It’s great that so many tools are equipped with dust collection ports but unless you are committed to a single brand it can be difficult to connect the vacuum you have to the ports on various tools. Individual adapters are available, but many carpenters I know solve the problem by placing the big vac hose around the little tool dust port and wrapping the connection with half a roll of blue tape. It’s a solution, but not a very efficient one. Rocker’s new Dust Right Universal Small Port Hose Kit is designed to bridge this gap by offering a wide range of tool to vac compatibility. I’ve been testing it for a month or so and here’s what I can tell you about it.
The kit consists of a high quality hose with a 2-¼-inch OD port on one end that attaches to the vac. This is compatible with vacs from Festool, Shop Vac, Craftsman and others, but not Ridgid, which require a larger port. The Rocker kit also comes with two flexible rubber dust ports, (1 and 1-½-inch ID) that can be connected to the other end of the hose. All three of the ports easily twist on to the hose coiling with a reverse thread. Once on, the connections are tight, but it’s still easy to unscrew and swap out the connections for different sized tools.
The hose is a high point of the kit. It holds a length of about 3-feet, but it can stretch to over 13-feet. It stretches with light resistance and is heavier than other vac hoses, both of which take some getting used to. It’s very durable and didn’t kink when it was accidentally stepped on a few times. It always retracts back to its original size when not in use.
The two dust ports are rubbery and easily pliable so they can also fit over rectangular dust ports. They each have a slight angle to them, which helps with managing the hose while the tool is being used. While connected to the hose, the two ports (and the port on the vac end) can spin freely. This stops any hose coiling and reminded me of the pneumatic swivel connections I like so much.
The ports fit around most of my tools, but not all of them. My Porter-Cable plate joiner, DeWalt track saw, and Bosch planer were all compatible, but the tiny port on my Makita orbital was not. On the other hand, I found that the 1-¼-inch port could wrap around my old Makita belt sander with a solid, but not perfect fit. The dust bag of this tool is long gone and I had actually stopped using it because of that.
Unfortunately, the kit doesn’t come with any kind of carrying bag, which is not surprising considering that Rocker caters to the woodworking crowd and not the carpentry crowd. Since it would be unfortunate to lose one of the connectors, I’m planning on picking up a small duffel to hold the pieces.
At first I thought the $40 price tag was on the high side, but once I realized how nice the hose is and how well the system works, the cost makes sense. Really, every element of this kit was thought out, from the durability of the hose to the free and easy swivel of the connections. It’s going to solve a lot of problems on a jobsite (and save a lot of blue tape in the process).
Rockler Dust Right Universal Small Port Hose Kit
Hose: 1-½-inch ID
Vac port: 2-¼-inch OD
Dust ports: 1-inch ID, 1-½-inch ID
COO: Taiwan (ports), USA (hose)