1. The maximum press capacity in a press design is measured in tons or pounds
force. Tons/pounds force is calculated by multiplying the platen and or cross
sectional mold area (e.g. 30" x 24" !20 s"uare inches# times the pressure
re"uired to bond or mold (e.g. 300 psi# resulting in !20 x 300 21$%000 pounds
of force. &i'ide 21$%000 by 2%000 pounds (one(1# ton# 10( tons (use 12) or
1)0 ton press#. *hange any factor and press tonnage may change.
2. The stro+e of the hydraulic ram is usually determined by the sum of the number
of openings times the si,e of each opening (e.g. ( openings -ith 4" daylight each
32" stro+e#. .ome cost sa'ings result in reducing the length of the ram stro+e
(as many molders -ill load all openings -ith 3" molds (boo+s# per opening and
actually use only a stro+e ("#. This reduces costs by reducing the length of
cylinder% length or ram% oil reser'oir% etc. /ost all presses are sold to fully close
(stro+e# all openings -ithout any molds (boo+s# in the press. This pre'ents the
operator from lifting the ram from the cylinder causing ram seal damage.
3. The utili,ation of the hydraulics in press systems 'aries by all press
manufacturers. The basic approach is to close the press by pumping oil to a steel
ram (up acting# and forcing it in an up acting direction (stro+e# thus closing the
press platens at about 40" per minute (approach speed#. This re"uires a motor
-ith a low pressure, high volume pump. The press utili,es an additional motor
-ith a high pressure lo- 'olume pump for pressure buildup. 0rior to full closure
(about 1" or less#% the press has a limit s-itch or proximity s-itch that can be
actuated and shut off the lo- pressure% high 'olume pump and motor. The press
-ill continue the stro+e in a slo- (pressing# speed to assure a gentle contact to the
surface. The press -ill build to the setting of the panel mounted relief 'al'e.
There can be t-o (2# relief 'al'es1 (1# for the lo- pressure setting and (1# for the
high pressure setting. 0ressure relief 'al'es are spring loaded 'al'es that hold the
pressure in the system until it reaches the 'al'e setting. (.ome systems use
pressure s-itches to completely stop all motors and pumps and hold pressure by
means of the closed hydraulic circuit. 2thers us transducers and 'ariable3
displacement axial3piston pumps to accomplish the same effect#.
The oil -ill then be 'ented bac+ to the reser'oir -hile holding the pressure at that
preset pressure setting. There are additional 'al'es in the system for later
discussions. 4lectrical timers or the use of a 05*% etc. -ill determine the
se"uence and duration of time of pressure settings% etc. This is the basic operation
and other conditions and designs lead to a more sophisticated "state-of-the-art"
4. The electrical system can incorporate the use of manually operated components
(timers% selector s-itches and pushbuttons# or the use of a /icroprocessor 05*
(0rogrammable 5ogic *ontroller# or the use of a *omputer/05*.
The microprocessor operation is the acceptable direction 's. the manual
operation. The microprocessor is usually mounted in the operator electrical
enclosure. The microprocessor is capable of programming temperature and heat3
up rates% time functions and pressure as -ell as pressure profiles.
The *omputer/05* function pro'ides the same type programming capability and
a lot more -ith graphical presentation soft-are and monitor.
). 6eated or heated and cooled platens system 7 Temperature uniformity on
electrically heated platens is usually 8/3(9 at set point (3)09:#. ;e prefer to state
the uniformity of a platen -ithin an area using a 1" border from the edge of
platens on all four (4# sides (e.g. 30 x 24 2( x 22 area#. 2ther conditions may
ha'e an affect on this uniformity. <niformity is usually better on hot presses only
(no cooling# as the platens -ill ha'e a chance to stabili,e at a set point and soa+
the steel. /any press systems in the past used steam heat but 'ery% 'ery fe- are
sold for this application in today=s mar+et. 4lectric heat is still the number one (1#
used heating medium. /any of the 'ery large platens for copper clad laminate
manufacturing (**5# use steam% hot -ater% or thermal fluid platen heating. The
press manufacturer -ill determine the best heater and control design to achie'e
the temperature uniformity for the platens from the customer supplied data on the
re"uired uniformity specifications. There are assorted -ays to ",one" (di'ide into
small units# control a platen. 0latens are drilled for insertion of heaters into the
drilled passages.
Thermal fluid is an added cost to the thermal fluid press system 's. the electric
heat medium. 0laten temperature uniformity is usually much better than electric
and steam heating% but does not offer a "uic+ heat up rate for multiple platens
from an ambient state. Thermal systems are basically a 'ery lo-3pressure system
-hen compared to steam heated units. Thermal systems are best at heating a
platen to a constant temperature and holding as a set point for long periods% thus
pro'iding a temperature uniformity on the platen surface at about 2349:.

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