Author Topic: How do you stabilize handle materials  (Read 2041 times)

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Offline Whistler1895

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How do you stabilize handle materials
« on: September 25, 2016, 05:15:39 AM »
Recently built a vacuum chamber out of a mason jar and a brake bleeder. Can pull about -20"wc  how long should i let the material remain under vacuum? Also how much if any longer does antler or bone take than wood?

Offline Spyder1958

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Re: How do you stabilize handle materials
« Reply #1 on: September 25, 2016, 09:35:59 AM »
crashblades will be by I'm sure. he stabilizes a lot of material. or PM him.

I've used a canning jar and lid, double boiler in tung oil, let it set for a month, seem ok, time will tell.

Good luck
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Offline druid189

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Re: How do you stabilize handle materials
« Reply #2 on: September 25, 2016, 10:08:46 PM »
Create the "poor-man's" vacuum chamber:

brake bleeder
http://www.harborfreight.com/brake-bleeder-and-vacuum-pump-kit-69328.html

big pickle jar or large Mason jar. Your best bet is to use one that's smaller in diameter but taller....think of a large olive jar.

minwax wood hardener
http://www.minwax.com/wood-products/maintenance-repair/minwax-high-performance-wood-hardener

Punch a hole in the jar lid and screw in the end of the fitting from the brake bleeder kit.

Put the project inside the jar.
Fill the jar with the hardener to about 2" above the project [videos I've seen but can't find used metal plates to "hold down" the project in the jars]
Seal the lid on the jar.

Slowly, begin to draw the air out of the jar. As you draw the O2 out, tiny bubbles will emanate from the project and rise to the surface. Keep the fluid level higher than the project at all times.

Do this over the course of a few hours to ensure all the air was replaced with hardener.

When the project no longer provides tiny bubbles, the pores have been filled with the hardener. Allow to sit in this state for several hours, break the seal and remove to dry over a period of about a week. Polish the outside. Works for non-finished woods, bone, antler, etc.

Here's the one i described:


How it's done:


Here's a video using a vacuum pump but the outcome is about the same:
« Last Edit: September 25, 2016, 10:35:52 PM by druid189 »
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Offline crashdive123

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Re: How do you stabilize handle materials
« Reply #3 on: September 26, 2016, 04:01:35 AM »
For stabilizing material in a vacuum jar, Cactus Juice Stabilizing Resin works well. 

Offline crashdive123

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Re: How do you stabilize handle materials
« Reply #4 on: September 26, 2016, 04:07:17 AM »
Recently built a vacuum chamber out of a mason jar and a brake bleeder. Can pull about -20"wc  how long should i let the material remain under vacuum? Also how much if any longer does antler or bone take than wood?

I still believe in the Cactus Juice Stabilizing Resin that I mentioned in my previous post, but wanted to address your questions a bit more.  The length of time will depend on what you are using to stabilize and the equipment.  The length of time will vary quite a bit, but is not necessarily tied to whether it is antler, bone or wood.  The more porous a material is, the longer it will take.  One thing to keep in mind is that stabilizing will fill pores, but will not fill voids.  For example the marrow cavity on an antler or bone will not be filled by stabilizing, but the bone structure that makes up that cavity will become harder.

Offline Whistler1895

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Re: How do you stabilize handle materials
« Reply #5 on: September 26, 2016, 12:01:16 PM »
Wow . Thanks for all the input. I will digest it all and experiment till i find what works for me . Thanks again :)

Offline Sarge

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Re: How do you stabilize handle materials
« Reply #6 on: September 26, 2016, 01:10:45 PM »
I have experimented just a little recently. I have an electric vacuum pump and have used an acrylic canister and a glass canister as the chamber. Acrylic worked fine but the fumes from the Minwax Wood Hardener turned the interior white so it is no longer clear. Of course, fumes had no effect on the glass.

I read somewhere (cannot find the site now) about mixing equal parts  Minwax Wood Hardener, Boiled Linseed Oil, and Denatured Alcohol. I used that cocktail, pulled a vacuum several times during the day and then let it sit overnight under vacuum. Seemed to work fine. It turned some really delicate, porous spalted maple into some much harder and heavier material. I was able to saw, drill, glue, pin and sand it.

I'm certain at some point I'll spring for a real chamber and some Cactus Juice.
"The man with the knapsack is never lost." Horace Kephart (1862-1931)

Offline pap11y

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Re: How do you stabilize handle materials
« Reply #7 on: September 26, 2016, 05:16:11 PM »
I use cactus juice. I run my vacuum at 29psi for at least 3-4 hours then again the next day for 3-4 hours.. Then I cook the scales (in oven) in foil for 2 hours.

A hand pump is not going to do it for you if you want to get full penetration. I can watch wood at 20 the 29 psi and the bubble difference (bubbles coming out of the wood) are substantially different. If I get it to 29 and close off the jar so theres a 29psi vacuum in the sealed jar t doesn't do anything. It needs a continued vacuum..

Mine is a stainless reservoir with a pyrex lid. The vacuum pumps are cheap but beware the cheapest ones and make sure you keep it well oiled..

Offline Sundance Creek

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Re: How do you stabilize handle materials
« Reply #8 on: November 18, 2018, 05:47:09 AM »
its threads like this that I joined

ty all