AirCorps Aviation Adds 1500 Ton Press to The Shop

A thickened slab was poured to support the additional weight it will put on the floor.
FAGEN Restorations

We at WarbirdsNews have been fascinated by the rapid growth taking place at AirCorps Aviation. We love what they have been doing to resurrect old aircraft over the past few years, and they have fast established an enviable reputation for world-class warbird restorations. The company seems capable of handling almost any task, but most recently, they added an absolutely fascinating, and truly massive vintage sheet metal fabrication tool to their arsenal. This will give them even more ability to manufacture larger and more complicated parts for their rebuild efforts, and we thought our readers might be interested to learn more about it….

Growing demand for AirCorps Aviation’s high-quality fabricated sheet metal parts supported recent acquisition of a 1500 ton hydraulic press.  This enormous press will allow AirCorps to not only press larger sized parts, but also speed up delivery and even increase quality.

The press was purchased in March, but with disassembly time, transportation, and final installation completed this week, it is now operational.  Due to the physical size 175” tall x 108” wide x 100” deep the press had to be craned in through the roof of AirCorps’ fabrication shop. Check out the time lapse video  Weighing approximately 100,000 lbs, there’s no doubt that this vintage piece of manufacturing equipment will be able to carry its weight while pressing new parts!

Vice President of Fabrication Dan Matejcek is excited to put the new press into action stating “we no longer need to farm out hydro pressing of larger parts to other vendors”.  Hydro pressing refers to the process of using a high pressure hydraulic ram to form metal over a specially built die pressed into a semi-fluid material – in this case, a high density rubber pad.  The results are a part formed to the shape of the die without draw marks, scratches, and wrinkling. A new container with a rubber pad was constructed for the press and will allow for parts as large as 30” wide by 72” long.  The 1500 tons of pressing power that the hydraulic ram is capable of will allow for tighter bend radii and raise the level of detail on parts that AirCorps is known for delivering.

Press Specifications:

  • Press opening dimensions – 51”W x 50”D x 47”T
  • Pressing tonnage – 1500 tons
  • Rubber pad container dimensions – 30”W x 72”L

AirCorps Aviation is continually expanding its fabrication and manufacturing capabilities by implementing new equipment and adding personnel. While remaining true to their roots in WWII aircraft restoration, expanding services to other aviation segments such as commercial, legacy, and general aviation will serve to improve their expertise and skill set in aircraft parts fabrication.  While we strive to acquire new, higher capacity equipment, the dedication to deliver consistently high-quality aircraft parts remains the same through:

  • Adherence to  FAA/PMA standards to produce parts of exceptional quality
  • Considering no project too big or too small -our experienced staff and state-of-the-art equipment can handle almost any job you could imagine
  • Quick turn around – our team works diligently to ensure timely completion so you receive your part as soon as possible

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