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FASCINATION OF SHEET METAL

A material of limitless possibilities

ABOUT THIS PUBLICATION

This work is protected by copyright. All rights reserved, including the right to translate, reprint, or reproduce this book or any part thereof. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by any means whatsoever, whether electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise, without the prior written permission of the publisher. While great care has been taken to ensure the accuracy of the contents of this book, the author, the editor and the publisher do not assume any liability for damages, direct or indirect, arising from the use of this book, in part or total, except where prohibited by law.

Editor Dr. Nicola Leibinger-Kammller, TRUMPF GmbH + Co. KG, Ditzingen, Germany Author Gabriela Buchfink Translation Matthew R. Coleman Project coordinators Frank Neidhart, Gabriela Buchfink Project associates Dr. Nicola Leibinger-Kammller, Dr. Klaus Parey, Ingo Schnaitmann Layout and design Felix Schramm, Karen Neumeister (SANSHINE GmbH, Stuttgart) Text consultant Gurmeet Rcker Translation coordination euroscript Deutschland GmbH, Berlin Production coordination Jeanette Blaum (SANSHINE GmbH, Stuttgart) Printing Rsler Druck GmbH, Schorndorf Finishing Oskar Imberger & Shne GmbH, Stuttgart Binding Josef Spinner Grobuchbinderei GmbH, Ottersweier Image editing Reprotechnik Herzog GmbH, Stuttgart

Publisher Vogel Buchverlag, Wrzburg ISBN-13 978-3-8343-3071-0 ISBN-10 3-8343-3071-X

1st edition 2006

SHEET METAL THROUGH AND THROUGH


S H E E T M E TA L H O L D S O U R W O R L D T O G E T H E R. D O E S T H AT S O U N D A L I T T L E FA R - F E T C H E D? I TS N O T. S H E E T M E TA L HAS SERVED MANKIND FOR THOUSANDS O F Y E A R S. T O D AY, S H E E T M E TA L PA R T S A R E A N I N T E G R A L PA R T O F O U R L I V E S S O M U C H S O T H AT W E H A R D LY E V E N N O T I C E T H E M. TA K E A C L O S E R L O O K A R O U N D Y O U; Y O UL L B E S U R P R I S E D AT T H E VA R I E T Y O F M AT E R I A L S A N D A P P L I C AT I O N S Y O U F I N D.
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SHEET METAL THROUGH AND THROUGH

THE BRILLIANCE OF STEEL What is sheet metal anyway? Through the millennia A case of mistaken identity? SHEET METAL AS A BASIC MATERIAL Why sheet metal? More than meets the eye Gauge, size, and grade A matter of form Joining forces

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HOW SHEET METAL IS MADE Back in ye days of olde Keep it movin: steel rolling

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A BRILLIANT FUTURE

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The brilliance of steel

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Sheet metal is used as siding on many industrial buildings. Armor at Erbach Castle Couch, or kline, of the Celtic ruler buried at Hochdorf Cant live with them, cant live without them: endless rivers of steel

Heiligs Blechle An expression used in the dialect of Swabia, a region in southwestern Germany. The expression (literally: a holy tin) is used to express astonishment or to designate that dearly loved object of the Germans the automobile. Ein heiligs Blechle was originally a sort of token made of tin that poor people could redeem at Church institutions. People were usually given food in exchange for the tokens.

WHAT IS SHEET METAL ANYWAY? Sheet metal, as the term suggests, is metal that has been rolled into a sheet. In English, the word metal was borrowed from Old French metal, which in turn has its origins in Latin metallum metal, mine, the product of mining, and Greek metallon metal, ore, originally mine, quarry, pit. Today, when we speak of sheet metal, we are not only making specific reference to the material used, but also to its shape and application. Different types of metal can be used in sheet metal. While sheets used in mechanical engineering are made chiefly of steel, sheets in other industry sectors may be made of copper, copper alloys, or precious metals. Sheet metal is a semifinished product, that is, a material from which a wide variety of other products can be fabricated from the second hand of a wristwatch to the hull of a supertanker. Sheet metal can take many forms. It may

