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Heat or Vacuum Presses

Stephen Enggass

True Grumbler
Curious to know what those of you with Dry amount Presses use them for mostly. What size projects are typical - if there is such a thing. Heat or Vacuum? Pros/Cons? Frequent use? Recommendations? Thanks.
 
888

framestudio

CGF II, Certified Grumble Framer Level 2
I've used the same Seal 500T heat press for 31 years now which has a plate size of 26x32. I use it to mount prints & posters mostly. Oversized pieces can be mounted in sections with no problem.
 

prospero

SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God
The old screw-down hard bed presses do have one advantage over vacs. You can mount in 'bites' which means the capacity
in one direction is (theorectically) infinite. Also, if you are wet-mounting you can leave the item in the press under pressure
for as long as you like. You wouldn't want to leave a vac press switched on while the glue sets, even with no heat on.
 

alacrity8

MGF, Master Grumble Framer
It takes less time to mount something in a Clam Shell Style Press (500T).
Vacuum Presses take longer, as the pressure needs to drop with the press hot, and the art inside.
This makes them potentially less safe for heat sensitive items.
The 26x32 size of a 500T is large enough for the majority of what we mount, but it can be tedious to mount something large.
Maintenance on a Clam Shell is easier as well, as the only thing that is likely to go off is the thermostat,
Vacuum Presses require a good seal, which can be hard to obtain if you purchase a used model.

Having both can be helpful, but I'd start with a Clam Shell.

Side note is there a good standard term for the 500T style press?
Heat Press is misleading, as most Vacuum Presses are heated.
Screw Down Hard Bed? Clam Shell? Mechanical Press?

Brian
 

prospero

SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God
The clamshell or so-called 'soft bed' presses are great for smaller scale items. Never had one.

The typical entry level vac presses will take a medium poster. About 24x36. The bigger ones take a BIG poster but are
very unwieldy. Need a bunch of strong lads to shift them. The biggest ones are colossal. Three-phase electric.
It should be noted that you can mount multiple items at once on a vac press - as many as you can fit in and
they can be different thicknesses.
 

charming

True Grumbler
It takes less time to mount something in a Clam Shell Style Press (500T).
Vacuum Presses take longer, as the pressure needs to drop with the press hot, and the art inside.
This makes them potentially less safe for heat sensitive items.
The 26x32 size of a 500T is large enough for the majority of what we mount, but it can be tedious to mount something large.
Maintenance on a Clam Shell is easier as well, as the only thing that is likely to go off is the thermostat,
Vacuum Presses require a good seal, which can be hard to obtain if you purchase a used model.

Having both can be helpful, but I'd start with a Clam Shell.

Side note is there a good standard term for the 500T style press?
Heat Press is misleading, as most Vacuum Presses are heated.
Screw Down Hard Bed? Clam Shell? Mechanical Press?

Brian

I agree that, if it is in your budget, having both can be a good purchase.
 

snafu

MGF, Master Grumble Framer
for about 36 years I've used a 42x62 vacuum press with no heat. It's quicker to mount with than any type of heat press if you include warm up time.
depending on what you are mounting, a small flat poster takes less than one minute to mount.
I've mounted about 48 - 11x14's at once by stacking them up , you can't do this in any hot press.
 

alacrity8

MGF, Master Grumble Framer
for about 36 years I've used a 42x62 vacuum press with no heat. It's quicker to mount with than any type of heat press if you include warm up time.
depending on what you are mounting, a small flat poster takes less than one minute to mount.
I've mounted about 48 - 11x14's at once by stacking them up , you can't do this in any hot press.
What adhesive are you using in your press?
I've so many things badly mounted by spray adhesives, and liquids, that I avoid them.

Brian
 

snafu

MGF, Master Grumble Framer
Seal Vacuglue 300 and yes paste
I avoid spray adhesives
 
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