We've had our Oneida Pro 2000 5ph system in place for a couple months now. When we first hooked it up, and before any dust was drawn through it, the pressure gauge between the cyclone and exhaust filter cartridge had a reading of "2" on a gauge that goes from "0" to "5".
Once we started using it, the bottom end of the gauge reading when running the system became "3". Tech support at Oneida said that was normal as the filter fabric would be initially embedded with fine dust, thus slowing down the air flow somewhat.
What we are finding, though, is that after we clean it and get the gauge reading of "3", it only takes about 30 minutes of Timesaver use to bring the gauge all the way up to "5", making it time to clean the filter again.
Does anyone have similar experience with this filter system? Is the cyclone not separating the fine dust the way it should be?
(Dust Collection and Safety Equipment Forum)
From contributor E:
Make sure that you have no leaks at all in the cyclone setup. Any small leak can affect the cyclone's separating ability. I know you're playing with a RAL below so that could be the culprit.
Other than that, it shouldn't be clogging your filters that quickly, or at all really. I have a different setup using a 7-1/2 hp cyclone with 3 - 2' x 8' filter bags (1 more than needed, but I like the idea of overdoing it). I can run my dual drum sander all day long and never have a problem with loss of suction or clogging filters. In fact I clean my bags out every 6 months or so, not because of any noticeable loss of flow, just to keep them somewhat clean.
I was going to use an elaborate secondary blower system but now I'm afraid it will leak too much air through the air lock. I may be back to a single very tall bag below the unit (cyclone on 1st floor, bag in basement) and just eliminate the rotary air lock completely.
First, you could have your blower system from the RAL on completely sealed. Not sure how difficult it would be to do, but if the entire system was air tight it should (theoretically anyway) eliminate the problem.
Second, if you cannot completely seal the system, but it still separates the majority of waste, then keep the RAL and add a small baghouse in the basement as a replacement to your cartridge filter? Just run the exhaust duct to the basement into a plenum with as many of whatever size bags you want. I originally had a very nice 3 stage filter for my collector, but I knew it would be more difficult to clean if (more like when) I got blowby from overfilling the drum. So I had a plenum made and added 33% more area by adding 1 more bag than what was needed. Fairly inexpensive to have done in the overall scheme of things. You wouldn't fix the separation problem, but you also shouldn't have to stop to clean the filters very often.
Third, don't know how tight your space really is, but I know you do a lot of molding work, correct? This last idea, if you had the room, would be to add a separate cyclone for the widebelt only. You could have the first cyclone service the rest of your shop with the heavy stuff through the RAL, etc., then the cyclone for your widebelt could be a completely sealed system which would give you good separation to keep the filters clean and also allow you to do quite a bit of sanding before filling the 55 gallon drum. Wouldn't be too much of an expense, as I see the smaller Torit cyclones come up in our area every so often in the $500 range. The shop I worked in previously did this. They had a huge outdoor system for most of the shop including an old Timesaver. But when they bought a second 53" widebelt they also added another collector inside just for that one machine.
I've also been thinking about pulling the rotary air lock out of the system and just dropping straight down into two 5' to 6' tall bags through a Y-split. I'll be a bit hard pressed to get both bags in place, but I probably can pull it off. Again, not much room given the location of the cyclone drop into the corner of the basement. Plus I'd be stuck with a 2 bag system instead of the 3 or 4 bags I was looking to build.
I will say that I'm a bit annoyed by all this. When I bought the Oneida I expected it to solve all dust collection issues. And it would have if I could have lived with the single 55 gallon collection barrel below the cyclone. That of course is totally inadequate though. I kind of wish I knew then what I know now!
Contributor J is right about cyclone systems needing a baghouse or hanging filter bags downstream to handle the fines.