consist of a large rectangular sheet or a thin strip that has been wound into a coil. In both cases, the thickness is significantly smaller than the length or width. Sheet metal can be anywhere from 0. 05 millimeters to 15 centimeters thick. Sheet metal with a thickness of less than 0. 2 millimeters is often referred to as foil or leaf. Sheets with a thickness of several centimeters are called plate. THROUGH THE MILLENNIA Sheet metal has been an extremely popular material since antiquity when it was used to make everything from gold jewelry, coins, and containers to farming tools and weapons. Fabulous pieces of jewelry fashioned from gold plate date from the time of the Maya. The Romans reinforced their shields with metal plating, and medieval knights protected themselves with metal armor. Advanced civilizations of the past have also left us with examples of everyday objects and furniture made of sheet metal. In Hochdorf near Stuttgart, excavations of the burial chamber of a Celtic ruler have uncovered a movable couch, or kline, 2. 5 meters long. The lavishly decorated kline is made of thin bronze sheets and is over 2,500 years old! A CASE OF MISTAKEN IDENTITY? For some, sheet metal is a cheap, lightweight substitute for more expensive, high -grade materials. The term sheet metal seems to conjure up images of flimsy tool sheds, cheap containers and other structures never meant to stand the test of time. Oftentimes, what is regarded as sheet metal is, in reality, the economical galvanized type, which is used because it is lightweight, cheap and convenient. But take one look at the furnishings and appliances you have at home,
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of sheet metal. This is the high-grade sheet metal used in expensive kitchen designs or home furnishings. The brilliance of pure metal gives objects a modern look and a high-quality appearance. Unlike plastic, metal is a natural raw material. This means it is not only pleasant to look at, but also safe for the environment since it can be melted down and reused to produce new parts.

and youre sure to find plenty of examples of another type

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Sheet metal as a basic material

Different materials: steel, copper, brass, and aluminum

Ship ahoy! The Queen Mary II luxury liner is without doubt one of the largest conglomerations of metal in the world. It is 325 meters long, 41 meters wide, and 72 meters high. The ship is so high that a person standing on the upper deck can look the Statue of Liberty in the eye!

WHY SHEET METAL? As a material, sheet metal offers numerous advantages, making it particularly well suited to industrial processing. It is ideal for a wide range of applications.

The most important materials are:


Material

Description

Typical applications

Mild steel Stainless steels High -grade steels High -tensile steels Light metals such as aluminum Non -ferrous metals such as copper and brass Precious metals such as silver and gold
Quality steels Higher-quality ferrous steels or alloyed steels with fine grain and few impurities Mechanical engineering, sheet metal processing, architecture, automotive industry, agricultural machinery Steel Generic term for materials made of iron (Fe) and iron alloys; often referred to as mild steel or structural steel Mechanical engineering, scaffolding systems, sheet metal processing, automotive industry, agricultural machinery, shipbuilding

It can be used to make products that have small or large surface areas. It is very easy to work with from cutting and punching to forming and press brake bending all the way to welding and other joining processes.

It is elastic and easy to shape. It easy to mount and recycle.

Materials differ from one another in weight, tensile strength, corrosion resistance, appearance, and price. There are also differences within certain groups of materials. Certain types of mild steel, for instance, can be alloyed in different ways, thereby creating different levels of tensile strength.
High -grade steels Stainless steels

Plus, sheet metal is thin, lightweight, and more economical than other solid materials. The properties of a piece of sheet metal are determined largely by the properties of the metals of which it is composed. The tensile strength of the sheet metal is crucial not only for the construction itself, but also for its production. Tensile strength measures the amount of stress that a sheet is able to withstand. In production, stress is deliberately applied to the sheet metal so that it undergoes deformation or breaks. The finished sheet metal part, however, should be able to withstand these loads. Nevertheless, there are exceptions to this rule. The crumple zone on a car, for instance, is intended to undergo deformation, and some parts are even designed with predetermined breaking points.

Iron (Fe) with chromium (Cr), nickel (Ni), molybdenum (Mo), and titanium (Ti) elements

Food industry, building cladding systems

These steel types have a high degree of purity and specific properties that distinguish them from structural and quality steels, for instance, degree of heat resistance, corrosion resistance, and amenability to welding.

Food industry, water and sewage, furniture and fixtures

High -tensile steels

Steels that are particularly hard and tough. Examples include nickel steel or multiphase steels exhibiting two or more compositional structures (called phases) within the metal.

Tool manufacturing, security and defense technology, lightweight constructions

Light metals

Lightweight materials such as aluminum (Al), magnesium (Mg), and related alloys

Aircraft construction, aerospace, automotive industry

Non -ferrous metals

Copper-based materials comprising pure copper (Cu) or alloys such as brass (copper and zinc in various proportions).

