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Swag Finger Brake Kit for HF Arbor Press

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  • Swag Finger Brake Kit for HF Arbor Press

    I finally got around to welding together the Off Road Swag finger brake kit for my Harbor Freight 20 ton arbor press, which my wife gave me a for Christmas. The kit cost $300 including shipping. It was shipped in two of those USPS "If it fits it ships" boxes. All together it weighed about 100 lbs. The heavy duty model can bend 3/16" steel the full width and 5/8" thick steel up to 3" wide.

    1. The first step was pressing the guide pins into the base by the following process:
    Tack weld
    Straighten
    Plug weld
    Grind flush
    2. Next I welded the guide bushing to the upper guide housing by a similar process:
    Tack weld
    Straighten
    Weld
    Unfortunately the welding process distorted the guide bushing so that they no longer fit over the guide pins so I had to bore both bushings on my milling machine.
    3. I skip welded a piece of angle iron to the formed channel to make the lower die, without difficulty.

    4. The collar to guide the arbor was plated so I put it in some HCL acid to remove the plating. You can see bubbles coming from the plating in the picture. You can purchase HCL acid from Home Depot in the paint department. It is called Muriatic Acid.

    5. To prevent damage to the finger brake a sturdy base is necessary. The cast iron arbor plates that come with the arbor press can't be used because they are brittle and can shatter under load. You can purchase quality arbor plates from Off Road Swag in various sizes but I just used a piece of scrap 1-1/2" x 8"cold rolled steel that I had. I measured the space and cut it to length on my horizontal band saw. Unfortunately it was a little too long so I had to trim it on my mill.

    6. I bent my first piece of 3/16" x 2" steel and it worked fine. The only thing is that the inside radius is about 1/2" due to the fillet in the angle iron used for the lower die.
    Attached Files
    Miller Thunderbolt
    Smith Oxyacetylene Torch
    Miller Dynasty 200DX
    Lincoln SP-250 MIG Welder
    Clausing/Coldchester 15" Lathe
    16" DuAll Saw
    15" Drill Press
    7" x 9" Swivel Head Horizontal Band Saw
    20 Ton Arbor Press
    Bridgeport
    Miller Spectrum 375 Plasma Torch

  • #2
    Here are some additional pictures:
    Attached Files
    Miller Thunderbolt
    Smith Oxyacetylene Torch
    Miller Dynasty 200DX
    Lincoln SP-250 MIG Welder
    Clausing/Coldchester 15" Lathe
    16" DuAll Saw
    15" Drill Press
    7" x 9" Swivel Head Horizontal Band Saw
    20 Ton Arbor Press
    Bridgeport
    Miller Spectrum 375 Plasma Torch

    Comment


    • #3
      Here is the last set of pictures:
      Attached Files
      Miller Thunderbolt
      Smith Oxyacetylene Torch
      Miller Dynasty 200DX
      Lincoln SP-250 MIG Welder
      Clausing/Coldchester 15" Lathe
      16" DuAll Saw
      15" Drill Press
      7" x 9" Swivel Head Horizontal Band Saw
      20 Ton Arbor Press
      Bridgeport
      Miller Spectrum 375 Plasma Torch

      Comment


      • #4
        I have the same brake. I didn't finish welding the die. Actually I built it to make a bunch of the same part. Added a ram and pump so i can bend them FAST. When Im done I done with this contract i will probably finish it.
        Performance Aluminum Fabrication

        Comment


        • #5
          Another option that someone mentioned was using the Harbor Freight Air over Oil Hydraulic Jack. It is supposed to be a drop in replacement. The air pump attaches to the rear of the cylinder so that you can still use the manual pump and release valve for fine adjustment.

          http://www.harborfreight.com/http-ww...5553-html.html
          Miller Thunderbolt
          Smith Oxyacetylene Torch
          Miller Dynasty 200DX
          Lincoln SP-250 MIG Welder
          Clausing/Coldchester 15" Lathe
          16" DuAll Saw
          15" Drill Press
          7" x 9" Swivel Head Horizontal Band Saw
          20 Ton Arbor Press
          Bridgeport
          Miller Spectrum 375 Plasma Torch

          Comment


          • #6
            it wasn't a "drop in" on mine. But with a few small mods it works well.

            Comment

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