Manufacturer of Hydraulic Presses

Is It Time to Rebuilt, Retrofit and Buy a New Hydraulic Press?

April 29, 2021

Investing in a new hydraulic press is a major investment. That’s why many machine shops choose to retrofit or rebuild an older press, which often has a lot of life left in it.

The problem with older machinery is parts and technology are outdated. Even presses a decade old don’t meet current demands for precision and quality. But a high quality rebuild or retrofit can give you extra years of efficiency and workflow, avoiding the cost of an entirely new press.

Here is a look at factors to consider when deciding on a rebuild, retrofit or a new hydraulic press.

Types of Upgrades

Retrofits add newer capability to a press. One of the most common is building in types of new technology. One of the simplest and most effective is adding touch screen controls combined with helpful recipe storage. Incorporating automation capability like robotics and feeders is another popular retrofit. It gives older machines the some of the versatility of the latest machinery.

One of the best retrofits gives operators more safety. This involves updating to the most recent ANSI B11.2-1995 standards. Safety has definitely improved over the years on hydraulic presses.

A helpful retrofit is the addition of a closed-loop distance and pressure abilities. Another is to upgrade to speed control for hard-to-form materials, and the capacity to expand cycle rates. Anything that boosts accuracy and repeatability is an asset for a hydraulic press.

Rebuilds involve replacing components that drive the mechanical, electrical and hydraulic systems in a press. The modern components that take their place give an old machine a longer, more efficient lifespan.
Some of the most common rebuilds include :


  • Inserting a manifold system in place of old piping and valve systems. These are simpler to troubleshoot and repair since they are in a single, consolidated piece.
  • Put in new wiring for electrical systems
  • Take off the old surface and repaint the equipment
  • Completely rebuild old cylinders using up-to-date components
  • Rebuild the press motor and pumps
  • Get rid of deteriorating platen guides and slides and replace with new ones
  • Use oil ring seals in place of pipe thread systems that tend to leak
  • Replace old seals and ram gland rings
  • Doing a complete overhaul of the hydraulic press


Benefits of Retrofitting and Rebuilding

Adding new functionality to an old press can give it more years of use, improve the quality of what it produces and speed up output. It also means you aren’t paying the big money required to buy a new hydraulic press. Those are major advantages.

Old presses often have slower cycle times. Their output can be inconsistent in quality, requiring do-overs and waste. Older presses are governed by a control panel that is much more limited in its capability compared to recent models with programmable logic controllers.

Older control panels give the operator status updates much more slowly, which is a problem for a job’s critical data. Using them, it is not possible to automate a press run. Instead, the operator must enter all instructions for every job. That adds to the time the job is in the shop, slowing down workflow. And since the data must be manually keyed in each time, more errors are likely to occur.

When it comes to rebuilding, old presses are like old cars. With use, parts simply wear out. That doesn’t mean the press, like the car, is unusable. It requires refurbishing or adding new components to keep it in tip-top shape.

Time for a New Hydraulic Press

It makes sense to get every last ounce of work from the equipment you currently have. But there comes a time when it is just not cost-effective to upgrade the systems or update the components. The only sensible choice is to buy a new hydraulic press with all the latest bells and whistles already built in.

At that point, contact the experts at PressMaster. We have a decades-long reputation for quality hydraulic presses. We take pride in our research, using it to its best advantage with the latest technology in each press we manufacture.

We are experts at customizing presses for your precise needs. Talk to our friendly, knowledgeable staff about your needs and budget. We can help. Call today for a free, no-obligation quote.