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  • Which DC?

    So I've decided to take back the air cleaner Santa brought. Went through the effort to install it, ran it but damn thing wouldn't shut down! Gods have spoken. No biggee.

    Anyway, trying to decide between the CX401 or the CX400

    The CX401 is a two stage, but low CFM, 763cfm I believe, is 110v but can be switched to 220v. The CX400 is a single stage, 1700cfm, 220v. I know these aren't "real" cfm figures, marketing.

    It seems most people are fans of the "cyclones" hence the CX401 but the CX400 has more cfm and a cyclone could be added but here's the twist. Both are on sale right now, $550 for the CX400 but for $600 I can have the two stage but lower cfm.

    Right now I need portability (working out of half a two car garage), I have a 220v outlet but limited 110v and plan on using one tool at a time, i.e. TS, planer, jointer.

    So would the two stage but lower cfm be "good" enough or should I spend more in the long run for the CX400 ($550 plus whatever a separate cyclone costs?)

    Or should I really save the money and pickup a used 1hp for $100?

  • #2

    Re: Which DC?

    Re: Which DC?

    I have the CX400 and love it BUT with the price of the CX401 now I would most likely have gone with it instead. I too only use one machine at a time. I have to clean my filter out occasionally. That is something I doubt you would see too often with the cyclone setup - I am sure the cyclone users will reply with more info on that.

    RC

    Comment


    • #3

      Re: Which DC?

      Re: Which DC?

      I personally don't think they can fudge the numbers as much with the 2 stage cyclone as they can with the single stage DC units. I have seen the small cyclones working and they are pretty sweet. Both units that you asked about don't do that great a job at removing the ultra fine dust. You need to ask yourself to what level do you want to be at? Are you willing to pay the $$$ for a 4-5hp unit that will really suck? I lived with a ridgid shopvac for 2 years and single stage for another 2. Now I have a large 5hp Clearvue and know it's the last unit i will ever need to buy. I had the money to spend and the go ahead from SHMBO to do so.

      I know from personal experiance the CX400 will be more messy to change the bags and keep clean. what is it worth.

      Matt.
      Matt

      People are like a box of chocolates. It's hard to tell initially which ones are nuts.

      Comment


      • #4

        Re: Which DC?

        Re: Which DC?

        Originally posted by matt.mackinnon View Post
        I personally don't think they can fudge the numbers as much with the 2 stage cyclone as they can with the single stage DC units. I have seen the small cyclones working and they are pretty sweet. Both units that you asked about don't do that great a job at removing the ultra fine dust. You need to ask yourself to what level do you want to be at? Are you willing to pay the $$$ for a 4-5hp unit that will really suck? I lived with a ridgid shopvac for 2 years and single stage for another 2. Now I have a large 5hp Clearvue and know it's the last unit i will ever need to buy. I had the money to spend and the go ahead from SHMBO to do

        I know from personal experiance the CX400 will be more messy to change the bags and keep clean. what is it worth.

        Matt.

        Matt,

        But have you seen a "small cyclone"...that is "pretty sweet" with as low horsepower as this offerring?

        I believe Oneida's initial mini-gorilla cyclone came with a 1 hp motor but now that unit has a 1.5 hp (and a Leeson to boot) .... why? ....... (and we generally believe that Oneida's engineering and claimed specs have more credibility)...... Grizzly's lowest powered cyclones are also 1.5 hp.....Oneida's 1.5 hp claimed "real life" CFM is given as "up to 600 cfm" so what would BB's claimed spec of 763cfm actually degrade to in practice?....... there are some reviews of the 1.5 Oneida, with 10 ft. lengths of a single piece of "5" flexible ducting that are positive...

        ...perhaps there is more fudging on CFM claimed on single stage than two stage but I seem to recall that Bill Prentz's minimum horsepower recommendations were 3 for cyclones and 2 for single stage.

        ....looking at the photo of BB's 1 hp cyclone the three spindly legs could be problematic; they could get leveraged against uneven flooring and distort sheet metal of cyclone housing they are anchored to on top... but it would be fairly simple to built a plywood platform for all the legs plus the chip container to sit on as one stable unit...... the residual dust bag under the canister filter is nice (strange that the Oneida doesn't have this)

        ....if one bought the 1 hp cyclone, what diameter flexible ducting would you go with: 4" or retrofit a 5" inlet on the backing plate ? .......(the existing 6" main inlet seems pretty ambitious) ....

        .... cyclones have a reputation over single stage for capturing more of the fine dust before it hits the filter but if a 1 hp unit doesn't have the power to suck up the fine dust this advantage is null ....

