and between the drum sanders and planers. Yes, there is more than one of each, kinda happened over the last 40 years....?

A 30 gal drum full of sawdust is heavy and no fun to carry down 15 stairs to dump it. When running a big job, I keep a spare empty 30 gal available for swapping out with a full one. I also check the shop vac filters once a week and can swap them out when they get full with a cleaned one. You have to wear a dust mask when emptying or cleaning the dust system, or you've made no progress in catching the dust if you breathe it.
There are various modifications to the HF dust collector all over You Tube and the web. I kinda like this approach, but is has an outside exhaust, no filter:
https://www.instructables.com/id/Mak...-dust-collect/

The answer to your question will only be as detailed and specific as the question is detailed and specific. Good questions also include a sketch or a photo that illustrates your issue. (:< D)

Last edited by woodnthings; 01-13-2019 at 12:24 AM.
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post #3 of 17 Old 01-13-2019, 04:48 AM
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Things to consider

With a fairly small and crowded workshop, consider the space the HF system will take up verses your dust collection needs and goals. If your primary concern is removing chips AND the fine dust that represents possible health hazards, then installing an aftermarket HEPA filter to the system is important. The HF stock filter bag does not filter dangerous ultra fine dust. The Wynn HEPA filter made for HF is a worthwhile upgrade.

Do you use tools that exceed the capability of a shop vac? Jointers, surface planes and drum sanders? Then an HF system would be useful. If just saws and routers, consider the space savings of a shop vac with a small dust deputy stacked. This extends your shop vac HEPA filter life considerably, and can be built on a rolling cart with a 2íx3í footprint.

The advantage of a chip separator on an HF System is mostly reduced loading on the dust filter. It may increase overall chip capacity and/or be more convienent to empty, but greatly increases the overall footprint of the system. From your brief description of shop size and tool movement, sounds like I would forgo the chip separator and go with a mostly stock HF system with a Wynn HEPA filter. Be aware the Wynn filter will cost more than the HF. I believe the Wynn runs about $230, but a safer respiratory environment is worth the investment. The Wynn filter will last years.

Connecting to one tool at a time is a perfectly fine practice for any system. Central ducting is just a convenience and time saver in production work. Nothing wrong with a hobbyist taking a bit more time in setup to move the dust collection hose to the next tool.

Here is the link to the Wynn filter: https://wynnenv.com/woodworking-filt...ht-collectors/
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post #4 of 17 Old 01-13-2019, 07:56 AM
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Based on the reply above ^.....

If you can exhaust the dust outsidelike the one in the link I supplied, then maybe the expense of a Wynn filter can be avoided.... I donno?
That's a question only you can answer. There's another option which is locate the entire DC outside in a bumpout or small shed with an access door. Now, you have not taken any floor space. Can you do that?

The answer to your question will only be as detailed and specific as the question is detailed and specific. Good questions also include a sketch or a photo that illustrates your issue. (:< D)
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post #5 of 17 Old 01-13-2019, 09:39 AM
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Nick, Using a separator such as a dust deputy greatly reduces the larger chips from going into the dust collector. by using a separator the dust collector air flow stays efficient much longer between filter cleanings. I have a harbor freight DC, with a barrel added under the filter that the plastic bag hangs into. My intake hose from the DC is connected to a separator (aprox 30 gal), and from the separator to my tools...one at a time as needed. By using a separator (in my case) it fills the separator about three or four times before I have to empty the bag on the DC. Where the DC works much better than a vacuum...is at removing the larger chips and shavings from jointer, planer, router table, and table saw. I use a small shop vac for the dustier things like sanding and such. I also equipped a 20" window fan with a furnace filter, that I use to remove the fine floaty type dust that seems to stay airborne a while without it. My shop in the basement is 13'x 19' and since using my DC and fan filter...my wife no longer complains about dust drifting upstairs. I have used this setup now for about 15+ years now.

Gary
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post #6 of 17 Old 01-13-2019, 10:54 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nick W. View Post
Iím looking to purchase the harbor freight dust collector. Iíve seen the hf dust collector hooked to a dust deputy system. What are the benefits of hooking up a system like that? Could I just not use a system like that? I have a very small 16í x 16í shed and would probably only be using one tool at time. Would probably have one line coming off the dust collection and then hook to whatever tool Iím using. All are my tools are portable and I have to move them around to use them. At most one line to my miter saw and the other to other tools.


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I have two of the HF collectors. They work very well for a table saw or sander where it's collecting dust but for a machine that makes chips it tends to get stopped up at the grate in front of the impeller. This is what the dust deputy would help. If you could remove the chips before it got to the dust collector it would help a lot. Even if you just reduced the volume I don't think it would stop up.

I think the grate is intended to keep someone from sticking hands in the impeller while it's running.
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post #7 of 17 Old 01-13-2019, 10:57 AM
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ditch the grate!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Neul View Post
I have two of the HF collectors. They work very well for a table saw or sander where it's collecting dust but for a machine that makes chips it tends to get stopped up at the grate in front of the impeller. This is what the dust deputy would help. If you could remove the chips before it got to the dust collector it would help a lot. Even if you just reduced the volume I don't think it would stop up.

I think the grate is intended to keep someone from sticking hands in the impeller while it's running.

I removed the grates from my Jet 1100's, so far no issues with either the jointer or planer.

