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Vise vs. arbor press

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Pcmaker

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#1
I have one of those vises that has a quick release lever so you can move the vise freely or just push in when securing something.

I was thinking of either getting a second vise or an arbor press to use whenever I have to "squish" something or press something together. Like inserting a roll pin into a hole or something like that.

I've just been using my vise, but I'm afraid I'll break the half-nut or something if I use too much force.

Does the arbor press provide as much force as a vise can when clamping something down with all your strength? Or maybe close to it? I've never had an arbor press and was thinking of getting one just for jobs like these. I was also looking at a hydraulic press, but I hate pumping the lever a million times to get it to move an inch.
 

mikey

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#2
An arbor press provides better tactile feedback when pressing something. For example, when pressing a bearing into position, you can feel when the bearing bottoms out. A hydraulic press is capable of much higher force but provides less feel. Sometimes this matters, sometimes not.

For the money, a hydraulic press is hard to beat. A 10, 12 or 20 ton press can be had for much less than an equivalent arbor press. I only own a 1-ton arbor press and a 10 ton Dake hydraulic press and I get along fine but I don't do big stuff so its okay. If I had to do it all over again, I would find a 3-ton Dake ratcheting arbor press and a 20 ton hydraulic press.

And no, a vise will not do what a press can do.
 

projectnut

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#3
If you look at different arbor presses you'll see they are rated in tons of pressure they can apply. The smallest ones can apply about 1/2 ton of pressure with the larger ones being able to apply up to 15 tons of pressure. There are larger and smaller ones on the market, but the sizes mentioned are the most practical for a machine shop. The depth of the throat will allow larger pieces to be placed on the platen than can be inserted between the jaws of a vise.
I have a Greenerd deep throat model 3B in my shop. It looks like this, but with the standard ram and platen on the base:
http://www.greenerd.com/arborpress-detail.aspx?pressid=10

Note the length of the handle compared to one on a bench vise.

I use it regularly to seat and remove bearings, bushings, roll pins, taper pins, etc., etc. With a 2 foot long handle it doesn't take much pressure to seat or remove a bushing or pin. In addition the work piece can sit either vertically or horizontally without having to be held in place until the ram makes contact.
I doubt many vices could apply the same amount of pressure without failing in short order. A job that would take 15 minutes to setup in a vise will probably take less than a minute to setup in an arbor press
 

Pcmaker

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#4
so, arbor press delivers more force than clamping with a vise? Harbor Freight has a 1 ton arbor press for 60 bucks I'm looking at.
 

benmychree

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#5
A vise makes a very poor press; Very small arbor presses are not of much use due to limited height capacity.
 

Dave Smith

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#6
vises and presses each have their own advantages---presses have more power and feel--but vises have continuous clamping pressure and easier to work on the object you have clamped---I have at least seven to ten of each so you need at least one press and many vises--Dave
 

C-Bag

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#7
A small arbor press is better than nothing but I'll bet you'll run into its limit really quick. I found a 3t Jet arbor press locally on CL and it has become indispensable. I bought to use for broaching key ways and I much prefer it to a hydraulic press because of the feel. It's easier for me to feel when something is binding up. It has proved to be a lot handier quicker and more compact than a hydraulic press. I've never liked using a vise for a press mostly because of awkward horizontal position. But that's just me.
 
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