Introduction: Make a Woodshop Pre-filter (aka Cyclone) for $8
If you spent any time cutting wood you know how annoying it is to clean out your Shop Vac all the time since it get's clogged up with wood just as fast as your lungs do. There are many options to fix the issue, ranging from the dirt cheap to not so bad to "I'M RICH, BEOTCH!!! solutions.
I tried to set the budget bar even lower with my $8 Shop Vac prefilter build.
Follow along at home if you dare.
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Step 1: Get a Bucket, Then Spend $8
Grab a bucket. Make sure it has no hole, leaks or fissures other than the giant one in the top you can stick your head into.
Get some additional hose if your length doesn't match your girth.
Step 2: Screw Your Lid
While I was at Lowes I bought a threaded PVC piece that was the same size as my Shop Vac hose. The threaded side I screwed into my GAMMASEAL lid. If you do it right it will be leak free. If you suck at tools, then shoot some silicone or some sort of sealant around your wonkey hole.
This is good life advice.
If you suck at life, shoot some sealant around your wonkey hole.
Step 3: Use Your Shop Vacs Nozzle Attachment
You probably have the Shop Vacs nozzle attachment floating around in a junk drawer somewhere not doing a damn thing for you and your dusty lifestyle. Cut a hole in the side of your bucket and jam this tool into it. The hole will need to be this peculiar shape in order for the nozzle to fit inside at an angle.
Don't be lazy like me, deburr your hole.
That's more good life advice. "deburr your hole."
I should write a coffee table book full of life tips.
Step 4: Use the Nuts and the Bolts and the Flavens
Silicone alone won't hold the vacuum attachment in place. I used a few nuts and bolts I had in the shop. If your shop is a disorganised mess or devoid of nuts and/or matching bolts, buy them when you are at Lowes. They might set you back $2.
Silicone this hole too.
Step 5: Put It All Together.
Now put it all together and bask in your success at making wood chips spin inside of a bucket.
Step 6: Weeeeee
Step 7: Look at Your Wood, JUST LOOK AT IT!
Are you proud of yourself now? Look at what you have done. Now your wood is no longer clogging up your Shop Vac. You should be able to suck wood for substantially longer periods of time now before needing to remove the waste.
Step 8: Now Figure Out How to Keep This Stuff Together
I have an old cart leftover from the BBQ Grill I made from junk. I might use the cart to hold the vacuum and the prefilter. Stay tuned and maybe I will show you how I accomplished that someday.
Why am I using such a wimpy Shop-Vac you say? It has good reviews on Amazon, and was in my price range. It was also one of the more powerful ones in it's category, so it was a good fit for me. Maybe someday I'll upgrade into something fancier, but for my basic shop garage it does the trick.
Step 9: I'm Like Elvis, I'm Everywhere.
I make my Instructables about 2-3 days after my videos are completed, so if you want to see my new stuff even faster, check me out on Youtube. Instagram is where you can get sneak peaks of stuff that is in progress or fun little snippets. Twitter is a wasteland of bots and marketing people, so enjoy me there as well.
Maybe someday I will make a coffee table book of clever life tips. I shall call it "Just the tips".