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hitchmss

Build your own ram press?

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Hey folks, so my business is expanding and in the "near'ish" future Im going to be expanding into a larger studio, with more power, space, etc. To cover these costs and save my hands/back/etc Im wanting to get into less intensive forms of production. A lot of my line will be slip cast, but I also want to get into Ram pressing a lot of my wares. I know plenty of companies make beautiful units, that would more than fit the bill, but if I could avoid the "bill" that would be great too. I know commercially made units of the caliber Im seeking would cost me between $20-30k, but if I could make my own for half or so Id like to.  I see some used units for sale here and there, and if one could be had for the right price I'd just go that route, but for conversations sake lets just say there isnt.

    Id like to build/get a unit with a bed of 2'x2 '-3'x3', 30-40" of daylight with a stroke of similar length, 30-40 tons, air release, 5HP 240 v motor, all the goodies. Not terribly concerned about the high tech safety features; this would be used in a private studio by myself, so liability concerns are minimal. I tend to use common sense, like not drinking while juggling chain saws and the like. I plan on designing the unit to be able to be broken down into manageable sized pieces so I wouldnt need a forklift to transport.

  I have a fair bit of metal fab experience,  but would likely hire a real machinist for all the critical tooling, and have an electrical engineer spec out my design. Im sure I could look at a commercial unit and get some ideas on how to tackle the job, but why reinvent the wheel? Does anyone know of anyone who has built their own ram press, or any publications which would have info?

   If you have built your own; where did you source materials? Would you do anything different if you built another one? What design features do you consider critical? Any advice is greatly appreciated and thank you in advance.

   

Edited by hitchmss

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