View Full Version : Question withh Shop Vac

03-25-2011, 03:54 PM
I know there has been discussion and pics posted of dedicated dust collectors that have a ground wire run through them. I know that one cannot run a shop vac for long periods of time. Could a person run a wire through the hose of the shop vac and then use the vac for a short period to remove the sawdust etc. without jepordizing the machine?

03-25-2011, 05:09 PM
It will depend on the vacuum and hose. I had a vacuum that I tried to use and it always had static. I would stop the CarveWright, ground the vacuum and the two times I tried it, static gave the CarveWright a non-recoverable error. I purchased another vacuum, tried the same things and it did not caused an error. I have since incorporated a downdraft/dust collector. Now I just give a shot or two of air while the carving is going on. I just don't use a vacuum any more during the carve.

03-25-2011, 05:47 PM
Okay I am going to stir the pot! I always use my Craftsman 16 gallon shop vac with my CW and never had one burn out! The vac is over 6 years old and never a problem! I clean it making sure the filter is always clean. I have 3 Craftsman shop vacs and I use them in my portable shop and run them for DC when I hand route signs. I just finished a 4 1/2 hour carve the vac on the whole time.

I have never had any issues with static I made a 14" by 35" sign all raised lettering and the background removed. I did not use the rollers and I have a Rev C with the CT and with the 1/4" sleeve I used my 1/4" 1/16th carving bit without any problems!

Matter of fact I am about to load another board 12" by 24" and it too is all raised lettering with the background removed. It will be another 2 1/2 hour carve and I will use my shop vac and the same 1/4" 1/16th carving bit and without rollers!


03-25-2011, 05:57 PM
Well, Ike, thats sure makes me feel better. I have a 16 gallon Craftsman vac and was going to use it on the CW. I had actually just finished Fletchers dust collector when the machine went down. Now I'll feel better about using the shop vac as soon as the parts get here next week.

03-25-2011, 06:03 PM
I think it also depends on the type of hose on the Vac.. A more Rubber hose and less problems and a more plastic hose more problems...


Ike, Good to hear you are Carving.... Carving is making Money... And that is a Good Thing...

03-25-2011, 06:37 PM
I have used a 16gal Shop Vac vacuum for about 6 months now with no problems, have ran it as long as 4 hrs non stop..

03-25-2011, 07:30 PM
I think it also depends on the type of hose on the Vac.. A more Rubber hose and less problems and a more plastic hose more problems...


Ike, Good to hear you are Carving.... Carving is making Money... And that is a Good Thing...

Al the hose is the what came with the vac! I am using the 1 minute DC cutting the hole in the cover and using a floor attachment and the hose connected. I do make sure the hose is not touching the machine mostly to stay out of the way of the board.

Yes this is an order I am working on!

Doug I imagine the shop vacs that went out were "Shop Vac" brand and they are a piece of junk in my opinion! But Craftsman has been great matter of fact I think the one I am using is actually 12 years old!

I remember having it when I lived at another house and that was 12 years ago! So even being old it still handles the workload! Just buy good filters and keep them clean!


03-25-2011, 10:35 PM
For what it's worth, the vacuum that gave me the most static (no pun intended) was a Craftsman. The new one that is working fine is a Shop-Vac.

03-26-2011, 07:24 AM
You might be able to use a shop vac with no problem. Then again, it only takes once to ruin your day. Static electricity is fickle. There is no way to predict if and when it will strike. I used to use my shop vac to clean out my machine until one day, a wayward spark fried the CW computer. So maybe there are those that use it with no problem and maybe there are those who are lucky. If you are a gambling aficionado, then go ahead and use the vac. If you want to minimize your risk, then minimize the potential for problems by not introducing fickle variables into the equation. The equation? CW machine = $$$, proper dust collector = not so much.

03-26-2011, 10:33 AM
I used shop vacs for the first 4 years. They each lasted about two years before burning out the motors. But at a $100 a pop it doesn't take too many to add up to a good DC. Rather than buying a 3rd shop vac I now I use a Jet DC. It removes more sawdust, keeps the Carvewright cleaner, and since it is designed for 100% duty cycle it should outlast a shop vac by many years. If I had used a DC from the start, I wouldn't have had to look for a third one. The DC would most likely still be going strong.

As far as the static electricity generated, it depends on several things. The volume and velocity of the air (debris) moving through the hose will determine the amount of electricity generated. If I understand correctly, the composition of the hose, etc, will determine how much, if any will be disipated to ground. Cheap hoses will not disipate much if any and more expensive hoses made with carbon or other conductive fillers will disipate more and reduce the amount of charge. A four inch DC hose is four times bigger than a two inch vac hose (yep 4 times not 2 times). Therefore it can move the same Volume of air in the same amount of time at only a quarter of the speed, Or four times the air, at the same speed. This should seriously reduce static.

03-26-2011, 01:26 PM
is there a kit or a place to find a way to make one?

03-26-2011, 02:37 PM
Deleted (last) post.


03-26-2011, 04:37 PM
maybe to fix the static is to wrap a small chain or wire around the hose and let it touch the ground. this concept is used on trucks in different job enviroments.

03-26-2011, 06:12 PM
Ike, you are certainly right, there is more than one way to do most things. I think we are just relating our experiences just like you are. Just because those experience are a little different doesn't mean anyone is wrong or a lying. Just means their experience was different, that's all. If we look at both our experiences I guess we can conclude that craftsman vacs out perform Ridgid vacs by about 6 to 1. Doesn't mean either of us was fibbing.

03-26-2011, 07:05 PM
I apologize if I offended you. No offense was meant. Certainly everyone has their own methods of work and the bottom line is that whatever works for you is what you should do. I think my comments were meant only as a general observation that many people find shop vacs to be risky. However, if your experience is different, then that is great. But for one who has not yet committed to a certain path, it would be hard to advise them to go down a road that others have had issues with. No one is telling you that what you are doing is wrong. It is only wrong if it creates problems. If you have no problems, then you are not doing anything wrong. My experiences are different than yours. And so, for me, since I have had my electronics fried by a shop vac, I feel compelled to inform others of my experience. But at the end of the day, we all have to make the choices that work best for us.