Metal fabrication is usually very common in industries that involve manufacturing as well as construction. During this process, raw materials are converted into processed metal sheets that are utilized in making buildings, machines and bridges. One of the most commonly used metals for fabrication is structural steel due to its flexibility, tensile and durable properties. During steel fabrication, steel sections are made using various fabrication processes. The various fabrication processes involved in steel fabrication include shearing, welding, machining, punching, stamping, cutting as well as folding. Cutting is the first stage of metal fabrication. During cutting, steel is cut into smaller pieces using a saw, plasma torch, a water jet as well as lasers. Other cutting techniques used include chiseling, numerical control as well as shearing.
Press brake is used during folding. Folding or bending of steel is important in order to make certain steel sections. Folding helps to air-bend a sheet of metal into the desired form for ease of use. The press brake used has a set of dies that pinch the metal sheet in order to form a crease. In order for the designer to acquire the desired metal shape they are in need of, unwanted materials are removed from the structural steel through machining. During this process, the metal designer can either choose to use a rotating cutting tool on a stationary metal piece or rotate the metal piece against a tool used for cutting.
During punching, a metal piece is punched by the use of a punch press in order to create a hole in it. One should ensure that the die and punch are of the same shape for the hole shape to be perfect on the metal. Shearing, also referred to as die cutting, is used in cutting straight lines onto a flat metal stock. During stamping, a portion of the metal sheet is raised when using a die. Welding involves two pieces of metal becoming attached in order to form a large structure or separate steel section. Metal designers use different techniques during welding which depend on the design of the metal structure and the metal itself.
Metal fabrication is very beneficial as it helps strengthen the quality of the metal. Strengthening steel helps to make it more suitable for construction projects. Energy sector projects also make use of fabricated steel. Fabrication companies usually produce metal products depending on how the client has specified. Fabricated steel is preferred by most clients since it is cheaper unlike other alternatives. The process of fabricating structural steel is very cost-effective making it favorable.
Besides manufacturing and construction, structural steel is also used in sectors such as oil and gas, infrastructure and transport.