Quality Metals Inc https://www.qualitymetalsinc.com Just another WordPress site Wed, 28 Nov 2018 16:18:36 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.2.6 Get Familiar with the Different Types of Workable Steel https://www.qualitymetalsinc.com/get-familiar-different-types-workable-steel/ https://www.qualitymetalsinc.com/get-familiar-different-types-workable-steel/#respond Wed, 28 Nov 2018 16:18:36 +0000 https://www.qualitymetalsinc.com/?p=3916 Steel is the most commonly used metal in the world, thanks to its versatility and durability. Steel is generally categorized into four types of workable steel classes depending on its chemical composition. To understand the different types of workable steel,…

The post Get Familiar with the Different Types of Workable Steel appeared first on Quality Metals Inc.

]]>
Steel is the most commonly used metal in the world, thanks to its versatility and durability. Steel is generally categorized into four types of workable steel classes depending on its chemical composition.

To understand the different types of workable steel, it helps to understand what comprises steel. Steel is a metal alloy comprised of iron, carbon and other elements that mix with steel to create the alloy. By altering the alloying elements used in creating steel, different types of steel vary in strength, hardness, melting point and other important properties. These can be used to create anything from a kitchen knife to a jet engine!

Which type of steel you’ll need depends on its properties and the needs of the project. Read on to learn more about the four main types of workable steel.

1. Carbon Steel

Carbon steel is the most popular kind of steel in production. It contains up to two percent carbon by weight, and can also contain trace amounts of other alloying elements. Carbon steel is matte or nonglossy in appearance. Depending on their carbon content, carbon steels are classified as: low carbon or mild carbon steel, medium carbon steel and high carbon steel. Carbon steel is found in a variety of applications and is a great choice for structural steel.

2. Alloy Steel

Alloy steel contains varying amounts of alloying elements to change the steel’s properties. Alloying elements include manganese, copper, aluminum and nickel. Depending on the proportions, these alloys affect characteristics such as the steel’s strength, weldability and formability. Adding alloying elements can also make the steel cheaper. Alloy steels are used in motors, jet engines and transformers.

3. Stainless Steel

Stainless steel contains 10 to 20 percent chromium as the alloying element, which makes stainless steel more resistant to corrosion than other types of workable steel. There are more than 100 grades of stainless steel, making it a versatile material. Because it is shiny, non-corrosive and can withstand high temperatures, stainless steel is often found in home appliances, kitchens and cooking tools.

Stainless steel is divided into three types: austenitic, ferritic and martensitic. Austenitic steel is the most common type of stainless steel, used in kitchen products, food processing and piping. Ferritic steel is known for its magnetic properties. Martensitic steel is magnetic and heat-treatable, and is used in kitchen equipment and dental tools.

4. Tool Steel

Like other types of workable steel, tool steel is comprised of different alloying elements to make it heat-resistant and scratch-resistant. There are six kinds of tool steel: water-hardening, cold-work, shock-resistant, high-speed, hot-work and special purpose. Its properties make this durable steel good for (as the name suggests) tools, such as hand tools, cutting and drilling equipment. Tool steel is also helpful in shaping other metals and materials.

With the right type of workable steel in-hand, a knowledgeable fabricator can create myriad items for a wide breadth of different applications. All it takes is a keen understanding of the properties of each type of steel and the demands of the final application.

The post Get Familiar with the Different Types of Workable Steel appeared first on Quality Metals Inc.

]]>
https://www.qualitymetalsinc.com/get-familiar-different-types-workable-steel/feed/ 0
Getting to Know Common Structural Steel Shapes https://www.qualitymetalsinc.com/getting-know-common-structural-steel-shapes/ https://www.qualitymetalsinc.com/getting-know-common-structural-steel-shapes/#respond Tue, 13 Nov 2018 18:14:30 +0000 https://www.qualitymetalsinc.com/?p=3911 Architectural steel represents a huge part of the materials market and a good chunk of the steel demand in the United States and worldwide. Infrastructure is constantly growing and with it comes the demand for building materials that are ready…

The post Getting to Know Common Structural Steel Shapes appeared first on Quality Metals Inc.

]]>
Architectural steel represents a huge part of the materials market and a good chunk of the steel demand in the United States and worldwide. Infrastructure is constantly growing and with it comes the demand for building materials that are ready to meet the rigorous demands of building codes and architectural expectations.

To understand the huge demand for structural steel, it’s first important to recognize the different shapes in demand from architects and builders. Here’s a semi-comprehensive list of the fundamental structural steel shapes essential for building:

  • Flanged I beams: As their name indicates, these beams are shaped like a capital “I” and feature flanges at both the top and bottom of the beam. There are actually two distinct types of flanged I beams: wide flanges and bearing piles. The only difference between the two is that for bearing piles, the flanges and web (center) have equal thickness.
  • American standard beams: A variation on the traditional flanged I beam, American standard beams actually have a sloped flange that works to add extra strength to the web of the beam. These beams are engineered to proportion weight closer to the center of the beam, where the structural integrity is strongest and most supported.
  • Channels: Channels look like a vertical cross-section of an I beam, with flanges only on one side and a flat surface on the other. Like American standard beams, the flanges are sloped to help concentrate support closer to the web of the beam, allowing it to bear more weight consistently.
  • Tees: Tees look like a horizontal cross section of a flanged I beam, with two top flanges and no bottom to the web. Because tees are cut directly from flanged beams, there are three distinct types: WT, ST and MT, cut from wide flanges, American standard beams and non-standard I beams.
  • Tubes: Also called hollow steel sections, tubes are a curved rectangular section of cut steel that can be used for architectural support, as well as practical function. Builders often run plumbing, electrical and other utilities through tubes in order to protect them and hide them within infrastructure design.
  • Pipes: Pipes are self-explanatory and come in wide variety of sizes and shapes. They can be fabricated from different materials depending on the nature of their use.
  • Angles: Angles are simply a 90-degree section of metal that can be used to reinforce architecture in strategic areas. They can be fabricated in both equal and unequal capacities, depending on the installation.
  • Plates: Plates resemble thicker sections of sheet metal and can be fabricated in all different shapes and sizes, usually starting at .5” thickness. Smaller plates are also referred to as bars. Plates and bars are used to reinforce architectural segments.

Each of these unique structural steel shapes serves a practical purpose in the construction of buildings. Because of this, there’s unique demand for structural steel overall, as well as each unique shape. Depending on the nature of the construction, having the right structural steel shapes and components is essential.

Want to learn more about structural steel varieties or inquire about your demand for a specific shape? Contact Quality Metals Inc. today for more information about availability!

The post Getting to Know Common Structural Steel Shapes appeared first on Quality Metals Inc.

]]>
https://www.qualitymetalsinc.com/getting-know-common-structural-steel-shapes/feed/ 0
Ferrous or Non-Ferrous Metals: Which Option is Right for Your Project? https://www.qualitymetalsinc.com/ferrous-non-ferrous-metals-option-right-project/ https://www.qualitymetalsinc.com/ferrous-non-ferrous-metals-option-right-project/#respond Tue, 06 Nov 2018 20:36:09 +0000 https://www.qualitymetalsinc.com/?p=3908 Metalworking professionals have the challenging task of figuring out which type of metal is best suited for the project at hand. In some cases, it’s a metal with certain properties like hardness, density or cold-working abilities. In other cases, it’s…

The post Ferrous or Non-Ferrous Metals: Which Option is Right for Your Project? appeared first on Quality Metals Inc.

]]>
Metalworking professionals have the challenging task of figuring out which type of metal is best suited for the project at hand. In some cases, it’s a metal with certain properties like hardness, density or cold-working abilities. In other cases, it’s about choosing a metal that can be specifically treated or fabricated to specifications.

There’s one more variable a metalworking professional needs to consider when choosing metal: Ferrous vs. non-ferrous. It’s a simple property, but could have major ramifications on the outcome of a metalworking project, purely because of what this property entails.

What is a ferrous metal?

Ferrous metals are alloys containing iron. The name “ferrous” is actually derived from the Latin word for iron, “ferrum.” Because of this iron content, most ferrous metals are magnetic and react to an electrical charge. By comparison, non-ferrous metals are metals that lack iron content and thus, are not magnetic.

Why choose ferrous metals?

There are plenty of reasons to choose ferrous metals for your metalworking project. For starters, they exude unmatched strength and longevity! Due to their iron content, ferrous metals are extremely durable and tremendously strong, making them widely applicable across a number of infrastructure projects and other fabrications.

Ferrous metals are also typically some of the most cost-effective options when it comes to metalworking and offer workers a great return on investment based on the properties they exude. For example, steel, alloys, cast iron and other metals are considered ferrous—each of these is commonly used in fabrication projects where strength and resilience are the most important desired properties.

