When to Choose a Servo Press for Your Production

advantages of a servo electric press

A Servo Press is a system that uses a linear actuator controlled by an AC or DC servo motor to deliver linear motion, similar to a press cylinder. Servo presses utilize ball or roller screws to offer precise control over speed, position, and force. Though a servo press isn’t necessary for all applications, it can be ideal for some. In this blog post, we’ll take a look at a few advantages and disadvantages of a servo press, and when this type of press might be the best choice for your application.

What is a Servo Press?

A servo motor is typically an AC brushless electric motor that uses either an open-loop or closed-loop motion control system. Open-loop control systems do not incorporate any feedback in operation – these systems simply follow directions from the controller without reading output or sending data back to modify input.

Conversely, a closed-loop system, that’s more commonly used today, is controlled by motor feedback signals that make it possible to make micro adjustments to positioning, speed, and torque automatically as needed. As commands are being sent to the motor, a sensing device called an encoder sends positional, speed, and directional data back to the control system based on output. Torque feedback is also sent back to the control system which helps measure the force exerted by the linear actuator. This allows a servo press to be able to work with great precision, accuracy and control. Servo presses have many advantages as an option for industrial production.

servo motor factory press

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Advantages of a Servo Electric Press

High Accuracy

The positional feedback system within the servo motor press creates a highly accurate operation. The system has the ability to make very fine adjustments to meet the needs of the process. This is ideal for jobs with tight tolerances, or those working with very expensive materials.


Servo presses not only operate with a high level of accuracy, but their operation is steady and repeatable. Even as loads on the motor change, the controls can adjust accordingly to achieve the desired results. If the demands on the press frequently change, a servo electric motor is optimally designed to meet these needs.

Exceptional Control

The closed loop control system allows the press to operate with a very high degree of control. Though these presses can operate quickly, and with great power, they can also be carefully and precisely adjusted. The actuator’s positional feedback provides an incredible degree of control to the speed and position of the actuator.

High Powered

Even operating with high accuracy and control, the servo electric press does not sacrifice power. These types of presses can work with delicate materials and highly precise processes as well as very tough materials requiring a great deal of force.


Many high-powered motors are also very loud which require your operators to have hearing protection when in their proximity. A servo motor press is electrically powered, and produces very minimal noise only during the press cycle.


A servo motor press can work very quickly, up to speeds of around 300mm/s. The feedback loop system allows the motor to adjust itself as needed, without interfering with the pressing process. When it’s important to produce components or complete jobs quickly and with great efficiency, a servo motor press may be ideal.

Disadvantages of Servo Motor Presses

Though servo motor presses have many advantages, there are also some disadvantages. It’s important to balance these factors to find the right press for your needs.

High Cost

As previously discussed, the servo motor operates smoothly, accurately, quickly, and can produce a great deal of power. However, this optimal performance comes at a cost. Servo electric presses tend to come with higher initial costs to most other types of presses, including full hydraulic options.


Servo motors are more expensive generally because they use more complex construction and components. This also means they have more expensive parts and are difficult to maintain. While most presses have a range of issues that can be addressed with in-house maintenance, servo press components will most likely need to be sent back to the factory for repair. Extra components, emergency maintenance and off-site maintenance can be costly and time-consuming.

High Voltage

The high power output offered by servo machinery also comes with high power supply. Most servo press machinery requires either 480 or 240V of electricity, which increases potential safety risks for an operation compared to low or no voltage options like pneumatic presses.

Specific Applications

Servo presses can perform a range of applications and can offer advantages for jobs with very tight tolerances, where precision and accuracy are an extremely high priority such as in medical device or aerospace manufacturing. Servo actuators are used outside of assembly to control the function of many products, like robots, drones and other electronics. With such precise operation from a closed-loop feedback system, servo actuators are even used to control the function of several vehicles in operation, like controlling steering motion or the speed of aircraft, submarines and automobiles.

If this level of precision and functionality isn’t essential for your applications, you may be needlessly overspending. It’s helpful to have details about your applications to choose a press, including the materials you’re working with, the dimensions of the workpiece, and the type of operation you’re conducting. This will help you get the right amount of force for your press, and get the right type of press.

Is a Servo Press Right For You?

There are many different types of presses to choose from for your application. Finding the right design and configuration requires some careful consideration and planning. If your process requires a great deal of accuracy, precision, and smooth operation, a servo press might be ideal for you. However, many of these complex processes can also be performed with a force and distance monitoring air over oil press for a fraction of the cost and there may be a range of pneumatic, hydropneumatic and even hydraulic options that could provide the capabilities you need with a higher return on investment.

