Metal fabrication involves various types of industrial processes that can form or manipulate the metal such as: metal stamping, bending, shearing, forming, forging, cutting, rolling, and welding, etc. Components such as: grills, kitchen equipment, metal tools, machine tools, enclosures, gates, windows, and sheet metal guards are usually fabricated by one or more of these processes. Accessories such as: latches, handles, glass and acrylic panes and rubber components can also be fitted during the fabrication process. This is not a high precision process and unlike precision operations such as jig boring and fine grinding, the investment, maintenance, gauging costs and manpower skill requirements are not very high.
The fabricated metal components can be later drilled, milled or ground. Paint and other wear and corrosion resistant coatings can also be applied to the items for the required finish. Metal fabrication equipment may include various types of machinery such as: abrasive blasting equipment, EDM, water jet machining, surface grinders, shearing machines, portable/fixed welding equipment and sheet metal cutting equipment, along with a plotter to read the profiles that need to be cut.
In sheet metal fabrication there are three basic processes which are cutting, forming, and finishing. You can cut sheet metal into smaller pieces in many different ways by using methods such as shearing, electrical discharge machining (EDM), laser cutting, water jets cutting, and abrasive cutting. After the sheet metal is cut, it is then formed into the desired shapes that are required for the component. There are various types of forming methods that can be used such as rolling, bending and forming, stamping, punching, welding, and hardware and fastener creation.
When the part is ready to be finished if it has any sharp and rough edges they can be polished by using an abrasive. Suitable demagnetization techniques must be used for the finished parts. Fabrication may be used to create sub-assemblies or finished products that can be packaged and sold.
Metal fabrication is a very common process that is used in all types of industries and almost all types of metals can be fabricated in one way or another. Most metal items that you use have probably gone through at least one of the processes of metal fabrication.