If you regularly cut aluminum, steel, iron, and similar metals, partnering with a metal fabricator that uses a welding plasma cutting table is a smart investment. By combining modern cutting and welding technology with high-quality performance, these tables can produce results that make your business even more productive and profitable.
How Does Plasma Cutting And Welding Work?
Plasma cutting is an effective method of cutting through materials of varying thickness. It was originally developed in the 1950s to process metals that could not be cut with flame. A plasma cutting system consists of a torch through which high-velocity gas and concentrated electrical currents flow. They generate intense heat, which cuts through electrically-conductive materials such as aluminum, steel, stainless steel, copper, and brass, while the gas eliminates molten material from the area of the cut.
While hand torches can generally cut steel sheets that are up to 38 mm thick, you’ll want to use computer numerical control (CNC) plasma cutting technology to cut through denser workpieces. Since plasma cutters create a hot and localized ‘cone’ to cut, they are especially effective if you want to cut and weld sheets in angled or curved shapes.
Advantages of plasma cutting include:
Cuts up to 10 times faster than with oxyfuel
Fully guarantees automation
Smoothly cuts through all electrically conductive materials
Cuts high-alloy aluminum and steel in both medium and large thicknesses
Cuts through higher-strength structural steel with lower heat input
Plasma welding is an advanced version of the tungsten inert gas welding process. When the gas is superheated, it becomes highly conductive and allows for the transfer of an electric arc. When a gas passes through the arc, it breaks the gas down and forms a plasma stream.
The primary advantage of plasma welding is the degree of control you receive and the higher quality of the finished result. There is better arc control, welds are generally cleaner and smoother and, in smaller heat-affected zones, the welds are stronger and less noticeable.
Benefits of Welding Plasma Cutting Tables
Welding plasma cutting tables are regularly used in manufacturing, construction, automotive restoration and repair, and salvaging applications. Their high-speed performance and precise cutting ability makes them compatible with both industrial CNC applications and smaller businesses.
Their operational advantages include but are not limited to:
Versatile performance: With a welding plasma cutting table, you can cut and weld diverse kinds of metal. Because it uses an electric arc, it can be used to process any conductive metal. Unlike oxyfuel, plasma can even cut through different types of material stacked on top of each other.
Superior cut: Plasma cutting delivers clean and quality results compared to other cutting technologies. You can also train new employees how to use it relatively quickly because it uses an automated system to ensure an accurate cut each time. The system control factor makes it easy to use premade templates for simple replication of regular cuts and patterns.
Rapid cutting speed: Plasma cuts thicker metals twice as fast as oxyfuel. With thinner metals, the speed difference can be up to 12 times faster. The difference in piercing speed is even more striking: for oxyfuel to piece a 15 mm sheet of metal, it has to reach a heat of around 1000C, which can take nearly half a minute. Since plasma doesn’t have to preheat in this manner, it can do the same job in under two seconds.
By investing in a welding plasma cutting table, you are adopting a system that’s safer to operate and cuts metal faster with a lot less waste. With no downtime due to worker injury and the ability to accomplish more in a small amount of time, you can realize a cost savings that adds up to greater business profitability.
We Are The Metal Fabrication Experts
At VeriForm, we exceed customer expectations by using CNC plasma cutting to deliver their orders on time and with the quality that they’ve come to expect from us. We can cut a broad range of metals and thicknesses, perform a smooth and accurate weld, and accommodate large or small runs. Our fabrication work is 100% guaranteed to your satisfaction. For more information, please contact us today!
VeriForm is a metal fabricator that, for the past 23 years, has been making products for uses as diverse as rail car doors, guidance systems for coast guard ships, energy facilities and telecom towers. These metal parts can be as small as a fingernail or as long as 50 feet.
As with many other companies, the COVID crisis has been a source of stress for VeriForm, some of whose employees are older and therefore more vulnerable to the virus.
“People are worried about making sure that everything is sanitized, that procedures are in place on the shop floor… All of this adds to the stress,” Paul explains to PIVOT. “Several of our senior staff are taking a leave of absence or are working remotely, so there are security issues. If you’re working remotely how does that expose our network here? That’s a huge concern of ours.”
“The stress adds to costs, it wears people down and introduces risk to our facility and to our customers,” he elaborates.
If you recently visited Ottawa, you almost certainly saw ‘Maman,’ a giant egg-carrying spider made of stainless steel, bronze and marble that stands outside the main entrance of the National Gallery of Canada. Designed by French-American artist Louise Bourgeois, the 30’ arachnid is meant to symbolize motherhood and fertility.
