20 November, 2021

Overdue shop cleanup, and updates.

My shop is well overdue for some serious cleanup. My wife had decided the shop is a dumping ground for everything, and honestly I let it grow from there. This is after all my space, I could have simply jettisoned the unwelcome intrusions to my space, but I didn't.

So I have spent time over the last week sorting, cleaning, and fixing. 

I am again finding tools I thought I had lost. I once again have a full set of Snap On deep well 3/8" drive metric sockets, and a full set of Snap On metric combination wrenches. In both sets the 15mm were missing, in both sets somehow they were behind the lathe. Not sure I want to know.

I sorted my small parts bins, and found I have WAY too many and WAY too varied fasteners. But at least they are sorted now.

My overhead hose reel, which I will have go to back in this blog itself to see how long ago I installed it, but probably at least 8, but maybe as much as 10 years ago. Well the hose started leaking. So I grabbed a new Goodyear hose and replaced the old one...

I finally got fed up with the leaks in my existing air hose jumpers such as from the compressor to the manifold just prior to the regulator, dryer, filter, oil separator assembly. And it was being caused by the weight of way too much extra hose being left on the quick connect joints.

So to alleviate this, I picked up a pneumatic ferrule crimp tool, and a box of ferrules, and went after making my hoses cut to length for this application. Sadly this turned out to be problematic as the first box of Ferrules I bought, advertised for 3/8" air hose do not actually fit 3/8" air hose, at least not 3/8" rubber air hose that has a measured O.D. of .62, so instead I returned the box of .5something ferrules and ordered the right size, which should be at my door tomorrow. Hope I don't need compressed air before then.

As you know from my Workshop page I own a Harbor Freight 2HP dust collector that is fitted with a .5 micron Wynn Environmental washable filter, which in over 10 years has never needed to be washed due to my Thien cyclone. 

Well the suction / CFM of this thing has always lacked a bit. I always knew the factory impeller was garbage and massively undersized, but the only alternative I knew of, the Rikon impeller was expensive, and constantly unavailable. 

I found recently that the Wen impeller for their bag dust collector is a great match for the HF DC, and is reasonably priced. So I grabbed one, and I must say, I am impressed with the apparent build quality, not to mention the fit, and overall size of this thing. The change in airflow / suction is quite noticeable. Sorry I have no way of measuing it, but there are folks that have done this swap and measured it. I must say though, if you already have a Harbor Freight 2HP dust collector, GET THIS IMPELLER AND DO THE SWAP! It will behave like a totally different machine! 

I am finding a LOT of contradictory information out there, I know the OE impeller equipped HF DC just won't support 6" duct, but some folks say impeller swapped will, and some say it won't. I am leaning toward will, so my thought process is this...

In the upcoming months pull the 2 4" runs, convert to a single overhead 6" with a single 4" branch to provide under cabinet for table saw, and router. The rest will have branch Y fittings and drop to 4
 as close to the tool as possible.

Another mod that is coming is I am removing the 55 gallon drum Thien separator from the system, and instead using a Thien sparator in the separator ring in the dust collector, these reportedly work just as well, and should be much more space efficient, although I will have to empty a bag instead of a drum, no big deal...

So back to the cleanup I guess.. Thanks for reading.

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