P17676: Vacuum Former

Integrated System Build & Test with Customer Demo

Table of Contents

Team Vision for System Level Demo with Customer

Planned to Complete:

Actually Completed:

Highlights: We tested, and successfully vacuum formed three different times. Each test worked extremely well, parts came out very detailed.

Budget Update:

Bill of Materials

Test Results Summary

Heating Element / Oven Test

Heating elements were wired into the constructed two-layer oven, and wire connections were insulated with a braided fiberglass wire housing. The risks with the oven included:

Frame Sliding Test

Brackets attached the clamping frame to the sliding brackets, but there were observed issues with the rigidity and torquing of the frame, along with engaging sliding features causing binding, lead to the brackets being shimmed to be parallel to the 80-20 frame and flat, non-engaging sliders to be used. Although it requires a fair amount of coordination from the two operators, the sliding frame can be much more feasibly lifted after these modifications.

Mold Forming Test

A variety of parts were placed on the vacuum table, over the course of three trials, and the full procedure was tested to determine the effectiveness of the subsystem integration. A 12"x12" plastic sheet was secured to the clamping frame, set close to the oven surface, the oven was turned on and the temperature slowly rose, softening the plastic. The vacuum tanks were evacuated simultaneously, along with the plastic heating process. Once the plastic began to sag a reasonable (currently undetermined) amount, the frame and plastic was brought down over the parts, the vacuum system was opened and purged, and the softened plastic was tightly drawn over the parts and hardened. The image below shows the parts to be formed and the completed mold that resulted from the forming process.
Molded Parts

Risk and Problem Tracking

Risk Tracking

Plans for next phase

With Imagine RIT fast approaching, we plan on having all build and test completed in 3 weeks. Included in this will be:

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