In the current scenario, there have been considerable changes in the methods of metal fabrication employed by the metal fabricators. The best examples of these methods and techniques are steel plants. However, it is important to understand the sheet metal fabrication process and its various aspects. If you get to know the fabrication process, you will be able to understand the tools and the techniques used in this process.
In general terms, sheet metal fabrication means joining, forming and shaping of metals for the purpose of either repairing or building tangible parts. All these are basic processes of metal fabrication. Various techniques and tools are employed to achieve the desired results from these processes.
What Does Sheet Metal Shaping Include?
Metals can be changed in four main ways through metal forming and shaping. Metal can be cut, shrink, bend and stretched to the desired shape.
Following are some of the basic tools and machines that are used in sheet metal shaping:
Tools Used for Bending Metal
Form bending is the easiest way to bend metals. It is clear from the term that you will be bending metal over an edge or a shape which is under metal. A hammer is required to perform this task.
You will be making clean and precise bends in the metal while doing metal brakes. A clamping tool is required for giving metal the desired shape or form.
What Does Cutting Metal Entail?
Hand shears are used to cut metals to give them the desired shapes and sizes. Though it is a manual process, you need to buy hand shears if you wish to run a sheet metal fabrication business.
Power shears, also known as scissors, are used for cutting metals. These cut metal faster and do not require much manual effort.
Another popular tool to cut metal are throatless sheers which are operated by hand. These come in the form of a hinged blade. Throatless sheers do not waste metal while cutting. These are very useful when you want to make many cuts of the steel at the same time.
Plasma cutters and angle grinders are another popular tools to cut metal. Angel grinders perform great job despite being messy and noisy. Plasma cutters work their best for powerful and aggressive cutting process and if itâ€™s adjusted the right way, cutting of metal will be much faster and accurate.
Tools and Techniques Necessary for Shrinking Metal
For metal shrinking, you need a shrinker or a trucking metal. Trucking metal is one of the earliest methods applied in metal shrinking. Normally, metals are bunched together and passed between crevices in order to give them the desired shape or form. A shrinker can be a good option than trucking metal but it moves metal slowly. Others options are a wooden stump and a hammer.
Must Haves for Stretching Metal
For stretching metal, few basic tools and techniques are required. For example, stretcher, English wheel, hammer and dolly. It is important to remember that hammer and dolly is the most basic way of stretching metal.
The Necessities of Metal Fusion
Last but not the least; metal fusion is another important method of sheet metal fabrication. In this method, panels are fused together to produce large and complex parts. The most common way of metal fusion is welding which includes TIG welding, MIG welding and oxy acetylene welding. Among these, MIG welding is the easiest and most common form of welding in modern times.
These above mentioned techniques and machines are an essential part of metal fabrication process.
Continental Industries is a leading sheet metal fabrication company based out of Anaheim, California. If you have any queries about sheet metal fabrication processes and techniques employed by us, call us at (714) 632-9190.