Without the metal fabrication process, it can be nearly impossible for the construction industry to perform business activities or survive in the competitive marketplace. The metal fabrication process allows manufacturers to mold and bend metal sheets in the desired shape and size to create distinct metal structures.
The custom sheet metal fabrication process can be performed both manually and mechanically, depending on the size and design of the structure. It can be challenging to create complex and unique structures using manual techniques. Traditional techniques are less efficient and preferred by manufacturers than mechanical fabrication techniques due to a lack of construction flexibility and feasibility.
If you are interested in metal fabrication or looking for ways to understand the process, this article is for you.
This article consists of everything – from different metal fabrication techniques to ways you can get the most out of the fabrication methods. Let us first understand:
What is metal fabrication?
Metal fabrication is the process of creating and forming different metal structures from raw materials or raw metal components. Raw materials usually mean any kind of metal material that is unadulterated or went through chemical processes. With the metal fabrication process, you can create metal structures as small as metal screws and expand the existing metal structures to double or triple their size.
Based on the size and shape of different metal structures, metal fabrication techniques are categorized into different types. For instance, to bend and mold strong and heavy metals advanced fabrication methods are used. Similarly, to fabricate metals with low tensile strength manual or moderate fabrication methods are preferred over other methods.
Which metal fabrication technique to use majorly depends on the structure requirement and complexity of your project designs. If you are unaware of the right methods or don’t have prior experience dealing with metal fabrication, you should seek help from experienced and knowledgeable local metal fabricators.
What are metal fabrication techniques?
Before beginning with metal fabrication process, it is recommended to check the tensile strength and other details of your metal sheet to determine the suitable fabrication technique that can bend the metal sheets without causing severe injuries or damage to the structure.
Here are some common and widely used metal fabrication techniques involved in the metal fabrication process.
Through cutting fabrication methods, you can easily cut or split metal sheets into precise shapes or smaller structures depending on the design of the structure. Generally, cutting is the first step involved in the fabrication process Laser cutting, mechanical shearing, and water jet cutting methods are some of the most common and preferred cutting methods to cut different types and styles of metal sheets.
As the name suggests, forming is the method used to bend or distort metal sheets to fabricate different structures. Different forming methods are used to create structures suitable for unique and distinct project designs. It is important to note that in the forming process metal only loses its form and mass.
The punching process involves the use of mechanical devices or machines to press or create holes in metal structures. This process includes a two-fold purpose method to press the metal sheet without causing harm or damage to the rest of the metal sheet. The punching process can be used as an alternative to cutting methods to shorten the overall time frame of the metal fabrication process.
The Shearing process is similar to the cutting process. This process is used for trimming or removing unwanted material or parts from the metal sheets. Shearing is more suitable for trimming or cutting smaller lengths and uniquely shaped metal sheets. You can mount and bend the blades to any specific angle or shape to reduce the unnecessary parts. To be specific, you can achieve any shape by simply using different blade combinations.
Welding is one of the most common and widely used fabrication techniques in the manufacturing industry. It is the method of joining two or more pieces of metals together using a combination of heat and pressure techniques. The three popular welding techniques are MIC welding, TIG welding, and Stick/Arc welding.
The stamping process is similar to punching fabrication methods. Using the stamping technique you can create an indentation rather than a hole on your metal sheets. You can easily create letters, shapes, images, and other structures using this technique. Besides creating an indentation, stamping can be used to cast, punch, cut, and shape metal sheets to create a wide range of metal structures.
Before hiring services from local fabricators, always conduct background research to learn more about their services and work culture.