posted on Jan, 2 2020 @ 11:05 PM
a reply to: Stupidsecrets
When I was in college, I worked in a big machine shop. I ran a 300 ton shear. We were shearing 1" stainless for NASA.
The sheets would come in on rail (on a diagonal). We'd pick them up with a crane and set them down on these posts which stuck up out of the floor,
with ball bearings in them. Then we'd roll the sheets around to line them up. We had early lasers on the break; the lasers would set a line across
were we wanted the cut. Then we'd have to adjust the sheet forward.
Cutting a 12' foot wide, 1" inch thick, sheet of stainless steel was something to behold! There were spectators when you did this! The whole
building shuddered. I digress...
When we'd shear the steel, it was a two stage process. First the hydraulic rams would come down and pin the sheet to the shearing table (which was
about 12 feet long). Once that happened, the operator would initiate the "cut" BOOM!!! It sounded like an earthquake! The whole building
shuddered, and the people in a trailer park nearby would complain. The power was incredible. But here was the thing...
When the primary hydraulic rams came down, they always said keep your fingers out. AND, if you ever got your fingers caught under the sheet, they
said just "shear the sheet" because the rams would not let up until the shear came down.
Yes, you would lose your fingers, but it was better than losing your life. That got my attention, as the guy running the shear!
NASA - STS 51 Lima - RIP!!