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Thread: My Vacuum Chucking System

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Suwanee (near Atlanta), GA
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    811

    My Vacuum Chucking System

    Thought I would provide some pictures and details of my new vacuum chucking system. Thank you Steve Schlumpf for your tutorial which helped immensely.
    Pump Setup
    Here is my pump setup mounted on the wall next to my lathe using my existing French cleat system for easy relocation. Instead of wiring a switch I simply wired an old computer power cord to the pump and used an old power strip with a switch. I bought this power strip in the early 80s for my Commodore Vic 20!
    I was able to buy a late model GAST 523 110V with internal filters off eBay. This saved me the expense of having to buy external filters. The 110V Gast saved me the inconvenience and expense of having to run another 220 line or buying and wiring a 220 duplex receptacle to the circuit my PM is connected to. My advice to folks looking at the 220V GAST 522 from Surplus Center would be to compare the options and costs closely as reasonably priced 110 V Gast pumps come up on eBay quite often.
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    God is great and life is good!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Suwanee (near Atlanta), GA
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    My Vacuum Chuck Part 2

    Rotary Adapter
    I wanted the convenience of a quick removal adapter and ran across the idea of using a plastic garden hose quick disconnect. I turned a 4 ply laminated MDF turned handwheel adapter sized the same as my PMs handwheel.

    I built my rotary adapter with a pump bearing from Lowes, part 99502-H .625 Bore, double seal for Ace Pump found in Drawer K10, Specialty Fasteners. I added a 3/8 barb to 3/8 MIP brass fitting. I turned down the threads on the lathe with a parting tool to closely fit the .625 bore of the bearing and glued with JB Weld. Sorry for the out of focus picture as I was not aware of the macro focus setting when I took it.

    I fastened the bearing with three washers in case I decide to make a better handwheel adapter from Corian or something else if the MDF adapter leaked too much. The small end of the garden hose fits snugly in the handwheel and has an O ring that appears to seal very well. You may be able to see the closed foam gasket on the end of the adapter that seals against the handwheel snugly when the pump is on.
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    God is great and life is good!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Suwanee (near Atlanta), GA
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    My Vacuum Chucking System Part 3

    I made a holder for the rotary adapter when not in use as shown here.

    Here is a picture of my first chuck. I made a wooden face plate using a couple of pieces 5/4 cherry and the Beall 1- tap I recently picked up at the local WC.

    The white gasket on the chuck and handwheel adapter is from a sheet of thin closed cell Fun Foam, 99 cents at Michaels.
    Total costs for my pump system were $131! I have not had a chance to actually use it yet but it held a piece of wood with 24 inches of mercury so I think I am set.
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    God is great and life is good!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Mason Michigan
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    Looks like a beaut, Mike!

    You will wonder how you ever got along without it.
    A few hours south of Steve Schlumpf

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Harvey, Michigan
    Posts
    20,451
    Very nice work Mike! I like your variation on building a system! Have fun with it! It honestly makes finishing the bottoms of bowl/hollow forms so much easier you will ask why you didn't build the system sooner! Nice work on the vacuum system and the writeup! Thanks for sharing!
    Steve

    You never know what you got til it's gone!
    Please dont let that happen!
    Become a financial Contributor today!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    Goodland, Kansas
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    22,605
    Great looking system Mike. Really like the way you set it up.
    Bernie

    Never put off until tomorrow what you can do the day after tomorrow.

    To succeed in life, you need three things: a wishbone, a backbone and a funnybone.



  7. #7
    Nice Mike, looks like you'll be having a lot of fun with that system.
    Success is the sum of Failure and Learning

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Rogers, AR
    Posts
    106

    Vacuum Pump

    Mike,
    Do you think you will have any problems with the pump mounted vertically? Lubrication, or something of that sort?
    Kurt

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
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    SE PA - Central Bucks County
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    49,536
    I really like how you leveraged the cleat system for this addition to your shop, too.

    Kurt, if there was an issue with the mounting position, it would be a simple matter for him to rotate the unit 90 without disrupting the setup. The only thing I can think of that might be of consideration is load on bearings.
    --

    The most expensive tool is the one you buy "cheaply" and often...

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Suwanee (near Atlanta), GA
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    811
    Quote Originally Posted by Kurt Bird View Post
    Mike,
    Do you think you will have any problems with the pump mounted vertically? Lubrication, or something of that sort?
    Kurt
    Kurt, I originally was going to put the pump on a small shelf but when discussing with a woodturning friend about how to mount the shelf so it would hold the pump he suggested the simpler approach of mounting it like I did. I was concerned about the orientation but when reviewing the manual from the Gast website I discovered:
    "Mounting
    This product can be installed in any orientation. Mounting the product to a stable, rigid operating surface and using shock mounts will reduce noise and vibration."

    God is great and life is good!

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    HARVEY, MI. NEXT TO STEVE SCHLUMPF
    Posts
    1,735

    Great Setup!

    I was concerned with the verticle mount for the pump too. I'm suspicious that verticly loaded ball bearings will not last as long as a horizontal loaded bearing. Probably Old foaggy syndrome. Enjoy your system, and "PICTURES" of the results from the system.
    Bob

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Mesa, Arizona
    Posts
    1,373

    Good job!

    Mike,

    It looks like a great set up. Thanks for all the details, in particular the part numbers!

    A couple of questions:

    1. Is the garden hose quick disconnect attached (glued or something else) to the handwheel adapter or is just held in place by suction & friction?
    2. Is the handwheel adapter attached to the lathe in anyway or, again, is it just held in place with suction & friction?

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    New Port Richey, FL
    Posts
    197
    love the railing system in your shop, configuring it for my garage right now. do you think any of these three vacuum pumps will work? http://tampa.craigslist.org/pnl/for/957239192.html i'm not sure since they are the blower type. any help would be great, as i could probably get one for pretty cheap.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Suwanee (near Atlanta), GA
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    811
    David, I used epoxy to hold the plastic quick disconnect in the turned recess. The snug fit and the vacuum holds the adapter to the handwheel without assistance but a large rubber band might provide some peace of mind.

    Chris, I am no vacuum pump expert so went with the Gast model frequently used. The ones in your link have bigger motors than the 1/4 HP of the Gast 523. I would have concerns that bigger is not necessarily better. Gast 522 or 523 both work and are popular.
    God is great and life is good!

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Richland Wa.
    Posts
    784
    Thanks Mike, nice set up. Are you still happy with this? I am saving all of these good ideas.

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