I’m just checking the temperature of everyone. Someone mentioned there is a clicker press for sale in the DFW area for $1500. For those who don’t know a clicker press is great for cutting fabric, soft plastics, and leather really quickly. Clicker Press.
A clicker press is really useful when making LOTS of parts / components out of flexible materials like leather. I contracted a person to do this for me a few years ago for something I was exploring making in quantity. Thing is, to use this one needs to have a die fabricated. A die is made using sharpened steel banding that is set into a plywood sheet. The die plywood might be cut / formed using a CNC or a laser and the mild steel “knife” is would be formed into the shape or kerf in the plywood. The knife / steel banding might be .030 inches and sharpened on the exposed edge. There are companies in Austin who can do this.
A die can cut straight or curved patters with a clicker quite quickly. It’s useful cutting leather to select a part of a hide for any part of a shoe. Good for cardboard pasteboard as well as leather.
All that said, don’t know if any makers at ATX HS contemplate doing something like that. I am exploring a product that “might” find a clicker useful but I’ll relate to that in a different post I’ll title an “Undermask.”
I think the clicker is neat, would be cool to see, but i really dont think it fits the needs or the room of the space.
Seems itd take alot of room, and wouldn’t get much use due to it needing custom made dies.
For the most part, if you need alot of thin things cut the laser is a good option. Its proven itself with the fabric cutting for the masks.
We actually had a hydraulic industrial clicker press years ago! It got used a few times, but never for the intended steel rule dies. Instead we had some oversized CNC’ed 2D plywood pieces with a puzzle-piece joint intentionally undersized so it press-fit together without gluing (but you could do this with glue). IIRC the pump seals blew on the press when someone tried to press something outside its limits but I’m not sure.
The steel rule die seems like a simple thing to DIY, but it’s anything but. Difficulty being that you need to bend curves and corners at very exact points or it won’t fit in the groove, they use CNC steel rule benders. I thought about doing a DIY years ago, found where to buy the steel rule stock for it, but couldn’t find a viable way to do the bending.
But, like you say, there are companies that make the die. Then again, at that point you might just let the company punch out everything in their press anyways.
At 10bit years ago we had a member make a couple steel dyes, one was a paper wrapper for a 1" cube Christmas ornament he sent people, another was for a magic the gathering card box. both times he had the dies outsourced, and just using a manual hydralic press to press it for the small quantity they were doing.