When developing a new product for market, custom metal fabrication provides the ideal solution for getting from concept to physical product. Custom metal fabrication can also be the best process for improving the design of an existing product to lower production costs, enhance quality, or address defects.
Custom Metal Fabrication vs Stock Metal Fabrication
In the fabrication process, a variety of metals are cut, shaped, or molded to create a variety of stock metal components including sheet metal, metal rods, and metal bars in a variety of dimensions and sizes. These stock metal components are widely available from most metal fabrication shops. Custom metal fabrication shops, however, have the ability to create non-standard metal products when manufacturers have unique specification needs. Custom metal fabrication services include both design and production assistance for built-to-order parts.
Custom Metal Fabrication Concept Services
All stages of the product development process can benefit from custom metal fabrication services. This may involve assistance with the design of a single part for an assembly or a full production run of components. Widely used types of custom metal fabrication services include, concept and design, building of product, finishing, and assembly.
Fabrication of a new product design should include considerable engineering and planning. Problems such as structural weaknesses or incorrect dimensions can result from insufficient planning, and ultimately compromise the quality of the product. These custom metal fabrication services can prevent such issues:
- Computer-Aided Design (CAD) – CAD programs allow manufacturers to create a computer-generated three-dimensional representation of a product. This reveals potential structural weaknesses before actual production begins.
- Tooling Design – Custom metal fabricators can develop specialized production tools that will enhance product quality or increase production efficiency.
Custom Metal Fabrication Build Services
Selecting the right fabrication method for a given project depends on the structure of the parts, the desired characteristics of the product, and the materials used to make it. Custom metal fabrication processes may include:
- Assembly – Two or more components may need to be combined in an assembly.
- Bending – Sheet and plate metal is transformed into custom V or U shapes, or channels.
- Custom Finishing – Often a secondary finishing treatment is needed.
- Drawing – Tensile force allows molten metal to be drawn into a tapered die.
- Drilling – Various drill bit designs can be used to bore circular holes into the metal.
- Electronics – Electronic components are integrated into the design of the product.
- Milling – Non-circular holes can added to metal using a milling process.
- Punching – Custom designed turrets punch the metal to create decorative features and more.
- Turning – The metal workpiece is rotated on its axis while a cutting tool shapes the material.
- Welding – Through a combination of heat and pressure, two or more pieces of metal are joined.
Are you in need of custom metal fabrication services? Winston Manufacturing is your experienced and equipped metal fabrication partner for both your custom metal fabrication and production fabrication. Contact us to discuss your project needs.