A metal press is a tool that changes the shape of a workpiece. The machine is used to shape or cut metal by deforming it with a die. A press usually has a frame, a bolster plate or bed, and a ram. The bottom portion of the die is clamped on the plate; the ram is a solid piece of metal that is clamped to the top portion of a die and provides the up and down movement. The die then produces the parts from the metal that it needs to process. The metals that are processed through the press are then used in various types of industries like automobiles, buildings, sculptures and many others.
There are various types of press used according to the requirements of the end product required. The servomechanism press is driven by an AC servo motor. It is advantageous in terms of low energy consumption, low noise and clean work environment. An Arbor press is usually used for small jobs and is a hand-held machine. Forging press is a slow and continuous application of pressure or force and can be done either hot or cold.
Punch press is used for cutting holes in metal. It comes in a variety of models; a small and manually operated one or a large, CNC operated one with a complex die set. All of them have a table or bed with brushes or rollers.
The quench press uses concentrated forces to hold an object as it is quenched. The clamps that hold the workpiece are slotted so that oil or water can flow through and cool the surface. High pressure gas quenching is more popular than other methods.
The rolling press has rollers that flatten the sheet metal. The rollers turn continuously and the sheet is pulled through. The space between the rollers is adjusted to the requirements of the thickness of the end product. In a screw press, also known as fly press, the ram is driven up and down by a screw.
The metal press can be classified according to the power that drives them – hydraulic or mechanical. Hydraulic cylinders are used in the hydraulic press, which exerts a constant press force during the stroke, while the mechanical press has a press force progression. Single and double acting presses are another type of categorization, where the single acting press has a single ram and the latter has a subdivided ram.
One has to exercise safety and caution while handling metal press. Some manipulations of the machines to ensure safety are using light sensors to keep the machine from working if the operator is in the range of the die or using controls which requires both hands to be on buttons for the machine to operate.