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The Indispensable Press Brake Safety Guide

For Owners and Operators

Note: This article summarizes our own in-depth safety guide. To view and download the PDF, click here.

At Cincinnati Incorporated (CI), we design all of our equipment, including our press brakes, to comply fully with OSHA/ANSI safety standards for machine construction. It’s also a point of emphasis to train customers and operators with safe practices in mind, and to notify them when new safety equipment or design modifications become available.

Simply being in the vicinity of something more powerful than you mandates caution and respect, and that’s what we emphasize to operators and others working near CI press brakes.

When operating a press brake, you have two primary and vital objectives. First, you must eliminate the need for operators to place any parts of their bodies within (or even near) the point of operation when loading, forming or unloading. Second, choose a guard, device or operating method that prevents entry or stops die closing if the operators inadvertently enter the point of operation. This is best accomplished through an analysis of all the factors that make up the forming system and its relationship with your operators.

Here now are a few safety methods you can implement for your part forming jobs. 

1. Presence Sensing Device (PSD)

The PSD stops ram motion or prevents initiation of the motion if the sensing field is interrupted by an object. It relies on proper settings for Mute and Blanking to ensure your press brake is both properly safeguarded and productive. 

2. Laser Guarding Systems

This device utilizes a transmitter and receiver mounted on opposite ends of the ram to create a sensing zone (or grid) behind, under and in front of the upper die tip. Any interruption of this sensing zone will prevent machine operation or immediately stop the ram’s motion. 

3. Dual Palmbuttons (with supplemental hand tools)

The palmbuttons cycle the ram of the press brake, and both hands are required to hold the buttons during the machine’s downstroke. Hand tools are used to remove small parts from the die. 

Be sure to explore our dedicated safety page if you need additional information. You will find machine safety signs available at no charge to customers, and they can be purchased by anyone online. We also provide safety resources both online and at our facility. If you have any questions on safety as it pertains to your CI equipment, please feel free to write our Safety Department any time at