Choosing the right production process for your part manufacturing project is critical to its ultimate success. Sheet metal fabrication is commonly used in industrial and automotive projects due to its strength and durability. However, no production process is perfect. Before settling on a process, it’s essential to familiarize yourself with both the benefits and drawbacks that it provides. Below, we will address some of the key pros and cons of sheet metal part production.
Pros of Sheet Metal Part Production
- Low Cost of Production for Simple Designs: One of the most attractive benefits of sheet metal part production is its low production cost for simple designs. Manufacturers can often save a significant amount of money when using sheet metal fabrication to produce simple parts with a basic design.
- Wide Range of Materials: Manufacturers can choose from a wide range of different materials when implementing a sheet metal production process. Depending on the needs of their application, sheet metal material options include aluminum, copper, steel, and custom metals.
- Durability: The process of sheet metal fabrication typically yields extremely durable parts that have a high resistance to heat. As such, the sheet metal production process is often ideal for industrial or automotive applications that require high levels of strength and environmental resistance.
Cons of Sheet Metal Part Production
- Aesthetic Appearance: While many metals are flexible, they often can’t be formed into highly complex shapes or designs through a sheet metal production process. Compared to more complex part production processes that offer more design freedom, such as reaction injection molding, the appearance of sheet metal parts cannot compare. Rather than sleek, sophisticated looking parts, the sheet metal production process often yields boxy products with a rudimentary appearance.
- Cost for Complex Designs: While sheet metal fabrication is an economical option for simple parts, more complex designs can rack up a large bill. If your part requires a significant number of secondary operations, this labor-intensive manufacturing process likely isn’t the most budget-friendly choice.
- Slower Production Process: Sheet metal production is a highly labor-intensive manufacturing method. Depending on the amount of secondary processes required and the complexity of the part, sheet metal number can require lengthier production timelines.