I’m starting my journey with aluminum and as I usually do, I hit multiple discussion boards prior to getting started. One thing I kept reading over and over again, some of which is repeated here, is to not use your dust collection when working on metals. The biggest concern appears to be starting a fire. Several folks have pointed out that a good cleaning of the dust collection system before shifting from wood to metal can mitigate the risk.
I’ve done two aluminum runs with no dust collection and the cleanup is extensive.
I took a look at the instruction manual for my Vacmaster Wet Dry VWM510 and it has no warnings about metal and I do not see any warning for the Dustopper Cyclonic Dust Separator.
Building a fort to protect the shop from the evil chip monster was somewhat effective but not ideal.
So, does dust collection for metals fall under shop folklore or is there a real reason it should not be used?
A couple of qualifications:
- I’m not using any type of lubricant
- Metals at this point = 6061 aluminum
- There is always going to be some clean-up
- Not looking to build an enclosure