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EASY build Vacuum Casting machine system for Lost Wax / PLA Casting – DIY chamber & Pump : lwc #6



Vacuum casting machines are expensive. But can you make one? YES… here’s a easy, simple construction, low cost vacuum arrangement to assist with you lost wax or lost PLA casting. Many of the parts you may already have lying around and the rest are cheap as chips. Building a vacuum system has literally saved me thousands and just as importantly it’s dramatically improved the quality of my metal castings… beautiful, clear and precise details matching exactly the original wax pattern, with no pockets, no porosity and no sand. This really is a cheap and simple solution to better lost wax casting!

My thanks once again to Paul Hamler for partial use of his video. Checkout this wonderful video in full here:

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Written by Yaipoo

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  1. We had some pretty good luck pouring pewter coins in a split mold carved out of soapstone with a small CNC milling machine. We made the mold, and a friend poured around 100 coins with it as I remember.

  2. The flashing on your coins was a result of a fractured mold. This cracking occurred because you added new investment on top of the insufficient initial batch. I won't go into all of the details here, but the bottom line is that you should have poured out the investment before it could cure, and then made a fresh batch.

  3. I used to do lost wax casting in silver and over many years made thousands of parts. My advice is – buy a cheap mechanical centrifugal casting machine – the force it produces on the molten metal is much higher than a vacuum machine and produces much better castings.

  4. wat you could do is use a old propane bottle , vacuum that with youre expensive pump (no heat at all) before the poor and basicly use it as an accumilator
    first pump the vacuum with the handpump close that off and open the vacuum inside the propane bottle a little to slowly suck out the air leaking intoo the chamber
    you could allso motorize the handpump using yet another wheelchairmotor and a tall crank

  5. Have you considered steam casting?
    In a nutshell you prepare and burn out the investment, melt your metal on the top of the sprew, a wet down fireproof pad is pressed on the top of the flask and the steam pushes the metal into the investment. I first saw this back in the 70s so there must be improvements on the technique.

  6. You can use your heat sensitive vacuum pump if you vacuum an air tank, then attach the tank to the mold install a shutoff valve for a quick vacuum pulling the metal in using only negative pressure from an air tank thus the vacuum pump will be safe and totally away from any and all heat while the hot liquid metal begins to be pulled in the mold much faster and more efficiently. Thanks for all your inspirational videos. Keep them coming!

  7. Hello I have used tin, instead of wax, then i have put tin in oil sand and burn it out, It works perfect, My question can you use vacuum on oil sand or can you centrifugal cast with oil sand? And my second project Use bismuth and tin for much lowwer melting point, Or maybe gallium?? Can you experiment whit this things? I have succesfull burnout tin out of oil sand withoud damaging it!!! But i dont know casting with centrifugal or vacuum with oilsand

  8. Perhaps use some plastic plumbing pipe as a vacuum accumulator? Or an old welding gas tank that's aged out of pressure service? You could use your nice vacuum pump to pull the accumulators down, then isolate it and use the vacuum you built up for casting.

  9. DIY WATER GLASS,… AKA … SODIUM SILICATE or POTASSIUM SILICATE…..WORKS w/ Po'Paris too…. impervious to heat… makes firebrick with silica sand and fireclay too… and more…. but yet sooooo much more.

  10. You should try adding a valve between your vacuum box and where the casting is placed. Then you draw a vacuum in the box and then place the casting on top of the vacuum pad and them turn the valve allowing the air in the casting to flow into the vacuum box.

    You could use your round vacuum box for this. I would create a little support stand to hold that silicone pad and run a brass fitting (hose fitting) into the silicone pad and do the same to the plexiglas/acrylic top of the vacuum chamber – then run a line from the silicone pad to the vacuum chamber (the valve would be placed on this line). You don't wan't to fill the chamber with stuff this time, you want it empty. Draw a vacuum as high as possible (you can use your good pump for this b/c it's drawing room temp air) and keep the vacuum running up until you pour.

    Then at pour time, shut off the vacuum, pour the casting & place on the new holder and then open the valve and the vacuum chamber will pull all the air from the casting into the chamber and you don't need to worry about pumping fast.

    You could also do the same with an old propane tank instead of a vacuum chamber. Maybe draw 50% vacuum (the larger the tank, the better) and then crack the valve to pull air from the casting.

    Another way to do this would be to add a little water to a propane tank, heat it with the valve open until it steam exits. Remove from heat & close the valve. Allow to cool. You now have vacuum inside the tank. Connect hose/tube to casting holder & open valve once poured.

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