        ... the single stage, 2 horsepower cx400 is of a proven design (that General Internationale and others have used) and very likely has enough minimum power to both to used as portable, sucking thru' 5" flex thru any length one is going encounter within a garage size workshop as well as be the basis for an "installed" system later with rigid main ducting, blast gates, etc. (I have the GI 2 hp single stage and can vouch for the design)
        ... without a creditable review of the 1 hp cyclone, it is the safer choice....

        ...but purely out of curiosity, it would be nice for someone to buy the 1 hp cyclone, write a review (and write a follow up after a year).... smiley.....

        good luck

        michael

        Comment


        • #5

          Re: Which DC?

          Re: Which DC?

          thanks for the feedback, I'm tempted by this one, too much of an unknown for me I think. What do you think?

          Comment


          • #6

            Re: Which DC?

            Re: Which DC?

            Gowyn.. I sent you a pm
            If your dreams don't scare you, you are not dreaming big enough

            Comment


            • #7

              Re: Which DC?

              Re: Which DC?

              michael, you are correct in saying that I don't know how the unit will perform in the long run. If you were asking me if I'd buy one.. NO, I got a much larger unit and won't settle for anything less.

              Is it better than an average shopvac. I think it is. Is it better than the Cx400. I don't know either. I had a CT030 for a couple of years, and I didn't find it that spectacular of a unit. I don't know if it was the way that it was hooked up, or some other factor. The unit had a 5" opening that is ported out to two 4" pipes. Even with a 5' long 4" dia hose, it had trouble sucking chips out of a 15" cast iron planer. I had a set of the 4" rigid pipes hooking up the rest of the shop with blast gates, and it left quite a bit of debris in the bottom of the pipes. Clearly there wasn't enough suction, and that might be by the limitation of the pipes.

              But then you also have to look into several other parts. You mention Bill Pentz. If you read his charts, you'd clearly see that the HP he recomends has little or nothing to do with the CFM. Rather he is talking about the amount of HP needed to support a particular sized impeller. The motor has nothing to do with suction, that is a function of the impeller, rather the motor will draw current and work to spin that impeller. If you put an undersized motor, it will still spin the impeller at the rotation speed, and have the same suction, but it will draw too much power, and overload itself. Plane and simple.

              So you take a look at the BB specs. the CT030 has a 12" impeller, with a claim for 1600cfm through a 5" opening. the CX402 also has a 12" impeller, but claims 2320cfm through a 6" opening. So for some twist of magic, the exact same size impeller can suddenly suck more air spinning at the exact same speed simply because it now has a 3hp motor vs a 2. But my Clearvue cyclone has a 5hp Leeson motor with a 16" impeller, and is only rated at 1950cfm. Either my cyclone doesn't work nearly as well as the BB models, or someone is selling a dream.

              The only reason the CT030 or th CX402 work is that the port opening dramatically reduce down the suction available to the unit, so the motor doesn't need to work as hard, so it can't overload itself. Neither will get anywhere even close to the CFM that they are posting.

              You are right. The CX401 probably will get in the realm of 350-400 cfm through the 4" pipe connection that the unit comes with. If you hooked up the CX400 with the same 4" pipe, you'd get the same CFM. Even going to a larger CX402, the limitation is the pipe and not the size of the impeller or motor attached. Both will give you adequate sawdust chip collection. Won't really address the fine particles to any real extent. If the OP went and modified his equipment to take a 6" pipe, and hooked up the CX401, then he would probably be on the boarder to overtaxing the motor when he turned the unit on. If you did that with the CX400 or CX402, there would be no problem, but you'd be limited to around the 800cfm that this size of pipe will give. The numbers posted with the machine are a joke.

              Matt.
              Matt

              People are like a box of chocolates. It's hard to tell initially which ones are nuts.

              Comment


              • #8

                Re: Which DC?

                Re: Which DC?

                Originally posted by matt.mackinnon View Post
                I personally don't think they can fudge the numbers as much with the 2 stage cyclone as they can with the single stage DC units. I have seen the small cyclones working and they are pretty sweet. Both units that you asked about don't do that great a job at removing the ultra fine dust. You need to ask yourself to what level do you want to be at? Are you willing to pay the $$$ for a 4-5hp unit that will really suck? I lived with a ridgid shopvac for 2 years and single stage for another 2. Now I have a large 5hp Clearvue and know it's the last unit i will ever need to buy. I had the money to spend and the go ahead from SHMBO to do so.

                I know from personal experiance the CX400 will be more messy to change the bags and keep clean. what is it worth.

