It is quite common to see people confused between metal stamping and metal fabrication as both are used for manufacturing metal parts. Whether you should choose metal stamping or metal fabrication, it is an important decision that will ultimately affect the quality, design, cost, timing and repeatable performance of the metal components which are going to be produced.
It would be a sensible decision to conduct a research regarding the advantages, disadvantages and costs involved with both the manufacturing processes before choosing the right one.
Metal stamping includes different types of manufacturing processes such as bending, punching, blanking, embossing, flanging and coining using a stamping or machine press. It is a single stage operation where each stroke of the press produces a metal part. Parts can also be produced using a series of operations.
Metal stamping is fast and cost effective solution for manufacturing complex products in bulk as it is suitable for bulk production as the labor cost and per-piece set up declines when the production level increases. With the help of this method, innovative designs and complex products can be created.
The cost of metal stamping will be higher for short production runs which make it ineffective for short production. For the development of tooling, it takes longer initial lead time. Due to inflexibility of hard tools, it becomes difficult to make changes in the design once the tools are created.
Metal fabrication is a process of creating metal parts through bending, cutting and assembly processes. Cutting is usually done through CNC cutters using a laser or waterjet cutting and bending is done through striking or using press brakes. Individual pieces are joined together with the help of adhesives, riveting or robotic welding.
Metal fabrication uses various production techniques to create metal parts that can be easily customized according to the customer requirement. Initial production lead time is short and rapid prototyping helps in moving the design-to-production cycle quickly. Flexibility of the process allows metal fabrication to easily implement the design changes to a metal part. However, metal fabrication is quite labor and cost intensive.
Â Which One to Choose?
It will be quite complex to choose between metal fabrication and metal stamping as both processes have their own pros and cons. Various aspects such as cost, time, quality and design should be taken into consideration. It will be wise to consult an experienced metal fabrication company and seek their advice that will make the decision making process easier.
Continental Industries based in Anaheim, California is a leading name in sheet metal fabrication industry. For more information about our services, please call us at (714) 632-9190.