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The Fundamentals of Shearing Sheet Metal

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Sheet metal accessories and parts have a range of applications. They are applicable in the manufacturing, processing, construction, and automotive industries, among others. Proper fabrication of these components is essential for the successful use and installation of items made using sheet metal. For example, cutting sheet metal panels must be precise if they are to fit well on vehicles. The surfaces should also be smooth for proper adherence of paint and protective coatings. On that note, you need to understand one of the essential processes used for the fabrication of sheet metal parts: shearing. Read on to learn more. 

Understanding the Working Mechanism

Thin sheets of metal are susceptible to damage if you do not cut them properly. Shears are the go-to solution for trimming the sheets to size. Hand-held shears will suffice for thin sheets and tin plates. When you are fabricating thin plates and thicker sheets, your best bet would be motorised power shears. Both types of equipment have the same working mechanism.

If you use shearing machines for cutting straight lines on sheet metals, there is a fixed lower blade fitted horizontally. A moving upper blade slides against it from an inclined position. Essentially, the pivotal point where the blades meet is the shearing angle. The setup is essential for mitigating the amount of force need to shear the cross-section of the sheet you are cutting.

Getting It Right

When you present your materials to a fabricator, a quick look at the machines can tell you the quality of results to anticipate. The best fabricators use shearing machines with two blades to sandwich the material they are shearing. Secondly, the machines should have adjustable shearing clearance to attain the optimal shearing conditions. This allows the machine to handle sheets with varied thickness. Lastly, the robustness and rigidity of the machines must be sound, enabling them to handle the cutting forces involved. Robust equipment keeps the sheet metal from deflecting and form dented edges.

Using Portable Shearing Machines

When you need to make any changes to the materials and components delivered by your fabricator, portable shearing machines will come in handy. They are efficient for fast, straight-line shearing undertakings. You can use them on sheet metals as thick as four and a half millimetres. In this range, you can also opt for shear-type nibblers. They are power shears employing a short-stroke cutting mechanism that can deliver as many as one thousand four hundred strokes within one minute.

For more information, contact sheet metal fabrication services.