You’re a DIY kind of person. Your projects range in difficulty, and some may need metalwork for structures of protection. Sheet metal is often found in construction because it’s one of the most adaptable materials out there.
Since this material is so useful, we’ve put together a guide for you on sheet metal fabrication. You’ll learn everything you need to know to start using it for your own projects.
What Is Sheet Metal Fabrication?
Sheet metal fabrication is when metal is transformed into specific shapes. This will include metal cutting, bending, and punching.
The most popular metals to use are aluminum, brass, tin, nickel, steel, titanium, and other precious types of metals. The thickness of the metal can vary according to usage but they’ll often come in two forms: heavy plate and thin gauge.
Why Use Sheet Metal Fabrication?
There are a number of industries that rely heavily on the flexibility and durability of metal. This includes but is not limited to furniture, machinery, transportation, aerospace, appliance manufacturing, and more.
It’s so widely used because it has a few key advantages. Firstly, it is less expensive in the cost of materials and the processing. Secondly, you can manipulate metal extremely accurately so that it fits your needs. Thirdly, it’s malleable and durable, meaning it can be easily manipulated and will stay that way for a long time. Lastly, it is easy to repair if anything does go wrong.
How to Use Sheet Metal Fabrication
Manufacturers manipulate metal sheets to form certain parts that they need. They do this using various methods such as punching, bending, cutting, and stamping.
Often, machines are used to help. The machine uses 3D CAD files by converting them into understandable code. This tells the machine how to cut and form the metal sheets.
Of course, not everyone has access to machines to help them shape metal. So here are these two basic methods to get you started:
- Laser Cutting
Bending is when you apply force to a sheet of metal so that it bends at an angle or into a shape. You can have short or long bends. Often, you need a press brake machine that is either manually or automatically loaded, but there are machines you can use at home.
Laser cutting is when a laser used to cut different metals. The laser has a high energy beam that easily slices through the metal (and is often used on materials other than metal as well). Often, lasers are controlled by computers to accurately cut shapes and sizes. If you want to learn more, then head over to ametals.com.
It’s vital that the sheets of metal have the same thickness. So, make sure you follow all of the design requirements and tolerances of your method so that the parts are the same size. Otherwise, shaping becomes difficult.
Get Started With Metal Sheet Fabrication
Now you have enough information to get started with sheet metal fabrication. Keep in mind: the type of material you choose can make or break the success of your project. So, pick your metal wisely!
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