This guide show's how to build a human-powered press, primarily intended for juicing. We needed a juicer but we had a blender and I wasn't super 'thused about shelling out $250 for another kitchen-counter unit. The solution arrived in the form of a horizontal pressing scaffold that utilizes two "butterfly" arms with plexiglass plates to press a mesh bag containing the blended pulp of whatever we wanted to juice. At this some juicing purists might decry the blend+press methods as heresy (something about antioxidants and such) this works pretty well for what we wanted and filled a pressing need (I'll be here all week!).
Qty. - Item
(1) - 2"x2"x3' Red Oak [The upright and bottom cross pieces]
(3) - 1" x 2" x 2' Red Oak [The arms and side pieces]
(2) - 4" Extra-Heavy T-Hinges [For the arms]
(2) - 8" x 10" x 0.220" Acrylic Sheets [For the pressing plates]
(1) - 3/16" x 2" Stainless Eye-Bolt [To suspend the mesh bag w/ pulp]
(1) - 10/24 Wing Nut [For the eye-bolt]
(3) - 1/4" x 4-1/2" Stainless Bolts [To attach the hinges to the upright post]
(9) - 1/4" x 3/4" Stainless Washers [For all of the bolts]
(6) - 1/4" x 2" Stainless Bolts [To attach the arms to the hinges]
(9) - 1/4" Stainless Nuts [For all of the bolts]
(1) - Epoxy [ To attach the plates to the arms]
(6) - Rubber No-Slip Adhesive Rubber Feet [To prevent sliding]
(6) - Wood screws [These are to attach the top scaffold beam to the upright post and the two side pieces to the center support beam]
For The Juicing:
(1) - 9"-12" diameter bowl [To catch the juice]
(1) - Mesh bag [Here are the ones we use: http://www.amazon.com/Professional-Industry-Nut-Mi...]
(1) - Drinking Glass [Or more if it's a party!]
(?) - Fresh produce to juice!
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Step 1: Making the Frame
The scaffold consists of a T formed by the two 2"x2" pieces. I set the upright piece in a groove and shot a lag-screw through to secure it. Screws connect the two 1"x2" "legs" to the ends of the horizontal base piece.
To suspend the bag of blended veggie goodness I attached an eye-hook to the top arm with washers and a wingnut. The last picture shows the completed frame.
Step 2: Making the Arms
The arms are straightforward. I used gate hinges to ensure enough vertical stability to avoid warping. In retrospect T-nuts would've been a good call instead of the nuts and washers used in this build but they would've put it over budget. The plates are placed 1" past the end of the hinge-arm to allow as much contact between the plates and the juicing bag as possible. They're bonded to the arms with J-B Weld epoxy. I used epoxy to avoid any weak point that would allow the plates to crack. A little chamfering on the ends of the arms for aesthetic effect and their ready to be pressed into action!
Step 3: Making the Juice!
The juicer is done! Time to get to the fun part. This particular juice contained several bell peppers, carrots, and something green. Once blended, the ingredients are placed in a fine mesh bag and the drawstring is threaded through the eye-hook to suspend it over the collection bowl. The arms are pressed together and voila!
Pair with your favorite protein and the meal is served!
One blender's worth of veggies makes about 2.5 Mason jars worth of juice..
Hope you enjoyed this build!