The sheet metal manufacturing industry is expected to be worth $4.4 billion by 2026, according to Bloomberg. This number can be achieved given that sheet metal has become a valuable material in the industrial age. At first, it was just iron during the Iron Age. Then came steel, bronze, and all the other metals.
Today, all these metals, including copper, tin, nickel, titanium, aluminum and steel, are combined to make sheet metal. This substance has a large number of uses. But, this article will cover all about sheet metal production in construction. We will see what it is, its application in construction, the advantages of its use, and the methods used for the production of sheet metal.
What is metal sheet fabrication?
Sheet metal fabrication is the process of forming metal sheets to the desired shape using different manufacturing methods. The completion of a product usually comprises of many steps – from cutting and bending to surface treatment and assembling.
What is sheet metal used for in construction?
Construction – Sheet metal is incredibly important in the construction industry. From ducts to roof flashing and gutters, this is an essential building material for homes and commercial buildings alike. Equestrian – Though this particular use of sheet metal is strictly decorative, it’s still interesting!
What are the advantages of sheet metal?
5 Advantages of Sheet Metal
- Strength and Durability. Sheet metal is strong and durable, and sheet metal parts are often able to withstand greater pressure and heat than those made with plastic. …
- Malleability. In addition to being durable, sheet metal is also malleable. …
- Replaceability. …
- Sustainability. …
What are the different types of sheet metal operations?
Different Types of Sheet Metal Operations are:
- Shearing Operation.
- Blanking & Fine Blanking Operation.
- Punching Operation.
- Piercing Operation.
- Perforating Operation.
- Slotting Operation.
- Notching Operation.
- Bending Operation.
The advantage of sheet metal used in construction
Sheet metal has many advantages in construction. These include:
1. Low cost
Sheet metal is readily available. Thus, it is relatively inexpensive. Several factors indicate that sheet metal is a low-cost material. For example, a structure built from the material takes longer before it needs repair. This is because the sheet metal is of high quality, eliminating the need for constant repair or replacement. It is also very versatile, which means that it is applicable in various aspects of construction. Therefore, if you have additional materials after purchase, you can use them elsewhere.
The durability of a material refers to its useful life and shelf life. Sheet metal products can come from steel, stainless steel, brass, and other alloys.
All of these have unique properties such as strength, ductility, tensile strength, machinability, toughness, weldability, strength-to-weight ratio, and more. The manufacturer considers all these qualities and decides on the best combination to ensure that the customer receives durable sheet metal.
For example, suppose you are looking for a sheet of metal with anti-corrosion properties. In this case, the manufacturer combines the necessary materials, such as galvanized steel, to ensure that the product lasts longer before it is damaged. They can withstand pests, moisture, sun, and damage from mold or fire.
The materials used in sheet metal fabrication are recyclable. Thus, you can reuse sheet metal multiple times in different applications before it starts to deteriorate in quality. Scrap sheet metal can be turned into better products. For example, metal plates used to make metal art can be used.
Common sheet metal fabrication methods
Sheet metal services can be accomplished in several ways. The most common ones include:
Cutting is the removal of unwanted material from sheet metal. There are many forms of cutting, including laser cutting, plasma cutting, and waterjet cutting.
1. Laser cutting
Laser cutting is the process of using different gases such as nitrogen, carbon dioxide, helium and oxygen to burn unwanted material from sheet metal until you get clean edges. The process involves the use of a gas jet directed at the area to be cut. This jet of gas melts unwanted substances and blows them away until you get the desired result.
2. Plasma cutting
Plasma cutting is a process by which a machine is shaped like a torch for the flow of electricity and gas through a small opening. The flow is usually fast, resulting in the melting and cutting of unwanted materials. Plasma cutting is applicable to conductive materials such as aluminum, stainless steel, cast iron, in col, titanium, copper, brass, Monel, and mild steel.
3. Waterjet cutting
Another way to design sheet metal is waterjet cutting. It involves shooting high-pressure water at a sheet of metal through a diamond or sapphire nozzle opening. Pressurized water is usually mixed with an abrasive and controlled by CNC.
4. Press punch
The punch press is an economical version of laser cutting and waterjet cutting. It is used for cutting simple patterns. Since it is a fast process that strikes over 100 blows per minute, the process is used to quickly create parts.
Bending is the process of turning sheet metal into the desired shape. Various bending tools are used to get the product into its perfect shape. For example, a die and a punch of any shape can be used to create a shape on sheet metal. The punches and dies come in different shapes and they press a specific part of the sheet metal to create the desired shape.
Choosing sheet metal for your construction is just a first step. You also need to specify the purpose of the material and the measurement. Then, the manufacturer helps you determine the material’s weight, strength, flexibility, cost, and everything related to manufacturing. Although it does not seem simple, a qualified engineer and his team will work on a prototype of your product to reach the desired results.
RapidDirect creates accurate, high-quality sheet metal in the shortest possible time. With many years of experience providing first-class sheet metal services make us the perfect choice for your business.