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PELS MEB 13 40 ton Ironworker


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I recently bought a pels meb 13 40 ton mechanical ironworker. I was trying to find information on it online but couldn't seem to find a thing on here about it. Saw a conversation thread in a google search so thought I'd see if you fine folks could give me any insight on this machine, or history, or anything.... Like I said, having trouble finding any information on it at all. its coming from a shop that said it was under power and functioning when they took it out of service one year ago, and I have asked them to power it up so I can see it operating when I arrive for pick up. I have to haul it back here from 3 hours away and have no clue how much it weighs but want to make sure the trailer i drive it on is rated for enough weight so it doesn't blow through the deck of the trailer. You seemed like a group of individuals who, collectively, may know a thing or two about this machine and whether or not it was a mistake to even buy the thing. It looks like a beast and its capacities are great compared to a lot of newer 40 ton hydraulic machines. So, long story short, a little concerned that I made a poor uninformed purchase, but also somewhat excited too. that picture of an original in 1929 is about all I could find. I just want the thing to function

My name is Elliott Barletta, Owner of EAB Ironworks Welding and Fabrication in State College PA, USA 


old pels.jpg

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Welcome to IFI Elliot

I would ask the seller how much they think it weighs. It looks to me to be similar in size, capacity to a Buffalo 1/2 or 1-1/2, both of which can be handled with a 10,000 lb trailer.

As far as insight, history, I would refer you to this post:


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  • 1 month later...

The best thing about the mechanical iron workers is their speed way faster than any hydrulic one though the hydrulic ones are more forgiving as you can stop the action at any part of the stroke. I used to use a machine a lot like that one and a 90 ton russian machanical punch/cropping machine as well. At the place where I did my apprenticship thousands of years ago they had both types the hydrulic one was called a Scotchman and was around 60 ton if I remember correctly. When punching mild steel never exceed in thickness the dia of the punch ie 12mm plate 12mm hole and as the strength of the steel increases the thickness must decrease or the punch WILL explode. The punch should also have 0.7mm of clearance up to about 25mm punches then the clearance should increase as they get bigger.

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Get it off of the cart for transporting, and onto some 4x4's or 4x6's.  When moving it remember that steel slides on steel, steel stays on wood. If you use a forklift to move it, a couple of thin boards (pallet top boards work good) on top of the forks makes a huge difference in safety. Cross chain it low, and have at least one over the top , or one on each side to keep it in place.. Drive a few miles down the road, then recheck the chains and binders. If the roads are bumpy, check them again later. Also make sure everything is tight, and won't vibrate off going down the road. The stretch film is good for this. Start at the bottom,and go up and down a few times to contain anything that may come loose. Packing tape run down the film will help keep it from billowing up as you go down the road.


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