How about we start with a picture.
What you have there is a welded steel frame with screw, a HDPE filter base and follower and a leveling plate. The hopper is also welded and lined with polycarbonate so it does not touch the sake (bad, evil iron) and is able to be sanitized and has a spigot valve.
Overall, it went very well with only a one fixable flaw. But what worked first:
Base filter did not clog
Follower and leveling plate stayed horizontal.
In short, I've thrilled with it. The only issue that came up was that it the bag pressed on the container in such a way that it created a seal and basically nothing flowed. In that I had 5 gallons of sake in the press at the time, failure was NOT an option. With some quick trips to the shop, I fashioned up 8 pieces of PVC with slots to allow the sake to press out from the sides. That turned out to work just great.
All told, with the troubleshooting, it took me about 4 hours to press the 5 gallons, but 90% was pressed in the last half hour.
With the solution working, I pressed my 2nd standard sized batch and had the whole thing pressed in maybe 20 minutes.
And for those interested, here is how it all went together....in the next post as 3 seems to be the limit.