Mini Press-brake project part 2

The tool support beam for my mini press-brake was mounted on the guide columns by boring out some larger diameter rod and welding it on to the ends of the beam. A step was milled into the bottom face of the beam to allow the tooling to sit as it would on a real machine. Four clamps were milled from square section steel to hold the top tool using its correct mounting channel, these can be seen in the photo’s, they are mounted on some 10mm studs with nuts and washers.

Two compression springs were fitted to lift the top tool clear of the die as the pressure was released, these springs were guided by some turned nylon collars which not only made the action very smooth but gave a needed 1″ lift to the height. By keeping the line of force from the tip of the tooling back to the ram of the press in line with the centers of the two vertical guide rods, any tendency to twist is removed and all the applied pressure is seen as force at the tip of the tool – just where it’s needed.

The bottom die is held by some small blocks tack-welded in place, this die is reversible to allow both channels to be used depending on width needed – thicker materials need a wider channel when bending in a press-brake.

Nylon caps were fitted onto the tops of the guide rods, secured with a socket head screw to enable the press-brake assembly to be lifted without it falling apart – it’s very heavy.

Tests bends were done on some scrap and it worked perfectly, tonnage required followed the available charts very closely, a full width 410mm bend in 3mm steel needs around 18 tons of pressure, all in all, a very enjoyable build and a useful workshop accessory too.

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