Below table dust collection - Router Forums
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post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old 09-07-2016, 01:28 PM Thread Starter
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Default Below table dust collection

I'm building a workstation for my table saw and one end of it is going to be my new router table set up. Since the router will be enclosed I'm going back and forth trying to decide exactly how to set up the dust collection. With my old table other than at the fence I didn't really ever hook anything up, just let the dust collect in the enclosure, then vacuumed it out, but I figure now I'll actually collect the dust while I'm routing which brings me to a couple of questions.

High or low? Should I make the opening for the dust to be vacuumed out up near the top, therefore nearer to the actual source of the dust, or near the bottom where it will naturally fall?

Opening size? The enclosure for the router is roughly 12x16x12. Will just a 2 1/2" shop vac connection be adequate, or do I need 4"? My dust collector is a smaller 1 HP one so it's not going to move the air a larger one will but it's not a problem to hook up either one.
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post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old 09-07-2016, 02:37 PM
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I suggest low if you are going to use it consistently. I would also build a V shaped bottom to move the dust down so the collection will be more effective. It is tempting to just use raw ply for the collection chamber, but I suggest you consider adding some sort of slick laminate to the interior to increase movement of sawdust toward the collector port. Given your small collector power, I'd stick with the 2.5 inch for now. You can always re-cut the port opening should you buy a larger unit.

You haven't mentioned your table saw. Does it have under the blade collection and collect sawdust inside the base cabinet? If so, you will just move your collector hose to the saw's dust port. The problem with table saws is the amount of sawdust that comes off the blade on top of the saw. If you are ripping, you want to make sure the blade has fairly deep gullets, which will carry the sawdust down. A friend made his own dust collection by adding a 2.5 inch port to the top of the blade guard. The hose goes from there to a spot beside the saw, where the DC unit gets attached. Helped reduce the flying sawdust.

You will also want to have dust collection in the router fence. I think it was Mike who posted a picture of a fence that was actually a long, narrow box, about 4 inches square, with a cutout for the blade in the middle. One end had a 2.5 inch DC port with a hose leading back into the DC chamber. Most commercial fences have a plastic port right behind the opening for the bit. Here's a pix of one.
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post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old 09-07-2016, 02:56 PM
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Add a vent or port in the router cabinet to replace the air that the shop vacuum pulls in. If you do not, the vacuum will not be very effective.

In my experience, a shop vacuum on the bottom side of the cabinet works best, with the replacement air port on the bottom side directly across from the vacuum port. The shop vacuum will draws in the air, creating a draft to draw the dust/debris into vacuum port.

Do you have a air compressor??-- when you are done using the router, blow it out with compressed air. Even though I have a shop DC system/cyclone, I routinely do this and it never fails that some dust is blown out. Preventive maintenance is cheap insurance and helps avoid unnecessary repair or tool replacement bills....
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post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old 09-07-2016, 06:04 PM Thread Starter
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Good information guys.

Tom, I do have dust collection below the saw. The collection box will be lined with laminate (haven't gotten that done yet) and I was going to do the router box also. I'm going to be building a new fence and will be adding a hose connection there as well.

Ray, I didn't mention it but I do have a blast gate that I was going to add for just that purpose. I do actually have a compressor and blowing out the box afterwards is a great idea. Probably not a bad idea to blow out the dust port and the router as well. Thanks!

Once I get further along with the build I'll post some pics.
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post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old 09-07-2016, 06:35 PM
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I really recommend that you do NOT enclose the router. The enclosure holds heat which is the electronic controls worst enemy. Also, the fan on the router blows toward the bit so pulling air from below the router or even around the router defeats some or most of the airflow adding to the heat. If you do enclose it anyway thenake an opening in the side of the box at the bottom and put dust collection at the bit which will work with the fan instead of against it.

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post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old 09-07-2016, 06:49 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cherryville Chuck View Post
I really recommend that you do NOT enclose the router. The enclosure holds heat which is the electronic controls worst enemy. Also, the fan on the router blows toward the bit so pulling air from below the router or even around the router defeats some or most of the airflow adding to the heat. If you do enclose it anyway thenake an opening in the side of the box at the bottom and put dust collection at the bit which will work with the fan instead of against it.
Chuck mine is enclosed and I get very little dust going to the bottom. I look down into the router and see very little dust. I think it has to do with the type of routing I do. Most of the time I just hook up the shop vac to the fence and it does the job. Other times I hook up the big dust collector to the bottom and the shop vac to the fence. I do keep a close eye on dust in the router.




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post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old 09-08-2016, 05:50 PM
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I have a Bosch router table and found that only using the dust port through the top fence spewed a lot of duct under the table. A lot of it has to do with the type of cut your making. Top fence dust collection work well if you're cutting a rabbit but is worthless if you're cutting a dado. Both top and bottom has worked well for me. I purchased a dust collection system made by Keen Products. Infinity Cutting Tools has it a good price Router Table Dust Collector - Dust Collection Fittings - Dust Collection - Shop Essentials

If you read the reviews, some people like it, some don't but it's worked very well for me. Bit changes were a little cumbersome but I bought a couple of offset wrenches and it hasn't been a major problem. The time it takes to change a bit vs. the time it takes to vacuum up the dust is a no brainer for me. Before I attached the Keen system I probably got about 25% of the dust, depending on the cut. Now I get about 95%, again, depending on the cut.

The product comes with a silicon cut that attaches with a Velcro ring to the bottom of the plate. The hoses attaches to the top fence and the silicon ring and, through a "T" connector to a 2 1/2" hose that goes to my shop vac.

Worth a look. Hope this helps.
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