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Thread: Advice needed: Circular Saws with dust collection

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2008
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    Noblesville, IN
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    Question Advice needed: Circular Saws with dust collection

    I am looking to buy a circular saw. Basically, just a standard-issue 7 1/4" saw for use in my home shop, cutting panels using an edge guide and stuff like that.

    After a little bit of research and looking at a couple of manufacturers' websites, I really like the idea of having dust collection for a circular saw. I'm all for being able to connect my shop vac. I found a couple of saws that support this:
    Hitachi C7YAK
    Porter Cable 325MAG

    I've also seen a Makita with dust collection on the web, but they don't list it on their website. Festool is way beyond my budget. Are there any other circular saws with dust collection out there I missed?

    For those with experience with circular saw dust collection, how well does it work?

    I have never owned a Hitachi tool. I've looked at them a couple of times before, but when faced with a choice, stuck with brands I already own - Bosch, DeWalt and Porter Cable. How does Hitachi stack up against those brands? I'm just a hobbyist, but I like quality - I am particularly concerned about accuracy and safety.

    Thanks!
    Travis

  2. #2
    I suggest you search this forum for EZ Dust Port (there's a current thread about it right now).

    IMHO, non-worm drive circ saws are better for dust collection, and all work significantly better with a shroud on the front to direct dust up to the port.

    Also, finding dust chute adapters can be a pain. The Bosch is widely available and can be retrofitted to fit most saws pretty easily.

    Contact Eurekazone; they have saws that are retrofitted already (Hitachis and Makitas I think). In fact, I think they're now retrofitting with a front-mounted dust port...

  3. #3
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    Yep, EZ sells modified brand name saws with front dust ports and dust shields installed. I plan to pick one up shortly (I have also modified them myself with a dust shield and back port; there are instructions on the eurekazone web site, and it makes a big difference).

  4. #4
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    Schenectady, NY
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    I use PC

    Travis,

    I have a PC 325MAG and like it very much. Connecting a shopvac to it is easy and picks up most of the dust but not all-way better than without any vac. I have not used the others so will not comment. I have tried a Hitachi and it is a solid tool.
    Happy and Safe Turning, Don


    Woodturners make the world go ROUND!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
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    Silicon Valley, CA
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    PC dust collection

    I have a PC circular saw of the left-blade persuasion.
    Dust collection with a shop vac works pretty well -- gets rid of the dust plumes going 6' out into the shop. Getting a flexible hose is pretty important, and can still be a bit of a distraction with an 8' rip down a sheet of plywood.

    Check compatibility with your intended guide system.

    Matt

  6. #6
    Join Date
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    Independence, MO, USA.
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    Even if you decide a make it yourself sawboard fits your needs, you might look at the front mount dust chute and dust guard on Eurekazones site. If the price isn't hugely different (if you don't need the EZ base), you could order it predone from him.

    I have the Bosch CS20 (one of the VERY early adopters of its chute) and it is good, but the PC I also have with the front mount chute, seems to be better. Both were improved with the blade gaurd chute.

  7. #7
    You might check out the Festool. I have one and you get hardly any dust and it cuts great.

  8. #8
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    I can give another very positive recommendation for the PC saw. I've had mine for many years. It's an outstanding tool. When I connect my shop vac to the saw, there's very little dust.

    As for wormgear saws, I personally don't like them. To me, you're just paying more for more weight. Whatever the strengths of a wormgear saw, they don't apply to my uses.

    I don't see why you'd bother buying DC adapter if you don't yet have the saw. Just get a model which is already built for dust collection.

    As you mentioned, the Festool saw appears to be outstanding in all areas, but comes at a pretty hefty price. Even at recently raised prices, I still think Festool offers a good value. It's simply a matter of deciding if Festool is in your budget and if the investment is worthwhile for you personally.

  9. #9
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    A shopvac definitely makes a difference with the PC, but it is nowhere near the really effective capture of dust that one can expect at stationary tools.

  10. #10
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    Midcoast, Maine
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    For a few years or so I've owned the Porter Cable 324, which is the non-brake model. With a Porter-Cable 39332 Vacuum Hose connected it gets a lot of the dust. Add an EZ Dust Shield from Eurekazone for $2.00 and it is very effective at getting the dust. I've found my PC setup to be a very clean saw for cutting indoors, and I spend very little time cleaning up after use.

    I have since gone to a more expensive Hilti saw with a larger cutting capacity, but I still use the PC 324 at times.

    Eurekazone sells the dust collection add-ons that will make most any circular saw much better at dust collection. In fact, their results have been surprising. I do know that they seem to like the Makitas at Eurekazone, and they sell both Makita and Hitachi saws already outfitted for dust collection.
    Don

  11. #11
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    Smile

    Wow, guys - thanks for all the replies! As always, I know I can get good information here on SMC. It looks like I have a couple of good options to consider, although I'm really intrigued by the Eurekazone stuff - that takes what I want to do to the next level.

    Thanks again - I really appreciate it!

    Travis

  12. #12
    Not to Hijack this thread but while we are on the subject of circular saws and dust collection does anyone know how to hook a shop vac up to the Festool circular saw? I am about to take the plunge and buy the Festool TS55 and am stretching my budget as it to buy the saw so will not be able to purchase their dust collector.

    Thanks. Chris

  13. #13
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    Chris, you can get the rubber adapter or just buy a Festool hose. Either way will work with a regular shop vac.
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