Vacuumformer - Tutorial

Hello guys! Correct me if i picked the wrong section for this thread.
I am building a vacuum former to improve my skills in tiny truck building and some times to do different things for sale.

Wesmade did an awesome video on his youtube channel about vacuumformer. Very thankful for him sharing his knowledge.
So i was enough motivated to build my own "machine".
I hope this thread will be usefull for forum members.

Let's get started

First things first - after lots of calculations i got some wood to make the structural box for all the components.



Then the 70 liters/min vacuum pump and 40 liters air tank that is used in MAZ trucks brake system.



As i was planning to fit the vacuum former into my workspace the air tank should be placed vertically into the box. The overall height is about 110cm. Like a bar counter.

Here is some doodles i made to control all the processes.
After some research i found that my pipe work on the pictures above is not very correct. I've reworked it a bit, so every single part of the machinery inside could be disconnected easily.





The turn/off switch is not mounted yet, but i'll do it after i finish the tabletop with all this holes.



The working space is 68x48cm. This square is required if i build some 1\7 trucks out of styrene some day haha.

Work is still in progress!
 

imthatguy

Putting it in "H"
WOW! That's a big vacuum table. Love it. And exactly what you'll need for larger bodies. Can't wait to see the results! What's your plan for oven?
 
WOW! That's a big vacuum table. Love it. And exactly what you'll need for larger bodies. Can't wait to see the results! What's your plan for oven?

Thank you sir! Can't wait to make some pulls too.

Speaking about the oven, i made today this fiberboard box with cutouts for the radiant heater placed on the floor.
Walls are covered with foil and secured in place with aluminum tape.



As the heater is 2kw, after 30 seconds it is pretty hot inside the box. Hope to heat the plastic for 3-5minutes to get the right sag.
 
This evening was very productive. All the holes are drilled, that means i am gonna clean them and glue the tabletob layers together tomorrow.
Also wired up the turn\off switch and attached it.

 

TLC

Scaled, but not fishy.
I tried so hard not to type this comment..............
.................. but in the end, my intense need to make bad Dad jokes just couldn't be stopped...

"I think that table looks like it really sucks..." :lol::laugh::laughing:


So sorry mate.... ::awwcrap
 
I tried so hard not to type this comment..............
.................. but in the end, my intense need to make bad Dad jokes just couldn't be stopped...

"I think that table looks like it really sucks..." :lol::laugh::laughing:


So sorry mate.... ::awwcrap

Old but gold.
Btw
It really sucks well::2thumbs
 
Yesterday i got my 1mm and 2mm thick styrene sheets. They were 3050mm x 2050mm size, so i cut them down to dimensions of my clamping frame.
Also yesterday i found this soviet vacuumeter that is used in water main control systems in my friends garage.



Yes it is big, but it is the only option i could found. Something wrong with finding vacuumeters in my location haha.
Also glued window seals around the working area.

First test run was very succesfull. The max pressure achieved is -0.9. It does stay the same after a few minutes, so i hope there is no major leaks. Very happy with it.



Well, as i mentioned before clamping frames are done. I've drilled lots of holes inside the outline of working area than broke out the inside wooden part and rough frames were made. Sanding machine helped me alot with smoothing those inside edges.


Covered the lower part with aluminum tape to make it heat less and test fitted the styrene sheet inside and clamped it.



Hope to make some vacuumforming tests this evening.
 

wesmade

Supporting Member
Just catching up on threads and glad I did. This is awesome seeing others getting into vacuum forming bodies and pieces. It?s a lot of fun and very useful. Can?t wait to see what you make with this set up. As always, if you need anything just let me know.


Wes
 
Can't wait to see your thermally formed awesomeness mate.... :cool:::2thumbs

Things have been done.

Just catching up on threads and glad I did. This is awesome seeing others getting into vacuum forming bodies and pieces. It?s a lot of fun and very useful. Can?t wait to see what you make with this set up. As always, if you need anything just let me know.


Wes

I apreciate it so much Wes, thank you! This process is so much fun for sure.


So, what can be a better introduction to vacuumforming than upgrading my old trucks with some parts.
There goes the Toyota dropbed.



Speaking about troubleshooting, during my first pulls, i had those wrinkles on the corners of inner fenders.



After i cut down my heating box in height a bit, started to open the vacuum into the table smoothly and added height to my inner fenders, problem solved out. Correct me if i do something wrong haha.









I am glad with the result. First succesfully pulled parts goes to my orange toyota.
 

dagabba

Supporting Member
That looks brilliant, great job!

Best thing is, now you can do a fresh pull for every Hilux you build!
 

TLC

Scaled, but not fishy.
Awesome job mate ::2thumbs I've started toying with this build process myself recently, in a very bush hack style though..... :paranoid:
Isn't it super satisfying when you drop that hot styrene down over the buck and get your first good clean pull? :cool: :biggthumpup:
 
Nothing wrong there, stellar work.


Wes

Many thanks, Wes.

That looks brilliant, great job!

Best thing is, now you can do a fresh pull for every Hilux you build!

True! One set went to my local friend. Hope to see more scale beds soon!

Awesome job mate ::2thumbs I've started toying with this build process myself recently, in a very bush hack style though..... :paranoid:
Isn't it super satisfying when you drop that hot styrene down over the buck and get your first good clean pull? :cool: :biggthumpup:

Thank you sir! You right, even if the pull is not very successful but the process is still very satisfying.
 
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