The advantages of non-ferrous metals

While ferrous metals may be strong, their iron content makes them susceptible to corrosion and rust, which can compromise the integrity of a project over time. This is where non-ferrous metals come in. Because they lack iron, these metals won’t corrode and remain inert throughout their lifespan—and they can even be chemically treated to improve their surface properties.

Another advantage non-ferrous metals have is their lightweight nature and low density. Iron is incredibly heavy, so taking the iron content out of alloys makes them extremely lightweight and malleable during the fabrication process. Metals like copper, lead, tin, zinc and others can be formed to spec without much trouble, resulting in a more accurate outcome for a fabrication project.

Making the right choice

Choosing between ferrous and non-ferrous metal comes down to the nature of your project and the properties you need from the finished fabrication. For long-term strength and resilience derived from density and hardness, ferrous metals are likely the way to go. For lightweight malleability and inertness that can be used in more delicate fabrications, non-ferrous is a smart choice.

Part of being an experienced metalworker is being able to see ferrous characteristics and leverage them into the final product you’re creating. Understanding how iron content and its properties play into the finished product (or don’t) will determine which type of metal is best suited for the job.

The post Ferrous or Non-Ferrous Metals: Which Option is Right for Your Project? appeared first on Quality Metals Inc.

]]>
https://www.qualitymetalsinc.com/ferrous-non-ferrous-metals-option-right-project/feed/ 0
Get the Facts on Counterfeit Steel and How to Avoid it https://www.qualitymetalsinc.com/get-facts-counterfeit-steel-avoid/ https://www.qualitymetalsinc.com/get-facts-counterfeit-steel-avoid/#respond Tue, 30 Oct 2018 16:09:34 +0000 https://www.qualitymetalsinc.com/?p=3889 Counterfeit products are a real problem in many industries. Imagine buying a high-value collectable, only to find out it’s a clever counterfeit or believing you have a genuine brand-name product when really all you have is an imitation. The steel…

The post Get the Facts on Counterfeit Steel and How to Avoid it appeared first on Quality Metals Inc.

]]>
Counterfeit products are a real problem in many industries. Imagine buying a high-value collectable, only to find out it’s a clever counterfeit or believing you have a genuine brand-name product when really all you have is an imitation.

The steel industry is no different: More than half of all steel industry personnel have come across counterfeit steel at some point. There are very real counterfeiting concerns that suppliers and buyers alike have to deal with. And, in the case of impure or below-grade steel, there may even be very serious legal consequences affiliated with counterfeit material.

What is counterfeit steel?

Counterfeit steel is classified in two distinct ways. First, it’s steel being sold under a reputable brand name, but has not actually been produced by that brand. For example, you may buy 10 tons of Company ABC steel, only to receive 7 tons of ABC steel and 3 tons of XYZ steel—all being sold under the guise of Company ABC’s name.

Second, is the outright fraudulent representation of steel. This often happens when reclaimed steel is sold as new or when grades are falsified by manufacturers in order to demand a higher price. In this situation, Material Test Certificates (MTCs) are often falsified.

Why is counterfeiting so widespread?

Counterfeiting is abundant, largely because it’s so hard to catch at the point of occurrence. Using the example from above, you can’t test every single piece of steel you buy, so you have no real way of telling if it’s from ABC or XYZ company. Documentation can be easily falsified and buyers are none-the-wiser unless they have in-house testing and take the time to perform extensive quality control.

Another reason counterfeiting is so rampant is because competition is fierce. Countries like the United States, China, Canada and others are all vying for international business with each other, which means trying to compete on both price and quality. Many times, producers will falsify quality in order to compromise on price, so as to remain competitive on a larger stage.

What can you do to avoid counterfeit steel?

The counterfeit steel conundrum may sound hard to avoid, but there are things buyers can do to make sure they’re steering clear of knockoff materials:

  • Buy only from reputable suppliers who stand by their products and provide quality guarantees.
  • When in doubt, ask for traceable MTCs and chemical testing analysis documents that prove the legitimacy of the product you’re buying.
  • Conduct a Positive Material Identification (PMI) to determine the validity of the materials you’re purchasing.
  • Be aware of products and industries where counterfeiting is more prevalent, including construction-grade steel, fasteners, valves, electrical equipment and more.

