Tips for Central Dust Collection

Tips for Central Dust Collection

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Once you’ve invested in a dust collector for your shop and are considering setting it up as a central system, be sure you educate yourself about the best practices for piping the system in. This video will go a long way toward helping you keep your system efficient.

It’s in the details:
Creating an efficient central dust collection system is all about the little things. You’ve got to pay attention to the small details to get the system to do what you want it to do. What type of fittings should you buy? Can plumbing fittings be substituted for dust collection fittings? Should you seal the joints? Where should you use flex hose instead of rigid pipe? What type of flex pipe is best? What’s the best way to reduce the diameter of the pipe? This video provides answers to these questions, and will help you make your system efficient.

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Elbows, T’s and Y’s:
Woodworkers often use the wrong fittings, and this adversely affects their dust control system. Elbows need to be the correct radius, based on the diameter of the pipe they’re connected to. T’s aren’t great, Y’s are a better choice. The video explains why.

More tips:
If you’re looking for more help on installing a central dust collection system, and keeping it efficient, have a look at Paul Mayer’s article that provides a simple approach for dust collection ducting.

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More info:
For more information on Laguna dust collectors and Laguna cyclone dust collectors visit or or


  1. Fattback on June 1, 2022 at 8:13 pm

    Great information thank you.

  2. Mike Allan on June 1, 2022 at 8:14 pm

    For the naysayers who deny that wood dust explosions are “a thing”… here’s one. There are a dozen more examples for wood, and hundreds if you consider other dust sources.

  3. Maurice Mc Loughlin on June 1, 2022 at 8:14 pm

    Oh man I love how you explain stuff. Loved the on ramp analogy. Thanks for the lessons.

  4. John Charmley on June 1, 2022 at 8:16 pm

    Grounding the pipe is a myth.

  5. Matthew Titus on June 1, 2022 at 8:16 pm

    can the machine only purge when it stops?

  6. ehengle on June 1, 2022 at 8:17 pm

    Of all the dust collection videos on Youtube, this was the most informative for me! Thank you!

  7. J D on June 1, 2022 at 8:19 pm

    I’m little confused on your statements about grounding on the flex pipe. The metal wire giving it rigidity isn’t exposed within the pipe itself, it’s contained within the plastic/flexible sheathing. If it’s inside an insulator and the static is accumulating inside the pipe, what is the point of grounding that wire? It’s similar to people who are run wire along the outside of their PVC to ground it. It does absolutely no more than I’m seeing this would, unless I’m missing something.

  8. Cliffmandude on June 1, 2022 at 8:19 pm

    Can you elaborate on the PVC grounding?

  9. dave0028 on June 1, 2022 at 8:22 pm

    If I use the 4" HVAC metal duct pipe do I still need to add a ground wire? I am using my HF dust collector in my powder coating business.

  10. Mark Koons on June 1, 2022 at 8:22 pm

    I’ve been scrounging components for a "new" system in a shop with 12′ ceilings. The collector is an old 7-1/2 Hp Torit with a 10" inlet and "submicron" cartridge filters. The inlet is 10′ above the floor and it seems, which is to say I Imagine, that the 10" and 8" branches ought to run nearly level across the shop. Is that correct? All of the machines are within 22′ of the collector with several dedicated shop vacs pulling through cyclones for the low volume machines like drill press, 14" band saw and a well-shrouded Festool miter saw. Stepping down from 10" to 8" for a 24" planer seems reasonable but what perplexes me is necking down to 6" for a 36" bandsaw and a 24" widebelt sander. Both are antiques with 6" ports. Even worse are a 12/14" table saw and 8" jointer both with 4" ports which I intend to open up to 5" mostly because I scored some used super high grade semi-rigid, smooth-inside 5" flex hose to make the transition to wyes branching into an 8" line in a trench. It seems like the air flow won’t be nearly enough once the dust laden air reaches the big tubes. Will it create enough air flow to keep the dust moving if I leave one or two floor sweeps open? What kind of gizmos should I use to assess the performance of the branches and drops I piece together? Also, I have a really old 3/4" shaper with no provision for dust collection other than a 3" port in the fence and louvers in the cabinet door. Do I need to cut into the cabinet to contain the dust? Thanks for your recommendations.

  11. Gordon Moen on June 1, 2022 at 8:26 pm

    I have a small shop with a wet dry vacuum. Can I use the hvac piping for my approximately 24 ft run plus drops?i feel as though my wet dry has much better air flow than my 2hp Reliant 820 which is set with original dust bags.

  12. Eric Hans on June 1, 2022 at 8:27 pm

    I actually sell and design dust collection systems for a living and would never sell or design a system using PVC piping. One reason is the elbows and tee’s are all too tight of a radius and will greatly increase your systems static pressure which will make your fan work harder and a loss of suction the further the duct runs go out. As far as static electricity issues, I would mostly be concerned with aluminum dust which can ignite and blow up during the filter cleaning cycle on a dust collector or baghouse.

