Piranha Ironworkers

Anyone who manages a fabrication shop knows all too well that productivity is the key to success. It’s absolutely essential to be able to complete tasks accurately and efficiently within a designated time period. To be able to achieve optimal productivity rates, a shop needs the right kind of equipment. Of course, none of this should be news to anyone involved in the fabrication industry—but the simple fact remains that far too many shops struggle with inferior equipment that compromises their ability to meet production quotas. Piranha Ironworkers are considered to be one of the most reliable on the market. 

Maintaining reliable ironworkers can make a huge difference in a busy shop. These machines handle a number of vital tasks—notching, shearing, punching, and bending, to name a few—that require precision craftsmanship. For anyone whose professional responsibilities include ensuring optimal machinist productivity, it’s important to know about Piranha ironworkers, a leading brand in the fabrication industry. These highly durable, ergonomically designed, uniquely crafted ironworkers come with a variety of useful features and workstations that provide the user with an enormous range of fabrication options. The line of Piranha ironworkers currently available on the market has earned the respect of industry professionals across the nation, and this brand has been linked with consistently high levels of measurable customer satisfaction.

Let’s take a look at Piranha ironworkers in more detail—their various components and the different models available.

The product line

Piranha ironworkers come in three basic types:

  1. Single operator ironworker – Available in various models (P-50, P-65, P-90, P-110, and P-140), this type can perform most of the functions associated with ironworkers—bending, punching, notching, and much more. These versatile machines boost shop productivity by permitting a wide range of tasks to be completed quickly and easily; they’re capable of fast cycle times and minimal part distortion. The number of each model refers to its punch capacity as measured in tons (e.g., the P-90 has a 90-ton capacity). All of these include electronic stroke control and integrated coper notchers, along with other features that vary by specific model.
  2. Dual operator ironworker – These enable the user to carry out two operations at the same time—for example, simultaneous punching and shearing. Each workstation of the machine has its own joystick and foot pedal. Two dual operator models are available: PII-88 and PII-140.
  3. Single end punch press – This model provides an easy way to punch holes in fabricated materials. Because punching is faster than comparable methods of creating holes, such as burning and drilling, this machine is cost effective as well as highly accurate. One model is available: SEP-120.


Standard features and functions

As we have established, Piranha ironworkers aren’t all alike. Even so, there are a number of standard features shared across the entire product line. 

  • Hold-downs – Piranha ironworkers include urethane hold-downs that have been designed to clamp and unclamp materials automatically. Materials will stay in a clamped position over the full shearing cycle.
  • Stripping – Utilizing urethane strippers that ensure the materials stay flat, Piranha ironworkers carry out this task more efficiently than typical units. 
  • Shear blade – Piranha avoids part distortion by using a low rake angle shear blade with four shear edges.
  • Improved visibility – With Piranha ironworkers, it’s easy to line up cuts properly because the blade remains visible.
  • Coper notcher – The low rake angle blade avoids deforming materials—a common hazard with high rake angle blades.
  • Angle shear – By using a floating upper blade, Piranha ironworkers eliminate distortions common to fixed upper blades.
  • Uniform workstation height – All attachments and workstations are positioned at an identical height, which promotes easy use of the ironworker’s various components.


A number of attachments are available that enhances and extends the capabilities of Piranha ironworkers:

  • Channel die blocks – Mounted in the place of a standard die block, these products are used for punching channel legs and similar tasks. It has a 50-ton punching capacity and can punch holes in the leg of a 3”- 6” standard weight channel.
  • Pipe/tube notching attachment – Featuring a spring-loaded return, this attachment mounts to the platen. Notching dies are available for ¾”, 1”, 1 ¼”, 1 ½”, and 2” types. 
  • 28XX punch attachment – Capable of increasing the ironworker’s punching capability as much as five inches, this attachment has been designed for any kind of standard 28XX tooling (50 tons and lighter). The attachment is mounted in place of the standard punch holder and die block. 
  • Bending attachment – Designed for optimal ease of use and installation, these are available in sizes from 8” through 48”.
  • Quickset gauging tables – These are excellent for punching several holes in a speedy manner, as this attachment can be mounted on the machine platen table without requiring the removal of the die block or the punch attachment. Plate and angle-gauging guide bars are included. These gauging tables come with three left-hand stops on the table as well as six stops on their angle guide bars.
  • Roller feed tables – These enable the easy feeding of the bar, the angle, and the plate. Available in five-foot increments, these attachments can be adjusted for different ironworker types. Rollers are included.
  • Press brake tooling holders – These attachments help the user with precision bending tasks by enabling the utilization of press brake punches and dies for this purpose. NOTE: These are available only for certain models.
  • Mechanical backgauge – This attachment provides the user with an infinitely adjustable mechanical backstop. It easily bolts on with no need for modifications to the ironworker. 3’, 6’, 9’, and 12’ lengths are available.
  • Electrical backgauge – Basically the electronic version of the mechanical backgauge (all of whose features it shares), this attachment makes possible the automated cycling of the ironworker when the fabricated material reaches the backgauge. NOTE: These are available only for certain models. Minor adjustments to electrical components may be required.
  • Channel shear – These attachments take the place of the standard punch holder at the punch end of the ironworker. Each cut from this shear can remove a slug of ½”, which easily slides out after cutting. Furthermore, this attachment features an adjustable pinned slide block and quick-release locking.
  • 1 ½” oversize punch attachment – This can punch a hole as large as 1 9/16”. Easily mountable, it utilizes No. JF dies and No. EF punches. NOTE: These are available only for certain models.

