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Thread: Anybody try a Vacuum hold down sled?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
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    Wisconsin
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    531

    Default Anybody try a Vacuum hold down sled?

    I'm sure it's a long shot, but have any of you tried or are currently using a vacuum hold down sled?

    I have a Gast 3/4 hp 8 cfm vac pump that I've used for various other shop shenanigans and I keep eyeing is for use on the Carvewright as well.
    I occasionally have wanted to run some things that were difficult or impossible to fixture in a normal sled.
    Thin sheets of plastic, or thin wood, and assorted foams come to mind.
    I think the Carvewright makes such light passes that I could even hold small pieces of wood with vacuum without breaking the vac seal too, if needed. I know it would hold large pieces, but I can see a need for that in this application.

    I have some half formed ideas, but I wanted to check and see if anyone else had experimented with it at all?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
    Location
    Kaukauna, Wisconsin
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    474

    Default

    I have thought about it as well, but never gave it a try. Thought it may work as they use vacuum on the larger table routers.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
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    NE PA USA
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    9,898

    Default

    I bought a bunch of the mushroom shaped wood plugs in 3/8. My plan was to have the machine drill a bunch of 3/8 holes on a carrier board and fill the holes with the plugs. Then fit a shoulder and insert a hardboard. This mushroom head thing would give me a chamber to tie a vacuum pump to with a hose. I would design a project on the sled and select places to drill holes to hold future parts on a board laying on top of the hardboard with holes in it. I would have different hardboard hole inserts for different projects. I would use it to hold down the plastic tags I cut from sheet stock. I use double stick tape now. This has been in planning for many years.... Just have not gotten to it... Taking this Retirement way too serious....
    Favorite Saying.... "It's ALL About the Brass Roller"..... And "Use MASKING TAPE" for board skipping in the X or breaking bits.

    Follow ME on Facebook http://www.facebook.com/pages/Accoun...50019051727074

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  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
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    Kaukauna, Wisconsin
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    Default

    I like that idea. The insert would be awesome. Carve it up, toss in a new one.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
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    Wisconsin
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    Default

    The changeable soil board type insert setup was all I could think of too.
    Digitalwoodshop I like your idea for creating the vac chamber.
    I was thinking on machining a vac plate style grid that a sacrificial soil board could be put on, and bore vac ports in the required locations.

    On big routers without a flat bed there are movable rails with movable vacuum pods on them.
    Then you can position your vacuum points to avoid cuts and holes.
    That setup only works for solid stock or some panel cutting.

    I don't have much experience with the big flat bed styles.

    I don't really have a lot of uses for one yet, but I've never let that stop me before.

  6. #6

    Default

    I bought a device that uses compressed air to create the vacuum. It's really designed for auto AC systems, but it'll pull almost 2 atmospheres of vacuum. I got it from harbor freight. I think 20 or 30 bucks. I cant remember how many cfms of air it takes, but it uses standard air fittings. I think it could be easily adapted to use for a vac table in lieu of a dedicated pump. I'll look at it when I get home.

  7. #7
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    Dec 2014
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    Kaukauna, Wisconsin
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    I have seen those pumps also at HF and do feel they would work. I have a few vacuum generators that also use air to produce the vacuum. It have been a plan of mine for a time now to make up a vacuum table and sled. With quick change fittings I could just move the vacuum source back and forth between the fixtures.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Wisconsin
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Mugsowner View Post
    I have seen those pumps also at HF and do feel they would work. I have a few vacuum generators that also use air to produce the vacuum. It have been a plan of mine for a time now to make up a vacuum table and sled. With quick change fittings I could just move the vacuum source back and forth between the fixtures.
    I plan to use press to connect, or press-loc style fittings if I build one.
    I use them at work for building vacuum fixtures and for vac circuits all the time and they work really well.
    Here is an example of a couple different styles, but there are thousands of choices.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
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    Kaukauna, Wisconsin
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    That is the style fitting I would use as well. We use them to run the pneumatic systems on the machines we build. They hold and seal very well and allow for quick change capability.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Nuevo, CA
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    1,842

    Default

    Seems to me it would suck up a bunch of saw flour.
    Clint
    CarveWright StartU team member
    Web Site WWW.clintscustomcarving.com

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