Oneida Air Systems, known for their Dust Deputy cyclone separator and full-size workshop dust collection products, has come out with a new product of a very different nature, a self-contained benchtop personal-sized dust collector.
The new Oneida Benchtop DC is said to provide source collection without a connection, which means it’s a standalone unit that doesn’t require the use of a larger dust collector or vacuum, or any hoses.
The Oneida Benchtop DC personal dust collector is also portable, and so you could move it from station to station to collect dust wherever it’s needed.
The dust collector is said to have a highly efficient dual-filter system, with a washable pre-filter and deep-pleated MERV-15 filter.
Oneida says that the compact Benchtop DC personal dust collector is ideally suited for wood carving, turning, scroll saw work, use with rotary tools, powder mixing, and other such applications.
It features variable speed control, and the six fan motors provide
535 CFM 481 CFM of airflow to help clean the air directly in the user’s breathing zone.
The Oneida personal dust collector is powered via 110V and has a supplemental AC outlet on the side for powering hand tools and accessories.
Oneida emphasizes that this is not a fume extractor, and so it is not suitable for evacuation of VOCs, acid fumes, corrosive fumes, or flammable fumes.
Oneida’s application example, where a rotary tool is being used to carve an instrument, is a great example of how a dust collector like this is designed to work.
This is not the first product of its kind on the market. Grizzly (check price via Amazon) has something similar, and other brands (such as PSI) have had portable benchtop woodworking dust extractors on the market for quite some time.
There are also very many 2-part solutions that involve different kinds of vacuum systems and collection hoods, scoops, and accessories.
Still, Oneida looks to have filled a small hole in the product lineup, providing a valuable solution for users that don’t quite need or cannot accommodate a much larger full-sized setup.
The new Oneida Benchtop DC dust collector is somewhat pricey, with a
$580 $699 price tag. Many woodworkers and DIYers have built their own portable and furnace filter-sized dust collectors and air cleaners for less. Still the self-contained dust hood looks to have been thoughtfully designed.
Features & Specs
- 0.32 HP
- 3A typical current draw
- 6-foot power cord
535 CFM (actual) 830 CFM (free fan rating)
- 481 CFM (updated 10/2022)
- 62.5 to 74 dBA noise level
- MERV 15+ filter rating
- Cold rolled steel construction
- 25.5″ wide x 9.75″ deep x 16.5″ tall
- Weighs 20 lbs
The package comes with the dust collector, main filter, pre-filter, top vane, left vane, right vane, and power cord.
That the front vanes are separate suggests they could be removed if needed. It might also be possible to use this in a custom enclosure to aid dust containment.
Launch Price: $580
Price: $699 (updated 10/2022)
A replacement filter set, including pre-filter and main filter, is priced at $90.
More Info via Oneida Air Systems
Oneida’s dust collection products are typically made in the USA.
As someone who is bound to doing work in their apartment, something like this seems pretty sweet! Tabletop, decent unit. Need to see some reviews, but there’s serious potential.
How much? $580.
How do the kids say it — “OOOF, BIG OOOF?” That pricing is such a sucker punch. I could buy my choice of small vacuums, hoses, adapters, and small shop air purifier — and still have enough for a nice meal out on the town (pre-covid).
Surprisingly, there are not a lot of products designed for benchtop placement. You could use a traditional dust vac or extractor with a large scoop, but that will still cost you a pretty penny and most large-mouth scoops are not easily adjustable or optimized for small work.
I went with a small industrial collector that’s aimed at jeweler and dental industry tasks, but it usually ends up pricier.
Foredom has a new dust collector, and it’s quite pricey and needs a scoop or hood attachment to work.
I considered the PSI for a while, and now it seems the Grizzly is one of the few tabletop cleaners/collectors on the market.
Depending on what you’re doing, I’d think this could fill up fast, and a vacuum system would definitely be suited for more frequent work.
But, they call it a dust collector, as opposed to an air cleaner, and so I can’t argue otherwise.
The price is very steep, but there’s not a lot of competition. It probably won’t be a huge seller either, not like their more traditional products, and so it costs what it costs in order for them to make and sell it.
I would have pointed to the Rockler Downdraft Table – https://toolguyd.com/rockler-downdraft-table/ as a potential alternative, but they seem to have discontinued it.
Some of the units aimed at DIY jewelry makers and for soldering seem to only be just fans with some activated carbon matrix as a filtering medium:
Those are fume extractors for soldering. What I’m talking about is for polishing, cutting, and other jewelry-making tasks. Or for dental work where say retainers or bite guards need to be trimmed and finished.
Yeah…I had the same thought. Pretty sure you could make one of these for a lot less with some mdf, plexi, a cheap merv 4 prefilter and a merv 15 pleated filter in standard sizes, and then some acrylic for the vanes. Either design it to fit something like a big gulp or a box fan or even an array of computer fans. Might not be as pretty or effective, but you could build 2 or 3 and still come out ahead.
