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CAD/CAM tooled hydraulic dies


It appears a new can of squirmy little ideas is being opened up
here. Since posting about the waffle/pancake die two people have
mentioned their great curiosity about using cad/cam tooling in a
hydraulic press. Specifically , about whether or not crisp details
can be obtained without extreme pressures.

Basically,for the purpose of this destruction, 20 tons or so is “not
a lot”, and 50 or more is “a lot”. My adventure with The First
Waffle Pancake Die (trumpets and banner waving) showed, much to my
surprise, that detail could indeed be pressed with (less than,
actually) 20 tons.

The critical factor , and distinct difference between my ‘old’ and
’new’ techniques , is the use of solid , hardened steel , design
matched tool sets. Exactly the kind of thing that can be made with
cnc - cad/cam technology. An important distinction must also be made
that the metal being formed is relatively thin , so that one is not
trying to “coin” the metal. But I suspect that we may be surprised
again by how well hardened matched plates perform. The tooling pairs’
shapes mirror each other. In other words, the metal is being formed
from the front and the back into the same shape. The Waffle Iron
Effect . Distinctly different than coining , where male and female
dies are different shapes , and extreme pressure IS required .

Now, just one die has yielded a lot of “new” info but this area has a
lot of potential for experimentation and adventure. Whether used in
conjunction with a pancake die or not is irrelevant. The point is
that there is a great difference in the amount of detail attainable
at a given pressure between forming with a single die and urethane,
or metal -impregnated matched tool sets, and hardened steel matched
sets. So there is a lot more to find out about this area.

Now I really should go put a few pictures up. Please be patient.

The Sheltech Guy