What do YOU use a hydraulic press for?
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  1. #1
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    Default What do YOU use a hydraulic press for?

    I've read in several threads where people are using their hydraulic press almost daily. I have a press and rarely use it. Even when pressing bearings, I using get by faster with other methods. Maybe I'm missing something though. What do YOU use your press for most often?

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    I've got a 60 ton press. I use it for big bearings, big broaches and generally mashing stuff into submission. I made a 12'' wide press brake for bending ¼" (or thinner) steel for fabricating. My next hairbrained idea, is to make a punch and die set for it.

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    I built a large bed unit yrs ago with the ram offset - to allow for pressing pins into die shoes. But I haven't built a die set in over 15 yrs now.

    I Shirley don't use mine all that often.
    But when you need it....


    ----------------

    Think Snow Eh!
    Ox

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    In addition to the above tasks, I have used my 60 tonner to break the beads on rusted in tires on old two and three piece 20 inch truck tire rims. WWQ

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    Quote Originally Posted by marrt View Post
    What do YOU use your press for most often?
    Bending more than anything.

    I built a small (12") press brake to fit in the press,
    with a little piece of all-thread out the back with a finger stop, as well as
    a 3/4-10 coupling nut and bolt for the "down stop" and I can quickly make
    little brackets and such.

    Also keep a set of "v" blocks handy, for when you need to straighten a shaft.

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    Hello Marrt
    I use mine a lot for straightening out bent things that are not suppose to be bent.

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    I have mine in my auto shop side and put wheels under one end so I can move it. Use it as a safety stand under the hoist.---Trevor

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    I use mine for hanging things on, setting things on, and generally collecting dust.

    I made a small press out of some 3" angle and a 6 ton jack that I use for u-joints, easier to carry it out and get them done on the ground many times than support the whole thing up in the air.

    I am in the process of making a set of dies for the big press to punch and relieve small holes in sheet metal, such as to allow screw heads to sit flush with the surface (I know there's a proper name, can't recall what) and also use it as a small press brake for the same pieces. Other than that, it catches the odd job when something needs separating with means other than a hammer or puller.

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    Besides the normal breaking/testing steel and concrete I use it for press fits along with punching rubber for gaskets quite a bit. Overkill to use a 400kip turret press for making gaskets though.

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    Breaking expensive castings....

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    Squashing stuff.

    A press is a great tool for a blacksmith, as sometimes you really need a slow, single hit, which a press can provide.

    Fer example, these candlesticks are made partially on the press- the candle cups are squashed pieces of square tubing or pipe.

    I also set a lot of rivets with mine- I have made rivet dies for the top and bottom so I can set rivets up to 1/2" diameter- some I can do cold, some need to be done hot.

    I made a jig for pressing 3/8" round stainless bar, so I could build this "wire mesh" in this big gage- It pushes a half dimple into the bar, so when you weave the pieces together, the wire mesh is flush, not proud. This was done hot, heating each intersection with a torch before pressing.

    I do a certain amount of hot stamping with the press, too- these bird/books were hot stamped in the press, using homemade spring swage letter and number dies, in 14 gage stainless.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails candlestick-1.jpg   candlestick2.jpg   coupevillebirdbook.jpg   38grillle.jpg  

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ox View Post
    I built a large bed unit yrs ago with the ram offset - to allow for pressing pins into die shoes. But I haven't built a die set in over 15 yrs now.

    I Shirley don't use mine all that often.
    But when you need it....
    I use mine all the time. And don't call me "Shirley".

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    We use it mostly for straightening aluminum plates. Also for use as a home-made press brake.

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    It all boils down to if you have a better tool to use. I use my 50 ton all the time. I've made punch/die sets for it, press forms and riveting stuff. granted, It's a lot slower but it can be done if you have the desire.



    Pressed detail



    Press form from .125 stainless



    .125 stainless


    Number 1 is a self aligning die set set to punch out .125 stainless parts below.



    Crude and slow by most peoples standards but it can be done. Kevin

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    I have a 55-ton press and, while it is possible to do may things with it, it is also possible to turn good intentions into interesting/scary unintended consequences.

    I use it for many disassembly/assembly tasks that require steady, uniform pressure in a controlled alignment. A while back, I purchased about 1500# of various press brake dies at less than scrap value. Some male-female pairs are very useful for forming brackets with strengthening dimples in them. Accordingly, I am in the process of making a set of die holders to make use of the assortment of dies.

    As an interesting side note, I found a number of die pairs that were fabricated from individual 3/16" and 1/4" plate segments, assembled in laminated fashion, which makes building dies with contoured faces much easier to build, assuming that you are forming material heavy enough to not show the minor irregularities between the laminations.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kevco View Post
    It all boils down to if you have a better tool to use. I use my 50 ton all the time. I've made punch/die sets for it, press forms and riveting stuff. granted, It's a lot slower but it can be done if you have the desire.



    Pressed detail



    Press form from .125 stainless



    .125 stainless


    Number 1 is a self aligning die set set to punch out .125 stainless parts below.



    Crude and slow by most peoples standards but it can be done. Kevin
    Very impressive!
    What are you using for the dies, what alloy?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Trip59 View Post
    Very impressive!
    What are you using for the dies, what alloy?
    A2, M2, D2 and some of it's smoothed mild on forming jigs. All made from scrap barrel finds. The #1 die was a slug from a wire cut job. I've had to regrind a few punches but still running the original die with over 1000 pieces stamped.

    There's more of the stuff here if you're interested.

    Albums By kevininohio - ImageEvent

    I don't normally take pics of the process but did for the truck build. Kinda neat looking back.

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    Quote Originally Posted by marrt View Post
    I've read in several threads where people are using their hydraulic press almost daily.
    I am one of the ones who said that. I run a valve automation and repair shop so my uses are different than a normal job shop. Most of the time I am using it to brake brackets for mounting actuators to valves, broaching keyways, re-sleeving plug valves, and pressing bearings. Here is a little die I made to bend a little linkage arm for a positioner mount we make and a typical actuator mounting kit.










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    I have a 30 ton that I bought from a buddy that was going through a divorce about 25 years ago. At first when he asked me if I wanted to buy it, I was hesitant. He gave me such a good price on it I decided to buy it, even though I didn't feel that I had much use for it. I had access to presses for smaller things on my job site.

    I used it hundreds of times for most everything mentioned in the previous posts, except maybe some of the fancy forming Kevin posted earlier.

    One other thing. You will have more friends if you have a press, or so it seems.

    Big B

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    Very nice work, Kev, I love those hinges.


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