PTL Fabricators - Custom Fabricators – Clarksville, Tennessee

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Equipment Highlight: 500 Ton Press Brake

What is a press brake and how does it work?

At PTL we have lots of specialized equipment, and our team of experienced technicians is ready to use each piece. One of these is our 500 Ton Press Brake. A press brake or brake press, is a machining tool used to bend sheet metal. It forms bends by clamping the sheet of metal that needs to be bent between a punching side of the machine that is aligned with a die side.

The machines are made of two C-frames which form the sides of the press brake. These are connected to a fixed table at the bottom and a movable beam at the top. The bottom tool is mounted on the table with the top tool mounted on the upper beam.

There are several types of brakes, they are named for the way that force is applied to create a bend:

  • Mechanical

    A mechanical press uses a flywheel with an electric motor. A clutch engages the flywheel to power a crank mechanism that moves the ram vertically. Accuracy and speed are two advantages of the mechanical press.

  • Pneumatic

    Pneumatic presses utilize air pressure to create the tonnage used to create a clean bend.

  • Hydraulic

    A hydraulic press operates by means of two synchronized hydraulic cylinders on the C-frames which move the upper beam in order to create the needed bends to the sheet metal.

With technology improving quickly for hydraulics and computer controls, computer controlled hydraulic machines have quickly become the most popular type of brake press used today.

Press brakes often include multi-axis computer-controlled back gauges. Optical sensors allow operators to make adjustments during the bending process. These sensors send real-time data about the bending angle in the bend cycle to machine controls that adjust the parameters. This helps to make for a more exact bend, which is essential to modern building and fabrication techniques.

To learn more about our 500 ton press brake and more of our specialized equipment, contact us at PTL. At PTL we employ experienced millwrights, riggers, ironworkers, welders, pipe fitters, pipe welders, and more armed with a complete arsenal of specialized equipment. PTL can provide crews from 1 to 80, ready to take on any job. Let us get to work on your project today!

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