Rail Joiner Maker

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Posts: 75
Joined: Sat Mar 15, 2008 12:25 am
Location: Nevada

Rail Joiner Maker

Post by JohnY » Thu Dec 31, 2009 1:34 am

Hi All,

Thought I'd post some pictures of what I've been up too. Earlier I obtained a small kick press. The reason for this machine is I need to make a lot of small (aluminum mostly) parts, punch a lot of holes, and bend stuff for my 1" scale railroad. I've already make a small 3" shear for cutting sheet stock and adapted the punches from a Whitney/Jensen hand tool to work in the kick press.

Here are some photos of the newest project - a punch and die set for stamping out rail joiners. They are 2 1/4" by 7/16", made from 1/16" aluminum. I need several hundred of them, and no I'm not going into production - just my needs only.


All the parts of the punch and die set. The round arbor piece fits in the
press. The bottom block and U piece fit in the shoe of the press. All future
punches and dies will be made to fit into the arbor and U shaped shoe.
The punch & die in the press. The pins on the right are guide pins to keep the die aligned while bending the blank. Note that the die block can be moved side to side and the punch can be moved back and forth so precise alignment can be obtained.
The punch & die in the press. The hole punching pins are staggered so that only two holes are punched at the same time. The holes are punched before bending to help hold the blank in place.
The aluminum blank inserted in the slot, the top of which acts as a stripper plate. The die is the same length as the joiner so aligning the blank is simple.
The press on the down stroke, 4 holes punched and joiner bent to angle of the rail base. Note the blank button from the hole under the U die block holder. These must be cleared regularly or the punch will jam up.
The upstroke after punching and forming. The press actually comes up on it's own. But because burrs are formed on the bottom side of the holes, the finished joiner is fairly tight in the die until it is knocked loose.
The finished rail joiner. Hard to see in the photo is the L shape of the joiner which gives it strength and matches the rail profile.

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Joined: Fri Dec 20, 2002 11:02 pm
Location: Onalaska, WA USA

Post by Harold_V » Thu Dec 31, 2009 4:51 am

Very nice job, John.


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