Thursday, April 1, 2010

Modifying the Pressure Pot

A while back I talked about getting a pressure pot off ebay for roughly 10 bucks.  I had planned on buying a bigger one, but it isnt in the cards till May or June.  Enviromolds has a complete system for about $800 that is really quite good and reasonably priced. 

So rather than get the new pressure pot now when I could least afford it, I opted for casting supplies and did a retro fit on the pressure pot I have.  Its smaller than what I would like, but it works and is better than nothing.  I just need a new lid gasket and 1 hose connector and Im ready to go.

This pot is actually a painters pot.  Meant to take the air out of paint.  This one had a regulator on the outgoing line to govern the spray of the paint coming out.  But the regulator isnt working and was in the wrong place for me anyway.  So I bypassed it.  I will work directly off the compressor.  I removed the outgoing line and put in a plug.  I kept the gauge as it was directly on the pot.  Good.  Right where I want it.  I cut the brass tube that came out of the lid and ground it flush so it wouldnt interfere with anything I put in the pot.  This tube sucked the paint out of the pot.  Thats all.  I then installed a make shift air fitting into the hose that came off the lid and goes to the compressor.  I hooked that up to a shut off valve and  then a quick change connector.  This is the compressor I found in the garbage.   It had a tag on it that said motor works, tank leaks.  So I welded up the leak.

The pot leaked.  I expected it to.  It needs a new lid gasket.  I inverted the gasket to the 'fresh' side and tightened the lid harder.  It held.  Im getting some new gasket tomorow. 

So how do I tighten a pot lid tightly with my mold/resin inside without moving the pot so my casting isnt splashed on the insides of the pot?  How do I hold onto it?

I took a couple of 3" hose clamps and made 1 out of the 2.  I did this because I didnt have a hose clamp big enough to do the job.  So I made one with 2.  I took some toolbox drawer liner and wrapped it around pot.  I then put a 1/2" keystock along the side of the pot.  I then tightened the hose clamps up and it holds not only the grip wrapping but also the keystock.  Now I can hold onto the can.  Now I can put the keystock in a vise to hold it still and then I can easily screw the lid on without moving the pot.  I can now also lay the pot down sideways for longer molds.  So the compressor and pressure pot cost me just under $20.00  The point being you dont need a designer setup and if you know what you are doing and looking for, you CAN do this on a shoestring budget.

It isnt the dream set up I wanted.  But it works properly and thats all that matters.  It will do what I need till I can get  a bigger pot.   At least I can do proper casting now.  Tomorrow I am off to get some new gaskets and a proper hose fitting and will be casting up a storm this weekend.  Centaurus will be my first project.  I need to make some figures for my chess set to keep the color scheme intact.

1 comment:

  1. Hah! That's funny because I got an old paint pot that my dad gave me that I'm in the process of converting to a pressure pot. ^_^