No matter what model you select, your Piranha ironworker will serve your shop well for many seasons to come.




Machinery Repair & Replacement Parts

Metalworking has been a part of human civilization in North America since the Paleo-Indians of the Great Lakes Region developed a process for heating and working metal about 7,000 years ago.1  The modern metalworking industry, known by the Bureau of Labor Statistics as the Fabricated Metal Product Manufacturing subsector, identifies the key processes as bending, forming, machining, forging, and stamping, usually for creating intermediate products that contribute to fabrication of end products further down the supply chain.2

Metal Fabrication Machinery – the Industry


Metal fabrication shops rely for their versatility and productive capacity on essential tools and metal fabrication machinery, like ironworkers, bandsaws, and press brakes, designed to adapt to a range of settings and needs. In the present U.S. economy, demand for metalworking machinery of this caliber is directly tied to overall industrial activity.

As is often the case, the largest 50 companies are responsible for roughly 30 percent of revenue, although many smaller companies succeed by offering specialty products, accessories, and replacement parts. The whole industry is, in fact, built on high-performance metalworking machinery, with 45 percent of revenue coming from dies and molds, while 25 percent is produced by machine tools, followed by 20 percent going to machine tool accessories and cutting tools.3

Today, the total U.S. industry generates about $30 billion in combined revenue for an estimated 6500 companies. Continued growth is linked to increased industrial activity in the U.S. as well as the potential for growing industrialization in undeveloped markets overseas.4

The Ironworker – an Introductionmetal-fabrication-ironworker.jpg


People who love tools and machines have a deep feeling of respect for the Ironworker. It is a class of machine that uses hydraulic systems to produce powerful forces capable of notching, shearing, and punching holes in steel plate. These machines must be made of extremely heavy steel, themselves, in order to tolerate the forces they generate, ranging from 20 to 140 tons.

Ironworkers come in different sizes to accommodate a single operator up to multiple operators at different stations. A separate task is performed at each station as the metal work piece travels through it. Operations include punch stations for different sizes, shear and coper stations, hold-downs on an angle, and bar and plate shears. An attractive feature of the Ironworker is its capacity to be adapted with a range of special tooling and accessories.

The Ironworker by PiranhaTM, an established brand in metal fabrication machinery, comes in Single or Dual Operator Models. They offer a wide variety of attachments for easy, efficient use, with all stations at the same height, eliminating the need to adjust to different feed table heights.

BREAKDOWN OF PARTSironworker-consumables

Ironworker Consumables include:

  • Punch and Die, various sizes and shapes.
  • Punch attachments in optional sizes to expand punching capacity, available with or without urethane stripper.
  • Channel die block to work in place of standard die block, yielding 50-ton punching capacity for all models.
  • Urethane strippers that keep material flat, and a shorter stroke, so no need for constant  adjustment.
  • Urethane hold-downs for shearing that quickly and accurately clamp and unclamp automatically, for greater accuracy and longer blade life.
  • Angle shear or floating upper blade that goes to center of angle and eliminates distortion.
  • Coper notcher with low rake angle blade to keep part under better control.
  • Shear blade with low rake angle produces flatter parts. The four shear edges on each blade lead to longer life and less expense.

P50 PiranhaTM Ironworkers Repair & Replacement Parts form an essential part of a complete assembly rebuild. Each of these components must stand up to heavy use and repeated motion at high volumes of work. Ensure prolonged life for the equipment and safe, accurate functioning with proper maintenance and timely lubrication.

  • Rear hinge pin – Comes in different solutions for varied applications within the Ironworker station. 
  • Rear hinge pin bushing.
  • Crank/pull arm bushing.
  • Clevis pin bushing – The most reliable way to attach a structure to the rod and cap ends of a hydraulic cylinder.
  • Crank/pull arm hinge pin.
  • Urethane spacer – Urethane has the advantage of greater load-bearing capacity and compression set, as well as tolerance of greases and oils, than rubber.5
  • Taper pin (replace if damaged in removal).
  • Hex nut, 1″ 14 nf nd, gr8 (replace if damaged in removal).
  • Flat head socket cap screw 3/8 x 3/4″.
  • Bandsaw and coldsaw blades – For horizontal bandsaws and coldsaws that hold the workpiece stationary.
  • Annular cutters by Hougen, Jancey Slugger, and other brand names – For fast, easy, accurate hole core drilling.
  • Grinder belts and discs – In varied radii to suit different parts.
  • Lubricants and cutting oils – Vital in maintaining the work piece at a stable temperature, as well as preventing rust, and ensuring safety for operators.
  • Press brake tooling
  • Shear tooling

Repair & Replacement Parts keep metal fabrication equipment in top operating condition.  Parts available for the following types of machines:

  • Variable speed bandsaws and coldsaws
  • Grinders
  • Drill presses
  • Mills
  • Shears
  • PiranhaTM press brakes
  • Plate and Slip Rolls
  • Notchers
  • Lathes