Reusable shop vac bags!

Hey dudes, my partner and i got sick and tired of spending $30 for 3-4 shop vac bag inserts every couple weeks. So I thought of something…

Just to be clear that is definitely a pillow case haha! so we sewed a zipper on the open end of the vacuum bag then sewed on the attachment part that connects to your hose port.

This is probably one of the simplest money saving solutions I have come up with and couldnt be happier with the results. The bags get occasional tears in them to be patched, but we’ve been using 7 bags in 7 vacs and for over 6 months and they’re still running strong!

And in case anyone is wondering, yes the vacuums run great with them. We were worried whether or not the vacuum motor would be able to “breathe” with a cotton pillow case insert, but again, they work great.

Just thought i’d share to help anyone else in here thats sick of buying bags!

Nice idea. I may have to get the sewing machine out and make a few. At about $5 each for bags at Home Depot this could pay for itself in one or two uses.

1 Like

Do it! I want to put velcro pieces on the two top corners to the inside of the vacuum and bag, just so the bag will keep somewhat of a breathable shape when its empty.

Hope that made sense.

Regardless though, they work great as is.

I’ve never used a bag in a shop vac, just a filter which I shake out every once in a while.

I’ve never even heard of bags for a shop vac.

I’m not sure if they’re available for all vacs, but Rigid makes ones that snap onto the inside of the inlet.

They are great for fine dust that clogs up the normal filter, but fill up too fast when used with something like a surface planer. At 3 for $15 they can get a little expensive too.

Second the dust deputy. My vac gets crumbs now, with the bucket 1/2 full

Built this a couple of years ago and bought a new shop vac. I never have change the filter or even cleaned the filter. I do check it about once a year. Still clean. Only machine that I use this setup for is my sanders. Works great!

Interesting! We need something like that haha

Well damn! I’ll look into it!

Shortly after I started using a surface planer, I realized a shop vac wasn’t going to be a realistic dust collector. I could fill up a big one in about 10 minutes. I graduated to a small 3/4HP dust collector, and made my own chip separator out of a 55 gallon drum. The DC is bolted to the wall and vents the exhaust and fine dust outside (I don’t have any neighbors close by in that direction). My only issue is if I let it get too full, I end up with wood-colored “snow” piled up out back.


That’s a great idea! I’m guessing the vertical distance also contributes to less material getting sucked up by the motor thus leaving more in the drum? That gives me a good idea for my own shop though. Thanks!

It’s really more of an airflow mechanism. The incoming stream enters tangentially so that it swirls around in the drum. The heavier stuff stays to the outside and falls out of the airstream to accumulate in the bottom. The fines are exhausted through the center. There are loads of how-to articles and videos online. It works great and wasn’t expensive. I think I have about $20 in the drum including the casters (drum was $5 on Craigslist). The top just sits on it and forms a good seal when the collector is turned on (it’s under vacuum). When I start to hear chips hitting the impeller, I stop and roll it outside to dump it.

I’m familiar with it. I have a smaller plastic bucket version at home in my garage workshop. I was just awed by the vertical distance between barrel and rotor thinking it would be even better at dust/chip separation since it has a longer distance to ‘lift’ the material, thus maybe it would be better than say leaving the dust collector on the ground and having a flexible hose come from the top and into the dust collector rotor.

Also, it looks like the downward pointing vent above the radial saw is for a dust collection hose, but what is the longer vertical vent for? Is it just not finished yet and you’re going to run more tubing?

That pic was taken before it was finished. The RA saw gets a large pipe to a box behind the blade and a smaller flex hose to the blade guard. The horizontal run facing the camera goes to table saw, band saw, router table, planer, etc., all with blast gates of course. That tiny 3/4HP motor can’t service more than one device at a time.

Sorry to hijack. Maybe I need to find a really big pillow case for my DC so we can get this thread back on track.

1 Like

Lol no problem, im open to hearing other dust collecting ideas!

And it cost only 30$ and no more dust bags!!!
Link to buy cyclone separator…

1 Like