Reciprocating Saws with Vacuum Dust Control

A vacuum dust control for reciprocating saws is a dust capture and control system that reduces airborne dust during cutting operations.

Description:

Vacuum dust control for reciprocating saws is an engineering control that can reduce the exposure to airborne dust and particulate. The saws are fitted with shrouds that partially enclose the blade or with hoses located near the blade. When a vacuum is attached to the dust extraction port connected to the shroud or hoses, air is drawn past the blade and dust is captured at the point of generation. The dust is then collected and removed from the work environment, reducing the concentration in the worker's breathing zone and the opportunity for skin contact, ingestion, and re-suspension of particles.

A dust capture and control system is recommended by OSHA and is commonly used in the form of a vacuum dust collector. These engineering controls allow for the removal of most airborne particles that result from cutting building materials. Reciprocating saws are used in a wide range of tasks to cut a variety of materials. These materials or their coatings may contain silica, lead, other heavy metals, asbestos, wood dust, or other materials that can create health hazards.

A permanent ventilation control may be the most effective way to remove the airborne particles, but portable dust collectors provide a solution where fixed ventilation systems are not feasible. Using a vacuum with filters, instead of ventilating to the outdoors greatly reduces the risk to other workers on a site. However, dust control by means of exhausting to the outdoors may be acceptable for dusts that do not contain asbestos, lead, or other highly hazardous components.


SawBuddie Dust Shroud

The SawBuddie shroud combined with the 18-inch hose extension is compatible with vacuums with 2-inch hoses.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  • Cost: $80 for the shroud and $20 for the hose attachment (verified 11/2013)
  • Vacuum Take-Off Diameter: 1.25 inches
  • Hose Extension Port Diameter: 2 inches
  • Bristle Length: 2.5 inches
  • Features: fits most reciprocating saws, clear flexible rubber shroud


The Saw Muzzle Type Z

The Saw Muzzle uses two vacuum hoses which combine to a single port to collect dust at the point of origin.

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

  • Cost: $80 for the dust control (verified 11/2013)
  • Vacuum Take-Off Diameter: 1.5 inches
  • Features: fits most reciprocating saws, dust capture via two ¾-inch hoses

 

Desco Reciprocating Saw with Dust Shroud

 

 

 

 

 


 

  • Cost: $735 for saw and shroud (verified 11/2013)
  • Power Requirements: 110 volts, 13 amps
  • Repetitions per Minute: up to 2,800
  • Vacuum Take-Off Diameter: 1.5 inches
  • Fits only the Desco Reciprocating Saw Model 6520-21

 

Festool Mobile Dust Extractors - CT MINI and CT MIDI

  

 

 

 

 

 


 

  • Power Requirements: 120 volts, 3-10 amps
  • Airflow Rate: 99 cubic feet per minute
  • Maximum Static Pressure: 80 inches of water
  • Filtration: paper filter is standard, optional HEPA filter, capable of removing 99.97% of 0.3 micron particles (the most penetrating size), can be purchased for approximately $33
  • Sound Pressure Level: 72 dBA or less (OSHA’s Permissible Exposure Limit for an 8-hour time-weighted average is 90 dBA)

Model

Costs

Dust Capacity (gallons)

Hose Diameter

Weight (pounds)

CT MINI

$450

2.0

1 inch (22 millimeters)

21

CT MIDI

$500

3.3

1-1/16 inches (27 millimeters)

21.4

(verified 11/2013)

 

Festool Mobile HEPA Rated Dust Extractors - CT 26 E and 36 E

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

  • Power Requirements: 120 volts, 2.9-10 amps
  • Airflow Rate: 137 cubic feet per minute
  • Maximum Static Pressure: 96 inches of water
  • Filtration: HEPA filter capable of removing 99.97% of 0.3 micron particles (the most penetrating size)
  • Hose Diameter: 1-1/16 inches (27 millimeters)
  • Sound Pressure Level: 71 dBA or less (OSHA’s Permissible Exposure Limit for an 8-hour time-weighted average is 90 dBA)

Model

Costs

Dust Capacity (gallons)

Weight (pounds)

CT 26 E

$600

6.3

28.7

CT 36 E

$650

3.3

29.8

(verified 11/2013)

