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Does anybody know of a good source for silicone membrane for vacuum pressing?
why does it have to be silicone? can it be ordinary dropcloth ?
Try aero-tech out of new york. Silicone works better. Elasticity allows you to do curved work easier
thanks for helping Dan i just started the ball rolling, but happy to share my meager knowledge.
Usually silicone is used for applications in which the material has been heated (solid surface) or the membrane itself is to be heated (ie. membrane press)
Silicone is much more expensive than polyurethane as well.
Practically speaking you have 3 choices: Vinyl, Urethane and Silicone. We have a production forming set up with 6 stations that we for veneer to a machined core. We started using vinyl bags (custom made) they were reasonably priced and lasted about a year. Then we went to Urethane bags, 30% more cost and they go 2-3 years. We never tried silicone, but I do know that you can get finer detail using it (stretchy), and I do not know about the longevity of them.
Given that you are a newbe to vac forming, I would suggest using vinyl and figure out what you are doing. For a small shop they could last a very long time. We turn out many 1000's of parts a year with these so we have a different economy of scale.
Try these folks, great people:
New World Mfg.Inc.
I use gum rubber. It is very flexible. It will only tolerate temperature up to 140F though.
For High Quality Silicone membranes, call Smartech International 704-362-1922 and speak with Jannica. They stock Steinbach membranes from Germany wich is an excellent product