P50 Piranha Ironworker Safety and Operational Guide

Disclaimer

This safety and operational setup guide is provided by Megafab, maker of the Piranha line of hydraulic Ironworkers.  This guide is designed to assist the end user in safe set up, operation, and maintenance of Piranhas ironworkers. However, it should not be used as a substitute for thorough operator training.

Megafab and the creators, producers, participants, and distributors of this guide disclaim any liabilities or loss in connection with the instruction and advice here.

Basic Rules

As with any machinery, the Piranha machines can be dangerous if improperly operated. Keep in mind the following basic rules:

  1. Each operator should study and become fully familiar with the operator’s manual.
  2. Each operator should receive a training course from an experienced operator.
  3. The machine should be set up in a safe location with plenty of room for the operator to work at each station.
  4. Operators should always wear eye protection and proper clothing.
  5. Operators should never be allowed to operate the Piranha or any machinery if their performance is impaired by alcohol or drugs.
    1. Keep in mind that some over-the-counter and prescription drugs cause drowsiness and affect reaction time.
  6. Instruct all operators to stop and seek help from the foreman or lead man has to any operation that is not fully understood.
  7. Never sacrifice safety for speed or convenience.

To ensure your Piranha is registered properly in the event warranty work is required, please take a moment to complete the warranty registration card you receive with the owner’s manual and return it to Megafab.

Operations

Megafab builds five separate models of its single slide hydraulic Ironworker. A single slide Ironworker utilizes a single hydraulic cylinder to provide power to all workstations.

The single slide Piranha models are designed for safe operation by one operator only. Do not allow more than one person to operate the machine at the same time.

Never attempt to exceed the rated capacities of the machine. Refer to your owner’s manual for workstation specifications.

Set-Up

When moving the Piranha, use a long-reach D shackle and secure it through the lifting hole near the middle of the upper beam. Be careful, as the machines are very top-heavy.

Once in place, use the leveling bolts located in each corner of the cabinet to level the machine.

Run a plug into the enclosure or wire the machine directly into a fuse disconnect. Make sure the incoming voltage matches the motor voltage.

The motor, hydraulic pump, and hydraulic filter are located in the cabinet along with the hydraulic cylinder and control valve unit. The hydraulic reservoir is also located in the cabinet of the machine. The Piranha is shipped with no hydraulic oil. Before operating, put 5 gallons of fluid in the reservoir, then raise the punch in and finish filling the reservoir with a Mobil DTE 13 M or equivalent ISO grade 32 oil. Operating the machine low on oil will cause an overheating condition. Once the reservoir has been filled with hydraulic oil and electrical wiring is complete, the machine is ready for operation.

Control Procedures

All single slide Piranha models may be controlled from either the front or rear electrical control box. A safety feature of the Piranha is the control box selector switch, located on the front control box. The switch has two positions, “front” and “rear,” and will allow the Ironworker to be operated only from the selected control box. The Ironworker may be shut off from either control box.

The rear control box which is located at the rear coper/notcher station and is operated with the foot control only.

The front control box is located to the right of the punch station and contains the following components: control box selector switch, emergency start/stop button, foot control receptacle, foot control toggle switch, “up” and “down” push-buttons, and 2 limit switches set the control box selector.

Set the control box selector switch to the “front” position and ensure both emergency stop buttons are pulled in the “up” position to start the machine.

The “up” and “down” push-buttons are used for aligning tooling. The foot control can be used in lieu of the “up” and “down” push-buttons. This requires the use of the foot control toggle switch, limit switches, and the control arms mounted to the on-side pull arm. This greatly reduces the machine stroke time, thus increasing productivity and allowing hands-free operation.

Never use the foot control without setting the limit switches.

Prior to any tooling changes, push one of the emergency stop buttons and shut the machine off.

Remove all tooling from the workstations not being used.

Punch Station

The punch station utilizes three main components: the punch attachment, the die block, and the coupling wrench. The punch attachment slides under the upper beam. It is affixed with a socket head cap screw, supplied with the machine, through the hole in the upper beam.

For punch installation, use the coupling wrench to remove the punch coupling nut.  Place the punch and the coupling nut tip down and reinstall into the punch stem. Using the coupling wrench, tighten the coupling nut. Do not remove the transparent safety shield.

The die block has a borehole for the die, a set screw to secure the die in the die block, and three set screws to set the die block location on the platen table. Place the die in the die block bore with the proper side up and lock it in place with the set screw. Place the die block on the platen table and slowly lower the punch towards the die using the “down” push-button, stopping prior to making contact with the die. Adjust the position of the die so that the die has uniform clearance around the punch. Once in alignment, lower the punch assembly onto the die block, securing it to the platen. Tighten the two flange nuts on the platen studs and the three set screws until they contact the platen studs.

Proper adjustment of the three set screws will assist in punch and die alignment in the future. Always check the alignment prior to operation.

The punch station should be operated using the foot control.

Take precautions not to overload the hydraulic system by bottoming out the cylinder, thus creating heat.

