I love a bargain on a tool as much as anyone, no, more. But I
couldn't really do it on the hydraulic press. I got lucky, I was
taking some graduate metals classes and they had had some h. press
frames welded up out of I beam stuff.
I was able to buy the last one for $75.00. My uncle owns a shop and
was able to make me steel platens to match the Bonny Doon ones so I
could use their accessories. I have yet to have them welded in
For the jack, I called every h. jack place in the area. I really,
really looked into it, into buying a jack and the gauge separately
and installing the gauge myself. I couldn't save much money doing it
that way, and there was a chance I could mess it all up. So I bought
the Bonny Doon jack.
My jerry rigged system works well enough, but it's unlikely that
you'll be able to buy a pre-made press and have an uncle.
So, I think, unless you are unusually well connected, it is not
My advice is to finance it and get the Bonny Doon, the whole set up.
It is a well designed, well made machine.
Metalsmith, Certified PMC Instructor
Hard to Find Tools for Metal Clay