There is a wide range of choice when it comes to forming metal. All sorts of metalwork require industrialised techniques in order to fashion metal sections into just the right shape and size. Without highly accurate techniques for forming metal, many of the world's most iconic structures, such as the Sydney Harbour Bridge and the Empire State Building, could not have been built. In addition, tiny metallic components, like those found in modern smart devices, also rely on manufacturing processes which require metal to be formed with precision. What are the common metal forming procedures in use today?
Rolling metal is a bulk forming process which deals with lots of material in one go. Principally used by the sheet stainless steel industry, as the name suggests, large rollers are used to deform metal into flat sheets. There are many types of rolling processes. These include flat rolling, shape rolling and ring rolling. Other forms, like thread rolling and gear rolling, are sometimes used in the production of tubes and metal pipework.
Forming metal by extruding it is commonplace for materials such as aluminium. Extrusion involves the formation of shaped metal by forcing it through a die under pressure. By pushing metal through an opening, industrial manufacturers can produce sections of metal that vary in length but which maintain constant dimensions in their cross sections.
Shearing is the term used for the process of cutting a piece of metal to shape it. It also encompasses procedures like punching holes in sheets of metal. Shearing is considered to be a critical process in sheet metal working operations these days and is much-used by metal fabricators as well as industrial manufacturers.
Metal can be bent in a number of ways. Typically pipes and other sections of metal are placed in vice-like device, and force is subsequently applied at either end to create the desired bend. These days, induction pipe benders use heat to reform metal in highly accurate ways. Modern induction pipe bending processes mean that precise turns can be created in metal products like water pipes, scaffolding poles and air-conditioning ducting. To learn more about induction pipe bending, contact a company like Inductabend Pty Ltd.
This process uses heated metal which is poured into a couple of dies facing one another. As the metal cools inside them, the dies can be removed from the workpiece. Usually, excess metal from the moulded material needs to be cut away to leave the remaining component. This process is used to form anything from road bollards to jewellery.