Counterfeiting may be hard to detect, but it’s not impossible. The biggest thing you can do is work with a supplier that has a proven track record of excellence and who is thoroughly vetted within their industry.

Purchasing authentic steel products and successfully avoiding counterfeit materials will save you a tremendous amount of grief in the long run, resulting in products that pass your specification, as well as any quality checks they may be subject to within your industry.

The post Get the Facts on Counterfeit Steel and How to Avoid it appeared first on Quality Metals Inc.

]]>
https://www.qualitymetalsinc.com/get-facts-counterfeit-steel-avoid/feed/ 0
Looking for Strength? Start with These 6 Alloys! https://www.qualitymetalsinc.com/looking-strength-start-6-alloys/ https://www.qualitymetalsinc.com/looking-strength-start-6-alloys/#respond Tue, 30 Oct 2018 16:07:39 +0000 https://www.qualitymetalsinc.com/?p=3887 Depending on the final purpose of a fabricated object, any number of different alloys may be used in crafting it. Different metals have different properties, affording the final creation different characteristics—such as hardness, tensile strength, resilience or inertness, among others.…

The post Looking for Strength? Start with These 6 Alloys! appeared first on Quality Metals Inc.

]]>
Depending on the final purpose of a fabricated object, any number of different alloys may be used in crafting it. Different metals have different properties, affording the final creation different characteristics—such as hardness, tensile strength, resilience or inertness, among others.

Often, the desired trait in a fabricated item is strength, which facilitates the use of strong materials. While steel is an obvious choice for these fabrications, it’s far from the only one. There are several extremely high-strength alloys out there that can be put to work for their hardness properties. We’re going to take a look at 6 of them.

The Mohs and Vickers Scales of Hardness

Before we dive into the strongest alloys, we need to understand how they’re measured. Often, they’re benchmarked on the Mohs Scale of Hardness or the Vickers Scale of Hardness—two measures of material strength that utilize roughly the same standards.

These scales work by measuring resistance to deformation by a uniform source—such as the force needed to scratch the surface of an alloy or the pressure used to bend it. Results are put on a scale of 1-10, with 10 being the strongest.

Understanding Strength

Another thing to consider before we name the strongest alloys is that strength has a few different meanings and measures. For example, an alloy can have general hardness or supreme tensile strength—two great characteristics, but very different in terms of importance. When we start talking about the strongest alloys, we’re talking about different facets of strength

The Strongest Metals

Without further explanation, here’s a look at 6 of the strongest alloys known to man and a little explanation about what makes them so desirable when strength is the number one desired trait in a fabricated item:

  1. Titanium: Pure titanium can’t be matched when it comes to tensile strength. However, in terms of general strength, steel alloys are actually stronger! The chief benefit of titanium is its low density, which equates to a much better strength-to-weight ratio.
  2. Chromium: Chromium tops the Mohs scale of hardness and is incredibly impervious to damage. That said, it’s known for being extremely brittle, which means pure chromium is almost never a good option. Usually, it’s blended into a steel alloy to lend its strength.
  3. Inconel: An alloy comprised primarily of nickel and chromium, Inconel is known to be extremely corrosion resistant. It also performs incredibly well at high temperatures, making it one of the stronger alloys under duress.
  4. Tungsten: Tungsten is very brittle all by itself, but when blended, it becomes one of the strongest alloys on earth. Tungsten’s tensile strength is unmatched and can withstand up to 500k psi at room temperature!
  5. Magnesium alloys: Magnesium alloys are incredibly lightweight and offer much-desired inertness. Relatively new, they’re still being explored and are limited to a few common niches right now.
  6. Steel alloys: Steel alloys are widespread and plentiful for a simple reason—they’re incredibly strong! Different alloys offer different properties, such as great tensile strength or hardness, depending on added elements.

There you have it: 6 of the strongest alloys known to man and what makes them special! The next time you’re approaching a fabrication process that requires a strong outcome, check what steel you’re using. Chances are, it falls into one of these categories.

The post Looking for Strength? Start with These 6 Alloys! appeared first on Quality Metals Inc.

