I have found only one connector that works perfectly for vacuum pressure. This solid brass vacuum bag connector locks on to the vacuum bag stem with a strong spring-loaded clip and features a soft cast O-ring which makes a leak-proof connection. This nicely machined connector has a 1/4" NPT-female thread. All lock-on connectors now ship with a special large bore to allow maximum vacuum flow.
To use the lock-on connector with your vacuum system, you will need a brass barbed fitting. Select the barb fitting option above to match the inside diameter of your vacuum hose/tube. The barbed fitting is the critical piece that allows the lock-on connector to attach to your vacuum supply tube.
The locking side of this connector is compatible with the following items:
Note from Joe:
All of our vacuum press kits include this lock-on connector. There is no need to purchase this item if you are also ordering a vacuum press kit.
How do I use the lock-on connector with a vinyl vacuum bag from another company?
The existing vacuum stem will most likely have to be removed. Then our flush-mount vacuum stem can be adhered to your vinyl vacuum bag. Our stem kit includes a brass fitting designed to work with the lock-on connector.
How do I use the lock-on connector with a vacuum press made by another company?
You will need to remove any existing fitting on the end of the vacuum tube. Then measure the inside diameter the vacuum tube and select a brass barbed fitting from our options shown above. The barbed fitting is the critical piece that allows the lock-on connector to attach to your vacuum supply tube.
To what thread type does the lock-on connector attach?
The lock-on connector is designed to work with what is often called a "Schrader" thread. This thread is found on all of our vacuum bags and vacuum clamping fittings. It is the same thread found on bicycle and car tires. The external thread size of a Schrader fitting is 0.305 inches outer diameter by 32 threads per inch (TPI), and it has a thread root diameter of 0.302 inches outer diameter.
What is the thread type on the non-connection side of the lock-on connector?
The thread on the back end of the fitting is 1/4" NPT.
Other than the lock-on connector, what else do I need to connect my vacuum pump to a vacuum bag?
If you have only a vacuum pump then this lock on connector is not the right thing to buy. Instead you need to order a vacuum press kit. The connector is included with all of our vacuum press kits. We offer the CRS and EVS vacuum press kits for users that already have a vacuum pump.
Does the vacuum bag have to stay connected to the vacuum press after full vacuum is achieved?
Yes because a perfect seal on a vacuum bag is virtually impossible. Here are some things to consider.
If the vacuum system is disconnected from the bag, you won't know if there is a leak because there is no vacuum gauge on the bag itself. If the bag is connected to a vacuum press system, you can easily see the vacuum level by looking at the gauge on the vacuum press. The vacuum inside the system is the same amount of vacuum inside the bag. If your vacuum press cycles on and off too frequently during a project pressing, you'll know there is a leak and if you can fix it. However if you can't fix the leak, at least the vacuum system will keep manage the vacuum in the bag until the panel is finished.
Review by Matt Lemay
This is a REALLY handy gizmo. It makes moving from bagging to clamping to chucking a breeze!!! Joe really rocks!!
Review by Brad Herron
My connector just arrived by post office. It only took 2 days to get here. Looks like a well made piece of brass with clean machining marks and no rough edges. The finger spring clip is strong and you can feel when the vacuum bag stem seats inside. The o-ring inside must be soft so that it makes an airtight connection. It took me a while to understand what this fitting in compatible with but Joe was very patient and helpful answering my questions. Basically... READ THE PRODUCT DESCRIPTION... it tells you what parts the lock on connector will work with.
Review by Chris Parks
This connector is machined to a tight tolerance, so the 1/4" ID brass vacuum clamp fitting mates to it with a tight fit. I bought the lock-on connector with the 1/4" ID barbed end; the connection between the two is air-tight, so it's worth paying a little extra. I ordered all the supplies to make my vacuum frame table from Joe because he has done the work to source the parts needed for my project, saving me time. Plus his customer service is excellent; he ships fast! Ordered one morning, got my stuff the next afternoon.
Review by Bijeshj
I purchased this to make it easy plug and unplug in multiple clamping devices. Joe was very helpful in answering questions and really fast shipping.
Review by Randy C
One of my biggest issues with my connection of my hose to my bag was having to connect the 1/2" tubing to the old barb fitting on the bag and using a hose clamp to secure. Yes...the connection was completely sealed, but I had to hook the hose on before I put my piece in the bag. It was a pain. All my issues were with the hook-up. This quick connector alleviated all of this. I couldn't order it fast enough and even bought a new valve stem kit to replace my old one. I bought a new poly bag and it came with the new valve stem so I can do all my hook-up with this quick connect. It is by far the best thing out there. Highly recommended.
Review by Michael A.
Nice product. I've bought 4 of these to make a manifold system for gluing skateboards in 4 bags at once. This connection system is very rugged and I have never had any leaks with it.
Review by Gerard W.
This connector works very well and I have not yet had any problems making an easy airtight connection. I have another bag from a different company and the tube just gets jammed into a nipple of the bag. Sure enough, it seemed like every time I used it, I ended up snagging the tube on something and then pulled it off the bag. This creates a mad dash back to the bag to re-attach the tube. With this connector, I've had not problems at all. I can pull all day long on the vacuum tube and it will not come of the bag. My shipping cost to Michigan was very affordable. Joe runs a great site and his customer service is impeccable.
Review by Craig Watkins
I have 6 of these connectors on my vacuum press manifold. I generally run 6 small bags at a time with the manifold and I have a lock on connector at the end of each of the manifold ends. This is a highly quality piece of machined brass that makes a good seal on the stems. There are other options that some companies offer which dont work quite as well. I've had a few of them come loose and nearly ruined my project. I doubt these connectors could pop off accidentally. Even if you tug on it when moderate force, it stayed connected and sealed.
I should mention that all of my current vacuum press equipment is coming from this website. I just find that the customer support here is second to none and the products are always well made and reliable.
Review by Nathan G.
No problems. Works as described and shipping was reasonable.
Review by Todd Greene
This is a suprisingly secure bag connector. It definitely feels like a heavy duty product. I had some concerns about how well it would seal against the valve stem but these worries were quickly put to rest when I tried it out on my vacuum bag. The shipping charge was reasonable (though I did have other things with my order) and it only took a couple of days to get here. I'm very satisfied.
Review by Robert J.
Excellent item. Very smart "borrowing of an idea" from another industry.
Great job Joe!
Review by Joel T.
Great product. Worked just as I had hoped. I will be ordering more parts very soon.
Review by Mike Joonesburg
Very nice product. Works very well!
Review by Tom Burwick
Right on the money! This connector is just what the doctor ordered!!! A non-proprietary, heavy duty, and tough as nails bag connector - Finally! Thank you Joe for the outstanding find!
Review by John Dominoc
Very well made connector... very beefy and rugged and makes connecting to the bag a simple one handed process.