Metal Fabrication tips
Industrial fabrication refers to metal making and processing, for the purposes of manufacturing a variety of appliances and structures. Metal fabrication involves various activities such as blacksmithing, sheet working, sawing, filing, hammering, welding, soldering, cutting, drawing, forming or machining the metal. Metal fabrication may also be done on precious metals such as gold and silver, for the purpose of manufacturing jewelry.
Metal Working Tips
A few tips that can be followed while metal working – to ensure that complicated layouts can be completed comfortably and accurately; are discussed below.
The first thing that should be ensured is to have a stable platform or work-bench that is big enough to support the layout and the operations (that are to be performed on the metal). This could ideally be made of a thick plywood framework to support the layout, while also giving an option to provide storage space if required.
Pattern material, if made with newspaper or cardboard, will not only be less costly but can also help save time in the preparation. This however will only be useful if pattern reuse is not required, and may even feel a little flimsy. But if the worker is not an expert, it is still advisable to prepare such patterns, lest expensive sheet metals may get wasted.
Pencil sharpener is a cheap yet critical tool to have, as a sharp transfer pencil is an absolute must for ensuring that thick lines do not ruin the transfer from the pattern to the metal.
A similar tip applies to metal scratch awls, as they can loose their sharpness with use. A good mill file will however ensure that the awl does not become dull. Further, having awls of different lengths, diameters and degrees of roundness, will also help in creating design indents easily.
If working on the metal in a wet and humid area, rust can be a real problem. It is therefore advisable to always keep the shears dipped in oil.
Further, workers should also use leather gloves while handling metal sheets. This will not only ensure that the oil coating does not grease the hands or cause rashes or irritation, but also that the hands are not cut by the sharp edges.
That said, a first aid kit (including bandages, cotton and anti-septic) should always be kept handy.
Finally, it is always advisable to repeatedly use the tape and be absolutely certain of the measures, before cutting the metal or trimming the finished product.