Press Brake Foot Switches
Increase the safety of your press brake safety systems with press brake foot switches. The press brake foot switches are made for industrial uses and to withstand high mechanical and electrical stresses. A press brake foot switch can be used to increase safety on wood processing machines, CNC machines, building machines and bending machines. Press brake operators using a press brake foot switch on their machines will find this added safety feature a must-have for the workplace. A press brake foot switch can be used in cohesion with other safeguarding devices.
Press Brake Foot Switches Usage
Press brake foot switches can be used as the primary activation for your machine. By pressing the foot switch, the press brake operator’s hands can remain free before, during, and after any stroke. Although foot switches significantly increase safety, they are not required to act as the sole activation control. Foot switches can be used with or without other activation levers. Using the press brake foot switches in combination with other levers can prevent accidental engagement of your machinery.
Typical press brake foot switches are necessary when both hands of the operator are required to be free allowing the operator to stop the machine by foot. Additionally, in an event where other press brake safety systems fail, press brake foot switches can be used to protect the operator and others in the vicinity as an emergency stopping provision.
Two-Press Operation Technique
Some press brake foot switches use a two-press operation technique. The first press of the foot switch will lower the die within 6 mm from contact and the second press of the foot switch will initiate contact. The two-press operation technique increasing operator safety by allowing time for the operator to adjust before the stroke takes place. Additionally, the two-press operation technique allows for the operator to step off the pedal entirely. This feature permits the operator the ability to make any final adjustments without having to make contact with the press brake foot switch before initiating the stroke.
Press brake foot switches are not required by OSHA for all machines. However, the use of a press brake foot switches can increase workplace safety providing operators the ability to work more efficiently and productively with less costly mistakes.
Maintenance for Press Brake Foot Switches
To sustain proper operator safety and machine function press brake foot switches should be regularly and adequately maintained. On a weekly basis, Metal Tech Controls recommends inspecting the foot switches by checking correct operation of pedals, removing all dirt and particles on the foot switch, and inspecting the enclosure and cables for any damage that could negatively impact function. Furthermore, Metal Tech Controls recommends lubricating the cam and roller shafts, isolating power and removing the cover, checking screw terminal tightness, and checking for signs of moisture on a six-month base.
Safeguards for Press Brake Foot Switches
To prevent accidental injury or unintentional operation press brake foot switches should be used with safeguards that cannot be easily bypassed or misadjusted.
- When using a press brake foot switch, a seated working position is recommended over a standing position.
- For the comfort and safety of the operator, it is recommended that a foot rest be provided near the pedal when using a press brake foot switch to reduce strain on the foot.
- Operators should avoid riding the foot switch (keeping the foot on the switch without actually depressing it). Riding the foot switch is dangerous and should not be acceptable in the workplace.
- Occasionally observing the rate at which presses are being cycled is suggested to ensure operators do not work at a pace that could cause them to press the foot switch mistakenly.
- The use of interlocking safeguards is recommended to ensure that the press brake foot switches remain inoperable when the safeguards are not operating.
Press Brake Guard for the Press Brake Foot Switches
To prevent unintentional operation the press brake foot switches should be used with a press brake guard. The press brake guard will shield the press brake foot switch from falling objects and accidental engagement by the operator. This type of press brake guard can be made from metal or plastic but should be brightly colored in order to distinguish from the floor.
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Provide your employees a safer work environment by installing press brake foot switches on your press brakes or other machinery. For more information on specific functions or specifications, contact Metal Tech Controls.