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Country Discussion Topics
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Recycled squirrel
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dave 50 8n    Posted 01-10-2003 at 11:33:47       [Reply]  [No Email]

I recently recycled the squirrel cage and motor from a large forced air furnace (3000sq. ft. home). Not sure what I was going to do w/it. But it looked too good to trash.

IDEA: Thinking of making a table saw dust vacuum for it. I have some sheet metal from same salvage, and maybe make a box to blow to the outside with a heating duct hookup on the suction side which would eventually go to the saw. Before I start brazing, etc. and cutting a hole in my garage wall, would the squirrel cage provide enough vacuum to be decent?


dave 50 8n--cage mock up    Posted 01-11-2003 at 23:12:23       [Reply]  [No Email]
While waiting for the mastic to dry on my bathroom floor, I took about an hour and made a mock up of what I thought would work.

Before that, a most scientific test resulted in the cage pulling most of the sample sawdust in at 6" from the surface of the sides.

For the mockup, I used cardboard and duct tape and cut 3" opening in the back. ...nuthin'...or just about. (Then I cut about an 8" hole. Better suction. Then cut another 8" hole. much better. I finally figured that this set up was tuned to two 8" openings, one for each side of the cage. It's only a .5 hp motor. I thought it'd be bigger. Oh well. I think it did well for what it was designed for.

A guy on the N Board gave me the idea of a putting the cage in a box on casters w/side furnace fileters to create a portable "air cleaner" with a worktop surface.

I have some other motors floating around. I just might see if they're bigger, and if it'd make a difference....or maybe a bigger pulley....hmmm.

Thanks for the comments!

ed    Posted 01-11-2003 at 20:25:10       [Reply]  [No Email]
Dave, I have read the comments that you have recieved and would like to give you my two cents. I work in a countertop shop where we use corian. We have two of these blowers hooked up into filters for the shop air. They have to be cleaned every day or they will plug and not suck. They will work realy good in the use your thinking of. I would use some sort of heavy & light secperator like a trash can with a hose in and out. By the way the small dust collectors with the bag on the bottom and top use the same fan only smaller and they suck just fine. They must or they wouldn't sell. I hope this helps. ED

Sid    Posted 01-11-2003 at 08:23:35       [Reply]  [No Email]
I do not think that the fan would create enough vacuum as others have stated but you have the fan and I have a thought. What if you set the fan before the saw build the duct work to blow past the saw then plumb the saw so to speak into the duct work. The thought is the volume of air moving through the duct work would create a suction effect as it passes by the opening thus drawing the dust into the system .

DeadCarp    Posted 01-11-2003 at 07:17:49       [Reply]  [No Email]
I use a recycled swamp-cooler setup to pump hot air at the cabin. The whole mess is about the size of a fridge, it's made to flow past the furnace, thru a 12" insulated underground duct, thru a 20-foot long insulated rock pile (thermal mass) and into the hose, then return to the garage. The fan does its part fine but water is twice as efficient at carrying heat. I don't think it would pull alot of vacuum without overheating something but it definitely moves air.
Why not use it to lift a hovercraft? :)

DHunter n NOLa    Posted 01-11-2003 at 03:30:25       [Reply]  [No Email]
Dave, I agree with everyone on the 'high volume/low pressure' aspects of squirrel cage blowers. I use them in the summer in my shop for cooling. Put one in an old grocery buggy that I can move around easily. Have to chock the wheels though or it'll run backwards when you turn it on.
I also use one at my 'burn barrel' to add forced air to the flame. Just cut a larger than normal hole close to the bottom of the barrel and set the blower on the ground about a foot or so away. It sure helps and eliminates most of the smoke from the fire.

Ron/PA    Posted 01-10-2003 at 16:02:52       [Reply]  [No Email]
Dave, I don't think you will get any vaccum from the fan, I work on oil burners and I salvage alot of them. We use them in our shops when working on equipment in the summer, they provide a large flow of air and cool ya down a little on the hottest day.

Scott Hansen    Posted 01-10-2003 at 12:50:55       [Reply]  [Send Email]
I'm not sure. Squirrels don't put out a lot of pressure, just volume. The systems I've seen have an elbow pointing down on the outside of the building. A fabric sack hangs from it. On the bottom of the sack there is a drawstring or zipper, so you can empty in directly into a large container. The fan has to push hard enough to get the air through the fabric. You can probably think of a better way to do it so you could use your squirrel.

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