When looking for a production partner, finding the right metal fabrication supplier is crucial. If your supplier is unqualified or mismatched with your metal fabricating needs, it could cost you in terms of product issues, delivery problems, or unforeseen expense.
Let’s look at four critical things to consider in when evaluating a metal fabrication supplier.
Your metal fabrication supplier’s experience is crucial to project success. More experienced fabrication partners will be more adept at identifying potential issues. Consequently, issues are resolved before becoming expensive problems. During production, a small deviance in measurement can result in unusable assembly parts. Selecting an ill-suited finishing process for your materials compromises your product’s quality. Experienced suppliers spot potential problems before they happen. They can also identify areas of improvement. Their experience lets them see the processes being used on your project might “get the job done,” but at a cost much higher than necessary. An experienced supplier offers you real savings and higher quality. They know a slight improvement in design or layout could substantially reduce material waste.
It is important to match the capabilities of your supplier to your needs. Just because a supplier can produce a part does not mean their manufacturing capacity is a good match. This is particularly critical in large production runs. The typical job shop may not have the proper equipment to efficiently produce the volume of components needed, or they may not have enough experienced labor to quickly fill large orders.
Many suppliers offer expertise in a few specific areas of manufacturing. While this is sufficient for some jobs, many projects require a variety of fabricating services to complete the end product. These services might include:
- Lasers and Turret Presses
- Metal Bending
- Custom Machining
- Metal Cutting
- Certified Welding
- Metal Finishing
In some cases, design assistance may be required, especially with new products. Choosing a supplier that can assist with design can greatly improve the product and reduce the time it takes to get to market.
4. Advanced Technology
Not all suppliers are created equal. More precisely, not all metal fabrication suppliers commit to investing the time and resources to stay at the forefront of metal fabrication technology. While it may not seem like advanced technology is important for your product, it is worthwhile to consider the value break-through technologies such as Salvagnini integrated systems can bring to a project in terms of lower cost, greater throughput and productivity. When evaluating suppliers, be sure you compare their equipment lists so you can choose a supplier that offers you access to the best technology available.
Have more questions about what to look for in a metal fabrication supplier? Allow us to share with you the benefit of our decades of experience as a foodservice equipment OEM. Please give us a call to discuss your project.