Two of the more common types of metal fabrication in Phoenix, AZ are metal stamping and machining. But what are the differences between these manufacturing processes, and how do you know which one is the right choice for your project?
Here are a few of the factors you’ll need to consider when deciding which process to go with for your components.
Over the last decade or so, stamping has really advanced to the point where it’s able to achieve some very light tolerances. Even light-gauge parts that have very fine features can be stamped. In some circumstances, stamping can be used on very fine-formed components that have tolerances of .0008 in.
With stamping, the lighter the gauge and the smaller the part, the tighter the tolerances become. Machining is going to be more forgiving in very tight-tolerance parts, so smaller parts generally are better machined than stamped, despite the technological advances that have been made in stamping.
The geometrical shape of the part to be machined is another factor you’ll need to consider in your decision of metal stamping vs. machining in Phoenix, AZ. There are some shapes that simply cannot be stamped, as it would be impossible for the punch material to hold up to the load required to pierce the material at certain diameters. In general, you can assume that any part that has geometry that falls outside the stock thickness of raw stamping coil should be formed or extruded. Machining allows you to start with a larger billet and work around features like extrusions and gussets, and its accuracy will be better than stamping for more complex geometrical formations.
How many parts are you planning on making? A stamping press can produce millions of parts in a single week, which makes it far better for producing large volumes of parts than machining. You might need more than 100 mills to machine the same number of parts you’d get in a week of stamping. Of course, you’ll need to weigh the other factors into your decision, but you should at least consider the fact that the larger the volume, the better efficiency you can get from stamping if it is possible for your part design.
The kind of material you’ll be working with will also influence the type of process you use. Red metals, titanium, cold-rolled steel and stainless steel can all be stamped, though the heavier the gauge and the higher the hardness, the more difficult stamping becomes. If you have thicker materials, machining is a better option for tight-tolerance, complex shapes, even if the material can be stamped.
These are just a few examples of some of the major considerations you’ll need to keep in mind when deciding on metal stamping vs. machining in Phoenix, AZ. If you have any questions about the metal fabrication services we provide, we encourage you to contact Metal Pro Inc. and we will happily provide you with any information you need. We look forward to helping you identify the ideal process for your project!