The Ultimate Guide to Understanding 3D Sheet Metal Fabrication

April 15, 2020

3D printing is playing a great role in manufacturing today. Here is the ultimate guide to understanding 3d sheet metal fabrication.

Sheet metal fabrication is an industry that's projected to reach $21.38 billion by 2024. This is up over $5 billion from 2015.


As you can see, it's a very healthy industry. However, do you actually know what it entails?

If you're interested in learning about 3D sheet metal fabrication, then keep reading. Here's a brief guide to this type of service.

What Is Sheet Metal Fabrication?

Sheet metal fabrication is involved in all manufacturing processes. This is simply the process of designing and cutting sheet metal to specifications.

These pieces of metal can then be used for a variety of applications, such as airplane and toy parts to hardware components.

The Types of Sheet Metal Fabrication

There are several types of sheet metal fabrication. Each has its own advantages, which means you can pick different types depending on your purposes. They are:

  • Cutting: Sheet metal is cut into different shapes and sizes
  • Folding: Sheet metal is folded over into the desired shapes and sizes
  • Machining: A lathe is used to trim off sections of the sheet metal
  • Punching: Holes are drilled into parts of the sheet metal
  • Shearing: Sheet metal is cut in horizontal fashion by a shearing machine
  • Stamping: This is similar to punching, but there are no holes, just a raised section in the sheet metal
  • Welding: Pieces of sheet metal are fused together
  • Casting: Hot molten metal is poured into a mold and left to cool off and solidify

Keep in mind that several methods of fabrication can be used on one piece of sheet metal to get the desired effect.

How 3D Sheet Metal Fabrication Is Done

For 3D printing to be done, the proper machine code needs to be fed into the sheet metal fabricators. This is done by using CAD packages.

These create 3D CAD files that the machinery can use and read, such as to create a sheet metal chassis. Other things that can be made include enclosers and brackets.

Once the fabricators have these readable files, they can then cut and form the sheets not just from left to right, but up and down as well. This is what creates the 3D look.

Advantages of Sheet Metal Fabrication

There's a reason why so many industries rely on sheet metal fabrication—because it's highly beneficial. Advantages of using this type of fabrication include:

  • Good durability
  • Great selection of material
  • Great selection of custom finishes
  • Easy to scale jobs
  • Quick turnaround times

Use Sheet Metal Fabrication Services Today

Now that you know what 3D sheet metal fabrication is and how useful it can be, perhaps there are ways you can utilize this technology. After all, if your business involves metal, then chances are, you'll need metal fabrication services.

It's always a good idea to speak to a professional about your needs and see if they can bring any of your visions to life.

If you found this article useful, then take a look at our other blog posts now.

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