Electrical systems, cables and conduits, art objects, jewelry

MORE THAN MEETS THE EYE A wide variety of materials are available for use in industrial applications. These materials consist of pure metals or alloys of different metals and other chemical elements. The properties of the materials determine their application and the methods by which they are processed.
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Precious metals

Precious metals include metals such as gold (Au), silver (Ag), platinum (Pt), and other alloys.

Jewelry

Variety is what makes them so versatile: popular materials and their applications

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Various sheet thicknesses from 2 to 20 millimeters

Units, conversions, and confusion Talk about missing the mark: in 1999, NASAs Climate Orbiter flew right by Mars instead of entering into orbit as it should have. The reason for the mishap: different teams using different units of measurement. While one team was using the metric system, another was making its calculations in feet and inches.

A similar problem exists in the world of sheet metal, where there is no single international standard for dimensions, gauges, and grades. Instead, it is the design engineers job to know which national standards apply. Luckily, sheet metal working machines are designed to handle a variety of measurement systems.

GAUGE, SIZE, AND GRADE To order sheet metal, you need to know the gauge, size, and grade. The gauge specifies how thick the sheet or strip is, while the size refers to its width and length. The grade indicates the surface quality. Standards governing the dimensions and grades of sheet metal can often vary depending on the country or region. In Europe, for instance, all length specifications are stated in millimeters. In the United States, on the other hand, lengths are generally specified in feet or inches. The European Standard (EN) is the standard used in Europe. In many cases, European Standards are transposed into German DIN standards. In Germany, harmonized standards such as these are indicated by the letters DIN EN.

of the nominal value. Thus, for a sheet with a nominal thickness of 2 millimeters, the actual thickness can be anywhere from 1. 9 to 2.1 millimeters. While higher grades such as cold rolled thin sheets offer greater accuracy, they are also more expensive. Keeping thickness deviation to a minimum is crucial for sheet metal parts requiring extremely precise outside dimensions or for parts that will later be bent. Bent angles, in particular, can be affected by deviations in the sheet thickness as small as several hundredths of a millimeter.

Steel strip, by contrast, may have a length of several hundred meters, but a width of only 2 meters or less. Coils can have a maximum diameter of around 2.3 meters and weigh up to 40 tons. The thickness of strips, meanwhile, is usually under 3 millimeters.

and, if so, which types:


Pores: small depressions or holes Bumps: small elevated areas Grooves: visible marks caused by contact with other objects; they can sometimes be felt with the finger tips Scratches: light scratch marks caused by contact with other objects

Surface | The surface of the sheet is an important factor


to consider whenever the sheet is painted or coated or if the sheet will be used to create a part that will be highly visible in the final product. Cold -rolled thin sheets are especially well suited to achieving a smooth surface. The quality of the sheet surface is specified according to grade. The surface can be very smooth, smooth, matte, or rough. The smoother the surface, the shinier the sheet and the easier it is to apply foils or finishes more uniformly. Customers can also specify whether imperfections are allowed

All surface imperfections can affect the appearance and function of the finished part. While scratches can mar the appearance of high-quality home accessories, other imperfections are more critical. For instance, imperfections preventing uniform application of the finish can later cause flaking and lead to corrosion. This is why customers purchasing sheets are given the option of specifying whether one or both sides of the sheets should be free of imperfections.

Shape and format | Sheet metal can be purchased in


sheets or as strips that have been wound into coils. The maximum width and length of a sheet are determined by the size of the rolling equipment. You can find sheets up to 4 meters wide and 10 meters long. Some sheet formats are more popular than others:

Gauge or thickness | Sheets can have a thickness


ranging from 0.05 millimeters to 150 millimeters. Within this range, many thicknesses are available, making it easy to find the right sheet for almost any application. The DIN EN 10079 standard distinguishes between:

Small format: 1,000 x 2,000 millimeters Medium format: 1,250 x 2,500 millimeters Large format: 1,500 x 3,000 millimeters

Foil: thickness of less than 0.5 millimeters Thin sheet: thickness between 0.5 and 3 millimeters Plate: thickness of 3 millimeters and over

The sheet thickness specified in the manufacturers catalog is considered the nominal thickness. Some areas of the sheet, however, may deviate from the nominal thickness. The degree of permitted deviation determines the thickness tolerance. Expressed as a percentage of nominal thickness, the tolerance can vary with the format and sheet thickness. When purchasing sheets, customers can choose from a variety of sheet grades. For standard sheets, the permitted thickness deviation is approximately plus or minus five percent
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Sheet metal is usually sold in sheets or coils that come in a variety of sizes and thicknesses.

