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Thread: Proto-Form Machine. Thermo forming plastics

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    backyard_cnc's Avatar
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    Proto-Form Machine. Thermo forming plastics

    Been slowly building a machine for thermo forming plastics using a mold, heat and plastics based on a set of plans available to purchase on the internet. Called a ProtoForm this machine will use either 24" x24" or 24" x 36" sheets of plastic. And has 20 gallons of vacuum holding tanks for a strong deep pull. Depending on what you can scrounge beg or borrow to build this machine will determine the total cost . I figure I will invest about $1500 to complete, I had a vacuum pump already but spent extra for nice oak trim and a solid electrical system. The end result though will be a professional quality machine capable of doing good work and it should pay for itself quickly!

    Gerald
    Winnipeg, Manitoba

    Proto-Form Machine. Thermo forming plastics-1_7375_img-20150410-01071%5B3%5D-1-.jpg
    Proto-Form Machine. Thermo forming plastics-img-20150407-01058.jpg
    Proto-Form Machine. Thermo forming plastics-img-20150407-01059.jpg

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    Jeff Deyo (02-04-2016), kbalch (04-13-2015), mwmkravchenko (06-26-2019)

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    Content Editor Altair's Avatar
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    I would love to have one of these. There's a huge market for motorcycle fairings in my area.

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    Yes the possibilities are almost endless dependent only on your imagination and the size of the machine you build. I am hoping to get it finished over the next 2 weeks and start to learn the ins and outs of molding various things.

    Gerald

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    Thanks Gerald! I've added your Thermo-Forming Machine to our Vacuum Forming category, as well as to your builder page: backyard_cnc's Homemade Tools. Your receipt:


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    Content Editor DIYer's Avatar
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    Very interesting machine, Gerald! Looking forward to your posts on its output.

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    Hi Gerald,

    Very nice! Your Thermo-Forming Machine is the 'Tool of the Week'!

    You'll be receiving one of our official HomemadeTools.net T-shirts:

    Proto-Form Machine. Thermo forming plastics-hmt-t-shirts.jpg

    If you've already received one of our official HomemadeTools.net T-shirts, we'd be glad to award you a $25 online gift card from GiftRocket. Your choice!

    Either way, just let me have (via PM) your details (size, color choice, and mailing address for the shirt or email address for the gift card) and we'll get things processed directly.

    Congrats!

    Ken

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    This thread has been moved to the Must Read subforum. Congrats (and thanks) to Gerald for making such a valuable contribution!

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    An updated picture of the completed woodwork and the start of the electrical. Machine will plug into a 50AMP range block. The 2 zones of heating will be controlled by Solid State Relays (SSR) which are visible at the top either side of the breaker panel. They are mounted on large heat sinks as they dissipate a goo amount of heat dependent on load. These are 40A SSR and should be well up to the task of switching the heater elements. The use of SSR means I only need low amperage switches on the control panel to send a DC voltage to the SSR to control the ON/OFF stae of each heat zone.I have yet to select a powersuplly for this but likely either 12 or 24Vdc depending on what I have in my parts stash!

    Gerald

    Proto-Form Machine. Thermo forming plastics-img-20150412-01076.jpg

    Proto-Form Machine. Thermo forming plastics-img-20150417-01099.jpg
    Last edited by backyard_cnc; 04-17-2015 at 02:59 PM.

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    Hi... Have you some plans of this machine? Were can be purchased? Thanks...

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    Plans for this machine can be purchased on the internet and are well worth the price. They are complete and comprehensive and the heater kits can also be purchased directly from the author. I am in no way affiliated with the website that offers these plans. Just a happy customer.

    Gerald

    Plans for building a personal and/or production ready vacuum forming machine


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