An easy and inexpensive way to reduce your consumption of dust filters and collection bags is to put a cyclone separator inline with the dust extractor or vacuum. This method captures dust (non-toxic only) before it reaches the vacuum, minimizing dust buildup on the filter, and eliminating the need for collection bags. Cyclone separators have been around forever; you see them at millwork shops, lumber yards, on jobsites, and anywhere else dust and chips are produced in quantity. We covered a review of three readily available and relatively inexpensive models here, but they are also fairly easy to build on your own.

On his YouTube woodworking channel, Stympy Nubs Woodworking Journal, woodworker Stumpy Nubs shares unique projects, tips and tricks for woodworkers and carpenters. The production quality of his videos are high, and his sense of humor/style makes them interesting. Stumpy created his own version of a cyclone dust extraction system that won’t break the bank, and won’t take all day to build.

Using scrap plywood, 6” PVC pipe, and some sheetmetal you can build your own cyclone. His approach to making the cone shape is particularly ingenious – though follow his advice and make sure to wear gloves.