I’m installing a new 1 HP Delta dust collector and need to ground the system. I watched a video about dust collector installation and it suggested running copper wire through the inside of the plastic tubing and then wrapping braided aluminum wire around the outside of the tubing. Then it recommends grounding one end to the dust collector and the other to the machine. My problem is that I can’t find any aluminum wire and I am wondering if I can use all copper, both inside and outside.
Rob Johnstone: Yup, any wire which will allow those pesky electrons to move along will do fine. Copper wire is simply a bit more expensive. It is also more dense and will hold up to the abrasive environment of the dust collection ducting. I’m glad to hear that you are taking the time to ground your system; it is an important task which is often ignored.
Michael Dresdner: Yes, you can. In my own plastic system in a shop in Pennsylvania, I used copper wire inside attached to the grounded tool at one end and the grounded dust collector at the other. We never had outside wire grounding because we did not have that much airborne dust, but it is certainly not a bad idea. The fact that you are thinking ahead and using a grounding wire is more important than what type you use.
Ellis Walentine: You can’t believe everything you hear. We’ve had numerous and contentious discussions about this on WoodCentral’s messageboards, but it’s hard to get a consensus. According to the most extensive and scholarly treatise I’ve seen on this subject, grounding your system with wires is unnecessary.