Steel fabrication is the name given to the process of bending, cutting and shaping steel alloy to create a product.
Cutting would be done by sawing, shearing, or chiselling (all with manual and powered variants); torching with hand held torches (including oxy-fuel torches or plasma torches) and through numerical control cutters, using either a laser, torch or water jet.
Bending is the process of hammering (either powered or by hand) or through press brakes and other similar tools. More recent techniques will use press brakes to either coin or air-bend a metal sheet into a desired form. CNC-controlled back-gauges will use any hard stops in order to position cut parts to then place bend lines in the appropriate position. CNC-controlled press brakes can now be programmed to be seamless and efficient through off-line programming software.
The assembly will be done by binding with adhesives, threaded fasteners, riveting, welding or more bending in the form of a crimped seam. Structural steel and sheet metal are the typical beginning materials for fabrication, along with the welding wire, flux, and fasteners that will join the cut pieces together. The end product from fabrication could be called a fabrication.
Frequent raw metals that are utilised by metal fabricators are:
– Plate metal
– Formed and expanded metal
– Tube stock
– Welding wire/welding rod
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