Pimped My HF 20 Ton Shop Press

ndnchf

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I finished the first round of modifications to my new HF 20 ton press last night. I added locking wheels, clips to hold the handle, grade 8 bolts to secure the top cross member and a winch system. I needed to change the top cross member bolts to 8 individual bolts rather than the 4 long bolts, in order to have clearance for the winch cable. I've ordered a machined aluminum knob for the jack valve, that should be here in a couple days.

In adding the winch I decided on a side mount due to clearance issues for the handle swing if mounted to the top. I welded a steel plate to the side frame and bolted the winch to it. I made a roller pin just above the winch to guide and keep the cable taught going around the pulley above it. The two pulleys were bolted to the frame. The cables were attached to the outside ends of the table with shackles. The winch works great! Now it easily raises and lowers the table with the heavy plates. Well worth the effort.

Overall, I'm very impressed with the quality of the new press. They have really improved it over the years. There are two versions of the 20 ton press, a welded and a bolted together version. This is #60603, the bolted together version. A big plus is that it comes with cut steel press plates, not the cast plates used in the past. Down the road I'd like to add the air/hydraulic jack and a press brake. But that will be another day.

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Firestopper

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Nice mods. For the money, its a great addition to the shop!
 

ndnchf

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I had a HF 12 ton press that I bought nearly 20 years ago. It served well enough within its limitations. But this one is far superior in every way. It's definitely worth the effort to add some extras to it.
 

Reddinr

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ndnchf. Thanks for your write-up and heads-up on the press. I've been thinking about getting a press for a long time. I now have $149 less in my pocket. Picked up the same 20T press last night, have not assembled it yet. It was a good deal, $200 off and I got a %20 coupon code on my phone too. Couldn't afford not to buy it, right? Funny thing was when I called them to check stock, they said they didn't have the 60603 model, only the 32879 model "which is the same thing". When I got to the store, their display sample was the welded one. I bought it anyway and when they wheeled it out, it said model 60603 on the box and the shape of the box makes it look like it is the bolt together version... Will find out this weekend. I will be adding the wheels for sure.
 

ndnchf

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ndnchf. Thanks for your write-up and heads-up on the press. I've been thinking about getting a press for a long time. I now have $149 less in my pocket. Picked up the same 20T press last night, have not assembled it yet. It was a good deal, $200 off and I got a %20 coupon code on my phone too. Couldn't afford not to buy it, right? Funny thing was when I called them to check stock, they said they didn't have the 60603 model, only the 32879 model "which is the same thing". When I got to the store, their display sample was the welded one. I bought it anyway and when they wheeled it out, it said model 60603 on the box and the shape of the box makes it look like it is the bolt together version... Will find out this weekend. I will be adding the wheels for sure.

The 60603 comes in two boxes, the other in three boxes. With he coupon and store price, mine came to something like $143. I too thought it too good to pass up. Let us know how it goes together and what mods you do.
 

ndnchf

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Another thing, the 60603 comes with flame cut steel press plates, the other may (not sure) still be the weaker cast plates. They are made by two different Chinese companies, so they vary a bit.
 

Reddinr

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Yup. 2 Boxes so it looks like the one I went in for. Should be assembling this weekend.
 

ndnchf

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Just a clarification. The bolt above the winch that guides the cable is not just a bolt. Its a 3/8" bolt that has a steel roller on it. I bought a piece of 1/2" steel tube with a 3/8" hole. Cut it to fit between the uprights. Then drilled a little oil hole and then polished it. So it really is like a pulley, but wide enough to allow for the cable to wind on the drum however it wants to lay.

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brino

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Great info and pictures, thanks for sharing.

I am still using a 20 year old "temporary" shop press made from doubled-up 19" telecom racks that were scrapped at work and a 8 ton bottle jack. I am considering an upgrade, and this shows some real nice features.

Thanks again,
-brino
 
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