We perform all sorts of metal fabrication, but one of the most common methods we perform is metal shearing. Customers often come to us with questions about metal shearing and shearing vs die cutting.
Keep reading to learn everything you need to know about metal shearing.
What is metal shearing?
At its base, shearing is the process of trimming and removing unwanted material from a metal sheet. It involves using tools to slice through metal with extreme precision to leave a clean cut without producing any waste.
How shearing is performed
Most shearing tools have a squaring arm to control the location of the cut, and the first step in metal shearing is securing the sheet metal between the cutting tool’s blades. Once the sheet is in the correct location, the top blade drops down to slice through the metal. As the top blade comes down, the bottom of the sheet metal is pressed into a lower blade.
Machines used for metal shearing
The most common shearing tool is a bench shear or lever shear. This is a lightweight and easy-to-use cutting tool that’s mounted to a work surface, such as a simple workbench. There are also more complex machines, like power shears, that are mechanically or hydraulically powered. The powered blade allows for a faster and more effective process, but the tools are a more expensive initial investment.
Advantages of shearing
Shearing yields straight lines without forming any chips. Because it’s performed at room temperature, there’s no possibility of burning or melting the material. Shearing also works well for a variety of soft materials, such as brass, bronze and low-carbon steel.
In addition to working with many types of metals, shearing can be used for nearly any diameter part and can produce thousands of pieces per hour if a powered shearing machine is used.
Disadvantages of metal shearing
The biggest downside of shearing is that it’s not ideal for harder metals like tungsten. Harder metals are often more brittle, which can cause the metal to fracture during the shearing process. Additionally, trying to shear hard metals takes a drastic toll on the tool’s blades.
The difference between shearing and die cutting
You may hear the terms shearing and die cutting used interchangeably because they both involve cutting metal—but they’re not the same. The main difference between shearing and die cutting is that shearing uses straight blades, while die cutting uses curved blades. Most metal fabricators can perform both services, and they’ll help you make the decision on whether shearing or die cutting is the best method for your metal piece.
Bring your metal to us
Whether you need metal shearing, welding, bending or any other type of metal fabrication services, bring your piece to the experts at Metal Pro, Inc. Our experienced team only uses the most advanced machinery to yield perfect results at a price you can afford. Get in touch with us today to get a quote for your next project. We look forward to working with you.