How Metal Sheets and Blanks are Textured using a Friction Press

Watch our new video to see how we texture sheet metal and metal blanks for jewelry making. We have a large selection of patterns and designs! 
The story of our friction press from SupplyDiva founder Laura. I knew we wanted one, as it could do all kinds of work and produce items that I found extremely interesting. I knew that if I found these items this fascinating so would others! I started searching for one, I am located in Mexico and it is not so easy here like it is in the US. Here everything basically is word of mouth. After searching for 3 months I found one about 400 miles away. I didn’t know the condition but being this is a mechanical machine and had no electronics that even if it had issues I could most likely refurbish it. I asked about it and was told it was in good condition.
But how to get it here, it weighs 2 tons! Whew…..we got a freight company bring it about 40 minutes away from here and a friend had a flatbed truck that could handle something 2 tons plus. It got to the town 40 minutes away with the handle broken off (so sad) and being it was so heavy they would not insure it so we would have to fix that detail. My friend drove up to the nearby town to pick it up and I followed him in my car. They took a cherry picker to pick it up and put it up on the platform. I told my friend to tie it down but he thought he knew better, he said nahhh, it won’t move, it is too heavy. So off we went, me not feeling too good about that part.
As he turned the truck the machine started sliding and due to a tiny itty bitty ledge on the edge of the truck it didn’t fall all the way off, but next to the truck was a tiny car with 7 people in it, if it had fallen off I am sure they would have died. The truck now was so lopsided due to the weight being on one side it was almost only on 2 wheels on one side! Yikes….my heart was in my mouth needless to say. We limped back to the place that had the cherry picker and this time the men listened to me and tied it down……omg.
We made it to the ranch and another friend of mine brought over his big yellow caterpillar and with the scoop up in the air we put all the chains we had around to get it off the flatbed without hurting it more (hopefully). I had some really big massive chains hanging around and others that were loaned and he slowly lifted the press and got it off the truck. Whew, that was pretty scary.
It was laying on its side and stayed that way until we could get my friend Carmelo over here to help stand it up, it is so heavy that we barely were able to do that, but we used a 4 ton chainfall, wood posts and more, and we barely did it. Under this machine we installed a huge cube made out of rebar and cement that measure about 1.5 meter deep by 1.5 meters wide. It has to weigh more than the machine so the machine won’t vibrate or fall over. It is sitting on huge screws that hold it in place, we had to lift it to sit on these and be able to hold it secure.
Then came the big job of giving maintenance and making it all good again, new leather on the brake, greasing it, setting up the new handle, and installing the 10 horsepower motor. It was the biggest thing I have ever done, but it is there now. Real good and real useful! Haha, I love this machine. How it got here from Brazil is beyond me!
Textured metal blanks
Shown here are some of our textured metal blanks with one of the texture dyes. The texture dies are tempered steel that can take the pressure of 60 tons that this friction press is capable of. 
Pedro cutting sheets of metal
This is Pedro, he is in charge of our large machine workshop. 
Friction Press for texturing metal
Pedro uses this 60 ton Brazilian friction press to texture and dome metal. 
Friction Press Wheels
The large wheels of this friction press are what give it power, a leather brake is installed around this wheel to stop the machine when necessary. 
A dye being installed in the friction press
A textured dye is placed below the hammer of this friction press.
A textured sheet of metal is removed from the dye
The final product is a perfectly textured sheet of metal which is handmade!