The answer to your question will only be as detailed and specific as the question is detailed and specific. Good questions also include a sketch or a photo that illustrates your issue. (:< D)
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post #8 of 17 Old 01-13-2019, 11:11 AM
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Originally Posted by woodnthings View Post
I removed the grates from my Jet 1100's, so far no issues with either the jointer or planer.
I think the grate on the HF collector is part of the body of the blower. I would have to take it apart to be sure.

Just went to look at the one for my table saw and when I took the hose off I found in front of the grate there was several strips of wood that would otherwise have gotten into the impeller. Now I think the grate may be as much to protect the impeller as it is to keep hands out.
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post #9 of 17 Old 01-13-2019, 04:12 PM
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I removed the grate from my HF to smooth airflow and prevent any surface planer chip build up. I have had no issues with it. I am running a Rikon impeller in the HF so clearances are much tighter. The grate is to protect hands and prevent large items from entering the impeller area.

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post #10 of 17 Old 01-14-2019, 08:38 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you everyone for your time and input. I think I was just save my money and space and stick with the dust stopper and shop vac that I have set up now.


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post #11 of 17 Old 01-28-2019, 10:56 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Red5hft View Post
With a fairly small and crowded workshop, consider the space the HF system will take up verses your dust collection needs and goals. If your primary concern is removing chips AND the fine dust that represents possible health hazards, then installing an aftermarket HEPA filter to the system is important. The HF stock filter bag does not filter dangerous ultra fine dust. The Wynn HEPA filter made for HF is a worthwhile upgrade.

Do you use tools that exceed the capability of a shop vac? Jointers, surface planes and drum sanders? Then an HF system would be useful. If just saws and routers, consider the space savings of a shop vac with a small dust deputy stacked. This extends your shop vac HEPA filter life considerably, and can be built on a rolling cart with a 2íx3í footprint.

The advantage of a chip separator on an HF System is mostly reduced loading on the dust filter. It may increase overall chip capacity and/or be more convienent to empty, but greatly increases the overall footprint of the system. From your brief description of shop size and tool movement, sounds like I would forgo the chip separator and go with a mostly stock HF system with a Wynn HEPA filter. Be aware the Wynn filter will cost more than the HF. I believe the Wynn runs about $230, but a safer respiratory environment is worth the investment. The Wynn filter will last years.

Connecting to one tool at a time is a perfectly fine practice for any system. Central ducting is just a convenience and time saver in production work. Nothing wrong with a hobbyist taking a bit more time in setup to move the dust collection hose to the next tool.

Here is the link to the Wynn filter: https://wynnenv.com/woodworking-filt...ht-collectors/

I'm thinking about getting the Harbor Freight with the Wynn HEPA Filter. Do you the part number for the Wynn HEPA Filter that everyone uses?



Thanks,


Gary
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post #12 of 17 Old 01-28-2019, 11:22 AM
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I'm pretty sure you are correct about the grate protecting the impeller. A piece of wood may easily total the collector by damaging the impeller, housing and bending the motor shaft.
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post #13 of 17 Old 01-28-2019, 10:13 PM
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Filters to choose from:

35A274NANO, MERV15, Maximum Filter Area. Highly recommended where a high efficiency, cyclonic style pre separator is being used. Has a fixed end cap.

35BA222NANO, MERV15, Highly recommended for all Harbor Freight collectors with or without a pre separator. With no sacrifice to air flow, these are the easiest to clean down. Supplied as open/open filters, a steel top end cap is included with gasket and mounting hardware.

35A274BLOL, MERV10, Economy (See Library)

35A100SBOL, MERV11, Open Pleat, Synthetic (See Library)
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post #14 of 17 Old 01-29-2019, 02:44 AM
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Filters to choose from:

35A274NANO, MERV15, Maximum Filter Area. Highly recommended where a high efficiency, cyclonic style pre separator is being used. Has a fixed end cap.

35BA222NANO, MERV15, Highly recommended for all Harbor Freight collectors with or without a pre separator. With no sacrifice to air flow, these are the easiest to clean down. Supplied as open/open filters, a steel top end cap is included with gasket and mounting hardware.

35A274BLOL, MERV10, Economy (See Library)

35A100SBOL, MERV11, Open Pleat, Synthetic (See Library)
Thank you!
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post #15 of 17 Old 02-26-2019, 11:31 PM
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Hi.. Which filter did you get? The 35A274NANO, MERV15 seems to be the best BUT I would think would require more cleaning? I am looking at picking up the HF DC and was leaning towards the 35BA222NANO, MERV15. Will be adding a separator at some point. Was looking for opinions from someone who using one and your experience with the filter. Thanks.
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post #16 of 17 Old 03-02-2019, 07:50 AM
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I went with the open/open MERV 15 but installed it with a chip separator from the start, so I cannot comment of filter performance without it. To date, air flow and cleaning have been a non issue. Wynn filters are a very good value. You get what you pay for.
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Last edited by Steve Neul; 03-02-2019 at 10:08 AM.
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post #17 of 17 Old 03-02-2019, 08:08 AM
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I went with the open/open MERV 15 but installed it with a chip separator from the start, so I cannot comment of filter performance without it. To date, air flow and cleaning have been a non issue. Wynn filters are a very good value. You get what you pay for.
Looks like you are missing your pants on the Wynn filter.. I'm leaning towards the same filter. 35BA222NANO Seems it would be easier to clean with it being open at both ends. Weighing that against the 222 vs 274 filter surface of the 35A274. Don't think that will make as big an impact over the easier cleaning.
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