 

Pullman-Ermator Cyclonic Pre-Separators

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

  • Removes approximately 90 percent of particulates and can be used with Pullman-Ermator or other dust extractors
  • Dust collection: Longopac® bag system, which uses a 70 foot long plastic tube that is divided and sealed at the desired length

Models

Costs

Inlet Diameter (inches)

Weight (pounds)

C3000

$1,100

2

49

C5500

$2,000

3

130

(verified 6/2013)

 

Dustcontrol, Inc. Single Phase Dust Extractors

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

  • Cyclonic pre-separator
  • Filtration: a fine filter, rated to remove 99.9 percent of particles, followed by a HEPA filter, rated to remove 99.95 percent of 0.3 micron particles (the most penetrating size) following a European method (EN 1822-1).  Additional testing, following IEC.60335-2-69, verified the performance of the filter system (fine filter and HEPA filter) alone and the filter system when installed in the dust extractor.
  • Light indicates when filter needs to be cleaned or replaced
  • Features a “reverse air pulse cleaning system”
  • Maximum Static Pressure: 84 inches of water
  • Vacuum hose inlet diameter: 2 inches
  • Operation timer and negative pressure gauge may be available for some models upon request
  • Sound Pressure Level: 68 to 75 dBA (OSHA’s Permissible Exposure Limit for an 8-hour time-weighted average is 90 dBA)

Models

Costs

Air Flow Rates, cubic feet per minute

Hose Diameter, inches

Dust Capacity, gallons

Vacuum Power Requirements

Vacuum Weight, pounds

DC 1800

$1,400

114

1.5

4

115 volts, 10.4 amps

22

DC 2900c

$2,000

114

1.5

5

115 volts, 10.4 amps

31

DC 3800c

$3,900

192

2

5

115 volts, 20 amps

77

DC 3800c Twin

$4,900

192

2

10.5 for both bags

115 volts, 20 amps

120

(verified 6/2013)

 

Rockler Dust Collector

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

A universal hose adapter and a hose are needed to connect to the saw to the dust collection system.

Rockler Item Number

Description

Cost

24719

4-inch Diameter Dust Right™ Hose, 3 Feet Compressed, Extends to 21 Feet Long

$52

20431

5 Micron, 15 Gallon Replacement Bag

$33

25344

Rockler Wall Mount Dust Collector

$250

63750

Universal Hose Adapter

$7

(verified 11/2013)

  • Reusable Heavy-Duty Cloth Dust Bags
    • Bag Capacity: 15 gallons
    • Filtration: 30 or 5 microns (not for use with lead, asbestos, or other highly hazardous particles)
  • Weight: 50 pounds
  • Power Requirements: 110 volts, 12 amps
  • Air Flow Rate: 650 cubic feet per minute

 

Delta Dust Collector

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

A universal hose adapter is needed to connect the dust extractor to the tool shroud.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Universal hose adapter

Rockler Item Number

Description

Cost

1014389

Delta 2 Horse Power Dust Collector (50-761)

$1,000

63570

Universal Hose Adapter

$7

(verified 11/2013)

  • Chip Bag Capacity: 9.6 cubic feet (4.8 cubic feet per bag, both capturing dust at the same time)
  • Weight: 132 pounds
  • Power Requirements: 230 volts, 20 amps
  • Air Flow Rate: 2,100 cubic feet per minute
  • Filtration: 1 micron (washable bags, not for use with lead, asbestos, or other highly hazardous particles)
  • Number of 4-inch Hose Ports: 3

Risks Addressed:

Exposure to wood dust in the workplace has several associated hazards. Wood dust irritates the eyes, nose and throat, in addition to leading to pulmonary function impairment. Western red cedar dust is considered a human carcinogen and has also been shown to cause asthma. Significant accumulation of fine wood dust particles can also be a fire and explosion hazard in the workplace.

The American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists (ACGIH) threshold limit value (TLV) is 1 mg/m3 for wood dust, excluding western red cedar. The TLV for western red cedar is 0.5 mg/m3. Oak and beech wood dust have been confirmed as human carcinogens and birch, mahogany, teak, and walnut are classified as suspected human carcinogens (ACGIH, 2013).

