As I continue to make more projects out of wood, I find that I rely on my bandsaw for more and more of them. The bandsaw is great for cutting curves, resawing wood and for cutting blanks for woodturning. The bandsaw is very versitile and comes in useful for many projects but it does have one major drawback, SAWDUST!
The bandsaw makes LOTS of sawdust. Not only does it make a lot of dust, it throws it around too! A majority of the dust settles in the lower wheel housing and stays there. As the dust fills the housing, more dust gets stirred up by the lower wheel spokes that are spinning around like fan blades. Where the blade channels through a blade guard going to the upper wheel is the spot where the dust really gets airborne. If it's in the air, then we breathe it usless we have some way to filter it. But even if we don't breathe it by wearing a respirator the dust still gets all over the shop.
The best way to help solve both of these problems is the capture the dust where it is being made rather than in our lungs or, all over that still wet finish on our masterpiece project.
My bandsaw is a Delta 14" saw and the only design of any dust collection is a very small port located just below the blade where a vacuum could be attached. The volume of air that this small port could collect isn't enough to keep up with the amount of sawdust that the saw can produce. I had to do something to help keep the dust down, it was just getting to be a chore to keep the dust mess to a resonable level in the shop.
What I have here is the beginning of my process for adding some adequete dust collection to my bandsaw.
This is getting wordy so I will let the pictures do most of the talking.
Next I moved on to using a metal cutting hacksaw blade and handsawing it. Yeah, right! That lasted only a few minutes until I figured at the rate I was cutting the cast iron, I wouldn't get done until Chritsmas!
I moved on to breaking the hacksaw blades in half and using them in a sawzall or recipricating demo saw. That worked well but I did burn up few blades doing it like that and it was tough to cut the curve so I ended up having to drill out some more holes on the right side across from where these holes are located.
The fitting installed.
I haven't tried the dust collection with the new 4" port installed yet but I hope to get some time to soon.
If the dust collection works well on this saw, I will do the same to the 2nd one.