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[Need] Vacuum casting equip

I recently completed a one week casting class at William Holland Lap.
School. I have all the equipment to set up my own casting shop with
the exception of a vacuum table/vacuum caster. Any used ones that
someone knows about?

I have one that I have only used a couple times and would be
interested in selling. I bought it from Swest several years ago and
it is in new condition taking up space in my shop. I’m in Pensacola
(Florida panhandle). Let me know. tx, Regis

Hi Dave. Yes, I have a Rey Vac-U-Cast that I bought about ten years
ago. It has never been used for casting only vacuuming and then only
about six times. I found that I preferred fabrication more. I would
guess it is worth about $400.00. I also have a large centrifugal
casting machine, flasks and other accessories.

. I have all the equipment to set up my own casting shop with the
exception of a vacuum table/vacuum caster. Any used ones that
someone knows about? 

Dave: I don’t know about used, but a vacuum caster is not that
difficult to make if you are handy and have the time. Vaccuum pumps
are available at the local pawnshop or used from construction
sources. Another tack would be to get a motor and an auto A/C
compressor. The flywheel on the compressor may need to be welded or
screwed (I used three screws between the two wheels on mine) to keep
it from freewheeling. Take vaccuum off the “Suct” side. I used some
copper tubing and compression fittings. The compressor needs to be
mounted and hooked to an old washing machine motor with a suitable
"V" belt. The copper tubing is then connected to some flexible hose
with some stiffness so it won’t collapse with the vaccuum. A vac
gage can be had from the auto supply store or similar. You will need
to build a jiggle table out of a steel plate and a few springs and
bolts. Then you buy or build a bell jar and get the appropriate
gaskets for vaccuum investing and for casting. If you can find a
thick walled glass carboy, you can cut the bottom off and grind it
flat. I just bought a bell jar. My commercial unit has a groove and
an “O” ring seal for the jar, but a flat rubber gasket and some
grease would work as well. A silicone gasket is needed for the
casting flask. You could buy flasks or use tin cans with the ends
cut out. You wil need a valve for turning the vaccuum on and off, a
gas valve such as that for plumbing your stove will work fine. A
trap in the line will protect the vac pump – a small bottle and
rubber stopper and some steel wool in the bottle is what I have, but
there are probably commercial filter units you can buy such as those
for air compressors. My auto a/c unit pulls about 28," which is
enough. I would like to do a little better, but I can boil water if
it’s about 70 degrees. Have to heat the water a little in winter.
Maybe another auto unit would work better. Some refrigerator
compressors work well for this application, too. Try getting some
advice from a local fridge repairman.

Tim McCreight has some further details on building a machine for
perforated flasks iin his “Complete Metalsmith,” but I can’t remember
them right at the moment.

I paid $25 for my compressor, and a motor should be available for
nothing or $20 at the most (find a dead washing machine at the thrift
store). The whole contraption should be do-able for less than $100,
not including the bell jar and gaskets. If you are not casting a lot
of pieces, an even cheaper way to go would be steam casting. You can
use a coating method rather than debubblizing with vac, use a tin can
flask and a “steam generator” (wooden handle on a jar lid stuffed
with wet paper) and that is about all you need, but that’s another
story . . . I hope this is helpful to you and/or to someone else
interested in casting on the cheap.

Generally jeweler’s supplies are way too pricey and anything
available from another venue (scales from gun suppliers, pliers from
Harbor Freight, torches from the local welding supply) is probably
going to be cheaper that way. Also many ways to make your own tools
— the Etruscans did, didn’t they? This is not said to take away
from the big bucks induction casters and the laser welders which have
their place, but often there are other ways. Why buy a machine that
is going to cost out at $100 per piece if you are a low volume


Your advise is right down my alley of thinking. I started out
thinking about building my own (I build a lot of my own tools). The
price of a vac.pump was the real hi end item and I thought that I
might find a used one reasonable. I had not considered an auto
compressor. You have inspired me to rethink the
building option again. Many thanks

Vacuum casting machine for sell. Tabletop and chamber casting. It
is a Vigor unit and its about 10 years old. I had to move to another
unit because this is my main source of income and I needed a new one.
If you try to make one yourself you are an armature. I have made over
$150,000 with this unit and theres still some more left in it email me
if interested

The price of a vac.pump was the real hi end item and I thought that
I might find a used one reasonable. 

Hi All! My husband has purchased 2 in the last year at the local flea
market for under $50 each! Might be a worth while trip to see!

Lydia, Mistress Jewelry