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Woodythepecker

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While looking around for a decent Vacuum Press i have been told that you can in fact use a compressor. Has anyone used one in this way?

What vacuum press do other members use?

I have been on the Bagpress website and their Mini Press seems ok. They do a upgraded bag which is 1250mm x 1250mm (250 micron), but they only recommend that you use this on flat panels. Has anyone used this bigger bag, and if so how do you find it?

Many thanks

Woody
 

Chris Knight

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Woody,

You can indeed use a compressor with a small gadget called a venturi that shoots air past an orifice in the venturi gadet, sucking in air from the orifice - which is connected to your bag. The trouble is that it has to run continuously and makes a noise - sound of escaping air and the cycling of the compressor. All in all much better to use a vacuum pump I think for work of any size although the venturi would be OK for small work perhaps or to get an idea of how vaccum pressing works. I can't speak for the quality of their bags - I use an airpress kit which came with an 8' by 4' bag in heavy vinyl and it is fine for the flat stuff I have used it for. Possibly one needs a different material for highly curved work?

One thing I like about having a vacuum pump is that you can then make up clamps that use vacuum - for all sorts of purposes where it is difficult to get normal clamps on. You could of course use a venturi for this too.
 

jasonB

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I have got the Mini press with the standard bag and find it fine for both flat & curved work, it is also made from a heavy vinyl. I've used mine to bend corianthat was heated to 170deg, laminate ply to a 5" radius and veneer flatsurfaces with single sheets of veneer and marketry

The only reason I can think of for not using it on large curves is that it may take a while to get all the air out of the bag. Some of the stuff that I have bent with it was hard to bend round the former by hand but the press pulled it down without a problem.

Good thing with the mini is that you can turn it off once the vacuum is reached and it will hold the pressure not that it's that noisy anyway.

Jason
 

Woodythepecker

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Chris, Jason, exactly what i wanted to know.

The press i have got at the moment was put together by my wifes dad many moons ago, but it is now on its last legs, and needs replacing.

Jason have you tried the bigger bag?

Regards

Woody
 

tim

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JasonB":30ylv9hz said:
Good thing with the mini is that you can turn it off once the vacuum is reached and it will hold the pressure not that it's that noisy anyway.
Is that not the case with others? If not, thats got to be a definite plus. Chris: what happens with yours?

Cheers

Tim
 

jasonB

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tim":iceaxdtr said:
Is that not the case with others? If not, thats got to be a definite plus. Chris: what happens with yours?
From what I have read of the water & standard compressor ones you need to keep the thing running all the time, not sure of other air/bagpres models.

Woody, have not had the need for a bigger bag yet but would try it if the need came up.

Jason
 

Chris Knight

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I leave my vacuum pump running all the time - it's not too noisy and is a heavy duty unit designed for continuous running. The problem is that my bag and sealing arrangement don't seal as well as they should and slowly leak air in - I may have a small hole or two in the bag and possibly the sealling thingy isn't perfect.

Ideally one would have a pressure or vacuum switch that cycled the pump as needed - should be an easy enough thing to fit I guess but would add to the cost.
 

Waka

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All good vacuum press information, I have been viewing the Bagpress and Axminster sites and having a look at their equipment. Not knowing much about this can anyone tell me if they are value for money, also are their any other specific sites I should be looking at.

I intend to slide into veneering this winter therefore want to purchase a quality piece of kit.
 

Waka

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Chris

Thanks for the links, really good surfinf, I can feel a purchase coming on.
 

MikeW

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Garnet Foster":2mrho2fk said:
Me as well. But I don't think anyone is gonna takes us (or the Roarockit) serious...again :roll:

But Roarockit isn't a solution for everyone. It's inexpensive and uses a wine vacuum pump to evacuate air for goodness sake. And those people promote making skateboards with it of all things!

Ok, a little sarcasm there. The thing does work well and I believe that for the occassional non-professional who doesn't make a living day-in day-out sucking the air out of a vacuum bag, it is a viable option.

Some people have had trouble sealing the bag using the tape. I haven't, nor any of the people who have attended the seminars I've taught for it. But some have and have returned theirs to Rockler.

Mine works everytime I use it. I use it for a few panels at least once a month. Small and large. A few curved laminations. Ted and Nona will custom make bags if you need them, for a cost effective price.

Mike
 

Chris Knight

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Mike,

I don't think it is a question of not being taken seriously, just that once you have a pump etc. it seems daft to get more kit. Certainly if I wanted to try vacuum veneering and had no stuff, I would try it. I am sure that laminating a skate board is as good a test as any and if it can do that it can do most things.
 

Gill

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MikeW":obuxe268 said:
... I don't think anyone is gonna takes us (or the Roarockit) serious...again :roll:
Why, Mike? What's gone before? When I saw the link I became very interested in this piece of kit. Just how effective would it be for, say, applying marquetry to small boxes?

Gill
 

MikeW

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waterhead37":3np2ilgk said:
Mike,
I don't think it is a question of not being taken seriously, just that once you have a pump etc. it seems daft to get more kit...
Hi Chris, I had hoped that with a smilie face and admitting it was sarcasam (Mikey's sense of humor) that the "seriously" remark wouldn't, well, be taken seriously :lol:

The suggestion about Roarockit was for Woody as he is looking for a pressing method, I thought anyway.

Mike
 

MikeW

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Gill":40bexoh7 said:
...Snip...
When I saw the link I became very interested in this piece of kit. Just how effective would it be for, say, applying marquetry to small boxes?
Gill
There are a couple ways of pressing marquetry. The problems revolve around keeping the pieces together while inserting the piece into the bag, and while evacuating air.

I've not tried, but I would think as long as it can go into a bag and stay in together properly, one could use a top paten that has a thin layer of rubber on the surface that would lay on the marquetry. This would allow for slight variations in piece thickness. If there isn't much, even the bag *may* pull it down evenly.

The kit itself is inexpensive for trying vacuum pressing. I'll tell you what. If you buy the thing and give it a try and it doesn't work as you expect, I'll buy it from you. I can always use another bag anyway.

Mike
 

Woodythepecker

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Cheers everyone, your advice is very much appriciated.

I looked at the Roarockit but the bags are just a bit to small. Saying that, i think that it would suit Gill's marquetry down to the ground.

A friend of mine knows someone with a Bagpress and he is going to let me borrow it next weekend, which is nice of him. At least this way i will be able to see if it suits me before i splash the cash so to speak. I will let you know how i get on with it.

Regards

Woody
 

GCR

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I use the Bagpress with the smallest "ejector/venturi". When using PVA type glue I leave the compressor on for about 2 hours (depending on temperature). I have to be careful with glue application, too generous and the glue is driven through the veneer and squashes over the inside of the bag! The compressor I use runs for about 30% of the time. The original "venturi" caused the compressor to run 60% of the time. Having said that, I reduce pressure once the bag is evacuated. The Bagpress works very well, although I have never been too sure if the bag is completely air tight, hence the continual running. Hope this helps.

Bob
 

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If anyone ever has any questions of Bagpress or vacuum forming please do contact me, i would be pleased to help you. :D
 
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