  13. Brad Ouellette on June 1, 2022 at 8:28 pm

    Just as a talking point it is recommended that you have a minimum of 24” of straight pipe coming off the dust collector intake prior to any fittings because in a cyclone system the fitting too close to the intake will cause turbulence and reduce effectiveness of the cyclonic effect

  14. Sergio Rando on June 1, 2022 at 8:28 pm

    Very nice pipes review, but for small workshops is better using movable dust collection systems. And I made the cheapest one. You can watch it here

  15. Tim Caron on June 1, 2022 at 8:28 pm

    I think I will just stay with my little shop vac and move it around from tool to tool to clean up.  Sure there is a static build up, but I will just live with it.  I would rather deal with a 5 foot hose then a 30 ft duct work.  Keep it simple.

  16. Brendan Chatt on June 1, 2022 at 8:29 pm

    very helpful, thank you!

  17. Mark Koons on June 1, 2022 at 8:30 pm

    Plywood rings, (1/2" baltic birch with ring width of 3/4") every two feet on long lengths of large diameter cheap steel tube will prevent collapse. Baltic birch too rich? Make the ring width greater and use inferior scrap sheet stock.

  18. wu lvxing on June 1, 2022 at 8:30 pm

    mfiltration nice to meet

  19. Ryan Keating on June 1, 2022 at 8:35 pm

    Into your Shap

  20. Mike Hozjan on June 1, 2022 at 8:37 pm

    I was hoping you would touch more on grounding. How do I transfer the ground from the inside of my pvc to the outside and do I need to ground it to a 6′ deep spike as someone has suggested? They’re the same ones that are grounding PVC on the outside. HELP! I don’t want to burn down my workshop.

  21. T N on June 1, 2022 at 8:37 pm

    The best tips which I have found in the internet! Well done! Thank you for your patience and excellent explanation for every bit of components selected and used! Hats off and woudl be great to see you again with other tips! Nithi from Germany

  22. Wes Hamstra on June 1, 2022 at 8:38 pm

    Thanks! I learned so much!

  23. Steve Koz on June 1, 2022 at 8:39 pm

    Hi.. Great video. Any idea where I can purchase clear 4" flex hose with the smooth interior? I keep finding hoses with interior ridges. Thanks!

  24. Barsabus on June 1, 2022 at 8:40 pm

    Just let the dust fall and sweep it up later.

  25. Juan Aguilar on June 1, 2022 at 8:40 pm

    Can this be used for bodo or filler type of dust.

  26. Adriva01 on June 1, 2022 at 8:40 pm

    Thanks a lot !

  27. Pat Maundrell on June 1, 2022 at 8:41 pm

    Thanks good information and explanation

  28. Chevrolet Diesel Nation on June 1, 2022 at 8:41 pm

    I have a small question

    When using spiral ducting, do U need to use foil tape where the pipes connect or is it a tight enough seal to not need it

  29. mgmcd1 on June 1, 2022 at 8:42 pm

    Just getting ready to install a dust collection system. Thanks for all this accumulated knowledge. I have a smaller system in one garage bay, so will use the metal hvac stuff.

  30. Felix Reali on June 1, 2022 at 8:43 pm

    very handy video. thanks for sharing

  31. Parker Edwards on June 1, 2022 at 8:43 pm

    This was amazing

  32. Emma Robert on June 1, 2022 at 8:45 pm

    "I recommend this guide:
    So grateful it exists."

  33. 97minitaco on June 1, 2022 at 8:45 pm

    Since PVC is an insulator, how does adding a copper grounding wire ground the entire system? Since PVC doesn’t conduct electricity, It will only dissipate static in the area of the pipe where it makes contact, which is only a tiny section of the pipe. If wire is on the inside, the outside has no means to dissipate static build up and vice versa. It seems like static will continue to build throughout the rest of the system. In theory if you wanted to ground a PVC system you would have to wrap the entire pipe (inside and out) in copper wire or foil tape before grounding would serve any benefit.

    What are your thoughts?

  34. Nathanrum on June 1, 2022 at 8:46 pm

    So glad I watched this before putting mine together

  35. Paul Vanslyke on June 1, 2022 at 8:48 pm

    Where did you get those big dust collector

  36. Douglas Thompson on June 1, 2022 at 8:48 pm

    Since HVAC is also about moving air efficiently why are their fittings so inefficient? You would think they would be engineered for good air flow and at least if space dictated you would have the choice of different short radius and long radius bends. Electrical conduit (NM) does have ‘sweep’ fittings which work very well for air flow in a vacuum system.

