If cleanliness is next to Godliness, then most Kydex shops I’ve seen won’t fair too well in the hereafter (my own included). But that doesn’t mean we can try to improve the situation. One of the biggest sources of mess in the shop is the dust generated by grinders, sanders and buffers. Here’s a quick project to help you manage the dust without spending a bunch on a professional dust collection system.
Start by measuring your wheel and deciding what the dimensions of your box need to be. For my buffing wheel, I determined my finished box should be 3” wide, 8” tall and about 4” deep. I sketched it out on a piece of paper and then transferred the dimensions onto a 10”x16” piece of Kydex.
Then I cut out the hole in the center for the shop vac hose to fit into.
Then I drilled relief holes in the box corners and made my cuts with the band saw.
Now I just need to bend it closed. I used the edge of my bench, some clamps, a straight edge and a wooden block to make a simple brake and heated the Kydex with a heat gun
Then I folded the ends in by hand and my box was complete.
The last step was to make a simple mounting bracket and mount it behind my buffing wheel. I used a scrap of aluminum flashing, but you could use anything at hand.
I run the buffer and the shop vac off of the same power strip so I just have to turn the strip on to activate the system. It works pretty well. If I did it over again I would make the bottom of the box deeper so it sit more under the wheel than behind it. I could also seal up the corners to get more suction on the wheel and that would help it work better too.