Before 9000 BCE, humans were mining for the extraction of metal. You can find its evidence by a copper pendant archaeologist that is found in Northern Iraq. Now-a-day, fabrication shops are being opened on a large scale to meet the needs of the industrialized world. In the past, metal fabrication was used for construction purposes on a large scale like railway lines, armaments, machine parts, printing presses, and many other purposes.
With time, remarkable innovations are done to increase the yield at a low cost of custom metal fabrication. Some of the major technologies which are used in today's world are described here:
This CAD software is important for generating the three-dimensional images of the metal fabrication project. Engineers use this software to make new designs, and for updating them. You can also translate your programming language by using the software. In this way, instantaneous information is added to improve the designs.
Fabrication technology has been revolutionized by automation. In this process, tools are used to automatically complete the desired task with a minimum external aid. The process is done in a short time with high reproducibility and precision. Automated tools can perform different tasks like welding, cutting, folding, and several other processes.
Depending upon the requirements, different types of processes can be used for cutting metals. It includes plasma and laser cutting, plasma cutting, and waterjet cutting. Different layers of metals are cut with the help of these technologies.
Many processes are involved in the fabrication process. According to the kind of application, different combinations of processes are being used. The most common types of fabrication processes are explained here:
Different technologies are involved here in the cutting of metals including laser cutting, waterjet cutting, shearing, sawing, and flame cutting. The most commonly used are laser and water jet cutting. After applying these processes, the sheet of metal is punched which creates different holes in the metal sheet. In this way, the meta piece is generated according to the desired shape and size.
Through this process, a wide range of structural orientations and dimensions of metal sheets are obtained. That can be in rectangular or circular form. Simple plate metals to large structures of metals can be obtained through this process which can be used for construction purposes. For cutting such thin layers of metals, beamlines are used.
Shearing is the most common way that is used for straight cutting of metal sheets. It works like a scissor, having two opposite blades. One side of these blades is fixed while the other side moves at a specific angle to cut the metal sheets in various sizes and thicknesses. A hydraulic system is used to operate the large shearing processes.
Plasma and laser cutting are used to cut the metal in any size and shape. However, plasma cutting is less precise than laser cutting. Plasma cutting is operated through CNC (Computer Numerical Control) and then circular or various other shapes of metals are cut. But to obtain, more accurate and sharp edges of a metal sheet laser cutting is preferred.
After choosing the desired method for cutting, the metal is obtained. This metal is then processed in different ways to obtain a final custom metal. Following terminologies are usually used while dealing with custom metal fabrication. So be familiar with them before starting a fabrication process.
Casting: A die is used to form a mold. The liquid metal is poured into this mold to obtain a particular shape. After cooling, the metal turns solid of the desired shape.
Forging: In this part, the metal is hammered, rolled, or pressed to obtain the specific shape metal. A wide variety of metals can be forged. It comes out in various forms like cold forging, hot forging, or warm forging.
Punching: The metal is punched to create holes and openings for design or other purposes.
Drawing and milling: After all these processes, the liquid metal is drawn and milled to produce perforations by boring. These perforations can be circular or non-circular.
Drilling and turning: Metal is drilled through these holes and forwarded towards the turning process. This turning process spins the metal which allows a manufacturer to break the metal sheets according to the radial movement of the metal.
Extrusion: This process utilizes a ram force to extract the metal sheet from the die. Cylindrical tools are obtained through this process including wires or pipes.
Metal fabrication varies from a single to a variety of metals. The variety of metals includes their homogenous mixture (alloy). You can use Aluminum, steel, copper, tin, gold, magnesium, iron, silver, and nickel.
Metals are available in stock metal form. Depending upon the type and usage of metal, this stock contains rods, sheets, plate metals, wires, or fittings. Aluminum and steel can be in the form of pipe or tubes form. The metal fabrication process may vary depending upon the type of metal. For example, Aluminum is pliable as compared to steel. Therefore, the process will need more complications for cutting the steel than aluminum. If you are interested in doing the custom metal fabrication process then you must consult an expert for further information.
Custom metal fabrication is used in various industries. Metal fabricators manufacture different tools for mining, construction, ships, and aerospace through cutting, bending, burning, welding, and assembling of metals. Here are the following applications of fabricated metal products: