Steel is known for its strength, versatility, and value. It is a widely utilized construction material around the world, and one of the main uses of the material is in metal fabrication.
Take a look at the world of steel fabrication and learn about the fabrication methods and the raw materials involved.
What Is Steel Fabrication?
Steel fabrication is the process that is utilized to manufacture components out of steel, and when finished, it can be used to create a framework. Typically, standard sections of steel are combined with specialist items to fit a job. However, some projects require a fully bespoke service for the best finish.
A fabricator transforms simple sections of steel into detailed designs with precision to bring a project to life. It can be used to construct a wide variety of structural shapes, sizes, and for many uses, including stairs, balconies, and roofs.
Different Types of Metal Fabrication
The various types of metal fabrication fall under the end-use of the product being manufactured or by the type of process utilized during the fabrication process.
Most metal fabrication falls into three essential categories:
Commercial fabrication is the work that’s done while making commercial products. This category covers goods intended to use by consumers. Appliances and cars are both basic consumer products that utilize commercial fabrication.
Industrial fabrication, on the other part, creates pieces that are utilized in other equipment. This equipment, thus, manufactures consumer goods. Manufacturers utilize most products of industrial fabrication. For example, ironworking machines and bandsaws are both products of industrial fabrication.
Structural fabrication refers to metalworking that’s done as part of the building process. Usually, large-scale fabrication projects create the metal components used by shops, manufacturers, buildings, and skyscrapers.
Each of these categories uses a wide assortment of processes. Metal fabrication can utilize only one of these processes and may rely upon a combination of processes. Many metal fabrication projects require different steps. Indeed, even relatively straightforward products, such as a pot or a pan, demand a variety of methods. The metal fabrication process goes past simply shaping metal.
Steel fabrication services have progressed significantly over the years, thanks to the evolution of high-tech computer software. For instance, Computer Numerical Control (CNC) systems now monitor and control the movement of machines like routers, welders, and laser cutters. At the same time, 3D modeling has made it easy to visualize even the most complex components. The fabrication process involves a wide array of manipulation strategies, with the following being some of the most well-known.
- Shot blasting: Steel sections are impacted with a shot in order to prepare them for fabrication. The primary purpose of shot blasting is to provide a clean finish that will be easy to weld and a rough surface that will acknowledge paint.
- Cutting: Steel sections are simpler to work with when they are cut to length before fabrication, and this can be achieved via many ways, such as using circular saws, flame-cutting, or plasma cutting methods.
- Bending: Many modern structures incorporate perfectly curved steel elements that need the fabricator to utilize different rolling and bending techniques. For instance, steel can be passed through a set of bending rolls many times until the curve’s right level has been established, while press braking can be utilized for more direct twists, including lengths of steel up to 12 meters long.
- Welding: Steel fabrication involves a lot of welding; for instance, it is used to attach fixtures and fittings and prepare connections for installation on site. Welding utilizes high heat to liquefy the parent material along with whatever is being added to it so exceptionally that as the weld pool solidifies, the two materials are fused.
- Coating: Coatings are applied to steel for practical and aesthetic purposes and are most generally applied towards the end of the fabrication process. Advanced coatings can protect the steel against corrosion just as fire, and they are additionally utilized to provide a custom look when demanded by the architect.
Basic Raw Materials Involved With Metal Fabrication
There are quite a couple of raw materials that are important for metal fabrication. Knowing which things to keep on hand can help accelerate the fabrication process, guaranteeing that workers consistently have access to a full supply of what they require to get the job done. Here are a couple of basic materials that are important for many metal fabrication projects:
- Flat Metal: Flat metal such as sheet metal and plate metal are altogether incredible for fabrication and can be added to pieces to make visual interest and texture. These are appropriate for making shapes as well.
- Fittings: these are frequently necessary for creating and completing pieces
- Formed and Expanded Metal: Expanded metal is something like a grate, so it is appropriate for things like outdoor furniture that need to let moisture flow off.
- Welding Wire: Since fabrication needs that metal pieces be welded together, it’s essential to keep different types and thicknesses of welding wire available so that parts can be joined to one another.
- Plate Metal: fabricators utilize this to shape the pieces they are working with to have a better range of what they can do.
- Sectional metal: “L” beams are instances of a type of commonly utilized sectional metal. Z shapes are also utilized as well as bar metal and rod metal.
- Castings: these are often used to add visual interest to the fabrication. Keeping them on hand may help speed the creation process.
Industries That Use Metal Fabrication
Metal fabrication has applications in a wide assortment of industries. Due to the versatility of tools and processes, it’s utilized to create parts for industries as varied as spa furniture, agriculture, and cars.
Some of the industries that utilize metal fabrication include:
- Agricultural industries
- Alternative energy
- Consumer products
- Military and defense
- Original equipment manufacturers
- Recreational vehicles
Who needs steel fabrication services?
Any industry that deals with metal requires steel fabrication services. Aside from playing a vital role in both the residential and commercial construction industries, fabricators work closely with shipbuilding, mining, and auto manufacturing. The following are a couple of items that are typically fabricated.
- Universal columns
- Universal beams
- Bar joists
- Pipe racks
- Steel stairs
If you’re looking for quality steel fabrication, contact Steel Fabrication Services from Truventor today. Our well-experienced engineers and fabricators build parts for a wide assortment of industries. Along with our wide range of steel fabrication services, our value-added processing makes us a one-stop shop for your custom metal fabrication needs.