Metal bending is a concept that dates back several centuries ago. The ancient society used the bending principle to modify various metals into usable items. As time moves, the process has been evolving, whereby modern approaches prove to be superior.
The latest way of bending sheet metal is by using a CNC machine. One can produce 3D parts from sheets of metal. Besides, that is only one option. One can use several methods to achieve similar results.
Several industries emerged to manipulate metals into useful items. Keep reading as we discover more on this subject of bending metals.
What is Metal Bending?
It is a process of deforming metal by applying force to it. Consequently, it will bend at a particular angle and later form the desired shape. The most common shape is either U or V-shapes.
In the metal bending process, one will use a press brake tool to bend sheet metal. Press braking may sound to be a simple process. The only challenge is to retain accuracy throughout the process. Various press brakes will deliver varying levels of force.
Let’s discuss some of these press brakes in full detail.
The design of this press brake makes it ideal for air bending. It has two primary benefits, such as accuracy and speed. Luckily, if you treasure safety, you can use other press brakes, which are simple and safer, like CNC press brakes. CNC machine is a powerful metal bending tool.
Here, the operator will use a compressor when supplying airpower to bend the sheets of metal. You can use this press brake when you require less pressure. One can put to use this type of press brake, especially on small metal parts.
This type of press brake uses modern technology, which one will use to ensure precise bending on the sheet of the metal. If you want proper sheet bending, then you can make hydraulic as the appropriate choice.
Types of Metal Bending
1. Air Bending
When air bending takes place, a particular workpiece will make contact with the exterior edges of a die, combined with a punch tip. Afterward, the punch will get forced beyond the top of the die. It will enter into a V-shaped opening.
During the air bending process, one will achieve a minimal amount for contact. The used equipment will only touch the material at three spots. They are namely dying shoulders, the tip, and the punch.
Air bending is one of the most used methods when bending sheet metal. Also, one will use less weight when bending the metal.
2. Bottom Bending
The only difference between the bottom bending and air bending is that they vary in radius. In bottom bending, the tie and the punch will make contact fully with the materials. It also lacks adequate tonnage when making an imprint on the metal.
This bottom bending method has higher accuracy and also has less spring back. It is a safer option, among other techniques.
While using the coining method, the top tool will force the material into the die that is at the bottom. It has a greater force to make permanent deformations on the sheet metal. The process has little spring back.
As you use the coining method, you will achieve higher precision. Unfortunately, it comes with higher costs. It is a reliable sheet metal bending method.
The folding process will involve clamping beams, which will hold the longest part of the sheet. Eventually, the beam will rise and begin to fold the metal sheet around the bend profile.
The beam can move the sheet in a downward and upward motion. As a result, it will cause the fabrication of the materials. The following factors will affect the resulting bend angle:
- Tool geometry
- Material properties
- The folding beam angle
5. Three-Point Bending
It is a new metal bending process that makes use of a die. It also combines with a bottom tool that has an adjustable height that uses a servo motor to run it. The operator will adjust the height in a range of 0.01 mm.
The good news is that it can also tolerate differences in sheet thickness. You can use the three-point bending to make a precision angle of 0.25 degrees. The method is suitable to use when you want to attain high precision. Furthermore, it is flexible. Unfortunately, the method is costly.
When you use the wiping technique, you clamp the longest side of the sheet. The tool will move strategically to bend the sheet of metal around a bend profile. The metal bending process is faster than fold. Unluckily, it can damage the sheet or make some scratches on the same.
The risk is at a peak when you want to achieve sharp angles. As you use this method, the bottom die’s radius will dictate the final bending radius.
Common Bending Materials
- Carbon Steel:It is the most popular method which is sturdy and reliable. It has multiple grades that have various bending properties. It has excellent machining and wear-resistance properties.
- Aluminum:You can use aluminum metal to make storage and transportation tanks.
- Alloy Steels:The alloy is ideal in lifting hooks, U-bolts, and grab bars.
- Carbon alloys:The materials are useful in building and construction.
- Brass:It makes marine and handrail applications.
- Stainless steel:It is useful in the water and food industries.
- Copper:the metal bends are useful in piping, railings, and bus bars.
You can automate the metal bending process by the use of CNC machines. One needs to feed the file with particular designs. Later, the metal bending machine will execute the program to cause a similar product to get reflected from the provided materials.
The automated prices are reliable since they are highly accurate and faster. The following are the advantages of automatic metalworking:
One can use a single robot in controlling the process while relying on a unique program. One will need fewer human resources to operate the process. Also, it is possible to run double shifts, both day and night shifts.
· Maximum Productivity
One can synchronize the production process with an automated set-up. The metal bending tool will change everything quickly within the shortest time. Also, it will rarely stop unless there is a mechanical hitch. By such a design, you can maximize the output.
· Constant quality
The automated bending is a process that is precise by producing quality items. After operating for many hours, the same machine will still produce accurate results. There are built-in sensors that make particular angles as they metals fold accurately.
The side lengths will also emerge accurately.
· Increased income
The automated process is simple to use. It maximizes time while installing and preparing materials. As a result, one can maximize production even for larger orders. One can get a complicated metal bending economically.
The production takes the 3D design and influences the folding sequence. For instance, what could take hours can now consume only a few minutes. The operator can perform a mass production using the shortest period possible.
It compensates for the shortage of skilled workers
To be a press skill operator, you need a particular set of skills. Finding suitable staff is difficult indeed. One can use automated bending to ensure top-notch results. It can deliver complex results within minutes featuring less workforce.
Application of Metal Bending Machine
One can use a metal bending machine in the following areas:
- Furniture industry:You can use it to decorate chair frames, bottle holders, and decorations of lamps.
- Agriculture industry:They make agricultural springs, vineyard accessory, and tractor part.
- Automotive industry:You can use the machine to make bonnets, headrest frames, child seat hooks and more
- Construction industry:there is multiple application in construction like ceiling hook and frameworks concrete.
- Railway industry:they make railway products like railway clips.
- Fastening industry:It makes different types of pins and hooks.
- Display materials:They make various items like display support materials.
- Gardening industry:you can use the bending process in the gardening industry to make various items like a lawnmower.
Disadvantages of Metal Bending
- The user will experience expensive start-up fees. Metal bending machines are more costly than plastic fabrication machines.
- The metal must undergo post-fabrication processes. Some of these processes are debarring and finishing and later painting.
- You can encounter limited designs. One cannot get advanced shapes from a particular state of metals like the molten state.
Metal bending is a technique that many people use to make particular items. The product that emanates from this process will lift the standards of human beings. Various applications result in the growth of business enterprises that provide direct employment to people.
The good news is that you can use different types of metal materials to make products. The most commonly used one is carbon steel. The properties of each metal will determine its durability.
The best method that bends metal is the automated ones.
Such a metal bending tool is accurate and precise, where you can attain good quality. In other words, one can maximize production by creating thousands of parts within a short time.
For more information on sheet metal fabrications, i.e., metal bending, contact us now.