A press brake is a machine used to form bends at almost any angle in sheet material using a matched punch-and-die tool set. When forming a part with a single bend, press brakes are a great option and somewhat simple to use. However, when you start forming parts with multiple bends, press brakes often require multiple matched tool sets to be changed over regularly. Since each angle after each bend has to be measured for accuracy, the operator’s skill set and training becomes increasingly important.

Triform sheet hydroforming presses are able to form the same bends and angles with a single unmatched tool, in a single process, taking only seconds, and requiring very little operator training. Our intuitive controls and user-friendly interface reduce the reliance on skilled labor and offer users more capability than they ever thought possible.

Watch the two processes side-by-side in the time-lapsed video below. You’ll be impressed with Triform’s easy set-up and fast cycle time when compared to traditional press brake forming.

Sheet hydroforming offers many benefits over traditional press brake forming, all saving you time and money:

  • Simplified tooling – Since the rubber diaphragm acts a universal female tool, sheet hydroforming eliminates the need for expensive mated die sets. Tooling can be made from standard, inexpensive materials (including wood, epoxy and 3D printed materials) and typically has a longer life than conventional press tooling due to the steady, uniform pressure applied during the process. The process also eliminates the need for progressive forming dies.
  • Reduced reliance on skilled labor – Due to the inherent simplicity of sheet hydroforming and the elimination of tool setup, Triform users can begin forming perfect parts in minutes. By eliminating the need for secondary buffing, polishing and other hand work (caused by the marring and scuff marks left by traditional matched dies), labor costs are significantly reduced.
  • Increased accuracy and repeatability – The user-friendly control platform allows the operator to manipulate process variables throughout the forming cycle. Once the optimal recipe for a particular part has been determined, it can be saved and repeated consistently, even on different Triform presses.
  • Less scrap – The accuracy, repeatability, and simplified tooling ensure your bend angles are always accurate, and often your blank size can often be reduced. As a result, virtually every part is a “keeper.”
  • Speed – The simple tooling, operation, and repeatability, make sheet hydroforming incredibly fast. Depending on the model, cycle times are as quick as 10-15 seconds, and multiple parts can be formed in a single cycle.

Read the entire Steelville Manufacturing Success Story to learn how they transitioned many parts from a press brake to a Triform sheet hydroforming press.