]]>
https://www.qualitymetalsinc.com/looking-strength-start-6-alloys/feed/ 0
Step-by-Step: The Sheet Metal Fabrication Process https://www.qualitymetalsinc.com/step-step-sheet-metal-fabrication-process/ https://www.qualitymetalsinc.com/step-step-sheet-metal-fabrication-process/#respond Tue, 16 Oct 2018 19:55:16 +0000 https://www.qualitymetalsinc.com/?p=3883 The process that takes sheet metal from its rawest form to a finished product is one with many steps and can vary greatly depending on what the finished product is. Knowing how sheet metal eventually becomes a fabricated item is…

The post Step-by-Step: The Sheet Metal Fabrication Process appeared first on Quality Metals Inc.

]]>
The process that takes sheet metal from its rawest form to a finished product is one with many steps and can vary greatly depending on what the finished product is. Knowing how sheet metal eventually becomes a fabricated item is useful regardless. It can give fabricators the foresight they need to plan better processes, as well as give suppliers insight into the needs of their customers.

Let’s break down the sheet metal fabrication process into its simplest parts—uniform steps that every process includes.

1. Working with blueprints

Every fabrication starts with a plan. Blueprints must be finalized before any fabrication can begin and the blueprints themselves must be accurate and specific to ensure the accuracy and repeatability of fabricated items. Blueprints should include rough drawings of the final product, specifications about measurements and dynamics, and detailed instructions for complex steps (if needed).

2. Fabrication

Once blueprints have been finalized, fabrication can begin. But this step is far from an inclusive one! In fact, depending on the nature of the item being created, there are different levels of fabrication that may be required and various methodologies for customization that can be deployed:

  • Cutting and shearing
  • Bending and forming
  • Joining and welding
  • Milling
  • Punching
  • Machining

Again, blueprints will dictate the demands of the fabrication process. Something simple like HVAC ductwork may only require basic bending and joining, whereas a complex item may require multiple forms of fabrication. In any case, everything must be done to the exact specifications of the blueprint.

3. Finishing

Again, this step is overarching and may be more or less complex depending on the item being fabricated. Finishing generally means undergoing processes that make an item commercially viable—such as an acid wash bath, heat treatment, coatings, painting and more. Finishing can also include establishing the properties of the product being fabricated, including making it inert to certain elements or dampening its conductivity through specialized treatments.

4. Quality control

Despite being “finished,” most fabricated products actually require one more step: Quality control. This ensures all fabrication specifications have been met and that all appropriate finishing processes are accomplished thoroughly. If anything is sub-par, overlooked or incorrect, there’s an opportunity to fix it or scrap it.

Why is the process important?

The process for sheet metal fabrication may seem generalized and straightforward, but it’s of the utmost importance to suppliers and fabricators alike.

Suppliers who understand the nature of their customers’ fabrication operations are better able to meet their needs upfront—such as through value-add services or inventorying. By anticipating the needs of fabricators through an understanding of their fabrication process, suppliers can better equip themselves to stay ahead of demands.

Likewise, fabricators who understand their process thoroughly will be able to better streamline their operations, cutting down on everything from turn times to material waste. Breaking down the fabrication process also allows individual steps to be evaluated for improvement, leading to an overall better product.

It may be a simple concept, but the fabrication process is an important step-by-step undertaking. Recognizing it means understanding operations at a granular level, which means smoother transactions when it comes to sheet metal supply and demand.

The post Step-by-Step: The Sheet Metal Fabrication Process appeared first on Quality Metals Inc.

]]>
https://www.qualitymetalsinc.com/step-step-sheet-metal-fabrication-process/feed/ 0
4 Emerging Markets in the Sheet Metal Supply Industry https://www.qualitymetalsinc.com/4-emerging-markets-sheet-metal-supply-industry/ https://www.qualitymetalsinc.com/4-emerging-markets-sheet-metal-supply-industry/#respond Tue, 09 Oct 2018 15:21:21 +0000 https://www.qualitymetalsinc.com/?p=3880 When we think of leading-edge industries and emerging sectors of the growing economy, sheet metal supply isn’t generally the first thought. This industry is typically regarded as part of the “old world economy,” alongside other trades and industrial fields. But,…

The post 4 Emerging Markets in the Sheet Metal Supply Industry appeared first on Quality Metals Inc.

]]>
When we think of leading-edge industries and emerging sectors of the growing economy, sheet metal supply isn’t generally the first thought. This industry is typically regarded as part of the “old world economy,” alongside other trades and industrial fields.

But, just because sheet metal supply has been a mainstay in the economy for the better part of a century doesn’t mean an old dog can’t learn a few new tricks! In fact, there are several exciting trends within the sheet metal supply sector that signal a surge of emerging industries—or rather a resurgence of old industries that have rapidly become relevant again.