That said, it looks like a nice product, but with a very steep entry price. I also find it annoying that they couldn’t just use off the shelf filter sizes (or maybe it is? looks like it could be a 16x24x1 based on overall dimensions, which makes that $90 filter set price crazy).
You can take a box fan, furnace filters and duct tape and your golden. Like $30-$40.
I was going to make this same comment. I cannot imaging dropping $580 on this product. Now, I’m sure it’s better than a box fan with a furnace filter, but $550 better….
Wow, look at that price.
What is so special about this to justify the price? Is it super quiet? Relative to the competition, is it powerful for its size?
There’s not a lot of competition in this space, or at least now many lower priced options. Compared to the Grizzly, the Oneida has more airflow. Compared to a shop vacuum, much lower noise.
I don’t have any contacts at Oneida Air, and so I’m limited to speculation when it comes to questions like yours.
Maybe small-batch production drives the price higher?
Oneida Air Systems also produces many (most? all?) of their products in the USA. That’s going to drive the price higher than for imported competition.
On a recent TOH episode they offered a tutorial on cobbling together an inexpensive air cleaner – based on a box fan and 4 air filters:
Hardly a benchtop model – but said to be effective
A box fan with a single furnace filter bungie corded to the back, or both sides for two stage filtering, actually works quite well. That’s an old remodel hack. You can even get some small box fans for “benchtop” use:
These small fans do not move much air at all. Put a filter in front of them, and airflow is dramatically reduced.
Judging from the dimensions, Oneida is using 6x 8-inch fans selected or designed for obstructed airflow.
You can buy 200mm fans, but the selection isn’t great.
You could find small assemblies of cabinet cooling fans that reduce how much needs to be tackled via DIY: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B017PMM990/?tag=toolguyd-20 but airflow is going to drop once a filter is in front of that.
For a DIY solution, something like a duct exhaust fan might work. I hacked something together back in college for airbrushing indoors.
There are a number of DIY improvisations, but not a lot of self-contained commercial products. I don’t think I have ever seen a benchtop DIY solution that would work as well as this one. I searched for this a LOT over the years, and eventually went with a quiet collector and small jewelry-style benchtop scoop.
For sure, for the small fans I’d recommend something like a MERV 8 HVAC filter media, the blue stuff that comes on a roll. It looks like they are using something similar as a pre-filter before the pleated filter. So definitely not as effective as the Oneida, but at around 3% of the cost, it works good enough for small benchtop jobs. Better than nothing at the least.
Update: I assumed wrong, this looks to have 6 very small fans.
Not sure what they mean with six fan motors? Did they mean six fan speeds. Not sure if the homemade version can match the CFM of this model. I think they are pricing themselves out of this market.
Given the size, I interpret that to mean their are physically 6 separate fans inside the unit.
2x 8″ – 16″, 3x 8″ = 24″. I would suspect there are 6 fan motors (I don’t know why they wouldn’t just say 6 fans) in a 3-wide x 2-tall configuration.
That’s the only way to get a 3:2 rectangular shape like this. A blower motor wouldn’t be possible here, and larger fans would force a different geometry and aspect ratio.
Update: I assumed wrong, this looks to have 6 very small fans.
From the owner manual: https://imgur.com/a/uY2yO6R
yep, six separate fans.
I’ve seen this and, based on their stated dimensions, scaled the image to find that the fans are roughly 80mm in diameter. To reach 830 CFM in free air, that’s a rated CFM of 138 per fan. I’ve been looking online and can’t find any 80mm fan that’s even close to that. Highest one I found so far is about 80 CFM.
So I have no idea what they’re doing – or how they’re getting this much flow – or why they’re using 6 small fans instead of 6 larger ones.
Actually found one that may match their specs on NewEgg:
1st PC Corp FN-PFB0812DHE-F00
Rated at 132.5 CFM at 9000 RPM, 12VDC 2.75A = 33W
8×33 = 264W
264W/120V = 2.2A (Oneida spec is 3A)
So $150 worth of fans (at retail), plus the housing (which they probably fabricate in-house), plus the power supply and control board. Their cost may be around $200, maybe a bit less.
An 80 mm fan has a surface area of 6,400 square mm.
A 200 mm fan has a surface area of 40,000 square mm.
Each 80 mm pulls air across a cross section that’s 6.25X larger.
Perhaps the filter impedes airflow so much that you need that 6X factor to ensure you still have enough airflow for dust collection purposes.
Once that filter starts to clog, you still want the fan to pull decent airflow.
I guess it is variable speed with six fan motors!
I made something similar out of cardboard and attached it to my shop vac. It didn’t cost anything. Sure, the shop vac is noisy, but that’s what ear muffs are for.
That would be handier to use, but not for $580 and $90 for replacement filters.
Found that Grizzly unit in perfect condition at a Salvation Army a few months ago for i think 15 bucks. Great machine!
I love the idea of this, and I understand that it isn’t likely to be a high volume product, but the price just kills it.
