I posted this over at an engineering forum too, but I would love any
feedback you can provide.
I've been trying to design a wine press but am concerned I may fail due
to my poor design and the relatively extreme forces involved.
To see an example of a type of press I'm considering, please see this:
For my press I had intended to place the hydraulic cylinder beneath the
compression chamber- eliminating the chance of contamination.
Everything else will be hardwood- or possibly (fir, pine) depending on
I would like to 'rest' the hydraulic jack on two pieces of angle iron
that are then braced with 2x6 or 2x8. They form the floor of the wine
press, and might possibly have a small 'filler' board to keep them from
shifting. I expect to use several carriage bolts to hold this
angle-iron reinforced structure together. I have access to a
OxyAcetylene setup but had not intended to use it for this design.
This floor beam would transfer the force to a pair (4x) of vertical
beams on either side. A small filler and stop would separate the two
vertical beams. As before, a carriage bolt or two would be used to
keep the beams in alignment with each other. These could be made out
of laminated plywood (3 to 4" thick) or 4" post beams.
The top of the press would have either one, two, or three 2x8 or 2x12's
to transfer the force to the follower. Square stock (spaced with
holes- I can't recall what it's called) would be set with a pin to
allow me to drop the press further and further down as the pomace was
drained of juice.
I was thinking of making the follower (the piece that covers the
pomace/must) from simple 2x3/4 plywood and a steel cup to help
distribute the force.
That's the background. My concerns are bracing the 20 ton jack
properly and preventing the entire press from disintegrating. I do not
expect to exceed 6 tons of force with this design as that would exceed
100 PSI on the pomace, and I'm told bad things begin to happen to grape
seeds around there.
Given that the pot is 12" in diameter and I'd like to upgrade to at
least 18" in the future, that requires a minimum floor beam length of
30" + vertical beam thickness, or about 40" total.
How does one go about calculating the yield strength of angle iron in
this case- am I over engineering the bottom? Are my concerns
I have been using this as a source of information:
I'm afraid to admit it but I'm a ChemEng/Chem, although it's been so
long since I took my materials courses that I don't even know where to
Thanks in advance for any insights you may have-