Iím finally getting around to grounding my 20' length of dust collector 4" flex hose. Iíve read to use a bare stranded copper wire, 16AWG, and that antenna wire will work too. The only problem is I can't find any bare stranded wire in San Diego! Where can I purchase this, and if I canít find it can I use another type of copper wire?
(Dust Collection and Safety Equipment Forum)
From contributor J:
I haven't done what you're planning to do, but you might have better luck searching for braided ground strap/cable. The braid keeps it from coming apart since there's no insulation jacket to fill that role.
The reason that the static builds up in the first place is that the plastic is an insulator. Running a wire through a plastic (insulator) tube only grounds the part of the tube it touches. The entire inside surface of the tube which is not intimately in contact with the wire is still carrying the static charge. (Because the tube is an insulator the static charge does not flow to the wire). The tube is an insulator so the static charge does not travel around the tube to be grounded by the wire. All you have provided is a nice grounded place for a really big discharge to arc to (although the article mentioned above suggests that such levels are never reached by a small diameter tube.)
Here's what I did. I found that ground wire at my local Rockler store. I also picked up some new clear flex hose that has a spiral wire all around the outside. The rep said to just ground each end of that wire and not even run a new wire inside. That's what I did, and now I have no static when I walk around the hose. Itís kind of neat seeing all the chips getting sucked away. It cleared up my chip dent about 50% too.