Dust Collector Cyclone

Dust Collector Cyclone

November 9, 2020

The Spark:

The dust collector in the woodshop had several issues. It was difficult to empty, top heavy (which made it challenging to move), and it used floorspace we could use for something else.

The Things:


  • Small garbage can
  • Piece of plywood to cover the can
  • 3/8" Rubber gas line
  • Silicone glue
  • Polyurethane
  • HDPE plastic strips

Tools Used

  • Sabresaw
  • Tinsnips
  • Oscillating sander
  • Various hand tools

The Process

Cyclone Garbage Can

Select a garbage can.

Pick a can large enough to get a cyclonic motion in the interior but small enough it is easy to empty when it gets full.

Seal with Silicone
Step 2

Seal it With Silicone Glue

Seal the interior cracks with silicone glue and apply glue to the top rim.

Gasline Gasket
Step 3

Make a gasket for the lid

Slit gas line hose lengthwise and slide it over the silicone glue on the lip to create a gasket for the lid. Place plywood over the top with some weight to hold the gas line tight while the silicone glue dries.

Plywood Lid
Step 4

Make the lid

Make the lid from plywood. In our case we had a round piece of plywood from an early version of the Maslow CNC that was perfect. We opened the center hole a bit with a sabre saw and also cut a second hole for the inlet fitting. Then we used the oscillating sander to clean the holes up until the hose fittings fit nice and snugly. To finish it off we plugged a few smaller holes and coated it with polyurethane to get a better seal with the garbage can gasket.

Lid Installed
Step 5

Install the Lid

Next we installed the hose fittings into the lid and connected the vacuum hoses. We also added a lip of 1/8" thick HDPE to keep the lid centered on the garbage can.

Working Cyclone
Step 6

Test it!

We tested it to see how well it works. With the dust collector running the lid seals tightly enough you can lift the garbage can up by the lid! After vacuuming several areas in the shop we checked the can to see how it was working. It seems to work pretty well based on the stuff in the can!

Shop Dust System
Step 7

Connect it to the Equipment in the Shop

The final thing we did was connect the cyclone to the rest of the shop. We have connections to the miter saw, bandsaw, and planer. The planer hose is on a boom so it can be used in other locations within the shop. The next project is to build an electronic sensor that turns the dust collector on whenever someone turns on one of the dust-creating machines. Stay tuned!