Here at Alpha, we often get asked questions about the capabilities of our machines, the best way to manufacture a certain product or the most cost effective solution to a customers problem. This is why we’ve compiled some of the most frequently asked questions and offered some solutions. If you have a question relating to sheet metal fabrication that’s not listed here, get in touch. We’d be happy to help!
If you have a question regarding design or any other sheet metal processes, please get in touch
Sheet Metal Fabrication
When working with sheet metal every day, it's easy to forget that not everybody understands sheet metal gauge, machine tolerances or bend radius. We've listed some of the most commonly asked general questions about what we do and tried to offer some useful answers.
In any manufacturing industry, design is the vital first step in the production process. By ensuring a design is adequately developed, huge savings can be made further down the manufacturing process in terms of material, time and money.
Programming is the process of translating a design model (CAD) into a language that a computer controlled machine can understand (CAM). Programmers are also responsible for calculating material utilisation and manufacturing times per product.
Laser cutting is one of the fastest and most accurate methods of cutting shapes from sheet metal and other materials. High powered machines convert electrical energy into highly focused light beams which penetrate workpiece material with minimal material waste.
CNC (Computer Numerically Controlled) punching is a sheet metal manufacturing process whereby a punch press machine creates perforations or forms in metal by forcing a punch tool into with high power
CNC Folding is a process of forming or bending sheet metal by applying high pressure to it using angled tools. The process is controlled by computer programming (CNC) and is dependant on the length and thickness of the material.
Many of the parts produced in the sheet metal manufacturing process become parts of a bigger assembly or fabrication. Often, this will involve welding and depending on the material, quantity and required finish, there are many welding options available.
CNC Machining is the prcoesses of using computer programming to control mills, lathes, drills and routers to remove material from a workpiece. Tools move around various axis to create shapes in the material.
Sheet metal insertion is the process of pressing fasteners such as nuts, bolts, clinch studs into a workpeice for further assembly later
Powder coating is the process of applying a powdered paint to a metallic material using electrostatic charge before applying intense heat to form a smooth paint skin. Powder coating has many benefits over wet paint, including faster application and more durable finished product.
Stainless steel has a unique set of characterisitics which makes it a highly popular metal, used in a wide variety of industries and applications.