If I have to choose between air filtration and dust collection for my home shop, which should I choose?
: No question, start with good dust collection. It will make a huge difference in your shop, but you'll probably still want to wear a particle mask. Air filtration is very nice to have, but only after effective dust collection with good quality filter bags.
: Get a dust collector big enough (plus a little bigger) to pull the necessary cubic-feet-per-minute (cfm) that your particular equipment requires. If you equip the collector with good aftermarket bags that filter out the fine particles, you'll practically have both machines in one.
: I think the right question is not "which should I choose" but rather "which should I choose first?" In most shops, good dust collection comes first because of the amount of dust generated by power tools, but you will eventually want to add air filtration as well.
: If your work is largely machinery based go for dust extraction. On the other hand, if your work is primarily with hand tools, go for filtration.
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