Just how prolific are these emerging industries? Only a few years ago in 2015, the global metal fabrication market was valued at $16.35B; today, it’s forecasted to expand at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 3.0% and is set to reach $21.38B by 2024. Let’s take a look at 4 sectors powering this phenomenal growth.

1. Commercial Ductwork and HVAC

With infrastructure and construction industries booming, the demand for commercial ductwork is on the rise. More than just the demand for sheet metal to fabricate custom ductwork, new legislation and regulatory policies are making it easier for HVAC providers to get a leg-up when it comes to economic growth.

As of Jan 2018, the Heating, Ventilation, Air-Conditioning, and Refrigeration (HVACR) Industry Alliance has officially lobbied for legislative and regulatory policies that enhance growth and opportunity within the HVACR industry. Specifically, they’ve focused on 6 key goals, including workforce development and better energy practices.

These demands have been met, opening up new opportunities for commercial HVAC work and spurring high demand for sheet metal supply.

2. Automotive Parts Fabrication (Aftermarket/OEM)

It’s getting more expensive to be a vehicle owner these days! That means, instead of buying new cars people are becoming more content to fix the one they have. This directly translates into a higher demand for automotive parts—both aftermarket and OEM. But the ripple effects don’t stop there! Demand for auto parts means demand for metal products, which pushes demand all the way back to suppliers.

With chain auto parts stores, dealerships and internet retailers seeing more demand for auto parts, this industry is emerging as a frontrunner fueling demand for metal supply.

3. Premanufactured Metal Buildings

Another trend powered by the shift towards more construction, premanufactured buildings are becoming a mainstay within the commercial construction sector. And, because these buildings are fabricated almost entirely of sheet metals, they’re driving high demand for supply.

Huge demand for premanufactured metal buildings is high in the agricultural sector, as well as for standalone commercial businesses. As their rise in popularity continues, these buildings will be a key driver for sheet metal suppliers. And, when you consider the sheer size of a prefabricated structure, it’s no wonder this industry ranks high among catalysts for higher sheet metal demand.

4. Residential and Commercial Appliances

Quite opposite of cars—which people are choosing to keep and fix—appliances are trending in the other direction. Today’s modern appliances are better, more energy efficient and smarter than even appliances from 5 years ago, which is pushing huge demand from residential and commercial consumers alike. And, because they’re primarily made of metal, increased appliance demand has been a direct catalyst for increased sheet metal demand.

While some of these markets may be considered cyclical in terms of demand, there’s no denying that the overall demand for sheet metal is on the rise in a sustainable way. Whether it continues to be powered by these 4 sectors remains to be seen, but there’s ample evidence to suggest they won’t slow down anytime soon.

The post 4 Emerging Markets in the Sheet Metal Supply Industry appeared first on Quality Metals Inc.

]]>
https://www.qualitymetalsinc.com/4-emerging-markets-sheet-metal-supply-industry/feed/ 0
The Advantages of Laser Sheet Metal Processing https://www.qualitymetalsinc.com/advantages-laser-sheet-metal-processing/ https://www.qualitymetalsinc.com/advantages-laser-sheet-metal-processing/#respond Tue, 02 Oct 2018 15:18:01 +0000 https://www.qualitymetalsinc.com/?p=3878 Laser sheet metal processing is a tremendous value-add service that Quality Metals Inc. takes pride in providing for customers with unique, specific sheet metal demands. Thanks to our Bystronic BySprint 4020 fiber laser, we’re able to process all types of…

The post The Advantages of Laser Sheet Metal Processing appeared first on Quality Metals Inc.

]]>
Laser sheet metal processing is a tremendous value-add service that Quality Metals Inc. takes pride in providing for customers with unique, specific sheet metal demands. Thanks to our Bystronic BySprint 4020 fiber laser, we’re able to process all types of laser cutting requests in a 78”x157” bed—large enough to tackle virtually any project.

More than just being able to provide specific laser sheet metal processing for aluminum, stainless steel or other metals, we process our general sheet metal products with laser-caliber precision. The benefits to all our customers are tremendous and afford us the ability to offer precision services, at a better standard of quality, faster.