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A look inside the warehouse of a steel manufacturer Profiles with circular, rectangular, and other cross sections Sheets with different surfaces Automotive body part with different sheet thicknesses

A little color makes all the difference Steel manufacturers offer colored sheets that can be used for buildings and industrial facilities to create a colorful appearance both inside and out. Different color schemes can be used to help an industrial building fit in better with its surroundings or make the interior more pleasant for the people who work there.

A MATTER OF FORM The classic sheet is flat and unprocessed and has two smooth sides. It is also possible, however, to purchase preprocessed sheets. These sheets have already been prepared for specific applications and make further processing easier.

Surfaces with bite | Sheet metal surfaces can vary


considerably: ground surfaces, brushed surfaces, grooved surfaces, surfaces with a pronounced design, or surfaces with a more subtle look. The type of surface you choose depends primarily on the intended function of the product. For example, sheets with a pronounced, raised pattern are used to provide a sure -grip surface on steps or catwalks. Designer sheets are used for work tables, accessories, elevators, and home furnishings. In applications such as these, having an attractive, high-quality pattern is paramount.

Finished sheets | From washing machines to facade


cladding many sheet metal parts are prefinished to provide corrosion protection or to create a desired effect. Normally, the application of finishes is one of the last steps in the production process. As an alternative, however, it is possible to employ prefinished sheets. In a well-established process known as coil coating, sheets are coated while they are still in the production line. Special finishes are rolled onto the material, where they bind with the sheet surface. The finishes are so durable that they are able to make it through producion without peeling off or scratching. In addition to different colors and luster effects, you can find functional coatings for special applications. Coatings of this type include finishes that are specially designed to reflect heat. They are used for steel roofing and building facades and let through less than half as much heat as other finishes.
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Sheets with personality | Corrugated sheets and checkered sheets are examples of sheets with their own distinctive personalities. They are more rigid and stable than flat sheets and have a more striking appearance. For this reason, they are often used as cladding for buildings or roofs. Profile sheets such as these also include steel rods. Rods with round cross sections are called tubes. Rectangular or square cross sections are also common. In addition, there are nonstandard products available in just about any shape imaginable for particular applications.

Tailored blanks | The idea behind tailored blanks is


simple: create a product that has the right sheet thickness and material quality in just the right spots. Tailored blanks are made up of different sheets that have been welded together. They are used in a variety of areas, for example in the automotive industry to make body parts. Parts of the sheet that have to withstand greater loads are thicker, while areas subjected to lower loads are thinner. Tailored blanks reduce weight and material costs.

Customizing | Many sheet metal suppliers offer to customize sheets to meet the specific requirements of their customers. This service includes cutting sheets to a particular format, rounding off the edges, or applying a protective film
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to stainless steel.

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Lightweight or heavyweight? The dimensions and density of the material are what determine the weight of a sheet. A medium-sized sheet made of 1-millimeter thick steel weighs around 25 kilograms. A 10-millimeter thick sheet, by contrast, already tips the scales at 250 kilograms. Because aluminum has a lower density, using it reduces the sheet weight by two thirds.

JOINING FORCES For many years now, sheets have been used in composite materials and structures.

a material with lower heat conductivity. Material like this is used for covers or lids designed to provide insulation from heat or cold. The idea of creating solid parts from individual sheet layers AN OLD PROCESS WITH NEW POTENTIAL

Sandwich technology | Sandwich technology is used in


products such as sandwich panels, which are used primarily to build large factory buildings. The panels consist of a centimeter-thick layer of rigid foam that is covered on top and bottom by thin metal sheets. The rigid foam is incredibly strong and stable, while providing excellent heat-insulating properties. The metal sheets on both sides protect the foam core and give it a pleasant appearance. Sandwich panels are amazingly light: a single truck can sometimes carry all the material needed to construct an entire building. In addition, there are other sandwich materials that are made exclusively of metal. In these types of materials, two thin sheets are joined to form a composite. Sheets can be joined with a weld seam, studs or other method. The material created in this way is oftentimes lighter and more stable than a normal sheet of similar thickness. Sheet metal can also be combined with plastic materials. Two layers of sheet metal, for example, can be used to surround a plastic core. This method has the advantage of creating

