Mechanical Cutting Techniques in Steel Fabrication
There are diverse metalworking processes which are utilised in the production of custom commodities, machine components and structural materials. Cutting is one of the integral steps because it allows the excess volume in the raw materials to be removed. Generally, there are laser and mechanical cutters in the manufacturing industry. The former has grown popular over the years but there are still numerous advantages of choosing the latter. If you are thinking about ordering some custom steel products, it is crucial for you to understand your mechanical cutting options. This will help you choose a process that suits your budget and steel fabrication goals. Here are the main techniques to consider when making your order.
A lathe is designed to hold and rotate the steel work piece during the cutting process. This machine has attached tools which modify the product during the fabrication operation. For instance, there are hardened cutting blades which are used to eliminate the unneeded material and to shape the work piece. This is a favourable technique because other tools can be attached to carry out other fabrication tasks. The additional operations can include sanding, drilling, deformation and even knurling. The combination of processes means that there will be minimal finishing required so you will enjoy lower costs.
A milling machine is designed with rotary cutters which are efficient in metal cutting processes. This technique is advantageous because it can make modifications from a variety of angles. Basically, the fabricator will be able to make complex and intricate products without using several types of metalworking machinery. Over the last few years, the technology and nature of milling machines has advanced significantly. Some steel manufacturers have machining centres with mills which can use different tools to perform the task. This type of set-up requires little labour so the fabrication costs may be lower. In addition, ensure that the fabricator has computer numerical control (CNC) for improved precision in translating the design. You will find milling equipment in both small-scale machine shops and large fabrication operations.
Grinding is a cutting process that utilises abrasive force from rotating discs in steel machining. This technique is a popular choice for high-volume projects that require refined finishes as well as light and precise cuts. The grinders are available in a wide range of sizes and configurations so there will be a machine that matches your requirements.
There are other mechanical cutting processes such as turning, threading and filing so you should discuss all the viable techniques with your steel fabricator.