The incredibly shrinking workshop
My (relatively) small workshop had become too big on machines and too low on moving space. I combined five machines -bandsaw, miter saw, drill press, router table and disk sander into one 6 x 2 ft workstation on wheels, so I can move it around for max flexibility. Before, each of them had their own support stand, eating up a lot of place.
All of the table tops of the machines are horizontally aligned, so that I use e.g. the bandsaw table or the router table to support long cutoffs on the miter saw. Since each of these machines has a “dead zone”, none is hindering another one.
At the same time, I installed a combined dust extractor box connected to each machine. I drilled five 2 1/2″ holes on one side (disposed in a circle of about 9″diameter), and connected these holes with flexible hoses to the different machines.
On the inside of the box, I installed a 12″ diameter wheel made of MDF, in which one hole was drilled that matches the position of the five holes in the side of the box.
Finally, at the bottom of the box, one 2 1/2″ hole connects with a flexible hose to the central dust extractor system.
The wheel extends about 1 1/2″ above the top of the workstation surface at the back, through a slot that I routed.
To select an outlet, I turn the wheel left or right to one of five markers, so that the corresponding opening at the back of the box matches the one opening in the wheel, thereby sealing off the openings to the other machines.
To complete the setup, I installed an overhead light, and mounted a homemade dust filter above the machines, to capture as much as possible of the airborne dust at the source.
The back of the workstation, with the flexible hoses leading to the dust box. The back of the miter saw is encased in a homemade dust hood.