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Lapidary / Gemstone Community Forum
April 22, 2019, 11:53:19 pm
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vacuum stabilization

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Author Topic: vacuum stabilization  (Read 397 times)
bilquest
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« on: January 08, 2016, 02:50:02 pm »

I've tried several methods for stabilization including Opticon and acetone/epoxy soaking. I even made a little vacuum out of a pickle jar and a Harbor Freight brake bleeder. It kinda worked in that I could see bubbles fizzing out of the stone. The problem was that to maintain vacuum I had to keep pumping which grew tiresome in a hurry. (You'd be surprised at how much air can be in a seemingly solid stone.)

So, I was wondering if anyone here has tried one of these gizmos?

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00LXH1NZ0/ref=dra_a_cs_lr_hn_xx_P1400_1000?tag=dradisplay-20&ascsubtag=b4cdffcb8b566f4efa77f3984677fa53_S

I've got some killer Chrysocolla (and other porous stone) that I would like to suck some epoxy into... and I'm not quite sure about dropping two bills for an apparatus that might only add further clutter to the shop.
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dickb
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« Reply #1 on: January 08, 2016, 03:14:16 pm »

You can get by cheaper than that, although that will work fine.

Look at vacuum pumps and aspirators on ebay.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Contemporary-Products-Aspirator-Vacuum-Pump-Model-6260-/301823034217?hash=item46460e0369:g:7usAAOSwys5WT8Xz

Good luck.

Dickb
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jakesrocks
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« Reply #2 on: January 08, 2016, 03:41:19 pm »

Did you read the product description. Especially the first part ?

This chamber is not to be used with stabilization resins or acrylic based products. In order to use these materials we only recommend our GlassVac systems. Reasons to Purchase our chamber: • Free 8x8 Vac Pad pad and 50 micron air filter • Unmatched customer service • #1 gasket in the market • Unique leak free bulkhead design • Next day shipping • Family owned business •Internal Dimensions: 6.75qt; diameter at opening drafting down to 6 Inches X 3 inches deep This chamber comes assembled and includes: • (1) 1.75qt pyrex glass base • (1) 1/2" thick polycarbonate lid • (1) Custom silicone gasket o Chemically resistant o 392F maximum working temperature for the Gasket Only o 60A Durometer density • (1) Custom liquid filled vacuum Gauge o Max Vacuum -28.5 HG (+/-1 HG) • (1) Leak free air manifold with release valve • (1) Brass barb that will connect to all vacuum pumps • (1) 5ft steel reinforced vinyl hose • (1) 3CFM single stage vacuum pump (Orange or Black) Question/Answer Section: 1. Will this chamber hold a vacuum for an extended period of time? Yes, our chamber can hold a sustainable vacuum for 24 hours while only losing a maximum of 2.5inHg. 2. Are these vacuum chambers safe? Yes, all of our chambers have been tested to their limits to ensure that they are strong enough for their advertised applications. Acrylic is an inherently strong material which is why in correct applications it is bullet resistant. 3. Can these chambers be heated? Yes, many of our customers routinely heat these chambers. The chamber can safely be heated up to 160F, in excess of that the user assumes all risk.
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light house jack
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« Reply #3 on: January 08, 2016, 05:50:18 pm »

I suggest that you watch the video on the website of HIS GLASS WORKS in Asheville, NC. They show how do the process with HXTAL which is the epoxy that museums around the world use as it is the most archival and never yellows.  I went there and watched the process and came home and made my own vacuum pump using the Harbor Freight hand brake pump and a mason jar which with the hose and connector which is about a $30.00 solution. When I pump it up and start seeing the bubbles coming from the rock, I cannot say that I loose vacuum for quite a while. If you are loosing vacuum, I would check to make sure that the connector in the lid of the mason jar is sealed totally.
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PhilNM
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« Reply #4 on: January 09, 2016, 10:18:30 am »

I bought and successfully used this system to stabilize many pounds of turquoise. Recently sold it and it was still working as good as the day I bought it.
http://www.bestvaluevacs.com/5gvackit.html
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PhilNM
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« Reply #5 on: January 09, 2016, 10:25:46 am »

I suggest that you watch the video on the website of HIS GLASS WORKS in Asheville, NC. They show how do the process with HXTAL which is the epoxy that museums around the world use as it is the most archival and never yellows.  I went there and watched the process and came home and made my own vacuum pump using the Harbor Freight hand brake pump and a mason jar which with the hose and connector which is about a $30.00 solution. When I pump it up and start seeing the bubbles coming from the rock, I cannot say that I loose vacuum for quite a while. If you are loosing vacuum, I would check to make sure that the connector in the lid of the mason jar is sealed totally.

Jack, Tried to find that video, found many other but not that one. Got an URL?

Thanks!
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bobby1
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« Reply #6 on: January 09, 2016, 11:47:44 am »

In my efforts at stabilizing or fracture sealing with a vacuum pump I found that, at least in my experience, the vacuum was so significant that what I saw as bubbles coming from the fractures was actually the epoxy boiling and causing the bubbles. I'm using an industrial vacuum pump that probably works too well.
Bob
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PhilNM
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« Reply #7 on: January 10, 2016, 05:32:04 pm »

In my efforts at stabilizing or fracture sealing with a vacuum pump I found that, at least in my experience, the vacuum was so significant that what I saw as bubbles coming from the fractures was actually the epoxy boiling and causing the bubbles. I'm using an industrial vacuum pump that probably works too well.
Bob
If your material wasn't completely dry, those bubbles could be caused by water breaking down, which will go on forever.
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bobby1
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« Reply #8 on: January 10, 2016, 07:58:50 pm »

Actually I heat the piece under a 100 watt bench lamp until it is too hot to touch, then I place it in an aluminum muffin pan with Opticon and heat it again to make the Opticon thin and watery so it will penetrate better.  All of this heat definitely drives off all the water. I let it cool a somewhat to minimize the probability of the Opticon boiling under vacuum but it still does.
Bob
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vitzitziltecpatl
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« Reply #9 on: January 10, 2016, 08:31:47 pm »

All the first-hand comments of vacuum setups is great. We have a pile of things we want to throw into a jar one of these days. Thanks!
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