What is Sheet Metal Fabrication?

April 2, 2024

Many industries are increasing their use of sheet metal. Sheet metal fabrication is important for the automotive, aerospace and construction industries. Sheet metal makes its way into bridges, buildings, machinery and various other metal structures.

One industry that makes great use of sheet metal fabrication is the HVAC sector. This, of course, is the industry that we at Nacogdoches Sheet Metal, Plumbing & Air Conditioning, LTD. work in. Sheet metal fabrication is a reliable and effective way to produce the various parts that are necessary for heating and cooling systems.

The Basics of Sheet Metal Fabrication

Taking flat aluminum or steel sheets and creating metal products from them is known as sheet metal fabrication. This process involves folding, cutting, punching and careful assembly. Chop saws and band saws are commonly used by sheet metal fabrication professionals. For larger sections, cutting torches are also incredibly handy.

Press brakes are useful as well. This is especially true with regard to creating sharp angles, corners and bends. With press brakes, cutting torches, chop saws and band saws, the fabrication process becomes streamlined, and the sheet metal can more easily be shaped into the necessary structure.

Another vital tool is the oxyacetylene torch. Its purpose is to straighten out any defective metal. The oxyacetylene torch accomplishes this by slowly applying heat until the defects and abnormalities are gone. During the finishing process, sandblasting, priming and painting and the final steps.

What the Process Looks Like

Designs of the metal structure, typically made with computer-aided design (CAD) programs, will be in either 2D or 3D. These include dimensions, finishes and materials. Next, the team will move on to laser cutting. This is an impressively precise method for cutting sheet metal. Once the programmed design is available, the lasers can simply follow it and create accurate cuts.

Afterward, it is time to bend and form the sheet metal. CNC folding is highly effective, and both automated panel bending machines and manual press brakes are common tools for this task. Through pressure and clamping, these machines will eventually achieve the necessary curvature. Forming is an interesting part of the sheet metal fabrication process because the metal’s mass remains the same while it is reshaped.

There are several types of welding that the sheet metal fabricators employ. Spot welding, tungsten inert gas welding, metal inert gas welding and robotic metal inert gas welding each have their own strengths and applications throughout the process.

The final steps are assembly and finishing. Making sure that the finished sheet metal products are properly assembled before our clients receive them is important to us at Nacogdoches Sheet Metal, Plumbing & Air Conditioning, LTD.. When it is time to finish our metal products, polishing and coatings are usually necessary to prevent corrosion and increase durability.

Common Kinds of Sheet Metal

The most common types of sheet metal that clients request are aluminum, copper, carbon steel, titanium, stainless steel, high-strength steel, galvanized steel and aluminized steel.

The ideal type of sheet metal varies depending on your use case, of course. Medical equipment, food processing machinery, sinks, kitchen appliances, electrical devices, automotive parts and staircases are all examples of popular sheet metal products.

Industries That Use Sheet Metal

Transportation and construction rely on sheet metal fabrication for things like security doors and glove-box enclosures. Retailers and vending machine companies also find great value in sheet metal. Finally, sheet metal products are also prevalent in the scientific and medical industries; you’ll find sheet metal products like sinks, working surfaces and storage structures in science and medicine.

How You Can Benefit From Sheet Metal Fabrication

How can you, as a Nacogdoches, TX resident, benefit from sheet metal fabrication? If you want your heating and cooling system to have great longevity and also be easy to care for, then sheet metal is ideal. It is versatile enough to be formed into a wide array of components and structures. Parts made from sheet metal also require relatively low maintenance. Additionally, you can depend on these parts to be highly durable due to the metal’s strength.

Contact Nacogdoches Sheet Metal, Plumbing & Air Conditioning, LTD. Today

We started doing business in Nacogdoches back in the mid-1940s. At that time, the focus was refrigeration repair services, though the company later branched out into HVAC services, sheet metal fabrication and plumbing. With so much experience, local clients can depend on Nacogdoches Sheet Metal, Plumbing & Air Conditioning, LTD. for their sheet metal fabrication needs. In addition to sheet metal fabrication, we also provide local heating and cooling services in the Nacogdoches area. Contact Nacogdoches Sheet Metal, Plumbing & Air Conditioning, LTD. today to discuss your project.