Precision Cutting

Laser processing allows cuts to be made that are imperceptibly clean and precise, to tolerances not possible by manual means. For example, our laser system can create kerfs as narrow as 0.10mm, allowing us to process precision projects for our customers that they may not otherwise be able to do in-house. These kerfs and similar cuts form the foundation for a better product, ultimately yielding better returns for metalworking operations.

Better Product Quality

Laser processed sheet metal reaches a caliber of quality unparalleled by rawer forms. Because of the precision of laser cutting, we’re able to create edges that are cut cleanly to a microscopic degree. This results in sealed edges without any striations, which not only look and feel better, they’re also capable of preventing injuries and reducing the level of machining required to finish products.

Faster Results

On top of the precise nature and better quality laser cutting ensures, faster results and lower production costs are also grouped into the mix of benefits. Laser cutting drastically reduces the time and energy needed to process sheet metals, thereby lowering production costs along the way. Using the programmable laser, cuts are able to be made autonomously, allowing manpower to be put to work elsewhere.

Infinite Options

There’s no limit to the types of specific parts that can be cut and processed within our Bystronic BySprint 4020 fiber laser! With the right schematics, we have the ability to create the exact parts our customers need, processed promptly and precisely, so they can be delivered in an efficient and timely manner. Not only does this reduce the cost of in-house production for customers, it ensures direct-from-supplier repeatability.

Take Advantage of Laser Processing

If you’re not currently exploring the benefits of laser-cut sheet metal, speak to Quality Metals Inc. today to explore the potential for your business. You’ll get the specific sheet metal and parts you need, at a superb quality that translates into a better finished product—faster and cheaper than you might otherwise! It’s a smart consideration for any metalworking operation looking to reap the benefits offered by a reliable metal supplier.

Consult with us today to understand more about our laser cutting capabilities and learn how they may apply to the sheet metal products you’re ordering from Quality Metals Inc.! Remember, we can even inventory for customers!

The post The Advantages of Laser Sheet Metal Processing appeared first on Quality Metals Inc.

]]>
https://www.qualitymetalsinc.com/advantages-laser-sheet-metal-processing/feed/ 0
A Look at Trends Shaping the Future of Metalworking https://www.qualitymetalsinc.com/look-trends-shaping-future-metalworking/ https://www.qualitymetalsinc.com/look-trends-shaping-future-metalworking/#respond Tue, 18 Sep 2018 17:03:59 +0000 https://www.qualitymetalsinc.com/?p=3875 Metalworking has come a long way from blacksmiths banging on anvils. Today the industry is driven more by science and technology than hard labor! The doors to all different innovations have been opened as a result and these days, we’re…

The post A Look at Trends Shaping the Future of Metalworking appeared first on Quality Metals Inc.

]]>
Metalworking has come a long way from blacksmiths banging on anvils. Today the industry is driven more by science and technology than hard labor! The doors to all different innovations have been opened as a result and these days, we’re producing better, faster and smarter than ever before, in an industry that’s still going through amazing growth.

What’s next for the metalworking industry? Take a look at a few of the most pivotal changes coming down the line and how they’re bound to move the industry forward in new and exciting ways.

The 4th industrial revolution

Metalworking and other forms of industrial manufacturing are entering a drastic period of change—the 4th of its kind in recorded history.

The 1st industrial revolution marked the move from agrarian societies to producer societies (fields to factories). The 2nd revolution was powered by a wave of new inventions just before the first World War. The 3rd industrial revolution saw the replacement of analog devices by digital ones. Now, the 4th revolution will see the rise of automation, augmented reality, big data and more.

The 4th industrial revolution will change metalworking by unlocking more precise, data-driven results. From heat treating to automated machining (CNC), the way metalworkers execute their jobs will be refined, repeatable and ultimately exact.

Additive manufacturing

Remember 3D printing? The craze came out of nowhere and left just as quickly, but it’s not gone for good. The concept of additive manufacturing is bringing it back! This approach to metalworking involves efficient production of metal objects through an automated “printing” method. It’s still in early stages, but it’s coming to head quickly as we learn more about how to handle extruded metals, heated binder polymers and much more.

Automated metalworking

Programmatic machining and automation are already present in the metalworking industry, but they’re about to become an even larger focus. While most modern shops have CNC machines or programmable presses, automated metalworking could mean the adoption of Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) devices that completely facilitate production from start-to-finish. Imagine slotting a piece of sheet metal, specifying a program and coming back later to a product that’s been properly turned, sheared, rolled and cut into exactly what you need, with no manual input!

