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Excel 5™
Continuous Run
Vacuum Press System
* Special Savings! *


Additional Pictures: 4

Regular Price:
Your Price:
$399.90   ($80.00 Savings!)
Excel Podz™ Kit:
Extended Kit:


Product Description

Excel 5

Vacuum PressSimple is Better
The Excel 5™ Vacuum Pressing System is designed for woodworkers looking for a simple, powerful, and affordable method of veneering wood panels and clamping wood projects for routing, sanding and carving.

Every part of this system was designed with simplicity in mind. This makes it easy to assemble and incredibly durable. The system is fully adjustable from 280 to 1,785 lbs of pressure per square foot. The assembly consists of only a few pieces and each uses standard NPT threads. There is no wiring involved in the assembly process and the whole system goes together very quickly.

At the heart of the system is a powerful vacuum pump designed for many years of trouble-free operation. We now offer a 120v and a 240v version of the Excel kit. This system can handle commercial and industrial use and is suitable for bags up to 4' x 15'.

pg-need-help.gifAssembly Time: 20-25 minutes 
Assembly Instructions: Click here

To complete your press, you will need a vacuum bag and platens.

Updated and Improved

The new Excel 5™ kit is a powerhouse of vacuum and a testament to simplicity. I have completely redesigned this system, updated many parts, and added several new features.

  • The kit now includes a higher efficiency vacuum filter. There is no more disposing and replacing of pleated filter media. Just remove the stainless steel filter element, rinse, and reinstall it.
  • The vacuum pump operates at only 63 dB. It is the most quiet piston-based vacuum pump that I've ever found. I think you will be pleasantly surprised. The sound level from this pump is even less than some diaphragm pumps.
  • Also included is an integrated handle and manifold assembly. The handle allows you to comfortably carry the system. The manifold allows for an optional extended valve system which allows the pressing of up to 3 vacuum bags at the same time.
  • With a simple change of one part, I've made it even easier to adjust the vacuum level.
  • Enhanced kit instructions are included with each Excel vacuum press kit.
  • It's also worth mentioning that the new Excel 5 system is $60 less expensive than the previous model.

 Excel 5 Vacuum Press KitKit Contents

  • Continuous Duty 5 CFM Oil-Less Vacuum Pump
  • High Flow Vacuum Filter
  • Braided Vacuum Tube (10 Ft.)
  • Lock-On Vacuum Connector
  • Exhaust Muffler
  • Thread Sealing Tape
  • Vacuum Valve (Type I)
  • Heavy Duty Stainless Steel Vacuum Gauge
  • Four Rubber Feet for Vacuum Pump
  • Brass Cross Fitting
  • Straight Brass Barbed Fittings
  • Short Brass Pipe Nipple
  • Long Brass Pipe Nipple
  • Brass Barbed Elbow
  • Brass Street Elbow
  • Brass Hex Plug
  • Composite Handle and Manifold


  • Suitable for vacuum bags up to 4' x 15'
  • Fully adjustable vacuum level
  • Composite handle with integrated manifold
  • Simple design with easy-to-follow instructions
  • Fan-cooled and thermally protected vacuum pump
  • Powerful enough to create 25.5" of Hg at sea level
  • Optional manifold with quick connector kit permits vacuum pressing up to 3 bags at the same time


Excel 5™ Options

Excel Podz™ Kit (26 Piece Podz Kit + Foot Pedal)
Podz™ are simple vacuum jigs designed to affordably clamp projects to your bench top. Using the power of your vacuum press and vacuum clamping add-on, the Excel Podz kit allows you to configure the clamping jigs any way you choose to clamp projects as small as 4" x 4" and as large as 5' x 4'. The Excel Podz kit includes everything in the regular Podz kit plus the electric foot pedal.

  • Podz Pre-Drilled Jigs Podz Clamping Jigs- 4" x 4" HDPE (4 pcs.)
  • Mach Valves (4 pcs.)
  • Brass Plug - 1/8" NPT
  • Blue Vacuum Tube (12 ft.)
  • Brass Barb Fittings (7 pcs.)
  • Removable Podz Gaskets (8 pcs.)
  • Attachment Fitting
  • Electric Foot Pedal


Extended Kit
This optional manifold kit with quick connectors allows you to vacuum press up to three vacuum bags at once. The quick disconnects allow the extra vacuum lines to be removed from the system when not in use.

Extended Manifold and Quick Connector Kit

This extended kit includes the following items:

  • Vacuum Valve (2 pcs.)
  • Brass Barbed Fitting (2 pcs.)
  • Quick Connector Assembly (2 pcs.)
  • Braided Vacuum Tube (10 Ft., 2 pcs.)
  • Lock-On Vacuum Connector (2 pcs.)

Additional instructions are included in the Excel 5 kits sold with this optional kit.

