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Ridgid still the shop vac of choice?

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  • #16
    Originally posted by Dave C View Post
    My 16 gallon Craftsman vac was bought in 1975 ish, and it is still going strong. I had to replace the hose and the AC plug, and the caster sockets tore out of the bucket. Cut the old sockets out and made some oak blocks to fit in the cavities, and drilled the blocks for new caster shanks. Also had to reattach the power cord to the motor after lending the vac to my Ahole BIL who pulled it around by the cord for a week. The plastic shroud that sits over the motor is all cracked, and of course no longer available from Sears parts, but I think I got my money's worth out of it if it were to quit tomorrow.
    Gotta love this place,,, run it till it smokes lol

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    • #17
      I have the same ShopVac JoeLee. Mine is at least 15 years old and I have never had an issue with it. It has sucked in a LOT of chips along with water soluble oil. I have had to replace the hose on it because the inside gets caked with the hardened oil.

      At least my ShopVac doesn't say something ridiculous like it is 5 or 6 HP.....or I would have to run it on a dedicated 240v/30A circuit.....

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      • #18
        Maybe yours has a different switch design because there is no way the one I have would ever last that long.
        I also have my doubts about the 6 1/2 horsepower motor. I have no other complaints about that vac.
        It sucked up a lot of metal chips off my lathe and mill.

        JL.....

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        • #19
          Not sure if they still make it, but Rigid used to have a 6 HP "scroll" design vacuum. I picked it up pretty cheap but I think it may have been on clearance. Anyway, it's worked well for me although I haven't used it in the metal shop. Reason I mention it is because it is much easier on the ears than any other typical shop vac I've heard. It's still loud but a lower frequency that I find much easier to put up with.

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          • #20
            Originally posted by ironmonger View Post
            This sucks!... in as good way :>)

            https://www.homedepot.com/p/Milwauke...8912/203168503

            This same design has been in use by the Milwaukee Tool Co for over thirty years. They never changed it... no need.
            You can fit a drain to it if you like, the wheels last on a construction site for years.
            This is what dad got not long ago. It is the quietest, best vacuum I've used ever. It must be 30 decibels quieter than his old one.
            21" Royersford Excelsior CamelBack Drillpress Restoration
            1943 Sidney 16x54 Lathe Restoration

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            • #21
              My dad had a large, almost 30 gal. Craftsman 2 motor vacuum. Worked great, but LOUD. He used it daily in his machine shop, because of this, he lost a good part of his hearing.

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              • #22
                I have the Milwaukee 11gal vac pictured above. My Dad had it in his industrial shop for 20-30 years before he closed up and I got it. Still runs great. The plastic tool bag/carrier did disintegrate after 30 years of use, but other wise running strong. I will say the bags are hard to find and not cheap. I think I paid over $40 for 5 bags last month, If you can find a used Milwaukee vac cheap- grab it. Runs quiet and works well.
                Also have a 16gal Shop Vac. Probably 20years old. Caters are falling apart (OK they are 20+ years old). The original 6' hose was friction fit to the can, so if you tried to move 6'1" from the canister, the hose pops out. Replaced it with a locking 8ft hose. That's better, but the (empty) vac canister is so light, that it tends to tip over if you try to drag it around by the hose until it is half full of dirt. The Shop Vac is also much louder than the Milwaukee. Retrofitted a home made muffler onto the Shop Vac to make it bearable and a pipe handle (similar to the Milwaukee) so I can push the Shop Vac around. Also retrofitted a full size (light) switch to the Shop Vac as the tiny black slide switch on the side of black motor housing was always a pain to use. So..no I don't like the Shop Vac, but its OK as a second machine when I don't want to lug the heavier Milwaukee up stairs for a quick clean up.

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