Wireless Dust Collector Remote By Dominic Greco 01/30/15
About a month ago I posted a question on Woodnet's Power Tool
Forum in regards to a Wireless DC (Dust Collector) Remote for my 3
HP Dust Collector. Since it's a 220V unit, you really can't use
one of those shop vac remotes you see advertised. I got a couple
of good recommendations for units ranging from $200 to $350. But
one response really piqued my interest. Fred Hargis said that I
could MAKE MY OWN for much less than the ones sold. Far be it from
me to say no to a little DIY project! Especially when I could make
it more robust than the ones sold.
So I started asking more questions about which components to
purchase and assembled my own unit. But this kind of information
is just too good not to share with the general public. So I
decided to make us this document that would give the sources for
the items and even help the average (non-electrically inclined)
wood worker put their own together.
One thing about this design: Because I like "SIMPLE", I made it a
drop-in-place unit. Other than assembling the unit itself, there
is no wiring needed. You just plug one end of your DC's 220V plug
in one socket, the other goes to your 220V outlet. Then you plug
the wireless switch into the 125V line and in turn plug that into
a 125V outlet. That's IT.
Some Caveats before we start: All of the components that will see 220 volts are
sized for 20 amps. That's the max my circuits are wired for.
If you want to use this for a DC larger than 3 HP, I'd take
care to read through the specs of each component and make sure
that they can take the added load. If you want to follow these instructions, awesome.
But I am warning you now that you need to take special
precautions when dealing with electricity. The author of this
document (ME) claims no responsibility for injury sustained by
yourself while you are attempting to replicate this project.
Proper electrical safety protocols must be followed at
all times and if you have any reservations please ask an
electrician. I am not a professional electrician nor do I
pretend to be. Before I put power to ANYTHING here I
had it looked at by a qualified individual. My take is always,
"Better safe than sorry".
OK now that's out of the way we can continue.
The heart of this unit is a magnetic contactor.
It's really just a big 220V switch that in this case is powered
(energized) by a separate 125V line. The wireless switch is
nothing more than one of those used to control outdoor Christmas
lights. Once you push the button on the remote the wireless switch
engages which in turn, energizes the magnetic starter. And bingo!,
your DC is on.
Along with the wireless switch you need an enclosure, or pull box
for the contactor. Plus you need some wire, some 220V and 125V
plugs, a couple of strain reliefs, some electrical terminals, and
assorted mounting hardware.
Special note here: I've been informed that this particular model
strain relief is for hard shell (romex) electrical line and really
not suited for the rubber coated power cable I am using. It will
function as a strain relief. But it will not seal out the dust. If
you want the proper type, look for one plastic ones with a rubber
seal. Or you can do like I did and wrap some neoprene around the
cable. Your choice.
Once you've gotten all of the components purchased is shouldn't be
that hard to wire the connections. To make it easy on myself I
drew up a wiring diagram so that I could plan out where the wires
So it was pretty easy to go from the diagram to the assembly
If you notice, the grounds are all tied together with a lug nut.
But to be "up to code" I really needed also to tie them to the
chassis of the pull box. So I drilled a small hole and used a
8-32" x 1/2" long pan head machine screw, washer, lock washer and
If you take a close look at the photo above you will see that the
pull box has (4) mounting holes. I used these to bolt the
completed assembly to a piece of 3/4" plywood and then fastened
that to the wall near my dust collector.
Once it was in place I plugged the power cable from my DC into the
female connector hanging off of of the DC Remote. Then I plugged
the 220V male plug into the wall socket. With that done I
connected the wireless switch to the end of the DC Remote's 125V
line and plugged it into a nearby 125V outlet