Metal fabrication is the process that involves the cutting and bending of the metal to produce a product. A custom metal fabrication is the cutting of the materials. It gets done following the requirements and producing a more durable product along the way.
Custom fabrication provides more value to the customer than a simple metal fabrication process. So, machinists are incorporating metal fabrication techniques while producing a part. There are techniques to help with quality fabrications. And the list goes like this.
“Each Metal Fabrication Process May Be Used To Cut, Drill, Fold & Weld the Strongest Material On The Earth.”
1. Metal Cutting
Water jet: A water jet is a cutting tool that uses a powerful stream of water to cut sheet metal. We can cut through various thicknesses of sheet metal by directing high-pressure water through a narrow nozzle.
Shearing: The sheet metal is held flat, and the top blade is lowered onto the surface, causing the metal to fall onto the bottom blade. A selection of smaller hand shears for manually cutting smaller and thinner sheet metal pieces. Hand shears work well for smaller projects.
Sawing: Metal sheets that are too thick to be cut with shearing, water jet, or torch are cut with circular saws and band saws by machinists. Sawing is a more time-consuming and intensive operation, used for thick materials.
2. Metal Bending
Metal brake: This entails inserting one end of the sheet metal into a gate and clamping the other end with a bar. The metal stuck inside the gate is lifted, but the metal beneath the bar remains in place. The metal brake bends the metal to the required shape.
Form bending: This is one of the practical ways of performing metal bending. It gets performed by bending the metal sheet using a hammer.
3. Metal Welding
MIG welding: It gets used for immense and thick materials. The MIG welding is faster that results in shorter lead times. It has a consumable wire that acts as both electrode and the filler material.
TIG welding: TIG welding helps machinists to manufacture a wide range of thin and tiny materials. It does this by using the non-consumable tungsten electrode to heat the metal.
Laser welding: A high-powered, solid-state laser resonator (like a disc laser) gets used to melt the metal in this process. A fabrication shop can use laser welding to produce consistent, high-quality welds.
4. Metal Shrinking
Heat shrinking: In this method, the torch heats the dented section, helping to overstretch the metal. It shrinks once it cools off.
Tucking metal: The edges of the sheet metal are tucked and hammered into place. It is done by using a planishing hammer and tucking fork.
5. Metal Stretching
Stretcher machines: A stretcher machine is the polar opposite of a shrinker machine, with powerful jaws that grip each end of your sheet metal and stretch it to the desired size.
English wheel: The metal gets stretched by pressing it against a lower anvil and an upper wheel in this machine. The English wheel gets required for smoothing out flaws and creating compound curves.
6. Metal Finishing
Sandblasting: Sandblasting means shooting sand against the sheet metal performed at a high velocity. With sandblasting you get a matte texture on the sheet metal. And to prepare metal for coating.
Buff polishing: The finishing process gets achieved with a cloth wheel that buffs the metal surface. This technique is a favourite one of the machinists as it makes the metal part shine.
Industrial Applications Of Custom Metal Fabrication Parts
Metal fabrication parts get used in ample industries because of their advanced design. The custom parts serve aerospace, transportation, industrial electronics, automotive, construction, and more. And the products include nails, screws, pots, pipes. And so on the equipment used in the kitchen and restaurant. Here are some more common industries with the use of fabrication:
- Medical Industry
The medical industry benefits from metal fabrication. A lot of medical equipment deals in metal like complex machinery and operating tools. The metal surgical tools are fabricated to a specific dimension and provide much-needed precision. There are many advancements seen daily in the medical industry, and metal fabrication is the perfect answer.
- Construction And Architecture
Sturdy buildings have metal in their structure, and most of the buildings get built from metal. When it comes to designing a building you need specific parts. Metal fabrication means that you get metal beams, sheets in the exact dimension you need them. It is impossible to think of the construction industry without the application of metal fabrication.
- Automotive Industry
Metal is an integral part of the automotive industry to build cars that can last for thousands of miles. Metal fabrication gets used by businesses that repair cars. The cars requiring repair need metal parts both for the interior and exterior of the body. The metal parts need to get cut according to the dimension of the car. And metal fabrication does it. With metal fabrication, you can make rare or duplicate spare parts saving time.
- Aerospace Industry
The aircraft and aerospace industry relies on metal fabrication. The best use of metal fabrication is for parts of the aircraft and equipment necessary for the aerospace industry. These pieces are needed to get crafted because they experience a lot of pressure when active.
- Hardware and Hand Tools
The metal fabrication parts get used in machine shops and nut and bolt manufacturing. At machine shops present in Canada, you can find the items manufactured by the fabrication process. Be it a product assembled from the metal panels or a part that gets produced from die cuts.
- Manufacturing Industry
Metal fabrication parts get used in spring and wire product manufacturing. The wire is necessary to the fabrication process as the welding wires help to weld pieces of metal in various products. Springs and wires play a crucial role in industrial machinery and are among the key reasons why factories are efficient and capable of performing advanced productions.
Metal fabrication gets used in OEM parts used in speciality manufacturing environments. The auto repair industry benefits from this. As it allows the faltering cars to be replaced from part by part.
Essential Items Made From Metal Fabrication Processes
Most fabrication uses sheet metal that goes up to .25 inches of thickness. The fabricators convert the sheet metal to products and tools used for daily use. Some examples of the products manufactured with custom fabrication include:
- Bolts, nuts and screws
- Blinds, cans, handles
- Keys, latches and pots
- Silverware, fans, chairs
- Hinges, lamps and appliances
Summing It Up
So, by following the metal fabrication techniques mentioned above one can create the needed parts for their clients. And the industrial applications of fabrication parts are endless. Many big industries such as Aerospace, Medical, Manufacturing have the requirement of precise parts. Metal fabrication is the solution helping these and other industries making daily- essential items.
There are plenty of custom metal fabrication services present in the market, and one has to choose one according to experience and the type of metal parts they are looking for.