Big data insights

Being able to anticipate when your brake press is about to malfunction or if your lathe needs to be serviced will save metalworkers a huge amount of frustration. That’s exactly what big data insights will be able to do in the near future. Aggregated data systems are coming to metalworking, providing insight into anything you could ever want to know about your machinery, metal products and labor practices.

The future of metalworking is coming fast

With issues like skilled labor shortages, a competitive global economy and scarcity among resources driving the need for change, these new trends are rapidly coming to fruition. It’s only a matter of time before the 4th industrial revolution hits and brings with it a renaissance of metalworking. When that time comes, count on Quality Metals Inc. to continue supplying you with best-in-class metal products!

The post A Look at Trends Shaping the Future of Metalworking appeared first on Quality Metals Inc.

]]>
https://www.qualitymetalsinc.com/look-trends-shaping-future-metalworking/feed/ 0
What to Keep in Mind When Choosing Tool-Grade Steel https://www.qualitymetalsinc.com/keep-mind-choosing-tool-grade-steel/ https://www.qualitymetalsinc.com/keep-mind-choosing-tool-grade-steel/#respond Tue, 18 Sep 2018 17:01:14 +0000 https://www.qualitymetalsinc.com/?p=3872 Metal fabricators understand the abundant number of variables that come in choosing the right material for the job. Making the right selection has a lot to do with how the final product will turn out when it comes to shaping…

The post What to Keep in Mind When Choosing Tool-Grade Steel appeared first on Quality Metals Inc.

]]>
Metal fabricators understand the abundant number of variables that come in choosing the right material for the job. Making the right selection has a lot to do with how the final product will turn out when it comes to shaping and forming that steel.

Tool fabrication in particular requires special consideration for the type of steel being utilized. Because tools are subject to extreme wear and duress over long periods of time in a wide range of conditions, making sure the core material holds up is essential.

Depending on what your tool will be subjected to—such as cold-weather work, high-impact work or even electrical work—choosing steel that’s been treated properly is important. Here are a few factors to keep in mind and some recommendations for the proper grade of tool steel to choose.

Impact and stress

Tool steels are generally more brittle, which means any tool that’s being fabricated to stand up to impact, stress or vibration needs to be properly treated. Treating for impact comes at a cost however—impact- and shock-resistant metals are typically softer and prone to corrosion. Tools most often associated with high-impact reliability include hammers, chisels and shears.

Quality Metals Inc. typically recommends treated tool steels such as S1, S2 and S5 for any fabrication of high-impact products.

Temperature (high and low)

Most tools are heat treated to increase durability and hardness. Unfortunately, this means re-heating them generally nullifies the effects of the original heat treatment. For this reason, it’s a smart idea to choose hot- or cold-work steels depending on the nature of the tool you’re fabricating.

We recommend hot-work grades of H12, H13 and H19 and cold-work steel grades of D2, O2 and A7. Additionally, if your tool will be subject to a combination of high speeds and high temperatures, steel grades of T1, M7 and M42 are generally even more applicable (high-speed, temperature-resistant grades).

Special considerations

Beyond the abrasive nature of tools and the temperature of the environment they’re subjected to, there are several other considerations that should be considered when choosing the right tool steel grade.

If you’re looking for a lower cost and willing to compromise on the overall final performance of the tool—such as with a discount brand—cost-conscious options for tool steel include water-quenched W1, W2 and W3 options.

Hot-molded plastic or injection molding applications require specialized tools that, in turn, require specialized grades of tool steel. The P-family of tool steel—including P2, P3 and P5—generally satisfies the demand for tools used in conjunction with manufacturing materials at low melting temperatures (plastics).

Making the right choice in tool steel

The examples we’ve provided here by no means represent the entirety of tool steel options out there. Fabricators will need to thoroughly understand the nature of the tools they’re creating, the conditions they’ll be subjected to and the properties of different tool grades to choose the best option.

If you need help picking the right grade of tool steel, consult with the metal experts at Quality Metals, Inc. Not only do we stock a variety of the most common tool steels, we’re well-equipped with the knowledge to make sure you’re choosing the best material for your projects.

The post What to Keep in Mind When Choosing Tool-Grade Steel appeared first on Quality Metals Inc.

]]>
https://www.qualitymetalsinc.com/keep-mind-choosing-tool-grade-steel/feed/ 0