|Now, the Big Cyclone is great for my large machines but it
is useless for the small hand-held tools such as Random Orbital Sanders, Belt Sander,
Biscuit Jointers, Portable Power Saws, etc.
The reason for this is that the dust ports (if any) on these tools are small two inch ones at best and require a high speed air flow to work. Now, if you take the big 6" duct from the big Cyclone and reduce it down to this size, the air flow is very minimal. This is because the big blowers work, generally, on volume of air not velocity.
So, to collect dust from these tools, I needed to use a Shop Vac (well an old house Vacuum Cleaner), This works but has a big downside - the Dust Bag would fill up very rapidly and a new one was needed making running costs expensive. I tried using a Triton Dust Bucket which is a pre-separator and, while this works Ok, it's in-built filter would clog up very rapidly when using the sanders in particular thereby causing the air flow to die of. Not being very happy with this situation, I decided to try something else.
During my research on the Big Cyclone, I found a site on the Net (in the US I think) created by Mike Simpson (Mikes Site). Mike had made a big cyclone like mine and then, facing the same problem, made a mini-cyclone to attached to his Shop Vac. Mike's results looked good so I thought 'lets give it a go'.
I again used Bill Pentz's spreadsheet (http://billpentz.com) to create the cutting list by entering a 6" drum and set it for a 1.64 to 1 Cone length. Printed out the plan and away I went. I chose the 6" Drum size as I thought I would make life easier for myself and use a piece of PVC Pipe for the top Drum. The cone is made from some left over sheet steel from the big cyclone (I had to pop rivet two scraps together to get a big enough piece). The inlet and outlet pipes are made from 2" PVC pipe I also had lying around.
I would like to thank Mike for putting up the details of his mini-Cyclone on the Web which helped me to make mine..
Click on the buttons above to find out how I did.