Hydraulic Press safety questions

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  1. ESP47

    ESP47 Well-Known Member

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    What types of safety cautions do you guys take when using a press? I bought one of those 20 ton presses from Harbor Freight last year and it works great but I always have that uneasy feeling that piece I'm pressing or the extension I'm using is going to fly out and do some major damage. I imagine it could kill you if enough pressure is built up.

    I've been sanding to the side of the press since the metal frame is there to protect somewhat. Now I'm thinking of maybe laying some thick metal on the side of the press so nothing could get through when standing there.

    Any other ideas or anything you guys use or am I being overly cautious?
     
  2. cudascott

    cudascott wish I had a Hemi

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    The ones we use at work have a full guard around the with the front that opens
    and a small window to view through while pressing
     
  3. 80fbody

    80fbody Well-Known Member

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    I have a similar press. Taking your time to set everything in a good vertical line is key. Allowing time for penetrating oil or a little heat too. Another item is a good bushing driver set. Made my life so much easier. Using makeshift drivers, sockets, etc is a good way to have an accident.
     
  4. RustyRatRod

    RustyRatRod Weenie idiot loser. FABO Gold Member

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    It's either gonna go or blow.
     
  5. 80fbody

    80fbody Well-Known Member

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    Hell ya. We need a sticker that says that. Perfect reminder as it's starting to "creak".
     
  6. dukeboy_318

    dukeboy_318 Our Lives, Our Fortunes and Our Sacred Honor. FABO Gold Member

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    I've got one of those harbor freight presses too. Ive had no problem with it, but like stated above, get a proper driving set, sockets, bar stock etc is just asking for problems. and take everything slow and keep it centered to help avoid any accidents.
     
  7. TrailBeast

    TrailBeast AKA Mopars4us on Youtube

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    Excellent advice. (straight and the correct style drivers)
    I have never used one with guards, but I've never had anything fly out with any speed.
    Usually just a POP and all your parts fall out on the ground.:-D
     
  8. rklein383

    rklein383 Well-Known Member

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    Standing off to the side when pressing might help.
     
  9. coolhandluke

    coolhandluke Well-Known Member

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    I run a 350 ton press at work. It's all good unless you're bending ar400 or something harder. Like has been said before, stand to the side if it's questionable.
     
  10. RustyRatRod

    RustyRatRod Weenie idiot loser. FABO Gold Member

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    No. Stand nekkid in front of it. That way you'll be really careful.
     
  11. coolhandluke

    coolhandluke Well-Known Member

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    most of the parts I bend I do have to stand right in front of it. not naked, though. NOBODY wants to see that. It's when I bend 1/2" or thicker ar400, 500, or 572 that I get off to the side
     
  12. william

    william Well-Known Member

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    I've had bearing fly apart, a safety shield is a good idea.
     
  13. 80fbody

    80fbody Well-Known Member

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    Could also supply a couple beers to a buddy then have him pull the handle on the questionable jobs....
     
  14. Coronet 500

    Coronet 500 Well-Known Member

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    We use the "safety squint" in our garage.

    I do tell the boys to use the clear face shield....Don't listen.
     
  15. lilcuda

    lilcuda Well-Known Member

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    First thing you need is good safety glasses. I've had bearing races shatter and send shards flying. Your eye won't heal from that.

    The other thing you can try is to get a piece of 3/4" plywood that is big enough to hide behind. Lean it up against the press. You would be surprised how much shrapnel it will deflect if something goes BOOM. We used to do that at the shop I worked at. Saved some pain on multiple occasions.
     
  16. fastnos

    fastnos Well-Known Member

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    I have used a lot of presses in my 20 years in the A.F. Most had a thick piece of plexi-glass mounted on the front of it. Hinged at the top with a long "piano" hinge, and a prop rod on either side to hold it up while positioning anything your working on. If anything broke and went flying forward, it would stop or slow it down. Would be cheap to add to most presses...
     
  17. DFX 340 Duster

    DFX 340 Duster FABO Gold Member FABO Gold Member

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    At work, we have a chain mail curtain surrounding our heavy duty press. It has stopped flying metal.
     
  18. coolhandluke

    coolhandluke Well-Known Member

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    Must be nice having safety equipment. I had some 350 pound pieces I had to bend a couple months ago, my magnet kept dropping them because it wasn't rated for 1/2" thick and 8' long. I refused to do any more after the magnet dropped the second one, my supervisor told me to quit being a baby and get back to work

     
  19. MOPARMITCH

    MOPARMITCH Mekong Gold Member FABO Gold Member

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    I'll bet most of you have the same scatter shield laying around that I use on axle bearings and some other stuff all the time!!. AN OLD USED BRAKE DRUM slid down over the axle shaft and bearing before you engage the ram. I got drums with different hub hole sizes for different jobs. Works great, especially when the work explodes \\:D/
     
  20. RustyRatRod

    RustyRatRod Weenie idiot loser. FABO Gold Member

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    What a great tip on the brake drum. Honestly though, nine times out of ten when something breaks, something was wrong. Whether there was a bur on something, or the wrong part or operator error, if you are careful and do it right, failures will all but be eliminated.
     
  21. KitCarlson

    KitCarlson Well-Known Member

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    I had an accident with a 12 ton HF. I was using it to press in the ball joint on a VW Beetle control arm. A cast iron work plate that came with the press, split and the jack popped out of the retainer. The jack went 12' past my right shoulder, bounced up and damaged a car door. The jack went so fast, I did not see it. How it got past me I will never know.

    I learned not to trust the 3/4" thick cast plates. Steel is a much better alternative.
     
  22. Bad Sport

    Bad Sport HALF A BUBBLE OFF Staff Member FABO Gold Member

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    Wow, I just bought the 20 ton and it has those plates. Me thinks I'll be hitting the local steel shop to pick up some small steel plates now.
     
  23. hemi446

    hemi446 Well-Known Member

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    I use the old brake drum on all axle bearings and I add a 2" thick piece of steel with a 2 1/2" hole in the center and it's about 8" round this holds the drum down because without it when the bearing pops or breaks the drum will jump up and parts of old bearing will fly out and hit you in the legs which is not much fun. just be careful whenever you are using the press and use good judgement if it looks bad it is going to be bad.
     
  24. cjh

    cjh Well-Known Member

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    At home I have a 50,000 kg hydraulic press.....haven't had any issues with it....when pressing off old axle bearings, wrap a heavy rag around it, like old jeans...if the bearing shatters, the rag catches it.
    At work, I use a 200,000 kg electro-hydraulic press.....some of the stuff I press together or apart can be as much as 80,000 kg pressure.
    This is footage I took at work.....that pin being pressed in weighs about 88 lbs.

    [ame]http://youtu.be/CMfIBSgks38[/ame]

    When assembled, that 2nd Reduction unit weighs about 1,800 kg.
     
  25. RedFish

    RedFish Well-Known Member

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    Only thing I have ever seen fly out of a press was a leaf spring eye bushing. That was operator error. The guy could have gotten helping hands if he had asked.
    Chit happens. It happens more often to the foolish. Since you're wise enough to know it can happen, it probably wont happen to you.
     
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