LOM technology | LOM stands for Laminated Object


Manufacturing. In this method, flat sheets are stacked on each other and their surfaces joined to form one solid part. LOM technology is applied chiefly to steel parts. Copper, however, is also well suited to this method. Here, a special soldering procedure is used to laminate the layers together. Aluminum layers, by contrast, are glued together. Sheets range from foil with a thickness of a tenth of a millimeter to sheets that are several millimeters thick. A 30-centimeter high LOM part, for instance, is made up of 150 blanks with a gap between layers that is ideally from one to two hundredths of a millimeter. At first sight, this may seem overly complicated. After all, whats the point of laminating individual sheets together when you can just use a solid block? The LOM process is indeed expensive and, for this reason, is only used in two cases: to produce cubic parts with complex internal geometries that cannot be otherwise obtained using a cast, turned, or milled part or to create parts for which other manufacturing methods would be more expensive.

is not new, emphasizes developer Daniel Graf at TRUMPF Werkzeugmaschinen GmbH + Co. KG in Ditzingen, Germany, when speaking to people about the design of the hydraulic punching head. The component is made up of around 150 layers and is responsible for keeping things moving in the punch press. People wondering why it is worth going to all this trouble just to make a part will find the answer by taking a closer look inside. What looks like a compact steel block from the outside is, in reality, an intricate structure with many hydraulic channels and cavities. The complex structure makes it possible to build a very compact punching head, while keeping the flow channels as short as possible, explains Graf. Manufacturing a part like this using conventional methods such as drilling and milling is very difficult. Thats why we use LOM technology. Blanks are punched or cut individually using a laser. Then they are stacked on top of each other and joined. In reality, its nothing new, says the developer. But then why bother putting more energy into developing the method? There are two answers to this question. Initially, processes were not well adapted to serial production, and laminating the layers was too costly. On the first prototypes, I had to figure out the contours of the blanks manually using the 3D CAD model, recalls Graf. Now, this is done automatically. In addition, the programming system is now capable of placing the blanks on the sheet in the right order. That means the unloading system can stack them automatically. The first obstacle to serial production had been overcome. The next step was to lower the cost of joining the layers. Graf explains: At first, we coated the sheets on both sides with copper and then soldered them together in a vacuum oven. It was a complex and costly procedure. Just coating the sheets with copper cost several hundred euros for each component. To get around this, another method of applying the solder had to be found. The new method helped us eliminate 98 % of the costs associated with coating the sheets with copper. The developer had reached his goal: finding a new method based on LOM technology that is suitable for serial production and makes sense from a cost perspective. Graf concludes: LOM technology is certain to remain a niche application. Nevertheless, we are now able to utilize the technologys potential to a greater degree and apply it to other components with complex internal structures such as cooling elements in power electronics.
Building solid parts layer by layer: LOM technology enables the construction of complex hollow structures.

Composite structures for tailored stability and weight. Metal sandwich material can be combined in a variety of ways.

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How sheet metal is made

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The first sheets had to be hammered into shape. Rolling steel: a sketch by Leonardo da Vinci Cold rolling: tandem mill at ThyssenKrupp Steel AG

Splitting hairs The thickness of ultra high -quality, cold -rolled sheets is accurate to a thousandth of a millimeter. This corresponds to a hundredth of the thickness of a single human hair. In order to produce such sheets, rolling mills have to be equipped with high -precision components. Indeed, with rollers weighing in at 80 tons and having a diameter of 1. 5 meters, finding a roller manufacturer who has a tendency to split hairs can make all the difference.

BACK IN YE DAYS OF OLDE For many thousands of years, sheet metal was hammered by hand out of single metal blocks. With each blow from the hammer, the metal spread out and became flatter until the desired thickness and surface area were attained. This technique is still used today to create works of art and jewelry. If there was a river or stream nearby, people were able to harness the power of the flowing water to operate the hammer. Even so, it could take hours or even days to create a single sheet of metal. In Leonardo da Vincis time, people began pressing the metal in addition to hammering it. Da Vinci designed a type of screw press that could be used to shape metal strips to the desired width and thickness. Leonardo da Vinci was also probably the first to suggest that steel strips could be manufactured using rollers. A sketch by da Vinci has been found that illustrates the principle of steel rolling and even shows a manually operated rolling machine.

KEEP IT MOVIN: STEEL ROLLING In the course of the 18th century, people began rolling steel. This method gradually gained acceptance over the next 100 years. Today, steel continues to be rolled. In this process, a rectangular rod of steel called a slab is guided through a gap between two turning rollers.