If you’re looking for a high-quality factory press and you’re not sure about the optimal construction, contact us. Our press experts can help you find a press that is highly functional as well as cost-effective and quote either a servo press or alternative, designed to meet your needs.

7 Problems Force and Distance Monitoring Can Solve

7 problems force and distance monitoring can solve

Now more than ever, access to data provides the ability for process improvement and fine tuning performance for quality assurance. Without the right data, it’s difficult to identify or fully understand a problem, and even harder to solve it. The right tools can give you the information you need to take a closer look at your production line. One of these such tools is force and distance monitoring on factory presses.

What Data is Collected with Force & Distance Monitoring?

Force and distance process monitoring collects data from each press cycle that gives insight into part quality and product specs, particularly the pass or fail performance of machinery that can determine whether a part that’s assembled is up to quality standards and can move through the production line and into the field. The quality assurance capabilities alone make the data from force and distance monitoring highly valuable.

However force and distance monitoring equipment actually collects a range of data that assists beyond identifying defects and can help signal need for repair as well as other issues that can affect production and improve issue response. Storing and referring to this data over time can also help you to identify trends and aid a whole host of common problems in manufacturing and assembly operations. Let’s take a look at the problems that force and distance monitoring can help solve.

7 Problems Force and Distance Monitoring Can Solve

1. Identifying Quality Assurance Problems

Force and distance monitoring tools allow managers and engineers to track the production of specific parts by serial number, and monitor the performance of individual machines. The main function of force and distance monitoring equipment is reading force and distance achieved for each press cycle and determining pass or fail for a part’s assembly. When parts show faults, they can be removed from batching. When the cycle readings are off consistently, this may also signal necessary process modification or machine maintenance to bring a particular machine’s output back up to standards for consistent, repeatable production quality.

2. Minimize Field Failures

Faulty parts can be an expensive problem. The harder it is to identify where and how the fault started, the more expensive the problem becomes, especially if faulty parts have made it to the field and recalls are required as a result. Data-gathering tools like force and distance monitoring will show when a process didn’t meet parameters, and how long this occurred. This allows managers to quarantine the problem parts and improve the process that caused that fault, which can greatly reduce or even eliminate faulty products from making it to the final production stage or out to consumers.

3. Identify Slow-Downs & Bottlenecks

Not all production issues are extreme enough to cause faulty parts. Some incidents simply slow down production processes and eat into efficiency. Collecting and analyzing force and distance monitoring data across machines and over time can help to identify these issues. Trend reports can show, over time, how much production has slowed, and when it started. Analyzing patterns can help you determine if these slow-downs are a regular occurrence, if a machine has been losing efficiency for some time, or if another issue is occurring, like a fault within the machine itself that will require maintenance.

Comparing data across each process can help managers and engineers identify costly bottlenecks. Assessing the data can also help to provide the best solution, whether that means rearranging processes to better organize the timeline, using multiple machines to speed up processes causing a bottleneck, or something else.

4. Minimize Experimentation

Data simulations are extremely useful tools for analyzing potential process improvements or changes. This allows you to visualize the change before making any expensive reworks. This also allows you to assess performance under each condition, and see whether or not new features or test limits, for example, are adding real value to your production or not.

5. Detect Defects Before They Occur

Data monitoring allows managers and engineers to isolate key process variables and use these to determine when product defects are likely to occur. Regularly reviewing process data, making notes of product and process faults, and changing test limits accordingly, can allow for prediction of impending failure conditions before they happen. This can also help managers stay on top of maintenance, and make sure that machines are repaired or maintained before they reach failure conditions.

6. Reporting and Decision-Making

Gathering information on your production process and organizing this data by part and process not only gives you valuable insight into how each process is performing, but also makes reporting easier. When making assessments on a press process, force and distance monitoring machines give you access to important metrics that you can use in decision-making, whether that means analyzing new features, setting test limits, developing a new test strategy, making necessary equipment upgrades or something else.

Regardless of industry, data is the most powerful asset for assessing and solving problems and ensuring consistent product quality. With the right data in manufacturing, you can read insights into the performance of your machines, the quality of your parts, and track parts moving through production, to stay on top of any problems. If you’re interested in modifying your factory production with force and distance monitoring capabilities, contact us – we would be happy to tell you more about the data that can be collected, how it can be used, and what you can expect.

