A highly versatile material, the various grades of stainless steel are used by manufacturing businesses all over Australia and the wider world. Stainless steel is resistant to corrosion, is extremely durable and can be formed into numerous different configurations. No wonder it is among the most popular materials of any metal in the country for both product manufacturing and fabrication. Of course, stainless steel can be formed in many different ways. What are some of the most widely used stainless steel forming techniques in the country?
When it comes to non-standard shapes, hydroforming is one of the most versatile techniques manufacturers have at their disposal. It is ideal for all sorts of ductile metals, such as aluminium and steel. Essentially, this industrial process uses a high-pressure liquid to push down on a section of metal which is placed over a moulding dye. The pressurised liquid then forms the metal to the shape beneath it in a single process, applying pressure equally over the entire workpiece to ensure an even outcome. With relatively low tooling costs and the fact that it often eliminates the need to polish stainless steel after it has been processed, this is one of the most popular methods of forming metals these days.
There are two main types of bending processes that manufacturers use. The first relies on a press brake that shapes sections of flat stainless steel by applying just the right amount of force to them over rollers. Where tubular steel is being bent, rotary bending machines tend to be used so that the exact radius of the bend can be maintained throughout the process.
Because stainless steel is tough, to extrude it means using a hot forming process. Essentially, to make it more ductile, the metal needs to be heated up so that it can pass through an extrusion die. Once it has done so, it is left to cool. Typically, box sections of the metal are formed by using this sort of process.
Shear forming is a spinning technique by which a section of stainless steel is produced. A mandrel is spun on a lathe or a similar device, and the workpiece comes into contact with it. A shear forming roller then pushes the metal against the mandrel as it spins such that it forms the same shape as it. Cones and ornate tubes can be formed with this method with ease.
For more information, contact stainless steel fabricators.