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A homemade sheet bending machine is a device for bending sheet metal. Leaf bending with your own hands

In the practice of home-made workers the leaf bending is still a rare device. But this tool is very useful, as it allows even an unskilled master to perform high-quality work related to flexible sheet metal. It is possible to bend the workpiece using a sheet bending at a given angle and ensure flatness and absence of deformations in the bent part of the sheet without problems.

In the right hands the sheet bending ensures exceptionally high quality of manufacturing of such products as housings, chassis, casings, the sheet bending will also be needed when joining sheets in a fold, in all cases guaranteeing proper the presentation of the products.

Homemade sheet metal bending machine

A homemade sheet bending machine consists of a base, a clamp, a crimping punch with a lever handle and two clamps for attaching the device to the workbench countertop (Fig. 1). In the presence of electric welding, it is not so difficult to make a sheet bending machine. Only a channel segment and undeformed corners No. 5 and No. 3 are needed.

Homemade sheet bending  a device for bending sheet metal. Leaf bending with your own hands
Fig. 1. Homemade sheet bending machine for bending sheet metal (assembly):
1 base; 2 nut-handwheel; 3 clamp; 4 bent sheet; 5 clamp; 6 crimping punch.

The base is made of channel No. 6.5 (suitable and No. 8) with a length of up to 500 mm (we choose the size at our discretion).

A clamp made from a corner provides bending of the sheet at an angle of more than 90, which, for example, is necessary to connect the sheets into a fold. The sheet bending clamp has a welded structure; the main corner No. 5 is reinforced by an additional profile from corner No. 3. In order for the clamp to be rigid, it is advisable to use corners with a shelf thickness of 5 mm. The clamp is made 70 mm shorter than the base, brackets from segments of corners No. 3 with a wall thickness of 5 mm are welded to the ends of it (Fig. 2).

Leaf bend
Fig. 2. Sheet bending (detailing):
1 clamp; 2 cheek; 3 base; 4 bracket; 5 welded clamp;
6 axis; 7 punch angle.

The edges of the shelves of the clamping angle in contact with the bent sheet are milled or processed with a file, making them parallel to the base. In the middle of the shelf, a hole with a diameter of 8 mm is drilled in each corner-bracket.

The crimping punch is made from the corner No. 5, it is 10 mm shorter than the clamp. The lever handle is bent out of a reinforcing steel bar with a diameter of 15 mm in the form of a bracket and welded to the punch. Cheeks are cut out of a steel sheet with a thickness of 5 mm and drilled into them through a hole with a diameter of 10 mm.

At the ends of the punch angle, chamfers with a length of 30 mm and a depth of 5 mm are removed from its edge, which are necessary for the installation and fastening of steel axes from a rod with a diameter of 10 mm. The axes are welded so that the direction of the centerline of the rod coincides with the edge of the corner. Chamfers with a depth of 6 mm and a length of 32 mm are removed on the edge of the base (at the ends).

For pre-assembly, the base and the punch are fixed in a locksmith vise so that the channel shelf and the corner shelf are located in a single horizontal plane. Cheeks are put on the axis of the punch and they are attached to the base at several points by electric welding or fixed in another way.

For trial bending, a sheet of soft metal with a thickness of about 1 mm is placed on this surface and fixed from above with a clamp, temporarily pulling it to the base with clamps or studs with overlays. The position of the cheeks relative to the base is checked by trial bending and, if necessary, corrected. Having made sure of the optimal position of the cheeks, they are welded to the base completely.

Using the holes in the clamping brackets as a conductor, holes with a diameter of 8 mm are drilled in the base and M10 threads are cut into them. Holes in the clamp are drilled to a diameter of 10 mm. Bolts are screwed into the threaded holes in the base from below, the heads of which are fixed on the base by welding.

The clamp is attracted to the base with M10 nuts, under the heads of which washers are placed. It is preferable to use handwheel nuts, which can be removed from the water fittings. The release of the clamp when unscrewing the tightening nuts is provided by springs put on bolts. Rubber shock absorbers can also be used.

Homemade leaf bend
Fig. 3. The leaf bend (the left cheek is conditionally removed):
1 insert made of wood; 2 base; 3 right cheek; 4 bent leaf; 5 clamp; 6 punch axis; 7 punch; 8 punch lever.

The clamps for attaching the sheet bending to the base are homemade, welded from corner No. 3. The design of the clamps is clear from the drawing (Fig. 3). The M10 clamping screws are equipped with support plates. The clamps are welded to the base shelf next to the cheeks.

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