The carver design was driven by Debbi LerMond, an equine sculptor of 50+ years. After using just about every carving tool known, she wanted a high speed carving tool that makes sense for artists, especially for artists with carpal tunnel syndrone (CTS). She found every tool on the market was designed for dental laboratory work and re-purposed as a carver or it was a redesigned dental hybrid. To do the carver she wanted, it needed to be lightweight but durable, have low fatigue so it could be used for hours non-stop, little to no maintenance, and actually carve the work without having to fight the tool.
To accomplish this, the tool needed to have a lightweight housing, but have a good knurling where the fingers grip the tool to reduce pressure on the carpel tunnel tendon. The bulk of the weight needed to be located at the bur end, so the tool could do the carving while sparing the wrist from useless weight. To solve the plunger dilemma and make bur insertion and removal easier for people with hand and wrist ailments, she used a push button design assembly. The resulting tool evolved into the Vortex XJ7
Read over this information and see if the Vortex XJ7 is right for you. The Vortex XJ7 goes way beyond electric powered tools like Dremel or plastic turbine carvers. Isn't it time you consider using a professional carving tool to get the best results possible for your artistic talent? Yes, it costs more than the cheaper made electric rotary tools, but the Vortex XJ7 is a well built, high speed engraver designed for professional use. You will discover the second you place it into your hand that this is quality built tool. Debbi LerMond, professional equine sculptor, has designed the Vortex XJ7 for creating her equine art that can be seen at www.HorseModels.com. Want to know more about what can be done with a Vortex XJ7? Sure you do. Give Debbi a call in the SculptingStudio at 1-888-643-9423 and tell her you "want more information about the Vortex XJ7". Also, ask her about the burs best to use for your work. She can help you sort it all out. So give Debbi a call.
Prototype Vortex XJ7 undergoing tests. The pressure was set to too low at 32psi during these tests.
The Vortex housing is made of aluminum and is type 3 anodized to 6 microns. This increases the strength to that of stainless steel without the weight. The turbine assembly is contained in a nose cone made of C360 brass. The brass turbine assembly moves the center of gravity towards the bur. This not only provides greater control, it reduces fatigue on the artist's wrist.
The turbine assembly is contained in a brass nose cone. Inside the nose cone are the major components comprised of the bearings, spindle and impeller. A unique feature of the Vortex turbine assembly is pre-loaded. This means the components are assembled and torqued to specifications to yield long bearing life and precision runout (eccentricity). The AECI bearings are contained in stainless steel roller cages and phenolic retainers are used to obtain long life and the highest speed. Once the ball bearings are inserted into the bearing assemblies, they are permanently lubricated.
The spindle is used to hold a carving bur. The Vortex utilizes a push button spindle so it's easy to insert and remove the bur. By pushing the plunger 1/8 of an inch, it engages the spindle to open it for you insert or remove a bur with just your fingers. Other tools require you to Push-And-Force the bur out of the spindle. Using a push button plunger eliminates destroying burs caused by jamming them down on a hard surface to insert them or losing them when ejecting them out in mid-air. Even people who suffer from CTS, AR or other hand and wrist ailments find it easy to use the push button plunger.
High speed carving tools are powered by directing a jet of high pressure air against the vanes on a circular disc called an impeller. Most carving tools use a single air jet. We found this type of design required more air at higher pressure. In addition, a single jet only exposed the impeller vanes to air only once per revolution, rendering them inefficient. We decided to utilize 7 air jet port injectors, meaning that every time the impeller has spun one complete revolution, each vane received a "boost". This maximized the available energy extracted from the compressed air supply. By increasing the number of vanes to 24, we were able to provide a boost of 168 for every revolution of the impeller. This provided more power while using less air consumption making the Vortex a much quieter tool than the other high speed carving tools on the market.
