WIP - Hydraulic Press Build

Discussion in 'Shop Talk - BladeSmith Questions and Answers' started by efleming, May 26, 2009.

  1. efleming

    efleming

    679
    Jun 6, 2007
    A few months ago, I started building a hydraulic press. This event seemed long in coming due to the fact that intense research on the subject had been going on for over a year. I’ve still got a ways to go but thought it would be good to share the build process to date and provide pictures as it progresses.

    First a little background. I’ve looked at many press designs and have asked many questions of folks building them or using them. I’ve read James Baston’s press book at least 20 times.

    The most impressive press I’ve run across belongs to Joe Caswell. I had the pleasure to speak with him a little over a year ago at the Pasadena Knife Show. He spoke of his press that he had automated to enable both manual up and down strokes with foot switches as well as timed up and down strokes with the ram moving at ~1 inch per second. This reciprocating ram allows a great deal of steel to be drawn out in a single heat as compared to a manual process. It is the type of control I set out to build. Thanks Joe!

    The basic design is that of an H frame press. It uses W8 X 35 I-beams. Specs for other parts are below:

    Motor – 7.5 HP
    Pump – Single stage 5.2 GPM (Single stage is necessary to get repeatable timing for an automated stroke)
    Cylinder – 5” X 8” Stroke

    Press base starting to take shape.

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    Mount for 7.5HP motor complete. Fabricating mount for pump.

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    Motor mount and pump mount complete.

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    Hydraulic tank mounted and top of base complete. Now to build the H frame.

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    Pictures of beams prior to welding.

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    Starting to tack weld top frame components.

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    Last edited: Jul 6, 2009
  2. efleming

    efleming

    679
    Jun 6, 2007
    Welding done. Frame sand blasted, primer then black coat of paint.

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    Dry fitting plates for ram guide.

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    Guide pieces super glued together for drilling holes.

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    Started out with countersink holes then progressively drilled larger to final tapping size.

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    Started the 1/2 inch tap by chucking in the drill press. Removed power and belts from drive and spun spindle by hand to start tap. Once started, removed from drill press and finished by hand.

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    Checking fit up of ram slides. Putting grease fittings in place as well.

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    Ram guide plate all welded up.​

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    Well that's it for now. More to come...​

    Eric​
     
  3. Edro20

    Edro20

    984
    Feb 5, 2008
    Sweet! I love the grade 8 hardware as well. I'm jealous.:p
     
  4. McAhron

    McAhron

    Feb 23, 2005
    Excellent:cool:
     
  5. indian george

    indian george

    Feb 15, 1999
    Sweet!!! Nice job.:cool::thumbup: The biggest pain in the butt when making my press was drilling all the holes for the slider plates.:jerkit:
     
  6. TekSec

    TekSec Böse Messer

    Dec 8, 2006
    Eric, that's awesome! Makes me want to go out and make one myself!
     
  7. bobbywett

    bobbywett KnifeMaker / Craftsman / Service Provider Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Jul 23, 2006
    Eric,

    Looking Good!:thumbup:
     
  8. efleming

    efleming

    679
    Jun 6, 2007
    Thanks for the nice comments. :)

    Attached is a .zip file containing the Google SketchUp design for the press as well as an Excel spreadsheet I used for RAM, Pump, Motor calculations. I used it to run "what if" scenarios. Please keep in mind that this is just information I used for my design and there may be errors! Please do your own research before relying on any information that I have used.

    I've made a few little changes to my press that may be a little different than what is attached in the SketchUp drawing. This drawing is what was used to prove out what needed to be done before wasting perfectly good metal. :thumbup:

    Eric
     

    Attached Files:

  9. kc custom

    kc custom KnifeMaker / Craftsman / Service Provider Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Apr 20, 2005
    Very nice press!!
    Ken.
     
  10. Salem Straub

    Salem Straub

    Oct 20, 2008
    Everything looks clean and well planned out. I am impressed by your fabrication skills. This thread will be a real winner, I can tell. Can't wait to see more.
     
  11. sunshadow

    sunshadow

    Oct 2, 2006
    It looks great!Thanks for the drawing and datasheet! I'm thinking of building a scaled down version to start (4 inch cylinder run off a snowblower engine)

    -Page
     
  12. pyrguy

    pyrguy

    Jun 26, 1999
    Quick question. I'm a Mac user what is a .skp file?
     
  13. efleming

    efleming

    679
    Jun 6, 2007
    A .skp file is a Google SketchUp 3D CAD drawing. It's free and works great. They support both Mac and PC. :thumbup: You can download here --> http://sketchup.google.com/

     
  14. Will52100

    Will52100

    Dec 4, 2001
    Very cool, love the way you built the guids, how do you attach the dies? Nice and compact, wish I'd built my a little smaller.
     
  15. efleming

    efleming

    679
    Jun 6, 2007
    Thanks Will. I've not fabricated the die holders yet. That will be coming along next. I'll be looking at slide guides with pin holders on the front side for quick change.

    Eric

     
  16. Will52100

    Will52100

    Dec 4, 2001
    Just make sure there strong, I had a lower drawing die punch me in the gut, it got out of alignment a little and didn't have a keeper. Not long I added a simple retainer, no more problems since.
     
  17. efleming

    efleming

    679
    Jun 6, 2007
    Got some time today to work on the upper die holder.

    Fabricating the slide rails of the die holder.

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    Upper die holder complete.

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    Lower die holder is next...

    Eric
     
  18. D.Mirabile

    D.Mirabile

    81
    May 29, 2005
    Very well thought out design on that press. I might just have to stop by for a test drive of that, the next time I'm in So. Cal...... I wish you the best.

    David
     
  19. efleming

    efleming

    679
    Jun 6, 2007
    Hello David,

    Thanks for the good comments. Any time you are in the area, let me know. You are welcome to stop by.

    Eric
     
  20. Burton Harruff

    Burton Harruff

    Oct 1, 2007
    Eric, you are doing a great job on this. Looking very professional. The Batson book is very good.
     

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