What Are The Different Ways of Metal Cutting Processes?

Now the metal cutting industry has been widely used in daily life. As people use more and more metals, the current metal cutting suppliers can no longer fully meet people’s growing needs, so the metal cutting industry can now get widespread attention from society. What are the different ways of metal cutting processes?

For example, the panels that make up the car frame are manufactured through custom metal manufacturing processes, which are usually carried out in manufacturing plants and then sent to car assembly plants. However, the processes involved are complex and diverse. So you want to know what metal manufacturing is and how to use a machine to cut metal?

Talking about the metal processing technology used today, the most common ones are laser cutting, plasma cutting, or water jet cutting. The choice of cutting technology greatly affects the overall cost of making the metal position, that is, the structure and its quality.

What is the metal manufacturing process?

When people learn how metal manufacturing works, the following process is usually part of a training program. Each process requires a certain degree of practice and skill to master. The tools and machinery required are usually expensive and take up enough working space. However, every metal manufacturing process can be used to cut, drill, fold, and weld the strongest materials on the planet:

Cutting

Perhaps the most commonly used metal manufacturing process involves cutting, and the metal cutting processes divide a metal plate into two halves, three equal parts, or smaller parts. In many applications, the cut metal is freshly made and has not been shaped into anything special. In other applications, preformed metals (such as bars and measuring plates) are submitted for cutting. Cutting is performed on a range of machines, from lasers and plasma torches to more complex high-tech machines.

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Foldable

A more complex process of metal manufacturing involves folding, in which the metal surface is manipulated into an angled shape. For some folding applications, the purpose is to fold the metal surface at a 90-degree angle, or something more or less dull. However, due to the complexity of the entire process, folding can only be performed in facilities equipped with specific high-tech equipment. In many cases where folding is required, connecting two metal panels at a selected angle will be a more practical choice.

metal folding

Welding

Like cutting, welding is one of the most popular metal manufacturing processes among craft enthusiasts. The welding process involves the joining of two separate metal parts. The parts used in welding applications can be sheets, panels, bars, or shapes-as long as the parts are made of metal, it doesn’t matter. Welding can be achieved by a variety of methods and tool types. Usually, welding is achieved by heating along with the point where the two pieces are to be connected. Many metalworkers first consider welding projects to pursue the field of metal manufacturing.

Portable laser welding machine sample

Machining

When a machine is used to remove parts from a piece of metal, the process is called machining. Typically, this process is performed on a lathe that will rotate the metal relative to tools that trim corners and edges to cut the workpiece into the desired shape or size. In other processing applications, one or a group of holes will be formed directly through the metal surface. Therefore, metal drill bits can be classified as processing tools.

Metal Machining

Punching

When a hole is formed in a piece of metal, the process involved includes stamping, where the metal is placed under a mold and perforated by a drill. In order for the punch size to be correct, the circumference of the drill bit must pass through the die correctly. Depending on the intent of a given application, stamping belongs to one of two subcategories. In most cases, the purpose is to punch holes in the metal plate to secure latches or other foreign objects. In other applications-also is known as blanking-the area with holes is specifically extracted from the larger panel to form a smaller bit section.

Metal Punching

Shearing

For metal plates that need to be cut for a long time, this process is called shearing. In some cases, the plates are fed horizontally through a metal cutting machine. In other applications, the cutting tool is applied vertically over the length of the flat metal plate. The third method is to place the metal on the edge of the open cutter and lower the blade, like a paper cutter in a copy facility. Shearing is usually used to trim the edges of metal plates, but the process can be done anywhere on the metal.

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Stamping

Stamping is not the only metal manufacturing process that uses molds. However, in some applications, the intention is not to form a whole, but to raise a specific part of the metal plate without penetrating. For such applications, the stamping process is used to form certain shapes, letters, or images in metal plates or panels. In fact, metal stamping is similar to relief carving on wood or marble. A prime example of metal imprinting is seen on coins, where text, monetary amounts, and the face of the president are embossed from pennies, nickel, dime, and quarter coins on each side.

Metal Stamping

Casting

One of the oldest types of metal manufacturing involves casting, where molten metal is poured into a mold and then solidified into a specific form. As one of the most flexible metal manufacturing methods, casting is ideal for the manufacture of various complex shapes. In some cases, casting provides a solution to manufacturing problems, otherwise, several other methods are needed to solve them, such as assembly parts that require folding, shearing, and stamping. The most commonly used metals in this application include steel, iron, gold, copper, silver, and magnesium.

What Are The Different Ways of Metal Cutting Processes?

Metal manufacturing is an important step in the manufacture of various metal parts, components, and machines. In almost any manufacturing process, the required metal materials need to be cut. You can choose from several different types of metal cutting processes. Which type of metal cutting process is best for your application? To help you make a decision, here are some of the most commonly used metal cutting techniques and methods.

