Harbor Freight 20 ton press mods

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Joined: Tue Dec 08, 2020 1:16 pm

Harbor Freight 20 ton press mods

Post by c7z06 »

Here are some mods I made to my 20 ton Harbor Freight press:

Air/hydraulic jack, table winch, guide rollers, casters, pinned table plates, release knob, grade 8 frame bolts, finger brake, support pin shaft collars.

Also, I have found it obnoxious to give up my ability to use my press when it is occupied by my Swag finger brake. As useful as the brake is, it is tiresome to have to uninstall it every time the press is needed as a press.

I'm currently fixing this problem. If you have a winch installed to raise and lower the deck, as I do, my fix is to lower the existing deck (table) way down, and fabricate a second deck from a length of channel. It can be quickly inserted above the brake in the frame and used for pressing. The second deck can be made as sturdy as necessary for the pressing you intend to do. Use a wooden block to raise the support surface as needed, and distribute the pressure. I'm using 4" x 7.25 channel, which is in the process of being delivered. See second image.

press mods.jpg
press mods.jpg (1.17 MiB) Viewed 1059 times
with spacer block.jpg
with spacer block.jpg (453.3 KiB) Viewed 1059 times
Posts: 14
Joined: Sat Feb 20, 2010 6:46 pm
Location: Edmonton, AB

Re: Harbor Freight 20 ton press mods

Post by EddyCurr »

A post to compliment you on the modifications to your H-press

I also have a few remarks.
  • The illustration in the second image appears to show:
    1. a single piece of channel
    2. positioned so that the channel's web section is horizontal and
    3. the channel's flange sections extend downward and
    4. each end of the channel's flanges feature two welded tabs to serve as load bearing points for the pins that go into the vertical legs of the H-press.
    If this interpretation is correct, then be aware that this added base will withstand considerably less press load than the twin original channels with their web faces situated vertically and entire flange length supported at the ends by the load pins (no weldments).
  • Consider adding some sort of cable retention device to the pulleys for the table hoist assembly. Commercial versions are known as cable guards and pulley traps. In its present configuration, a cable could come off a pulley while the table is being repositioned, allowing the table (and whatever is on it) to fall. A suitable method of retention serves the purpose of ensuring that the cable is unable to escape the pulley groove.
  • Consider exchanging Quick Link/Rapid Link chain connectors w/ threaded nuts in place of the spring-loaded snap carabiners shown in the photos
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