Once the air exits the impeller, the air needed to be vented from the tool. While it could be simple to just have a hole in the housing to let the air vent, there was a huge side effect -- noise! The noise from the tool needed to be reduced before venting. While some tools did nothing but just venting the air, other tools stuffed felt inside the housing to act as a muffler and absorb cleaner and/or oil lubrication. This works for a while, but over long term, the felt becomes saturated with oil and leaks out. Since the Vortex extracted most of the energy from the air, the noise was reduced. The housing acted like a muffler, without felt, and was vented out the front of the tool via the 6 micro exhaust ports. This also blows carving dust away from your work.
Over the years of using many different carving tools, Debbi found that all of the air hoses connected to the tools used stiff 1/4 inch diameter vinyl or polyurethane tubing. The stiffness and weight of the hose put a disproportionate amount of pressure on the end of the tool causing the tool to become unbalanced and dragged the end of the tool down more than the front of the tool. The Vortex XJ7 housing air supply was connected by using an 1/16" inside diameter hose using extremely flexible tubing made by Tygon. Debbi found the Tygon hose so flexible, that it reminded her of spaghetti. This eliminated all noticeable movement restrictions caused by the heavier and stiffer hose.
Higher Precision! The Vortex XJ7 is a step up in quality and precision from re-purposed dental lab tools. Debbi and artist's like her do insanely detailed work. These artists work with high strength magnifying glasses, even microscopes. To obtain this level of detail for these artists, one requires a truly amazing tool! Debbi gathered all the popular tools used for carving and set out to build a carver from the ground up. Bur runout must be next to zero, the tolerances unbelievable tight turbine assembly nosecone. The Vortex XJ7 turbines are machined to such tight tolerances that the assembly requires a microscope to build the final turbine assembly and preload it into the nosecone! The results are worth it because nothing else can match it short of ion beam milling at the atomic level.
The hourglass shape of other carvers compromises true tactile feedback, so the Vortex XJ7 has a "Smooth and Simple" design. The nosecone contains finger grips for tight detail work. This is especially important when using inverted cone burs and serrated carbide cutters. The dual turbine impellers and bearing assembly was specifically designed and manufactured under a microscope to work in this tool to obtain the highest degree of precision engraving for artists. By having a larger impeller, and 7 manifold jets, more air is converted into torque. This means you have more cutting power at a sustainable higher RPM than other tools. The Vortex XJ7 uses Phenolic in the bearing retainers and the entire bearing assembly is encased in the brass nosecone. When replacing the turbine, just unscrew the old nosecone and screw on a new nosecone - done in only seconds without tools. You no longer have to send in the entire tool to the manufacturer for them to replace the turbine for hundreds of dollars!
Within the internal makings of the Vortex XJ7, there are turbine bearing assemblies which are permanently lubed and never need oiling. Warning: using an in-line mist fog oiler or placing 1 or 2 drops of oil or cleaner into the hose will damage the carver.
The most technologically advanced handpiece on the market today, the revolutionary Vortex XJ7 is the smallest all metal carver on the market - yet, it's the lightest and easiest to handle! Featuring an ultra-high-speed turbine and dual support bearings preloaded into a nosecone, it provides high-torque steady vibration-free action unmatched by any competitive handpiece. And it's quality-backed by the best protection plan in the business. It sets up in minutes, too: simply connect a few hoses, plug in the compressor, insert a carving bur and you're in business!
What's Included in the Vortex XJ7 Kit
Essential Accessories Kit only $45 with Vortex XJ7 order!
This would cost your $101.94 is purchased separately!
The Vortex XJ7 operates at an maximum air pressure of 38 PSI (pounds per square inch). At this pressure the Vortex XJ7 will rotate under 350,00 RPM or about 6,000 revolutions in one second! Why not go faster? Isn't faster better? Not necessarily, for two reasons. First, the impellers on the turbine are designed to extract energy from the compressed air. This means nearly all of the air is converted into torque. Think of torque as "cutting power". Torque is the power delivered to the bur, the actual cutter. The second and the most important reason is the bur's maximum RPM rating. Most burs are only designed for rotational speeds of around 350,000 RPM. Above this RPM, the burs disintegrate and fly apart. It is this reason you should never exceed a maximum pressure of 38 PSI. The Vortex XJ7 turbine bearings are rated at 450,000 RPM, but applying more air pressure to go faster serves no purpose and will only lead to a shorted bearing life.