The woodworking industry creates significant amounts of wood dust. The dust generated from saws, sanders, routers, etc. is generally not controlled, and workers exposed to wood dusts have experienced a variety of adverse health effects such as eye and skin irritation, allergies, reduced lung function, asthma, and nasal cancer. Excessive amounts of dust can also inhibit sight within the work area creating hazardous conditions for not only the worker, but also others within the work environment. By using dust control methods, exposure can be significantly reduced. For example, sanding is one of the largest producers of dust, but with the use of controls, the inhalable fraction of dust emissions was reduced by 66% to 94%. Additional controls, such as downdraft tables, are a means for further reducing exposure (NTP, 2000).

Spee et al. performed task-based monitoring of 26 carpenters at 13 building projects to measure exposure to wood dust. Eight hour time-weighted average (TWA) exposures to wood dust ranged from 0.8 to 11.6 mg/m3 with a geometric mean (GM) of 3.3 mg/m3 and a geometric standard deviation (GSD) of 2.1.

Numerous studies in various countries have addressed whether Hodgkin’s Disease (HD) is linked to wood dust exposures. Studies were conducted of those who have already died from the disease, those who currently have the disease and woodworkers who were believed to be at risk. No study included sufficient information to find a correlation between length of employment, type of position, exposure to certain products, or contact with chemical agents that may be used in woodworking and HD. These investigations have shown that those with the greatest risk are among the carpentry and lumbering occupations. In the end, twelve studies were looked at, and five yielded statistically significant relationships between woodworking and Hodgkin’s disease (McCunney, 1999).

Silica dust exposure may cause silicosis or lung scarring with prolonged exposure. Silicosis is an incurable, sometimes fatal, disease. The NIOSH-recommended exposure limit (REL) is 0.05 mg/m3 as a time-weighted average concentration for up to a 10-hour workday during a 40-hour workweek. This is one-fourth of the OSHA standard, but still twice the ACGIH-recommended threshold limit value (TLV) of 0.025 mg/m3. In August 2013, OSHA proposed a revised silica standard of 0.05 mg/m3. Silica has also been associated with lung cancer and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) (Rice, 2002).

Silicosis symptoms include: chronic cough, shortness of breath when exercising, severe breathing difficulty, weight loss and fever. People with silicosis are also at a high risk for developing tuberculosis (TB). Although there is no specific treatment for silicosis, the source of the silica must be removed in order to ensure the disease does not get worse (PubMed, 2009).

Asbestos exposure may cause asbestosis, lung cancer, mesothelioma, and COPD. The risk for asbestos-related diseases increases in smokers. Smoking is the primary cause of COPD, but smoking alone does not explain all COPD, as only 15-20% of smokers developed COPD and 10% of deaths from COPD occur in persons who never smoked. Occupational exposures to dusts and chemicals (vapors, irritants, fumes) also cause COPD; the specific exposures in construction linked to COPD are wood dusts, cadmium, silica, welding fumes, cement dust, asbestos, and possibly isocyanates. For someone with heavy dust exposure over many years, the dust contributes as much to COPD as smoking does. Across all occupations, about 15% of COPD is caused by occupational exposures (Balmes et al, 2003 and Pierson, 2006).

Lead is a poisonous metal that can be swallowed or inhaled. Lead is commonly found in older interior and exterior paint, electronics, and plumbing pipes and fixtures.  Signs and symptoms of lead poisoning include abdominal pain and cramping, aggressive behavior and irritability, constipation, difficulty sleeping, headaches, loss of appetite and low energy level.  Lead exposure may lead to anemia, behavioral or attention problems, hearing problems, kidney damage, reduced IQ level, and slowed body growth. Take-home exposures must be prevented because children are more susceptible to long term and severe health problems (Perez, 2013).


How Risks are Reduced:

These saws are fitted with shrouds that partially enclose the blade or with hoses located near the blade. When a vacuum is attached to the dust extraction port connected to the shroud or hoses, air is drawn past the blade and dust is captured at the point of generation. The dust is then collected and removed from the work environment, reducing the concentration in the worker's breathing zone and the opportunity for skin contact, ingestion, and re-suspension of the particles.

