A shop vacuum plugged into a dust port is a great way to collect the dust produced by hand held power tools. Unfortunately there does not seem to be any consistency to the size of dust ports and it is likely that the standard 1 1/4″ hose that comes with many vacuums will not fit. Adapters are costly and clumsy to use but there is an easy and inexpensive way to make your own custom sized bushings.
Purchase a golf club protector tube – these go inside the golf bag and make it easier to take the clubs in and out. They are about $1.50 at sporting goods stores and the most common ones have an inside diameter of exactly 1 1/4″ which is what makes them useful for this application. The picture below on the right shows a standard hose plugged into the end of a protector tube.
Use a fine toothed saw to cut several lengths about 1 1/2″ long. Put one aside and then use a pair of scissors to slit the others so that they fit over the one that has not been cut. The cut pieces now have enough flexibility to fit over the non-cut piece, creating a wider diameter port on one side. You can add more cut pieces as needed to increase the diameter until it fits into your tool port. Just be sure to align your split pieces so that the gaps don’t overlap.
When the outside diameter is just a tiny bit smaller than your dust port, wrap a couple of turns of electrical tape around the outside. This will keep everything together and you now have a bushing with an inside diameter of 1 1/4″ and an outside diameter guaranteed to exactly fit the dust port.
The finished product is shown fitted onto a standard hose. One tube will make perhaps 4 or 5 bushings so you can have different sized adapters for all your tools for just pennies.
Eric Wood is a retired university professor from Ontario, Canada. An avid (some might say rabid) do-it-yourselfer, he enjoys the challenge of devising low-tech, low-cost solutions to workshop problems.