Another, equally compelling piece is the Big Toonie in Campbellford, Ontario, a 27’ toonie sculpture constructed to honour Brent Townsend, an internationally renowned wildlife artist who designed the $2 coin.
During the last few decades, the use of steel and metal for art sculpture has become increasingly common. We see them outside government buildings, schools, shopping centres, and other public structures. Mirror-polished stainless steel sculptures are extremely popular in public art projects due to their flexible fabrication, attractive finishing, and unique ability to resist heat damage and corrosion.
Not only are the results of custom metal sculpture fabrication unique and beautiful, but the malleability, durability, and relative affordability of most metals has resulted in many architects using them to create decorative sculptures for all kinds of design projects. In this blog, we’ll explain how they are fabricated in shops like the one at VeriForm and how you can contact us for your own project.
How Is Custom Metal Sculpture Fabrication Done?
Although the word ‘sculpture’ conjures images of a solitary artist making magic out of a huge block of marble, the custom metal sculpture fabrication process has many moving parts and tends to be a team effort involving architects, engineers, and metal fabrication professionals.
The process begins by styling your steel. Using software with CAD and CAM integration, design professionals create 2D profiles of the various pieces that will eventually form the finished sculpture. Then the appropriate material is selected, with corrosion-resistance being an essential element for artwork that will be placed outside.
Although there are different ways to cut the metal parts for use in a sculpture, computer numerical control (CNC) plasma cutters support greater precision and more accurate results. They are connected to a computer, which is equipped with the above-mentioned design software and directs the plasma torch along the desired toolpath. The cutter uses concentrated electrical currents to cut through electrically-conductive metals while high-velocity gas removes the melted material from the area, ensuring a cleaner cut.
Depending on the desired outcome, the cut metal can then be shaped using one or more of the following fabrication technologies.
Metal bending: The sheet metal is forced between a punch and die by a press brake, which then manipulates both tools to bend the metal into an angle.
Plate rolling: The metal is passed through rolls to uniformly reduce its thickness.
Structural roll bending: Using pre-made dies that can be changed according to the desired dimension and shape, this process involves passing the steel through a rolling mill to shape or bend it.
Once all pieces of the sculpture have been completed, they are welded at their connection points to maximize their strength. Some designers prefer to keep the welds visible as a rough and earthy aesthetic touch but if the goal is a smooth surface, the next step is to grind and sand down the weld area until it blends in with the surrounding metal, followed by a thorough polishing treatment that adds a final layer of beauty to the finished piece.
If properly fabricated, metal sculptures will stand the test of time in practically all weather conditions. If you are an architect, your project will achieve best results if you work with a custom metal fabricator with the insights and experience needed to transform a functional material like metal into a beautiful work of art.
We Are The Metal Fabrication Experts
At VeriForm, our metal forming capabilities include custom metal sculpture fabrication for architects and other design professionals. By skillful application of rolling, twisting, and welding processes, we create custom shapes that are precisely matched to your specifications and do justice to your original artistic vision.
We have worked on many sculptures and can handle projects that call for the following:
Natural and mathematical forms
Custom contours and shapes
Convex and concave shapes.
To discuss your design fabrication needs, please call 519-653-6000 or contact us for a no-obligation quote.
Metal folding is a process in which a machine bends (or folds) metal in order to achieve an intended form. Today, thanks to precise and efficient technologies like CNC folding, metal can be formed into a variety of shapes for both industrial and household uses.
The Origins Of Metal Folding Sheet metal folding machines started appearing in the U.S. market during the 1990s. The technology, which had been used in Europe for years, was adopted by the roofing and structural fabrication markets first, but soon made its way into industrial and precision manufacturing applications.
Today, metal folding occurs when a press brake forces sheet metal between an upper tool called a punch and a lower component called a die. The press brake then manipulates these two parts to apply the bending force that gives the finished product its shape. When the process is controlled by Computer Numerical Control (CNC) technology, it enables greater and repeatable precision while folding metal of varying thicknesses.
The Benefits of CNC Folding The CNC folding technology uses computer-based programming that saves a lot of time, especially on more complex parts and components. Once programming is complete, all facility employees have to do is feeding and unloading work: there is no need for any manual bending. Even if a part has multiple folds, all necessary bending and shaping can be completed in one operation, with an accuracy that can rarely be matched by manual handling.
At VeriForm, we have over 20 years of experience in metal folding fabrication. Our 20-foot CNC machine is fast, efficient, and delivers output that perfectly matches client specifications. Used for a wide range of industries, its reliable operation and precise results make CNC folding a natural solution for practically all folding projects. For more information about what this technology can do for your next project, please contact us today.
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