Delvie's Plastics Inc.
133 West Haven Ave
Salt Lake City, UT  84115
(800) 533-5843  Fax (801) 467-1540

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Vacuum Forming is the process of heating a sheet of plastic (usually polystyrene) until it becomes rubbery and very flexible (around 220 degree F).  The sheet is placed over a plate with a object or mold on top lots of small holes, like a screen,  in the plate.  There is a vacuum that sucks the air through the holes on the plate and the  heated rubbery sheet of plastic is sucked down and forms around the object or mold.  To use our Thermo-Vac, a sheet of plastic is clamped into the frame.  The frame swings right (heating side) or left (vacuum side) like a door on a hinge.  The sheet is set over the heating size for a couple of minutes (time varies with material thickness and type of material used).  You know when it is heated because the plastic becomes very flexible and rubbery.  You then swing the frame over to the vacuum side and turn on the vacuum.  The hot rubbery sheet forms around the object or mold.  The sheet cools very quickly and keeps the shape of the mold or object it formed around.  Vacuum forming is to used to make molds, for resins or plasters, packaging, or signs when using magnetic letters.

Instructions on how to vacuum form

Our Therm-O-Vac is a free standing, portable vacuum former that folds up to the size of a suitcase for storage and has a weight of only 32 lbs.  Set up time for the machine is less than 90 seconds and used only a standard 110AC outlet.  A single 3 say switch operates both the plastic heating and vacuum forming side of the unit.

Price $950.00   (order online)

Easy To Use

The unit is a snap to use.  Mount a sheet of high impact styrene (or other formable plastic sheet) in the pivoting latch-lock frame, lay the part you want the sheet to form around on the vaccum platen and cycle the unit to complete your project.  The vacuum surface, unobstructed by the usual heating hood, allows you to rearrange or straighten your layout up to the final seconds before forming.

Even-Heat Circulator

The Therm-O-Vac come factory equipped with the Even-Heat option in place.  This is an air circulator that transforms the radiant heat of the element into a gentle zone of uniform temperature capable of processing unusually thin or re-processed material.

Favorite of Professionals

Everyone loves a star and our Model 10-B Therm-O-Vac has its place in the prop shops and FX studios of several Hollywood Feature Films and TV shows. Rumored to be at the movie set of more than one Sci-Fi blockbuster for on the spot costume repairs and prop replacement our Model 10-B Therm-O-Vac is truly a professional instrument.


The Model 10-B Therm-O-Vac has proven indispensable as a tool for fast, efficient 3D modeling, prototyping, packaging, fabricating, and mold making. The  Model 10-B Therm-O-Vac has a proven track record in the Tech-Ed Lab as safe and fascinating hands on machine for forming styrene plastic sheets over a variety of available vacuum forming molds.

Due to the friendly, open design of the Nichols Model 10-B Therm-O-Vac, custom molds are exposed to reduced temperatures, greatly expanding the materials that may be used as molds or forms. Check out our new molds on P.170

Built to Last

Sturdy construction, baked finish, industrial quality parts, and a superior design combine to create a hardy workhorse for years of trouble-free operation.

Large Size

The Nichols Model 10-B Therm-O-Vac uses styrene plastic sheets that measure 14. x 20. (280 sq. in.) x .020 to .060 thick. This is an extremely large capacit  for such a modestly priced and compact unit. Adaptor units are available to accommodate sheet (10. x 14. #Whiz-2) and sheet (10. x 7. #Whiz-1) sizes to economize on material costs and enhance performance.

Recommended Materials

High Impact Polystyrene is the ideal vacuum forming material.  Quick to soften, low sag, crisp detail, and a variety of colors make HIPS the first choice for vacuum forming.