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Press dies


Nick Wheeler
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I've been wanting to do this for a long time, and since I told a fella on another forum I'd do it to help him out, I'm going to add it here too.

 

This thread is about press dies. These are some of the staples from my "collection" and I'm hoping others can/will toss in their ideas and pics too.

 

Thanks! :)

 

-Nick-

 

Combination drawing/welding/flattening die. This is one of the most basic, and staples of them all.

 

press21mv.jpg

 

Extreme drawing, or tight radius forming (like from bolster to blade on a forged integral).

 

press37md.jpg

 

Hot cut die, made from a piece of small RR rail turned on edge, with the webbing sharpened. This idea is 100% borrowed from Don Fogg.

 

press45ew.jpg

 

Another RR rail hot cut, this one for cutting width-wise (I simply cut the rail off, and sharpened the web)

 

press59wm.jpg

 

Squaring dies

 

press66nc.jpg

 

Ladder pattern dies

 

press79xh.jpg

 

Texturing dies

 

press81sb.jpg

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I'm about ready for dies myself. That texturing die is a new idea to me. Thanks for sharing. Are you using hardenable steel mostly? I think I'm going to stay away from mild steel.

Crocker Knives

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All of my dies are mild steel (except for the RR rail).

 

The problem with using a hardenable steel, is that it's typically REALLY expensive in the types of cross sections I've used here.

 

If you have the $$$, or accesss to some that's cheap or free, then I'd be all for it.

 

Mild steel dies won't hold up for squat on a power hammer (the few I've actually seen anyway). But on a press, they work fine.

 

I've replaced only the "T" dies in the last 4 years. Granted, some of the dies are newer than that, but they hold up well. Just don't stick something under them that's cold!!! :banghead:

 

I hope this helps some folks out, and also hoping that some others post pics of some of their dies. I'm always up for making some new ones :D

 

Oh yea, the texturing die. I made that one by getting the die shoe really clean, and the holding my MIG gun about 3-5 inches from the top and just firing away. It splatters like mad, but makes for a cool pattern. I know many guys carve their's and that would be GREAT... but I wasn't that patient that day :D

 

-Nick-

Edited by Nick Wheeler
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All of my dies are mild steel (except for the RR rail).

 

The problem with using a hardenable steel, is that it's typically REALLY expensive in the types of cross sections I've used here.

 

If you have the $$$, or accesss to some that's cheap or free, then I'd be all for it.

 

Mild steel dies won't hold up for squat on a power hammer (the few I've actually seen anyway).  But on a press, they work fine.

 

I've replaced only the "T" dies in the last 4 years.  Granted, some of the dies are newer than that, but they hold up well.  Just don't stick something under them that's cold!!!  :banghead:

 

I hope this helps some folks out, and also hoping that some others post pics of some of their dies.  I'm always up for making some new ones :D

 

Oh yea, the texturing die.  I made that one by getting the die shoe really clean, and the holding my MIG gun about 3-5 inches from the top and just firing away.  It splatters like mad, but makes for a cool pattern.  I know many guys carve their's and that would be GREAT... but I wasn't that patient that day :D

 

-Nick-

29234[/snapback]

 

 

 

 

 

Nick,

On the texturing dies, did you use gas or flux core wire in your mig?

 

Tony

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Tony, I only have it set up for gas and it's 0.035 wire. If I recall, I didn't even turn the gas on since I was going to have the gun so far from the work.

 

-Nick-

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Great pics!

 

I noticed you have a slide arrangement to locate the dies. Does it move about and require adjustment when in use.

 

I am in the final stages for my press, basically the dies and a few odds and ends.

 

 

Thanks, Hurl

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Hurl-

 

Rarely is it a problem.

 

If I'm hot cutting something in half, like cutting a jelly roll for a feather pattern, then I'm extra careful to make sure everything's lined up... but I don't have anything to keep them in a fixed position.

 

You could drill and tap a bolt into them, a friend of mine has a similar set-up, and he has done that on some of his dies, like the ladder dies.

 

Michael Kanter has a thread over on BladeForums about the press he's building, and he's come up with a really swift way of keeping the dies in place. It's MUCH different than my set-up :)

 

-Nick-

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