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Old 06-28-2004, 03:39 PM   #1 (permalink)
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DIY Sheet Metal Brake

Anyone build their own manually operated brake, or have plans to build one? Nothing big just something that could handle 14g at 30" wide. Links, pics, tips?
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Old 06-28-2004, 04:14 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I did a search on Google for this a while ago and came up with some pretty simple designs for both the bottle jack and manual types.
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Old 06-28-2004, 04:16 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Oh and you might try moving this over to the new "tool and shop" section.
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Old 06-28-2004, 04:58 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Search for "press brake" there are 3 threads that I can remember which are all about homemade brakes and such. But with steel prices like they are, its almost cheaper to just buy one.
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Old 06-28-2004, 06:36 PM   #5 (permalink)
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the one at harbor freight looks pretty cool. Do you bend that much sheet metal? Find u a buddy with a sheetmetal shop. It'll pay off when u wanna bend 1/4"
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Old 06-28-2004, 07:02 PM   #6 (permalink)
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why not use some angle iron cut to what ever width you want. then take and weld a couple of washers on each end then a couple of bolts on the 2nd piece of l channel.. botls thru washers.. weld ya some kinda handle.
use c clamps clamp to table. and bend away
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Old 06-28-2004, 08:56 PM   #7 (permalink)
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why not use some angle iron cut to what ever width you want. then take and weld a couple of washers on each end then a couple of bolts on the 2nd piece of l channel.. botls thru washers.. weld ya some kinda handle.
use c clamps clamp to table. and bend away
I almost can picture it in my head and put it together but not quite. I've been racking my brains about this for an hour... I think if I lay out some steel I'll clue in.
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Old 06-28-2004, 09:06 PM   #8 (permalink)
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bench.. take a section of l channel. putt a couple of washers down. for spacers so sheet metal will slide. c clamp each end make the L channel with the L facing into the tabel. then you could either put some type of hinges or weld on some sort of washers to use as a henge. if you use washer then you would need to line up the bolts with the washers so its all square. if you use hinges then it would simple require bolting it together. then weld some kind of handle on. im thinking the washer and the bolt would be a lil better fit.. lil closer. so it would end up looking like a cross + and teh edge of the work bend would be used along with the section of l channel thats c clamped as the break. i could draw ya something if you like.. my art skills suck tho.
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Old 06-28-2004, 09:38 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Scott (from Rockstomper) built one once. He talked about it here.

Otherwise, if it's an occasional thing, find your local industrial sheet metal shop, it will make life easier

Mike
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Old 08-27-2011, 07:10 PM   #10 (permalink)
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So... Resurrecting an OLD thread to see if there's any new ideas...

I need to bend some 6' wide sheet-either 14 ga aluminum or thinner steel for a few trailer lids. This will be a seldom-used item in the shop at this width. Does anyone have any decent ideas/plans for a DIY portable setup that I can stash away for most of the year when it's not in use that won't cost a fortune? I have a couple ideas using 3" and 4" angle, hinge, long handles. Just curious what the experts think/say. Also-at 6' wide, will an average guy have the testicular fortitude (strength) to bend 14 ga material by hand with no hydraulics???

Thanks, greatly appreciated!

Best of Luck,

Mike
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Old 08-27-2011, 07:31 PM   #11 (permalink)
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I built one a few years ago out of some c-channel, flat stock and some big bolts for the hinges. it's ugly and sat outside in the weather since I built it, but it works OK. Mine is 50" wide and I bent 090" aluminum up to 48" long easily.

The clamping part I made by welding a piece of flatstock into 2" angle. There are bolts welded to each side of the bottom piece of c-channel that the clamp bolts to. The clamp kind of warped when I welded the flatstock in it, so I used clamps to tighten it against the material. I need to build a better clamping mechanism.

I'll have to get pictures sometime. Like I said it is very fugly but it works.

Last edited by chris demartini; 08-27-2011 at 07:32 PM.
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Old 08-27-2011, 09:28 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Ugly-hell, it's a work of art compared to what I've got... Yes, would appreciate pics. I had a couple ideas using angle, but am a little confused how you went with the C and flat stock??? Probably just retarded and not thinking it through, but regardless, would appreciates some pics if you get the chance.

Thanks for the info!

Best of Luck,

Mike
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Old 08-27-2011, 10:23 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Its two pieces of c channel stacked together with a simple hinge on each side. The material clamps against the bottom piece of channel, and the top piece pulls down. Ill get some pics after the hurricane leaves town.
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Old 08-27-2011, 10:53 PM   #14 (permalink)
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I built one. 4" C channel and 2.5" angle iron
53" wide / removable handles /







Last edited by jeepgif; 08-27-2011 at 10:55 PM.
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Old 08-27-2011, 10:58 PM   #15 (permalink)
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.063 AL



Forgot to add that I can change the bend radius.


Last edited by jeepgif; 08-28-2011 at 11:26 AM.
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Old 08-28-2011, 09:41 AM   #16 (permalink)
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That's the same as mine only that clamping bar is much nicer. I may have to copy that.
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Old 08-28-2011, 09:56 AM   #17 (permalink)
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Awesome! That's pretty close to what I had envisioned and I THINK I had seen that posted here before, but my search skills sucked and was unable to find it again. Thanks for the pic-that helps a ton and answers a few questions in my head. Looks like it works great.

Thanks!

Best of Luck,

Mike
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Old 08-28-2011, 10:33 AM   #18 (permalink)
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i have one home made
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Old 08-28-2011, 07:05 PM   #19 (permalink)
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Swag offroad has a kit for building one. It uses an HF press as a base.

Last edited by JayMcJay; 08-28-2011 at 07:06 PM.
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Old 08-28-2011, 08:03 PM   #20 (permalink)
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Yes, Troy is a vendor here and I have had his press brake for some time now. It's great and handles up to 19" with ease between the HF press it was built for. Excellent kit that does a great job. Been very happy with it and used it far more than I thought I would for various things.

BUT...

I'm talking about a sheet brake to handle widths of 6'. Need to do a few trailer lids for some M416's I have here at the moment. I don't mess with sheet much and unless I acquire a few more trailer builds, likely won't be needing it again much after so for my purposes, a 6' DIY sheet brake that is portable and could be removed and stored upright in the back of the shop is a good looking solution. I think I can build this relatively easy enough for cheap enough to do what I need with these lids, then store it till the next go-round. Some great pics above that were pretty dang close to what I was thinking. Of course, I'm still open to other ideas as well...

Best of Luck,

Mike
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