Metal fabrication is very complex and it contains an extensive range of processes. Either you want something made as a once off, or you want something mass produced, it is essential that you understand fabrication and the different processes that go into it.
In this article you will know the three main processes of fabrication that are used for metal. You will discover some details on how these processes work and also their primary uses. Aside from that, this article will also include a short explanation about protective coatings and finishing touches that can be applied to any fabricated metal products. This article is based on the practices of professional operators and is only a guide and certainly not to be used as an instruction for any DIY jobs.
1. The Cutting Process
This process is one of the more technical and accurate processes. The first form of the cutting technique is the sawing and shearing of metal, which can be done both manually and by the use of large machines. Aside from it, you also use Oxyacetylene or plasma torches to cut the metal using heat. Another method to cut metals during fabrication is the most with the most common way which is by using CNC machining. These machine can utilize laser cutting, manual tools, or even water jets. The first thing to do when using CNC machine is to program the specific design that you like into the machine, then the metal will be shaped by one of the tools according to the shape specified by the computer design. This method is really useful for highly detailed projects.
Joining is the most commonly used method in the fabrication process. The joining method has a very broad category, welding and riveting or bonding with adhesives are the fabrication processes that belong to this particular method. Welding is the joining of two pieces of metal together using only heat and a filler material. Riveting is the process of joining two pieces of metal together by only using a metal rivet. Some items only required an adhesive glue to join different components.
3. The Bending Process
This process required bending the metal into the desired shape. It can be done manually, however, there are now modern machinery that replaced the traditional way of manually bending metals.
A Description on the Final Touches
The final touches to any fabricated product can be applied once all the process of cutting, joining, and bending of metals has been completed. There are wide range of final touches, from putting paint for aesthetic reasons to protective coatings like sandblasting or powder. You must consult with the manufacturer regarding what kind of coating is appropriate for your purpose and pocket.