Bending Basics 2015

Grand Unifying Theory of Bending on a Press Brake

September-December 2015

The Grand Unifying Theory of Bending on a Press Brake pt 1

Press brake guru Steve Benson proposes a new theory of bending, altering some long-held labels and definitions and introducing new formulas. Those long-held definitions worked well, but these new definitions and formulas may help a press brake technician become even more accurate in predicting how a part will form.

The Grand Unifying Theory of Bending on a Press Brake pt 2

Radius bends—defined here as any bend with an inside radius greater than 125 percent of the material thickness—require careful calculation, not only because of their significant springback but also because of the tooling these bends require. This includes the use of relieved dies.

The Grand Unifying Theory of Bending on a Press Brake pt 3

In this installment of the Grand Unifying Theory of Bending, press brake guru Steve Benson describes bending calculations for aircraft tooling. He also covers the basics of bottoming.

The Grand Unifying Theory of Bending on a Press Brake pt 4

This month Steve Benson summarizes his grand unifying theory of radius, bend deduction, and die selection with a review and complete rundown of the bend calculations, from estimating springback to working the bend functions.

Predicting the inside radius when bending on a press brake
August 2015

You can use some common rules of thumb to predict the inside bend radius when air forming and the results you get are usually close enough, but with the help of a few online calculators, you can get even closer.

How to calculate the air formed radius of different bend angles
July 2015

Using the 20 percent rule works well when calculating the floated radius in an air form, but what about the radius at different bend angles? To calculate this, we start with geometry to find the arc length and radius at different bend angles. We then manipulate these results by factoring in real-world bending conditions.

Forming aluminum on a press brake
June 2015

Air bending soft aluminum has such a low tensile strength that it doesn’t take much for a narrow punch tip to penetrate the surface and turn the bend sharp.

How an air bend turns sharp
May 2015

Why do air bends in cold-rolled steel turn sharp at an inside radius that’s about 63 percent the material thickness? It has to do with the relationship between forming forces and a material’s tensile and yield strength.

The 4-pillars of press brake tonnage limits
April 2015

To ensure you always work within the tonnage limits of your press brake and tooling, first, calculate how much tonnage you need. Second, identify your tooling’s load limits. Third, calculate the sinking tonnage limit, which, if exceeded, can embed tooling into the ram or bed. Fourth, determine your press brakes’ centerline load limit.

Minimum versus recommended inside radius
March 2015

A material’s minimum inside bend radius shows the smallest radius that’s physically possible in an air bend, though your machines and tooling may not be able to handle the tonnage. The recommended inside bend radius, such as those found on bend allowance charts for air bends, shows you what’s optimal in typical applications

Why buy new tooling for a sheet metal handbrake
February 2015

When bending with a handbrake, you can use the tooling that came with the machine, but investing in a tool with a radius on the punch nose has its benefits.

6-steps to successful die selection for press brake
January 2015

What inside bend radius you can achieve hinges on tonnage requirements and available die-opening widths