5 Ways Force and Distance Monitoring Presses Improve Production

When it comes to manufacturing important components, production shouldn’t be a guessing game. Force and distance monitoring on factory presses gives you increased production efficiencies, product quality improvements, and helps prevent field failures leading to costly repairs/recalls. This technology can improve production in many ways. Let’s take a look at what force and distance monitoring technology does for a press, and how it can improve production.

What is Force and Distance Monitoring?

Force and distance monitoring refers to electronic technology that offers real-time pass-fail feedback during the pressing cycle. In particular, the technology produces a visual representation of the press stroke during a cycle and then informs the press operator whether the press force and press stroke are within the acceptable parameters or not.

Our Sig-Series Air over Oil Presses come standard with force and distance monitoring
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Why is Force and Distance Monitoring Important?

In some cases, parts that look like they’re assembled or fitted properly sometimes aren’t. Defects may appear much later, during quality assurance testing or even during operation out in the field. This may occur if the press required for the operation doesn’t complete the process fully, or doesn’t exert enough force. Force and distance monitoring technology allows you to detect these issues in real time. If the press doesn’t meet the parameters set, then the press cycle “fails” and the failure will need to be acknowledged prior to another part being run. When this occurs, the part should be tagged and segregated. If this occurs repeatedly, the operator will know to inform a supervisor and inspect the incoming parts for more non-conforming parts or inspect the press for proper function.

Failures triggered in the press cycle can signal part issues like incorrect orientation, cracks, incorrect sizing, improper insertion or issues with tolerance, or machine issues such as alignment, improper lubrication, incorrect ram speeds, loose fixtures, damaged seals or low pressure. Any one of these issues can result in defects, or left unaddressed, lead to larger problems down the line.

5 Ways Force and Distance Monitoring Presses Improve Production

Now that we know how force and distance monitoring works and why it’s important, let’s take a look at a few more specific ways that this technology improves production.

1. Prevents Field Failures

One of the most obvious ways that force and distance monitoring presses improve production is to prevent defective parts from making into circulation.

Many minor misalignments or incomplete mated parts aren’t detectable with a visual inspection. These defective parts can easily be passed down the line, until they become a bigger problem. The monitoring technology shows when parts aren’t properly made or assembled, and these can be set aside rather than sent down the line as a part for a final product, ensuring better quality control for assemblies and limiting recalls.

2. Improves Accuracy and Consistency

Force and distance monitoring not only detects part errors and defects, but also provides graphical output on how far off the process was overall, even within operations that technically “pass.” These detailed outputs on force applied and distance at various points of the cycle can help operators pinpoint where the process can be improved for optimal performance and repeatability. Operators can work with specific numeric readings and adjust the process until the press cycle is operating perfectly – leading to higher accuracy, better quality and consistency in production.

See how AHI designed this 2.5 Ton Force & Distance Monitoring Press for error-proof pin insertion.

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3. Reduces Waste

As previously mentioned, without force and distance monitoring small misalignments can be easily overlooked. If the press isn’t operating properly, but the operator doesn’t notice, there may be hundreds of defective parts produced before anyone intervenes. By detecting the problem right away, and being able to identify and correct the issue before continuing production, force and distance monitoring technology can significantly reduce material waste.

4. Improves Maintenance

If the press is repeatedly not completing its cycle properly, there may be a need for maintenance or repairs. Force and distance monitoring technology can show when a problem repeats, but it can also show what the problem may be. By analyzing the waveforms produced during the press cycle, the operator can see more specifically what is happening with the press, and indicate a particular machine issue that can be fixed.

5. Improves Efficiency

Every production and assembly operation can benefit from improved efficiency. With the ability to determine potential machine issues, needed operator adjustments, or other changes to the parts or alignment, force and distance monitoring leads to better efficiency with every change that brings the process more in line with optimal performance according to the job requirements. By constant analysis of each press cycle, errors and issues can be determined and addressed quickly, leading to less downtime, less waste in terms of material and labor, and as tweaks to the process to improve accuracy of each pass, you can be sure you are running a smooth and efficient operation. For jobs that require very precise processes with minimal room for error, improvements to accuracy and efficiency based on actual performance data can really add up.

Learn More About Force and Distance Monitoring

If force and distance monitoring would improve production at your facility, we can help. Take a look at our press monitoring packages to see how to equip your press with full-integrated, easily configurable force and distance monitoring equipment. This system provides real-time feedback and does not require an external computer or complex installation. A touchscreen menu guides operators through an easy set-up process, so you can set your parameters and get up and running quickly. To learn more about presses with force and distance monitoring capabilities, get in touch with us today.