The gap is considerably smaller than the slab, causing the slab to be flattened. The slab is flattened to a steel strip in several stages, with the steel passing through different sets of rollers until the strip attains its final thickness.

In the rolling mill | In the hot -rolling mill, the slab, which
can weigh up to 60 tons, is rolled into a hot -rolled strip with a specific thickness (for example, 12 to 20 millimeters). When it passes through the mill, the steel is red hot. In this state, the steel is easier to shape. Afterwards, the hot -rolled strip goes to the cold -rolling mill, where it is rolled to its final thickness, which may be as thin as 1 millimeter. The thinner the sheet, the faster it cools during the rolling operation.

High -grade sheets | Cold rolling produces sheets of


higher quality than can be obtained by hot rolling. The thickness of cold -rolled sheets is more consistent. The internal structure is made more uniform by subsequently heating the metal until it is red hot. Surfaces are harder and smoother and have fewer imperfections. The temperature of the steel is kept within narrowly defined limits during hot and cold rolling operations. Minimizing temperature differences during the rolling process produces an internal material structure that is more uniform and less stressed. Rolling speed is also an important factor: the lower the rolling speed, the higher the quality of the internal structure and the surface. machines are used to cut the strip to the desired size. Thinner strips can be cut with slitting machines, which work in much the same way as a pasta cutter that cuts dough into noodles. Cut-to-length lines are used to cut the sheets or strips to the right length.
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More than just flat | Rolling produces not only flat strips. Cutting to size | After the strip has been rolled to the
desired thickness, it still has to be cut to the right size for storage and sale to the customer. Before it is cut, thick steel
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Almost anything required in one piece can be rolled. This includes rods, tubes, profiles, rails, and wire. Also, rollers do not necessarily have to be smooth: they can have bulges, ridges, or other features.

strip may be up to 40 meters long. Shears or flame cutting

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A brilliant future

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Laser cutting today a standard operation Lightweight sheet constructions are gaining in popularity Barely visible: sheet metal framework in glass facades

Sheet metal has been in use for ages. And, in the decades to come, sheet metal is sure to continue to play a crucial role as an industrial material and, thus, in our daily lives. Different types of metal have many attractive properties that can be modified by adding other materials or employing various processing methods. Sheet metal manufacturers are constantly working to develop new materials with properties that are optimally suited to specific manufacturing methods.

more stringent. Sheet metal manufacturers are constantly working to optimize their materials in order to keep pace with the steady advances in manufacturing technology.

Trimming down | Lightweight design promises to be the


way of the future. Reducing weight while maintaining the same level of stability and performance is a trend that is gaining in popularity in the automotive industry and beyond. To reach this goal, materials with a high tensile strength are used, making it possible to employ thinner sheets. At the same time, the new high -tensile materials present new challenges to mechanical engineers, who have to adapt the performance of the machines and, most importantly, the tools to the new materials. Using composite materials made of sheet metal is another way to reduce weight. Metal mesh between two thin aluminum sheets is just one example of the many different types of sandwich constructions that are currently being developed and studied. The first lightweight vehicles have already been built in research laboratories. As soon as cost -effective production of such vehicles becomes possible, the new materials will begin to appear in production facilities.

Laser-friendly | The use of lasers to process materials


has risen dramatically since the beginning of the 1990s. Even so, suitable materials are still required for lasers to be used effectively. In recent years, suppliers have begun offering sheets that, due to their structure and quality, are especially well suited to laser processing. Sheets such as these include
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fine -grain mild steels, which make it possible to achieve clean cutting edges that are free of burrs.

Reliable processing | The heat and stress that arise


during cutting and punching operations can cause the sheet to become deformed. This effect is magnified by stresses that may have been present in the sheet before processing began. Upright parts caused by deformation can get caught in the tools and bring the entire machine to a standstill. To ensure that this does not happen, stress -relieved sheets are used that undergo as little deformation as possible. This approach also reduces the amount of refinishing required. If parts are deformed, they have to be straightened and flattened in a separate work cycle.

Conclusion | The properties and processing possibilities


of sheet metal have still yet to be fully explored. Indeed, there seem to be many brilliant facets of the material that are still waiting to be discovered.

Higher demands | Each improvement to the properties


of the material yields better production results. As quality
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demands continue to rise, tolerances become increasingly

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