                Matt.
                Can you be more specific on how these don't do well with the ultra fine dust? You have me wondering if my cleaner is sub-standard? I don't think the filter is any different than any other 1 micron filter?

                As far as sucking - I find it hard to believe that another DC will have as much suction as the CX400 for the same price. Have you used a CX400?

                RC
                Last edited by RapidCut; 12-28-2011, 09:48 PM.

                Comment


                • #9

                  Re: Which DC?

                  Re: Which DC?

                  Well just an update. Brian was nice enough to sell me his old 2 hp nice and cheap, so I at least have chip collection. Perhaps I'll build and add a cyclone in the future but for now I'm happy.

                  Thanks all.

                  Comment


                  • #10

                    Re: Which DC?

                    Re: Which DC?

                    Good stuff. Enjoy

                    RC

                    Comment


                    • #11

                      Re: Which DC?

                      Re: Which DC?

                      when the next CNIB comes up, I'll try and go. I have a LV cyclone lid that you can have if you want it.
                      Matt

                      People are like a box of chocolates. It's hard to tell initially which ones are nuts.

                      Comment


                      • #12

                        Re: Which DC?

                        Re: Which DC?

                        Originally posted by RapidCut View Post
                        Can you be more specific on how these don't do well with the ultra fine dust? You have me wondering if my cleaner is sub-standard? I don't think the filter is any different than any other 1 micron filter?

                        As far as sucking - I find it hard to believe that another DC will have as much suction as the CX400 for the same price. Have you used a CX400?

                        RC
                        No I have not used the CX400. I did own the CT030 as I said above. What you have not said in your post.. what sized duct work do you have? In a quote from Bill Pentz,

                        If you do the math for the 1000 CFM we need at our larger tools and the 4000 FPM airspeed we need to keep our vertical runs clear, most small shops should run at least 7” duct. This sized duct is rare and the more commonly available 8” duct is so large we end up with the airspeed falling so low our vertical runs plug. My personal solution has been to use 6” duct which will normally only carry about 790 CFM, and to get that to over 1000 CFM by using an oversized impeller of at least 15” diameter running at 3450 RPM. This makes for more noise but results in great fine dust collection. It also means my whole system of mains and down drops ends up using 6” duct.
                        The CX400 has a 12 3/4" impeller. so according to Bill, you are going to be rather short on getting the CFM and airspeed that you need. The bigger problem that DC has is getting the smaller light dust that sticks in your lungs and causes the damage. That takes around the 1000cfm with 4000 FMP airspeed. As Bill has pointed out, to get those numbers, you need a much larger impeller and a larger motor to support it. That is why I went with a 16" impeller with a 5hp motor. It will give me serious suction on the bad tools like the lathe, and table saw where this small dust is getting made. Trap it at the source rather than trying to remove it from the air after the fact.
                        Matt

                        People are like a box of chocolates. It's hard to tell initially which ones are nuts.

                        Comment


                        • #13

                          Re: Which DC?

                          Re: Which DC?

                          One machine at a time, the CX400 will tackle any typical job you throw at it regardless of how much number crunching anyone does. This machine is also nothing like the CT030. Not even close. I know, because I used to have a CT030 and it was a glorified vacuum with a bigger hose. Still, if that is what is in someones budget then it is better than nothing.

                          Sorry, I don't mean to be rude but I see post after post on this forum of people crunching numbers on some formula and then conclude a certain DC doesn't handle a certain job (ultra fine dust). I can understand doing some research but the number crunching has gotten a little - old. Not everyone is going to buy a 5HP dust collector. If some people require a dust collector that costs $2000 and requires 5HP worth of electricity then so be it.

                          The CX400 has a 6" inlet. I use 4" though. And for 12' of hose, that is all I will ever require.

                          RC

                          Comment


                          • #14

                            Re: Which DC?

                            Re: Which DC?

                            Originally posted by matt.mackinnon View Post
                            when the next CNIB comes up, I'll try and go. I have a LV cyclone lid that you can have if you want it.
                            Thanks for the offer, not up there too often though.

                            Comment


                            • #15

                              Re: Which DC?

                              Re: Which DC?

                              It would be good if there was legitimate comparative testing done on the portable cyclones. There are enough brands of them around but not hearing feedback from buyers. That may be the best solution for small-to mid-size shops where portability is needed, but who would know?
                              Maybe Busy Bee would seed the market with a few in return for well done, fact-based reviews. I'm starting to think their new line-up of white equipment is comparable with Griz, and as good value at the end of the day.... no small feat.
                              I can't say I've heard of any woodworker buying too much dust collection but the huge majority bought too little, and at least once. Me included!

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