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Tips to improve ventilation and air quality in the shop

cnc router with wood chips flying around it

Manufacturing and CNC work in particular produces a lot of dust and debris. This can not only pose threats to the quality and efficiency of your production, but it can also cause health issues if inhaled on a consistent basis. This makes it essential to ensure your workshops ventilation is properly configured and that air quality is effectively maintained on an ongoing basis.

Here is a closer look at the threats posed by poor ventilation and air quality and some steps you can take to combat them to produce better work while preserving your long-term health.

Why ventilation and air quality matter

Air quality in the shop has an impact on safety, production, and the health of everyone inside.

Allowing dust or debris to build up around the shop can increase the likelihood of fire or slipping. Dust buildup can also accelerate the wear of machine components and can cause performance issues if not properly tended to.

Beyond that, inhaling dust, debris, and other toxic chemicals released into the air can cause breathing difficulties, heart and lung diseases, and even an increased risk of cancer.

How to improve ventilation and air quality

Achieving optimal levels of air quality in the shop ultimately comes down to three factors filtration, ventilation, and collection.


First and foremost, every shop should be equipped with an air filtration device to capture fine dust and debris particles in the air. For best results, we recommend using a vacuum with a HEPA filter to vacuum the shop regularly. HEPA vacuums trap up to 99.97% of small particles but remember to check the filter regularly and to change it when it is time to do so.

ShopSabre offers the worlds most popular air filter package by Tsunami, designed to reduce moisture, debris, and contaminants in your air lines to increase machine performance.


Whether its as simple as opening windows in the summer or ensuring your ductwork is properly configured, letting air in the shop circulate and be replaced with fresh, clean air is key to maintaining optimal air quality. Industrial ventilation fans and blowers are designed to remove contaminants from the air. As with filtration systems, be sure to frequently check your ventilation filters and to change them annually at the very least.

ShopSabre offers ventilation solutions for CNC plasma machines including down-draft compatible machines or water table-equipped solutions to help reduce airborne contamination.


Devices designed to collect dust and debris as they are produced can dramatically reduce the amount of pollution that enters the air in the first place. ShopSabres Dust Dock is a prime example, working seamlessly with CNC routers with automatic tool-changers to meet the needs of your production.

The Dust Dock features:

  • A dust shoe design for optimal internal airflow to effectively extract dust from material surfaces
  • A spacer system that allows operators to remove dust even when cutting with longer tools
  • A docking concept to remove debris from surfaces and to store it in the attached dock that clears the spindle and allows for easy and efficient tool changing on the fly

The Dust Dock reduces the surface area the collection system needs to cover, focusing airflow directly to the cutter to remove nearly 100% of airborne dust while significantly improving dust control in the shop.

Achieve optimal air quality in your shop with ShopSabre

ShopSabres industry-best CNC routers and plasmas are designed to help shop owners grow their production through unmatched precision, repeatability, and automation all at an affordable price.

Our machines are easy to get up and running and to learn how to operate, even without any formal training. Our team of dedicated experts offers one-on-one support to help find the right machine for you and to make sure it works the way you and your business need it to.

Here are a few of the reasons ShopSabre is able to develop and produce such revolutionary CNC technology:

  • Experienced in-house engineering talent
  • The ability to totally fabricate and test designs onsite
  • The ability to place the designs into production in-house

Shop our unmatched collection ofCNC routersandCNC plasmasin Minneapolis today to experience CNC the way it was meant to be.

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