Bend Force Calculator Description

The Press brake Tonnage Calculator can be used to estimate the required tonnage to “air bend” a part. The actual tonnage may vary from this calculation due to several factors such as the friction of the material on the die, thickness variations of the material and actual tensile strength. It is recommended that the press have 20% excess capacity. If you are bottom bending, tonnage requirements are approximately four times the air bend tonnage and for coining, the requirements are approximately ten times the air bend tonnage.

Another factor that must be considered is the capacity of the tooling which is important when forming short parts. The total tonnage may not be high but the tonnage per foot of bend may exceed to capability of the tool or ram. Damage to the tooling or machine may result if the capacities are exceeded.

"The Material Strength Reference Table” provides tensile strength values to use with the calculator. The “Max. Tensile” value should be used. This value is either the ASTM listed maximum tensile or an estimated maximum tensile strength of 15000 psi over the minimum amount. Also included in that table are any available recommendations for the die width ratio (die width divided by the material thickness) and minimum punch radius ratio (punch radius divided by the material thickness). These ratios are suggested by the steel manufacturers to avoid fracturing when bending to 90 degrees. For steels where nothing is suggested, an eight times die ratio is suggested. The punch radius for air bending should be less than the air bend radius.

The values calculated by the program include the die ratio, the inside radius of the part (the inside radius is determined by the die width NOT by the punch radius), the outside radius of the part, the minimum leg or distance between bends required by the die opening and most importantly the tonnage per foot required to make a 90 degree bend. Bends of less than 90 degrees may require less tonnage but not by a significant amount.

Instructions: Input data into the blue boxes for your material and punch & die configuration. This estimates the tonnage required to complete a 90° bend. Click here for Material Strength Reference Table.

Tensile Strength (PSI)
Material Thickness (inches) - T
Die Width (inches) - W
Punch Radius (inches)
K Factor
Die Ratio (W/T)
Bend Radius - Inside
Estimated Air Bend Radius

Bend Radius - Outside
Estimated Air Bend Radius

Minimum Between Bends
Minimum Leg Length for Die Width

Tonnage Required (per foot of Bend)
Total Tonnage for Bend
Overall Length
Constants (Press Brake Tonnage):
Bend Length (inches)
Friction Coefficient
Calculated Value of Force
Bend Angle (degrees)

DISCLAIMER: Actual bending force is affected by many factors such as friction between the material and the die, material thickness, material strength variations, rolling direction of the steel, work hardening and other parameters. This estimator calculates a force representative of the press brake requirement for air bending. Sizing of a machine or available die width should allow for up to 20% additional capacity. Pacific Press makes no guarantee of actual force required to make a bend in a specific part.


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