Scotchman 45 Ton Ironworker

Manufacturer: Scotchman
Model: Porta-Fab 45 Ton


Iron workers punch, shear, and form using high pressure and special tooling.  This particular iron worker is a Scotchman Porta-Fab 45-ton iron worker–and is capable of exerting up to 45 tons of pressure on a die (e.g., for punching holes).

Nearly every operation the iron worker can perform can be done by other machines in the metal shop–holes can be drilled (instead of punched), bar stock can be sawed (instead of sheared), and so on.  However, the iron worker can perform operations much faster, though the resulting holes or cuts may not be as clean or accurate as other methods.  It is thus well suited to rapid fabrication where tolerances are measured in 32nds of an inch, for example, rather than thousandths.  It is particularly useful in combination with the MIG welder, for example.

This iron worker is hydraulic, and can be reversed at any time.  (Other types of iron workers employ heavy flywheels that, once activated, perform a complete cycle that cannot be interrupted.)  The slow and controllable movement, however, is backed by 10 to 45 tons of force, which can easily break misaligned tooling.  Careful use is required for safe operation.

Watch the introductory video below:


Maximum force 45 tons (90,000 lbs)
Maximum material thickness smaller of 1/2″ or diameter of punch
Maximum diameter of hole 1-1/8″
Material mild steel only!
Bar shear 3/8″ x 6″, or 1/2″ x 4″
Rod shear 3/4″ round
Angle shear 3″ x 3″ x 5/16″ (90 degrees)


  • Fast.
  • Edge quality may be fine for many fabrication needs without further work.
  • Punch and die sets are available from several sources.


  • Only mild steel can be used.
  • Hole and edge quality may require additional steps.
  • High accuracy (better than 1/32″) may be difficult to achieve.
  • Maximum 1/2″ thick material.
  • Thin material may distort without a proper stripper plate.


  • Mild steel only.  (This is a function of the die clearance design.)
  • Solid pieces only–no stacking multiple sheets.


  • Punching (holes, rectangles, other shapes).
  • Shearing (rods, sheet, angle iron)
  • (With accessories not currently on hand at Maker Works, bending can be done.)