Hand tools for manually cutting metal

For smaller cutting operations, hand tools (including hand shears and hacksaws) can be used to cut the metal into the desired shape. This cutting method is best for projects that use more flexible metals such as thinner aluminum. If the metal must be cut into very small pieces, it is not recommended to use a hand tool to cut the metal, because the force required to cut the metal may only break it, rather than cutting it as expected.

Chisels can also be used to remove excess metal and make the shape more precise. Depending on the job, you can choose to use a sharp cold chisel or a hot chisel to heat the metal before striking it.

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Use machinery to cut metal

For larger projects or projects that use thicker or stronger metals, manual cutting is not always feasible. According to your metal cutting processes need, there are a variety of machine-based cutting methods to choose from.

Laser cutting

This is the latest technology involving metal cutting and is increasingly used in this process. With the help of focusing lenses and other laser components, high power and concentrated beams facilitate the cutting of metals.

Many companies need accurate and clean results. There are many traditional methods, but none of them can provide the same results as a laser cutting machine. The powerful laser beam of the cutting machine can be used for many applications and shapes that cannot be obtained by other methods. Even small household laser cutting machines can be used by amateurs. Many industries, even entertainment, props, medicine, etc., are using these large and precise machines as a cost-effective way to quickly mass-produce products.

Laser cutting is to irradiate the workpiece with a focused high-power-density laser beam to quickly melt, vaporize, ablate or reach the ignition point of the irradiated material. At the same time, the molten material is blown away by the high-speed airflow coaxial with the beam to realize the cutting of the workpiece. Open. Now generally use CO2 pulse laser and fiber laser cutting machine. Laser cutting is one of the thermal cutting methods, usually used for high-efficiency precision cutting of thin steel plates (<30mm).

The cutting quality of the laser is excellent, not only the cutting speed is fast, but also the dimensional accuracy is also high (up to ±0.05mm), and because the laser beam acts on a small area, the heat-affected zone is very small, and the workpiece is hardly deformed. In terms of cutting quality, the laser is better than plasma; in terms of cutting speed, plasma is faster than the laser.

laser metal cutting

Flame cutting (Gas cutting)

Flame cutting is a thermal cutting method that combines oxygen and fuel supplies to generate a flame with enough energy to melt and cut the material. Because oxygen and fuel are used in the flame cutting process, it is also called “oxyfuel cutting cutting”.

Flame cutting can only cut carbon plates and is not suitable for other types of metals such as stainless steel or copper and aluminum.

The advantage of flame cutting is low cost, and the maximum cutting thickness can reach two meters. The disadvantage is that the heat-affected zone and thermal deformation are large, the section is rough, and there is more slag. Considering the subsequent processing, a more surplus should be reserved.

Flame metal cutting

Plasma cutting

It uses the heat of the high-temperature plasma arc to locally melt (and evaporate) the metal at the incision of the workpiece and uses the momentum of the high-speed plasma to remove the molten metal to form an incision.

Plasma is generally used to cut materials with a thickness of less than 100mm. Different from flame cutting, plasma cutting speed is fast, especially when cutting ordinary carbon steel plate, the speed can reach 5-6 times that of oxygen cutting, and the cutting surface is smooth, the thermal deformation is small, and the heat-affected zone is small. Plasma cutting is not limited to cutting carbon plates, stainless steel, copper-aluminum materials, and nickel-titanium metals, etc., can be competent.

plasma metal cutting

Waterjet cutting

Not all metals can be used at high temperatures. If the heat is too high, you may endanger the shape and the material itself. Sensitive metals require a method that does not damage the surface due to heat. Waterjet cutting is the perfect way to achieve this goal. Waterjet cutting simulates the effect of nature on metal at a higher speed. The metal is corroded by water jet technology so that the metal can be cut easily.

Waterjet cutting can be used for soft and hard materials. The high pressure of the water stream can cut metal easily. If you compare the power of an electric washing machine and a waterjet cutting machine, you get 30 times the power of an electric washing machine. It can cut different materials at the same time, and the maximum thickness is 4 inches. To reduce confusion, the waterjet cutting method may need to be performed underwater. Doing so underwater will also reduce splashes in the work area. Be careful when using water jets, as this technique is very powerful.

Waterjet metal cutting

Which cutting technique should you choose?

When choosing the best metal cutting technology, you first need to consider the required cutting accuracy and the characteristics of the material being cut. In addition, it is necessary to include in the calculation the speed or position at which the metal being processed will be added.

Therefore, for metals that require more complex and precise processing, precision, and cutting efficiency, laser cutting is recommended. In practice, this means that laser cutting is the most economical for metals with a thickness of no more than 10 mm, which do not have high reflection properties and medium thickness. Similarly, plasma cutting is the most economical for metals with a thickness of up to 10 mm. In most cases, plasma cutting is used for plates with larger dimensions and thicker sections. Water cutting is recommended for metals up to 460 mm thick or temperature-sensitive metals.

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