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I Forge Iron

Forging Press -Build vs Buy?


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(Should I build or buy? Is building a forging press much cheaper then buying?)

A forging press is something I have wanted in my shop for a long time. I know overall a power hammer would be more versatile in the shop, but I only have a 6" slab and it has in floor heat in it, so I think there is potential to ruin the slab. If I did not have the in floor heat, I would cut the slab and pour a deeper footing for a hammer.

Anyways, for now I was going to get the press for my work. I enjoy hand forging, but for for larger stock the press will make a huge difference. For instance I have a large cross that needs to be made out of 2" square. It needs to be punched and drifted which is not something I can do by hand. I also make some axes and want to make more, but it is too much work by hand to be worth while for production work. Having the press would allow me to punch and drift the eyes and also draw out the bits. That not only would it allow me to do more work, but it would help save my body as my youth in the Army and then later in the trades is catching up to me.

All that to lead into the question. I would like to have a press in the shop no later then by March. So should I build one or just buy? I was looking at the Anyang 25T Forging Press, but he wants over $9000 for one which is more then I want to spend right now. I also have looked at the Gilmore Presses, but they are approaching that price as well.

So this brings me to building. I was thinking of buying the book, "BUILD YOUR OWN HYDRAULIC FORGING PRESS" by Batson. However my main question is what is the cost to build one of these presses if I am buying everything new? Can I even save much money over just buying one? Prices on everything has gone bonkers this past year, and my steel suppliers prices have more then doubled since summer.

Any input would be greatly appreciated.




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Thanks. I looked into theirs as well, but the 25T press they have is $1000 more then the Gilmore, and I am not sure about the log splitter style frame. Seems like the H frame of the Gilmore would be much more ridged.

Started just putting together some prices for components. I am sure I am missing stuff, but it looks like so far just in hydraulics, I could be looking at at least $2000. That would not include hardware and all the steel to build it. Not to mention welding electrodes, paint, hydraulic oil, electrical wiring and switches, etc. Steel might run over $1000.

So maybe looking at $4000 to build these days?

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3 hours ago, ThomasPowers said:

Also are you welding skills such that you are willing to bet your life on your welds?

I trust my welds. I used to weld a bit of structural stuff and heavy equipment repairs.  Not going to brag that I am superior to anyone else though, just proficient.

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5 hours ago, bubba682 said:

Build it yourself..

That has been my thought, but my time is more limited these days and buying would be much easier. That would allow me to start working on projects I want, like making axes, instead of building more equipment. I guess I was hoping someone would tell me that building would not save me much money that way I could justify buying. LOL!

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Good Morning,

In Canada, Pr-----s Auto have well priced Hydraulic Press in their catalogue, sometimes they are on sale. A friend in Vancouver area (BC) has a hydraulic business, he purchases a lot of his components from them as well.

I use a hi pressure/low volume-low pressure/high volume (2 stage) pump on my Press. The ram moves quite quickly, until it starts to load. Then the high pressure/low volume kicks in and the creaking and groaning starts. Kind of un-nerving at first, then the sounds of aches and pain become expected, but never really forgotten Caution!! With a little practice, you can roll heavy bar, into a loop. John Little rolls 2 inch round bar.

A Press is not the be all, but it has it's place. The creative mind is the limiting factor, after SAFETY!!


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