A “regular” dust filter (of the kind meant for a small shop or garage) has about the same frontal dimensions, is only about a foot or so deeper, and available at 1/4-1/2 the price, depending on the brand. For the price of one of the Oneidas in this post, you could buy a regular size air filter from a lower end brand (like Wen, which I have had good experience with) that’s a bit bigger and have enough money left over to buy a decent HEPA-rated dust collector.
A 20″ box fan with a 20″ HEPA filter on the back would be an inexpensive option. I wonder how well that would work. I might try it.
I believe it was the University of Michigan that tried a box fan + furnace filter and found that it was 90% as effective as commercial air purifier devices, though I think their comparison was more focused on allergy uses / indoor pollution, not project dust.
I’ve tried a 20×20 furnace filter to a box fan myself before, using painter’s tape to seal the gaps… Not something I rely on as my primary air/dust filter, and not a ton of airflow, depending on the filter, but cheap and easy to do, and doesn’t hurt.
For the price, I would have expected a more substantial warranty. 1 year seem pretty pathetic.
While it looks practical, I sincerely doubt that the lead picture reflects reality.
And the price totally kills.
One can do a lot with a few spare bits of wood, some fan parts, a piece of filter material and some creativity.
Looks like an airbrush fume extractor. If you are in the market for something like this, you should check out the extractors they sell for indoor airbrushing.
Some of those are available in the $100-$200 range with Plexiglas sides and a flex duct etc to get the fumes vented to the outside.
With a single fan, they’re probably not strong enough for grabbing dust per se, but it is proof of concept, and that the same principles can be followed for a dust scrubber without breaking the budget.
I have an idea for a portable desk unit with two spare fireplace fans and a rheostat.
This seems like a prime DIY opportunity. Get one of those in-window double fan units, a same-size MERV-11+ filter, some flexible ducting, and have your own square-peg-in-a-round-hole session like in Apollo 13 to make a dust extractor for a project room.
Koko The Talking Ape
I don’t see the need for a small air purifier you set near you. Dust doesn’t work that way, or at least not the finest particles that are the real health issue. They float in the air of the entire room, and the air of the entire room needs to be cleaned continuously. So you need a big cleaner, with big filters and high volume fans (or many small cleaners, but then cost becomes an issue.)
I imagine a small air cleaner might work for FUMES and GASES, where even minuscule amounts can be dangerous, but the cleaner would need a large activated charcoal cartridge, and this thing doesn’t have one.
Good air cleaners aren’t expensive. I have two Coway Mightys, each about the siae of a small suitcase. They were about $200 each and the filters are about $40 a year. They underwent controlled testing by an independent reviewer (Wirecutter, of the New York Times) and they work great. Almost silent too. Still doesn’t trap fumes though.
But for fumes, one option would be a stout attic fan and some flexible ducting to suck out contaminated air and dump it outside, without filtering or trapping it at all. As they say, for environmental toxins, the solution is dilution. But in winter, you’d be pumping warm air out and cold air would come seeping in through cracks, doors, etc., and the reverse in summer. Maybe that’s worth it though.
Air purification is a different job than collecting sawdust and chips.
From the title I thought this was a joke.
“PERSONAL DUST COLLECTOR”
“THIS TOOL IS SO BAD, IT WILL JUST SIT THERE AND COLLECT DUST”
Your health is important, so if it helps you breathe clean air it’s valuable. There are also the air pressurized helmits(battery operated) that keep you breathing filtered air. They also offer dust collector hose block like attachments, these can range 700 CFM plus. (Rockler model comes to mind). If you already have a large hose dust collector then these attachments would be much cheaper than the Oneida or Grizzly table models. I personally think the Dust collector attachment together with a Trend air filtering helmet would be the ideal setup. Clean air but not sure if the sound decibels would be a problem.
Don’t. Just Dont.
I started as a navy electronic tech in the 80’s. Worked in semiconductor houses. …. Don’t buy this. Just get a nice slower muffin fan, grill, devise legs for it for a stand (1″ & 2″ #6 screws and nuts, add whatever simple unused wall wart and disburse fumes for about $20. The last one I built 11 years ago is still running at my desk (too lazy to turn it off).
Don’t filter. Never the purpose. Just diffuse the fumes into the room like the code says.
Oneida says their unit is not suitable for VOC’s or fume extraction. It’s simply a targeted area dust extractor/ filter.
At least that’s what i gather from the article.
Yes. It should only be used for particulate dust, such as from grinding/sanding/cutting wood. It should NOT be used for fumes.
This looks like a OK solution but with a high price.
My homegrown solution:
I obtained a 110v blower fan from a furnace that was being replaced. Hooked up a switch, boxed it in using some 2×2’s with some leftover corrugated plastic cardboard, and placed a furnace filter on the front.
The airflow is high and the dust reduction is sufficient for me. I still wear a mask when sawing mdf, but it cuts dust down significantly for plywood and hardwood cuts. Additionally, I have used it to dry some spilled water or to exchange inside air with outside air. A friend designed on after he saw mine using another blower fan and I believe he used his when he was sanding drywall. The mileage varies based on design, filter(s) used, and the dust size; but it is a step up from a box fan and filter route.