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My Homemade Cyclone or My Version of
the Thien Separator Lid with Baffle

I was looking for a cyclone lid to enhance the performance of my Delta 50-760 dust collector. I had purchased a trash can cyclone lid from Lee Valley, which really didn’t improve much at all.  I decided to search the web and discovered a trash can cyclone lid plan created by J. Phil Thien for the Thien Cyclone Separator lid with baffle. You can learn further at his website

delta dust collector 50-760



Based on the positive reviews of his cyclone lid, I decided to make one for a 20 gallon aluminum trash can I had.  I planned on it fitting on the cart that is included with my Delta dust collector. I used a piece of scrap ¼” plywood and attached it to the two aluminum rails with double sided tape. 






C:\Documents and Settings\Angela\Desktop\cyclone\reducer.jpgThe Delta 50-760 comes with a dual port hose connector. I’ve actually never used both of these so I removed the one it came with and purchased a 5” to 4” reducer.



During my search, I located a forum that discussed the items needed to make a Thien Separator Lid. If you want to review this information at  The way I made mine is slightly different. I was a bit less exacting. I took some ¾” plywood, put it on the floor, turned the trash can over and drew a circle around it. This mark needs to be larger than the rim of the can.


draw circle around can       close up of circle around can


cutting circle with jigsaw


I used either my jigsaw or scroll saw to cut all the wood I used in this project.  I used my jigsaw to cut the circle out of the plywood.  Once cut I used my oscillating sander to clean the edges. 



The lid needs a ledge so part of it set in the trash can while the other part overhangs the rim of the can. To do this I made a rabbit cut.

rabbit bit on routing table


I  made a rabbit cut. I set it for a 3/8” deep rabbit cut completely around the circle. I decided to use a rabbit router bit and my router table instead of using a plunge router.

cutting on router table

My router table is made from New Yankee Workshop plans. It’s the first project I’ve made from using someone else’s plans. If anyone is interested in making this, I’d recommend buying the table top. The top was difficult to make and required a lot of different tools.  I figured if I can make the top the cabinet would be easy, which it was. I actually made the top first because I felt if I could make that I diffently could make the cabinet part. The cabinet part is just a basic cabinet making.

upside down lidI estimated the size of the inner circle by placing the upside down trash can back on the circle. Whereas the first marking needed to be slightly larger than the rim of the can, this needed to be slight smaller. I used a mechanical pencil and angled the pencil tip to mark under the rim of the can. I realized if I cut at this mark the lid would still be too big to fit correctly on the can but it would allow me to sneak up on the cut so I could obtain a tight fit instead of being loose.

I made the cut then place the lid on the trash can.  One side of the inner cut fit into the can while the other part didn’t fit. Where the inner cut didn’t fit I remarked it with a pencil in just the same way as I did before with the angled pencil.  I examined the mark to see how much still needed to be cut. I measured that and divided it in half. I made another cut with the router bit. I then sanded the edge. The width of the rabbit ended up measuring ½”


trashcanlid.jpgThe lid isn’t completely a circle but I’ve had the trash can for a long time and it’s not completely round. When I did all the marking and trying to get it to fit, I marked the can and wood this allowed me to always match the two up so I could set the lid on the can at the same place every time.  



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