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BACOENG 5 GALLON Wood Stabilization Chamber

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Review by Kelly posted 04-25-2021 03:00 AM 1163 views 0 times favorited 5 comments Add to Favorites Watch
BACOENG 5 GALLON Wood Stabilization Chamber BACOENG 5 GALLON Wood Stabilization Chamber BACOENG 5 GALLON Wood Stabilization Chamber Click the pictures to enlarge them

This unit comes with:

(1) Stainless steel pot. It measures about 11” in diameter by 11” tall. It looks even bigger, and is listed as a five gallon unit.

(2) Tempered glass lid. This is a nice, heavy piece of glass, ABOUT 3/4” thick.

(3) A silicone gasket, which mounts to the can.

(4) An oil filled vacuum gauge.

(5) Two valves, to allow you to connect to a vacuum pump and to release pressure from the pump and pot.

(6) A five foot (5’) hose with fittings that connect the gauge and valve system to your choice of vacuum pump.

The unit arrived and no ASSEMBLY was required, though the valve is upside down, for shipping purposes. As it came, I was able to connect the unit to the pump and draw a vacuum on the chamber in less than a minute.

The VALVE has no washers between the gaskets and the securing nut or T fitting on the outside of the tank. As such, you cannot tighten the nut on the inside enough to minimize the movement of the valve when any significant pressure is put against it. Merely adding two washers that rest over the two gaskets makes securing the valve body, without compromizing the seal quality, quick and easy.

Because this unit has a GLASS LID, it is suitable for ANY vacuum process, including stabilizing wood, which is a problem for units having plastic lids. Though thick, plastic lids suffer fractures caused by the gasses in the stabilization process. These fractures, eventually, result in vacuum loss.

The SILICONE GASKET, paired with the heavy glass lid, seals the unit quickly. If I shut the pump down and leave the valves closed, the chamber holds vacuum overnight. I haven’t tested it beyond that, but, since the gauge was still pegged, I suspect it would have ran another day or two fine.

The VACUUM GAUGE get will get you where you need to be, establishing vacuum for your chamber. HOWEVER, here, just a few hundred feet above sea level, my gauge pegs and moves beyond the -30 in Hg mark, so it’s far from dead on accurate. We’re not doing complex science here, so this should work for our needs.

I paired my tank with a Harbor Freight vacuum pump. The HOSE connected to the 1/4” NPT connection quickly and easily, without tools. The two stage, three CFM pump brought the five gallon tank down to vacuum in about one minute.

FIRST TEST: I have not test driven the unit with the Cactus Juice I bought. However, I am, as I write, testing a mix of oil based poly thinned about 50% with paint thinner. I poured it over a couple wood “arrowheads” I made and placed in a pot I set in the chamber (held down with a bent piece of wire).

I applied applied a vacuum to the wood in the little pot and it off-gassed air quickly. I, then, sealed the pump from the chamber and shut the pump down (which means it was left with a heavy vacuum on it, which is addressed below).

Since the chamber holds a vacuum well, I can continue removing air from the wood overnight or as long as I want without running the pump constantly. After that, I merely need to remove the vacuum and the poly will replace the air removed from the wood.

It’s said you should let the wood “soak” up the juice it’s in while under vacuum for at least twice as long as it was under vacuum. Longer will not hurt.

THE MATTER OF SHUTTING THE PUMP DOWN UNDER VACUUM brings me to a critical point: When you look into the world of stabilization, which requires a vacuum pump, you, generally, find two sets of people – those focused on the chamber and those focused on the vacuum pump.

Those focused on the pump point out shutting it down with pressure on it, then starting it again, without bleeding off pressure, beat on the pump and shortens its life. As it goes for fridges, freezers, HVAC’s, it goes for vacuum pumps we use for our vacuum chambers.

Because the system has one fitting feeding the chamber and two valves, one to atmosphere and one to the pump, there is no way to isolate the pump from the chamber AND release the pressure on the pump, before starting it again, should it become necessary to do so.

To solve that problem is just a simple matter of adding another valve and T fitting at the pump. The valve would allow you to release vacuum pressure on the pump, after the valve that came with the system.

NOTES:

1) Keep in mind, once you have the vacuum pump there are many things you can do with it. You could:

(a) build yourself a vacuum system for vacuum forming;

(b) build yourself a vacuum system for veneering;

(c) charge your home or auto cooling system (lot of cautions and such there);

(d) charge food storage systems with CO2 for long term storage;

(e) remove bubbles from small epoxy projects;

(f) degas essential oils;

(g) degas silicons for molds;

. . . . .




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Kelly

3547 posts in 4025 days



5 comments so far

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pottz

16841 posts in 2066 days


#1 posted 04-25-2021 04:36 AM

thanks for posting this it’s something im looking at getting into.

-- working with my hands is a joy,it gives me a sense of fulfillment,somthing so many seek and so few find.-SAM MALOOF.

View darthford's profile

darthford

703 posts in 3005 days


#2 posted 04-25-2021 01:05 PM

1) Keep in mind, once you have the vacuum pump there are many things you can do with it. You could:

(a) build yourself a vacuum system for vacuum forming;

- Kelly

My old dual pump 10 gallon setup with vacuum tank boosters for slamming ABS sheet during vacuum forming.

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Kelly

3547 posts in 4025 days


#3 posted 04-25-2021 09:31 PM

THAT’S a system!

NICE

View LittleBlackDuck's profile

LittleBlackDuck

7076 posts in 1902 days


#4 posted 04-26-2021 03:41 AM

Thanks for the review and the bum kick, K.

I bought a smaller one (5.7L, same brand) a few months ago and I should make the effort to RTFM and put it to use.

What’s that “orange square”

supposed to be used for? Did not see a reference in the manual’s big print. But then again, the way I read, I’m not surprised.

-- If your first cut is too short... Take the second cut from the longer end... LBD

View Kelly's profile

Kelly

3547 posts in 4025 days


#5 posted 04-26-2021 07:07 AM

I didn’t see a reference either. My guess is, since it’s “non stick,” you set your pot on it so it won’t stick if things boil over.

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