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Wood stabilizing machine

Fri Jul 12, 2013 3:34 pm

Hi guys,

Isaiah and I are interested in stabilizing some of the local woods we get for handles.

Thinking about this little set up. Any thoughts? Anyone have a better option?

http://www.woodcraft.com/product/208559 ... r-kit.aspx

Re: Wood stabilizing machine

Fri Jul 12, 2013 4:06 pm

Don't know enough but to be stupid about it...but I've been wanting to buy this one for a while now:

http://www.turntex.com/index.php?page=s ... Itemid=121

Re: Wood stabilizing machine

Fri Jul 12, 2013 4:17 pm

Honestly, send them to WSSI, K&G or another well reputed company. The DIY kits never produce the results that a professional set up can do. I have around 30# of maple to do and a huge chunk of Flamed Maple to cut up and send out as well.

Re: Wood stabilizing machine

Fri Jul 12, 2013 4:19 pm

You'll notice the vacuum pump he recommends a 6CFM pump whereas the Woodcraft deal recommends a 2CFM compressor.

I've read good things about the TurnTex system. Just haven't had $400 burning a big enough hole in my pocket lately. :)

Re: Wood stabilizing machine

Fri Jul 12, 2013 4:53 pm

Sure Mark. A set up like this could be ok for thin stock ie: pen blanks, made from softer wood, or thin scales. This setup is not sufficient for any serious quality. It will not handle hardwoods with any level of reliability.

Most small scale guys doing home shop stabilizing, get a pressure vessel built from 3/8” thick pipe, with a flange on each end and accompanying valves. End plates are typically 3/4” thick, with 1/2” bolts every 1 1/2” around the circumference. The chemical of choice is methyl methacrylate.

The process is to place the prepped wood in the tank, bolt it up nice and tight, then draw a vacuum and hold it for a minimum of 48 hours. While under, and maintaining a vacuum, the solution is drawn into the tank. Once a volume of solution has been added sufficient to cover the wood, the vacuum is reversed, and the tank is placed under high pressure, like 200 psi. That pressure is held for a week, up to a month to ensure saturation. Then pressure is released, chamber is opened, wood wrapped in foil, then into an oven at 250 degrees to catalyze the solution.

Methyl methacrylate is the chemical used to make Plexiglas/Lexan. It is a catalytic solution, that if it gets too warm, it will auto catalyze in whats called a run away chemical reaction, and the resulting heat will hit a flash point, and combust spontaneously.

Not saying don’t try it, but it won’t match what you get from the guys who know what’s what. Hope this helps.

Pierre
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