Don't other tools go faster? There are some tools on the market advertising their tool goes 400,000 RPM. We took a brand new competitor's tool on the market and connected to the recommended air source of 45 PSI. With a magnetic testing bur for measuring RPM inserted into the turbine, the measured speed was 328,000 RPM. As a note, this same tool as of March 2015, recommends the maximum air pressure be set to no more than 37 PSI.
We have heard from so many artists who purchased a Turbo Carver only to be frustrated a short time later. If your Turbo Carver Warranty has expired and you now find yourself reading this because you are looking for a professional tool, we can help you out a little. If you have a dead or dying Turbo Carver, we'll give you $15 cash back with the purchase of a PowerCarver 400K. Here's how it works. Purchase a PowerCarver 400K from us and let us know you want the trade-in cash back offer for your dead or dying Turbo Carver by calling us or writing us in the notes section during checkout. We'll send you a USPS Postage Paid Priority Mail box with your new PowerCarver 400K for you to return your dead or dying Turbo Carver handpiece to us along with the inline foot control, air filter and air hose. Upon receipt, we'll credit your credit card or PayPal account with $15. There is a strict limit of one Turbo Carver trade-in allowance per purchase of a PowerCarver 400K. This means if you send us more than one Turbo Carver, you will only receive $15 cash back. This offer is only available in the United States and we must receive your dead or dying Turbo Carver handpiece, inline foot control, air filter and air hose within two weeks of receipt of your PowerCarver 400K.
Compressors come in many different types, but there are two requirements which must be met to power the Vortex XJ7. First off, the pressure needs to be a maximum of 38 PSI (pounds per square inch). Secondly, the volume of air needs to be rated at 1.25 CFM (cubic feet per minute). We are asked very often if an air brush compressor will work? The answer is no because they do not meet the 1.25 CFM at 38 PSI requirement. There are cheap compressors available at Lowes and Home Depot, but they are extremely loud requiring ear protection. We've seen air compressors pushing 130db! The air compressor shown here is the one which we carry. It is very quiet at 60db and is an oil-less air compressor which uses a dual-piston pump for high performance and durability. Our air compressor is designed to provide 38 PSI of smooth and consistent airflow to your Vortex XJ7. The 1.6 gallon aluminum tank is rust resistant and helps to remove 80% of the condensation before it enters your air hose going to your Vortex XJ7, see our air compressor. Please Note, the air compressor is optional and not included with the tool.
All trademarks and brands are the property of their respective owners.
The Vortex XJ7 from Unbridled LLC carries a Lifetime Warranty to the original owner, except when stated otherwise. We guarantee the Vortex XJ7 against manufacturing defects in material and construction and to perform as advertised when properly used and maintained. The Lifetime Warranty is non-transferable and does not extend to normal signs of wear, rust, damage or breakage due to improper use or commercial use, improper maintenance, accidents, loss or theft. If we determine the Vortex XJ7 to be defective, it will be repaired or replaced solely at our discretion. To receive warranty repair or replacement, the owner must contact Unbridled LLC for Warranty Services. In addition to the provisions of this warranty, the owner may also have other rights that can vary by state. No other warranties are implied or expressed other than what is specifically stated here.
The Vortex X7J will be available for pre-order at a reduced price (shipping starts Sept 28th.) The list price is $595, current pre-order price for the Carver Kit is $299. The Essential Accessory Kit has everything you need to connect to your air compressor and be carving in a few minutes for $101.94, but now only $45 when you order it at the same time with your Vortex XJ7.
All trademarks and brands are the property of their respective owners. Specifications subject to change without notice.
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