Didn't you have a kit like this already?
We offered a different version of the Excel 5 for many years and were forced to discontinue it in August of 2014 because the former pump manufacturer (Gast Mfg) treated us terribly. I knew I could find a better pump, make a better system, and get away from their horrendous customer service and routine price hikes.

Why does the clamping add-on on this product cost more than if the Podz clamping kit is ordered separately?
The vacuum clamping option includes the Podz kit and the electric foot pedal. The stand-alone Podz kit on our site does not include the foot pedal.

How does the Excel 5 pump compare to previous pump that was formerly offered?
The new model...

  • generates ten less decibels than the Gast model.
  • is nearly $80 less expensive than the Gast model.
  • includes a much better exhaust muffler.
  • is modular so replacing a worn part is very easy.
  • uses less power at start-up and while running.

What else will I need to have a complete vacuum press system?
You will need a vacuum bag and a few veneering supplies such as a glue roller, veneer glue, and breather mesh. Also needed is a melamine platen board which can be bought at most large home improvement stores.

What is the warranty on this system?
The vacuum pump is warranted by the manufacturer to be free of defects in material and workmanship for a period of 1 year. All other parts of this system are warranted by to be free of defects in material and workmanship for a period of 90 days.

What is the return policy on the Excel 5 system?
Please see this page for details regarding our return policy.

Does this system include a vacuum bag?
None of our systems come with a vacuum bag because we don't want to force you to buy something you may not need. We also have no way to know what size bag you might want with your system so the vacuum bags are offered separate from the rest of the system.

What kind of plug end is on the 240v version of the kit?
The plug on the 240v power cord is designed for Australia power outlets using the AS3112 standard.

Why can't I order the clamping option with the 240V version of the Excel 5 kit?
The clamping kit requires the electric foot pedal to turn the system on and off. We have not yet obtained foot pedals that will work with the special plug end on the 240v version of the pump.

Can this system be used for vacuum chucking?
There is no safe way to answer this question. More information needs to be provided. You would need to know three things...

  1. What is the surface area where the chuck attaches to the project?
  2. Is the project material porous? (some species of wood are very porous)
  3. How much weight will be held on the chuck at turning speed?

With these bits of information, you can calculate a number that will help you determine if the pump is safe to use for chucking. Continue on to the next question.

How much clamping force will the Excel 5 create for vacuum chucking?
This is based on a calculation using the maximum sustainable vacuum level and the surface area where the project is attached to the chuck. A smaller attachment area means less clamping/chucking force. A large industrial pump capable of pulling a very high vacuum may not be suitable for chucking if the vacuum surface area of the project is small. You have to calculate the vacuum surface area on your project first. Then determine what amount of vacuum you are capable of applying to the project. With this information, you can determine the total clamping force on the project and consider whether or not it is enough to safely hold your project while it is being turned. Here is the method for calculating the clamping force.

  1. Determine the surface area of the vacuum attachment point. In most cases, the vacuum chuck will be circular so use Pi (roughly 3.14) to determine this number. The formula starts by taking the diameter and dividing by two. This gives you the radius. Then multiply the radius by 3.14 and then multiply it again by the radius. Let's use a chuck diameter of 6" and determine the surface area. Divide 6 by 2. That makes 3 so then multiply 3 times 3.14 (Pi), then multiply that again by 3.
    6 ÷ 2 = 3
    3 x 3.14 = 9.42
    3 x 9.42 = 28.26

    So here we have 28.26 square inches in a 6" diameter chucking surface.
  2. Determine the maximum sustainable vacuum level that you can reach with your project piece attached to the vacuum chuck simply by placing it on the chuck and turning on your vacuum pump. A non-porous material that is chucked to your lathe will typically achieve the same level of maximum vacuum that your pump is capable of achieving. In other words, the project material itself allows no loss of vacuum therefor the pump will achieve its best available vacuum.
    In the following example let's assume that the project material is non-porous and that the pump can generate 25" of Hg. For every inch of Hg vacuum, you get .49 lbs per square inch of pressure. Multiply .49 by the vacuum level that the pump can create.

    .49 x 25 = 12.25 (this is how much pressure in pounds that you are getting per square inch)
  3. Multiply 28.26 x 12.25 to get 346.19 lbs of force holding your project to the lathe.
  4. Now only you can decide if that is enough chucking force to safely hold your project.

What if the chucking project is porous? How do I determine if this pump is suitable?
Unfortunately, there is no way to determine this without actually placing the project on a vacuum chuck. You would need to determine the actual maximum sustainable vacuum and this will vary across each project you try out depending on the size and porosity of the material.

What pump do you recommend for vacuum chucking?
I can only suggest one thing... the bigger, the better. Several of our customers are using 3 CFM vacuum sources for chucking but most are opting for 5 CFM vacuum sources.

What is the size of the pump?
The approximate measurements are...

  • Length: 9.5"
  • Height: 7.25"
  • Width: 6"

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