  37. roque glenni on June 1, 2022 at 8:51 pm

    Please can you tell me what type and model of filter is for cement or concrete dust. when doing a polish. thanks

  38. Douglas Thompson on June 1, 2022 at 8:54 pm

    Just for information: Electrical supply houses have PVC in different diameters and schedules all with sweep fittings that are perfect for dust collection. You even get a choice of long sweeps or short ones. A nice system of different types of hangers that fit perfectly also makes for a professional installation. It is my experience that you better be packing a fat wallet before you even venture inside a HVAC facility! The other thing to keep in mind is the conduit fittings sweep or otherwise mate up with PVC that is available in your other outlets. You can also use a heat gun to judiciously apply heat and bend PVC without fittings. The frustrating part is trying to get adapters that actually fit different manufacturers as they all seem to make completely different fittings. Different sizes, some tapered, different tapers etc. etc. Take care. Doug

  39. CaMi on June 1, 2022 at 8:55 pm

    Just wanna say, I’m in the HVAC industry, its a pet peeve of mine how people turn elbows to "45 degree" elbows by only turning the two ends. This ends up making a sharp 45 turn, you are infact making it an even smaller radius by doing so.
    The trick is to turn all the seams of each gore of the elbow together. The closer they get together the straighter the elbow gets.
    This makes the Elbow have a much more efficient and smooth turn, rather than a sharp 45 turn.
    I hope that makes sense.

  40. gXXrGoNe on June 1, 2022 at 8:55 pm

    As an electrical engineer who has experience studying the corona effect, I feel empowered enough to state that a home shop will never produce the necessary saturation of a combustible environment within the volume of any home dust collection system to cause an explosion or fire.

    In addition, in a PVC system, you will never be able to incorporate the necessary "grounding" to prevent an explosion where the appropriate saturation level exist in the system.

    Simply put, you do not need to ground a PVC dust collection system. If you wish to reduce those annoying and sometimes painful static discharge on PVC systems, feel free to wrap multiple times at the most common points of contact between you and the PVC with a conductive wire and then ground that wire.

    And for those that want to try to rebuttal me because they think their Googling skills make them an expert in everything; no, the corona effect is not exactly what would occur in that volume, but I am knowledgeable enough to confidently make that parallelism between the corona effect and what’s necessary to create an environment where an explosion or fire can occur.

  41. Eamonn Shanahan on June 1, 2022 at 8:56 pm

    Good info on the larger diameter duct and its relationship with cfm…but you are wrong about gounding. It doesn’t dissipate static, it only provides an additional path to ground. "static" is called that because it doesn’t go anywhere (like travel down a wire) stays "static" so the hose itself needs to made made fom conductive resins like carbon dust or conductive urethane. The idea of groundng to do this has been debunked. Call Flexaust and ask for info on static dissipating flex duct. Surface resisivity is measured in ohms sq, hat is how yo determine if the hose s conductive or dissipating. Gounding is a whole ‘nuther thing.

  42. jeston brummet on June 1, 2022 at 8:59 pm

    If I have a 4" dust collection port on my dust collector, will immediately transitioning into a 6" pipe help me at all?

  43. D B on June 1, 2022 at 9:03 pm

    I always stay large as long as I can…great tip!

  44. Jeff Johnson on June 1, 2022 at 9:04 pm

    As large as you can? There must be a limit. I mean a 24 inch duct wouldn’t have the flow to keep the particles moving, right?

  45. sandmandave2008 on June 1, 2022 at 9:06 pm

    A better option over silicone caulk is silicone tape. It is stretchy and only sticks to itself so you can wrap it around any joint to seal it completely, and easily remove the tape to take a joint apart for redesigning your system or clearing a clog.

  46. Jon Farrell on June 1, 2022 at 9:08 pm

    How do you do the math to know what size ducting to use for optimal suction and efficiency for the motor. I have a harbor freight 2hp dust collector. It has a 4” inlet. I want to buy a Oneida super dust deputy, but they offer it in a 4”,5”,&6” cyclone. Which one is best? So if I could do the math on unit to duct size I could figure out any arrangement. Can someone help direct me in the right direction?!?!?

  47. Steven Fernandez on June 1, 2022 at 9:09 pm

    is metal tape air tight?

  48. President of The Internet on June 1, 2022 at 9:10 pm

    I’m tempted to use a cyclone for the big shavings and then simply do away with the collection bag on my dust collector and hook up the output from the motor direct to ducting and vent it all outside through the wall – like a horizontal dust chimney. Its VERY windy where I live almost every day of the year – I’d be surprised if a speck ever hit the ground on my property and we’re rural and remote. You think that’s viable?

  49. sanju krishna on June 1, 2022 at 9:11 pm

    Heyy what about the Angle of that tee

  50. mega paul on June 1, 2022 at 9:11 pm

    Great video thanks