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CNC Press Brakes: Precisely bending sheet metal plates to specification


Press Brakes bend sheet metal and metal plate. The thickness that can be bent is determined by the rated press force of the press brake, the strength of the material, its thickness, the length of the bend and the type of tooling used. CNC Press Brakes have with software and controls determining the position of back gauges and depth of bend for more accurate and repeatable pressing.

How accurate are CNC press brakes?

CNC Press Brakes can now achieve tight tolerances. Programming software accounts for the material, its thickness, and the tooling selected and calculates the shortening of the material that happens during bending to recommend the correctly sized blank. CNC back stops enable users to then position the blank accurately on the machine. This results in flange lengths that are accurate to less than 0.5mm. Laser and mechanical bend angle measurement systems calculate the spring back for a given bend. A second bending stroke will complete the bend accounting for the measured spring back and give a bending angle that is accurate to less than 0.5 degrees.

How thick can a press brake bend and what size press brake do I need?

The thickness you can bend with a press brake is determined by a number of factors. These are the material being bent, its thickness, and the length of the bend. The punch and die geometry then determines the force needed to bend the material. The rated press force of the machine and the rated load per meter of the tooling then determine if the bend can be made. In typical applications, press brakes are used to bend metals up to 20mm in thickness. The TRUMPF Bend Guide app is free to download and includes an easy-to-use calculator for required press force.

What types of press brakes are there?

There are two main types of press brake. The most common machines are powered by hydraulic systems. New versions of these are powered by servo drives making them quieter, faster, and more energy efficient. Hydraulic presses can achieve forces over 1000T. Electric presses are the most dynamic machines available but are typically limited to 50T in press force.