Vacuum dust controls will reduce airborne particulate matter. Although exposure is not reduced to zero, substantial reduction is expected. The extent of the reduction depends on the amount of air flow through the machine, the distance between the object creating dust and the shroud or point of dust capture, how effectively the collector removes particles from the air, the nature and amount of work and the extent to which workers are exposed to particles that are not captured. While published sampling data on these specific tools are not available, evidence indicates exposure to dust and particles can be significantly reduced through the use of vacuum dust controls.

Based on the published sampling results from Spee et al., the use of local exhaust ventilation on saws will reduce wood dust exposure three to four times below exposure without any control methods.

Dustless Technologies claims that its shroud captures 99% of airborne dust.


Effects on Productivity:

Vacuum dust collectors should have a positive effect on productivity and definitely improve the quality of the work by removing large amounts of dust, which provides a cleaner environment for operators and reduces the effort and time required for clean-up. In some cases, particularly where work is intermittent or in an area with general ventilation, use of dust collectors may be adequate to reduce the need to wear a respirator, and the need for an employer’s respiratory protection program.


Additional Considerations:

There are additional conditions and practices that can improve the performance of dust collectors and reduce dust exposure: 

  • Keeping your head away from dust created by the process and using adequate ventilation is key to controlling exposure to airborne dust particles.
  • The Scientific Committee on Occupational Exposure Limits (SCOEL), which was established by the European Commission, stated that exposures greater than 0.5 mg/m3 of wood dust could cause pulmonary effects and should be avoided.
  • The particles that can do the most damage in the lungs are small enough to penetrate or bypass the filters found on many shop vacuums. Additionally, some inexpensive shop vacuums pull the dust through the motors, which can destroy the vacuum on really dusty jobs, eliminating any initial cost savings.
  • Vacuum performance must be monitored on a regular basis. A vacuum with a pressure gauge allows for frequent and easy monitoring of air flow. For high dust generating tasks, dust caked on the filter may reduce flow to a level where it no longer provides adequate dust capture.

Large electric vacuums commonly require 20 amp electrical circuits. Cords and extensions must be rated for the tool's power requirements, be inspected regularly, replaced when damaged, and used in combination with ground fault interrupt circuits.

Some large vacuums, cyclonic separators, and exhaust ventilation blowers can be very loud. Noise levels may be high enough to cause significant hearing loss over a work lifetime. Buy quiet devices and maintain them properly. Noise exposures can be reduced by working further away from the noise source, enclosing the noise source, or using ear plugs or muffs.

As is the case with any construction equipment, users should follow manufacturer safety recommendations and comply with any applicable local, state or federal regulations.


Contributors:

Andrew Kingston and Michael R. Cooper - Aria Environmental, Inc.
Bruce Lippy - CPWR


Hazards Addressed:

  • Carpentry

Availability

Dustcontrol dust extractors
To obtain information, visit Dustcontrol, Inc. or contact 1-910-395-1808 sales@dustcontrolusa.com

Delta Dust Collectors
To obtain information, visit Rockler Woodworking and Hardware or contact 1-800-279-4441 orders@rockler.com

Festool Dust Extractors
To obtain information, visit Festool Authorized Dealer or contact 1-800-365-6677

SawBuddie Dust Shroud
To obtain information, visit Dustless Technologies or contact 1-800-568-3949

The Saw Muzzle Type Z
To obtain information, visit Dust Collection Products or contact 1-877-223-2154 sales@dustmuzzle.com

Desco Reciprocating Saw with Dust Shroud
To obtain information, visit Desco Manufacturing Company or contact 1-800-337-2648 info@descomfg.com

Rockler Dust Collectors
To obtain information, visit Rockler Woodworking and Hardware or contact 1-800-279-4441 orders@rockler.com

Pullman-Ermator Cyclonic Pre-Separators
To obtain information, visit Pullman-Ermator or contact 1-855-736-2869 info@ermatorusa.com

Return on Investment

To calculate the return on investment (ROI) for your specific application, please visit our Return on Investment Calculator. While a specific ROI example has not been developed for this particular solution, the ROI Calculator provides a useful tool and guidance on how to generate your own on investment analysis.