The VacuPress vacuum veneering press arrived yesterday; I had a chance to run a quick test, to make sure everything was working as expected. It was! The total time from unpacking, to making the 2′ X 4′ platen, to taking the photos below: 75 minutes.
Now the fun can start with the application of cherry and spalted maple veneers, to continue work with the Krenov-inspired cabinet:
As you can see, the pump pulled 24.5 inches of mercury, which is great at our 1,150-foot elevation. It took 38 seconds to reach this vacuum level, using this 2′ X 4′ platen with the 4′ X 8′ bag shortened by simply moving the C-Clamp tubular clamp near the back of the platen. I am quite pleased!
Since I normally keep the shop around 60° to 62°F in the Winter, I will be using the heating blanket to preheat the bag contents overnight, to ensure that everything in the bag stays above 70°F during clamping – typically 12 hours. This will allow proper curing of the veneering adhesive (Unibond 800).
I will keep you posted on my veneer projects using this vacuum veneering system. In the meantime, today I am headed to the Open House being held by Metro Hardwoods, the newest supplier of hardwoods and exotics in the Kansas City area. I might take pictures, or even shoot some video to share with you.