Hand Papermaking Newsletter #76‘s “For Beginners” column explores a range of vacuum techniques in papermaking. Read the full text here.
I’m always amazed when I stumble across yet another innovative use of a household tool in papermaking. The wet-vac is one such tool, and I’ve seen it used in a variety of ways.
The first time I saw a vacuum used for papermaking was at the Penland School in North Carolina, where, coincidentally, I am now teaching a 2-1/2 week workshop. I was taking a papermaking class and the instructor showed us how to couch sheets of paper directly onto a 4×4 foot silkscreen which was stretched over a wooden frame. After filling up the screen with several freshly made sheets of paper in various sizes and shapes, she got out the wet-vac and sucked the water out of the sheets from the back side of the silkscreen, which simulated pressing. I couldn’t believe it! More….