Unbalanced Dust Collection

A dust collection system has two barrels. One fills up before the other. Why? January 12, 2015

Question (WOODWEB Member) :
In my small shop I use a 5hp Oneida dust collector. For the sawdust I have a 10-7-7 Y that feeds 2 55-gallon drums. One of my drums seems to always fill twice as fast as the other. Does anyone have any ideas how to balance this out so as to be able to appreciate the full benefit of twin drums?

Forum Responses
(Dust Collection and Safety Equipment Forum)
From contributor J:
I'd check for leaks on the one that fills more slowly. If air is being sucked in through that container, it might create an updraft that would push chips away. If that didn't work, I'd try rotating the wye and the drums relative to the cyclone to see if that makes a difference.

From Contributor B:
Are you coming straight down off the bottom of the cyclone into the top of the Y? Most likely the answer is yes. If so then consider that the air and dust are spinning in the cyclone as they enter the top of the Y. The spiral spin will be angled downward and reach one side of the Y before the other. This is likely what is causing the problem. You might be able to insert a small deflector shield in the Y in order to make more of the shavings go to the less used side. I've done things like this in the housing of our 3-bag collector which is in the basement directly below our 5-hp Oneida system. Three 60" tall bags is a huge step up from double 55 gallon barrels. A call to Oneida might also be in order. They can be very helpful.

From contributor M:
I was thinking about the spiraling dust/air mix. Need to get a punk or incense stick to check for air leaks, though I am pretty confident that there are none. I even taped the hose to the y connection and again at the hose to barrel connector to try to eliminate potential leaks. Maybe try Contributor J's idea about rotating the y a little to try to balance the fill. Yeah, my y comes straight off of the bottom of the cyclone. It would be nice to get both barrels to fill nearly evenly, definitely less of a hassle that way.