When using the foot control, you must use the limit switches. To set the limit switches, turn the foot control toggle switch to the “off” position and start the machine. Using the “down” push-button, lower the punch into the die. Loosen the thumb screw on the front control arm and slide it until it rests on top of the front limit switch. Then, tighten the thumbscrew. This sets the down stroke. Using the up-push button, raise the punch and place your work material on the die block. Lower the punch until you are a maximum of one quarter inch above the work material. Loosen the thumb screw on the rear control arm and slide it until it rests on the bottom side of the rear limit switch. Tighten the thumbscrew. This sets the upstroke. Switch the foot control toggle switch to the “on” position for operation with foot control.

The automatic urethane stripper — a unique feature on the Piranha Ironworkers — automatically clamps material before being punched, holds the material while being punched, and strips the material after punching to ensure a precise hole and a flat part. If adjustments of the punch attachment are needed, refer to the owner’s manual.

When the operation is completed, push one of the emergency stop buttons and turn the machine off.

Remove all tooling from the upper beam and platen table.

Shearing Station

The shearing section of the Piranha contains workstations to shear flat bar, angle iron, and round or square bar with optional blades. It should be operated with the foot control.

The hold-down is used to clamp the material prior to shearing.

The machine is supplied with the safety shield on the material feed side. A safety shield is also supplied on the material drop side of the Ironworker to prevent material from being fed from the wrong direction, as well as providing protection on the drop side of the Ironworker.

Never feed material into the Ironworker from the drop side of the machine.

Never remove safety shields.

Regardless of the Piranha model being used, never attempt to shear material which is not clamped tightly to the table prior to shearing.

Never attempt to shear material which is not at least flush with the hold-down on the operator side.

Always feed material in the Ironworker from the hold-down side.

Never attempt to shear material without the hold-down assembly installed.

Failure to clamp the material tightly or completely under the entire hold-down may result in damage to the Ironworker.

Shear Station – Flat Bar

Using the up button, raise the upper beam to its full “up” position and loosen the adjusting nuts. Insert the material under the hold-down and through the knives. Tighten the adjusting nuts to lower the hold-down, stopping just as the material is secured. This will allow the material to feed freely. Use the material adjustment guide, which is perpendicular to the knives to ensure a square cut.

Shear Station – Angle

Using the up button, raise the upper beam to its full “up” position and loosen the adjusting nuts. Insert the material under the hold-down and through the knives. Tighten the adjusting nuts to lower the hold-down, stopping just as the material is secured. This will allow the material to feed freely. Be sure the angle hold-down pad meets the angle iron squarely prior to shearing.

The upper angle shear knife is square. Each corner has a different radius to accommodate various sizes of angle. For the best cut matched the knife radius to the angle fillet radius.

Remember, never attempt to shear any material which is not completely held down to the shear table and is not at least flush with the operator side of the hold-down. Failure to follow these precautions may result in serious machine damage.

Coper/Notcher Station

Operate this station only from the rear control box.

The foot control, with a limit switch, is used to operate this station. Setup of the stroke control is done using the front control box. Set the control box selector switch to the “front” position. Start the iron worker using the down button on the front box. Lower the punch into the beam, stopping just prior to the bottom of stroke. Set the front control arm by loosening the thumbscrew on the front control arm and slide it until it rests on top of the front limit switch. Tighten the thumbscrew.

The coper/notcher station uses only the front control arm to set the upstroke of the coper/notcher. There is no limit switch for the down stroke of the coper/notcher station.

Raise the safety shield and turn the control box selector switch to the “rear” position. Plug in the foot control and switch the foot control toggle switch to the “on” position. Adjust the front control arm to just allow material being sheared to be inserted between the knives.

Always return the safety guard to the “down” position when work is completed.

Maintenance

Simple routine maintenance will prolong the useful life of your Ironworker. It is recommended to set up a weekly maintenance program for your machine to lubricate, inspect the hydraulic system, and check the hardware and fasteners.

To maintain the precision of the Ironworker, inspect all fasteners and hardware every 40 hours. The table and knife bolts may need inspection more frequently, depending on your work applications. Refer to your owner’s manual for proper torque specifications.

There are grease fittings located on the pole arms, the coper/notcher side plates, and inside the cabinet.  These should be lubricated every 40 hours. Refer to your owner’s manual or the Piranha Ironworker Maintenance chart for exact locations.  Lubrication of the punch, die, and knives can prolong the life of these items.

The hydraulic system is a very important part of your machine. The smallest amount of contamination can cause the machine to malfunction. The filter element should be changed after the first 40 operating hours. It is recommended to change the element every three months after that. The hydraulic oil should be changed every 12 months. In a dirty environment, both may require more frequent changes.

 

Summary

The operator should thoroughly understand the owner’s manual and machine operation before operating the Ironworker.

Always wear eye protection and gloves.

Make sure all safety guards are in place before operating the ironworker. Do not remove any of the safety guards.

Keep hands and clothing out of the way of moving parts.

Keep work tables and work areas clean.

Turn the Ironworker off or turn the selector switch to the “off” position before changing or removing any tooling.

Remove all tooling from the workstations not being used before performing any operations.

Make sure the tooling is secure before starting the Ironworker.

The work area around the ironworker should be well lit and free from obstructions.

Always use the limit switches to limit the stroke of the Ironworker for all operations.

Be sure and check with your supervisor before operating this equipment.

This guide is designed to provide a summary of some of the features of the P50 Piranha Ironworker. It should not be used as a substitute for thorough operator training. As with any machinery, the Piranha Ironworker can be dangerous if improperly operated.

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