Metal Fabrication

Metal Fabrication Equipment

Introduction to Metal Fabrication Equipment

Metal working is an art or an industry, depending on who you speak to. Although, nowadays not many people can practice metal working as a hobby: metal fabrication tools are rather expensive and the process can hardly be done in the privacy of one's home. However, since metal is used in just about anything we do nowadays, it is quite a lucrative business.

Metal Fabrication Equipment

Type of Metal Fabrication Equipment

Metal working can be done in various ways, depending on the original material and on the final product that is being aimed for. Generally though, there are three processes that are used in metal working: cutting, forming and joining.

Forming the metal usually involves melting it and placing it in a cast (which would involve the cast itself and the tools to melt and work the metal). Another option would be plastic deforming, which again can be done in about six different ways (including extrusion, cold sizing, forging or hot metal gas forming) - which is actually the process we usually associate with metal fabrication (the image of a blacksmith forming the iron is actually representing a process of plastic deforming, although recently the process is more and more done by machines rather than people).

The cutting processes are also quite varied and also involve tools like drill machines which drill holes where necessary, manual tools like shears, snips, saws or chisels but also more complicated pieces of machinery like turning machines, milling machines and sawing machines. For more delicate processes, laser tools are also used and also tools that proceed with oxy-fuel burning or plasma to cut the metal.

The joining process is usually done through welding - which is a process that melts the metal to the point where it can stick to another piece of metal. It is a process that requires a lot of attention because the welding, that can be done through a gas flame, a laser, an electric arc, friction or electron beam and ultrasounds, if not done properly can lead to electric shocks, burns or ultraviolet light overexposure. Brazing, soldering and riveting are other types of joining processes which require drilling machines, capillaries and various soldering tools.

Metal fabrication can involve tools like angle bends, press brakes, rebar cutters and iron workers which are complicated pieces of machinery helping you bend, cut or drill the metal.

Where Can One Get Metal Fabrication Equipment?

While most of the tools we use in metal fabrication are not something usually sold at a supermarket, some of the simpler processes can be done at home and some DIY stores can provide you with the equipment to do it. If you are looking for something more complicated, though, you can try the following:

  • QualiMac (http://www.qualimach.co.uk/) - Deals used equipment for metal fabrication processes, which means that you have a chance of buying it a little bit cheaper here. However, as in the case of all used equipment if you yourself are no expert you should try having someone with you to help you choose the best option.
  • Rondean Machinery (http://www.rondean.co.uk/) - Deals both used and new machinery, which means that you will be able to choose and compare both options.
  • Coleman Engineering (http://www.colemanengineering.co.uk/) - This is a company that actually produces the tools - which allows you access to the newest technologies and pieces of unused machinery.

A website that can offer a larger number of choices is Up My Street (http://www.upmystreet.com/) which offers about twenty options, with contact information and customer reviews in the field.

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