Avocet Sales & Marketing will work with you to find the optimal sourcing for your prototype, short, medium, or long run metal forming needs in Northern California and Northwestern Nevada. Through the manufacturing experience and capabilities of world-renowned metal forming manufacturers, Avocet can ensure quality products that will meet your specifications.
Stamping metal for manufacturing applications can be done in a number of processes depending on the product volume, material type, finishing requirements, and the bending, punching, and/or welding operations that must occur during the process.
Stamping Metal – Low Volume and Prototyping
Most short run metal stamping operations performed for low volume manufacturing are done with CNC Laser Cutters. Laser Cutting involves the use of a high powered laser to cut flat metal sheets into specified part dimensions and then employing a press break to add any required bends. Most low volume parts then undergo a number of secondary operations for finishing.
A second method for producing prototypes and low volume metal parts is through the use of a CNC Waterjet Cutter. In this process abrasive grit is added to a very thin, high pressure stream of water. Water jet cutting can be used for quick turn manufacturing or tool building.
Short Run Stamping – Medium Volume
At higher volumes, metal stamping can be streamlined for more efficient production through the use of a high speed laser for cutting out blanks, or a CNC Punch Press, conventional tooling in a standard punch press, or a Progressive Die Stamping Process.
Laser Cutting Equipment
Laser cutting works by directing the output of a high-power laser most commonly through optics. The computer guided laser optics and cutting table are used to cut out blanks. A typical commercial laser for cutting materials involved a motion control system to follow a CNC or G-code of the pattern to be cut onto the material. The focused laser beam is directed at the material, which burns through the metal leaving an edge with a high-quality surface finish. Industrial laser cutters are used to cut flat-sheet material
CNC Punch Press
A CNC punch press can simplify short run metal stamping by stamping or punching a large number of components out of a single sheet of metal using a series of standard tools. Typically a 4’ x 8’ sheet of metal is placed on a bottom plate. The CNC Punch Press chooses the first tool (say a 1” diameter punch) and punches all of the 1” holes in all of the parts that will come from the 4’x8’ sheet. The press then chooses a second tool and does all of these operations. When all of the parts are completed, the 4’x8’ sheet is moved to another table, shaken, and the parts drop off. The parts are then taken to a press brake or other station for secondary operations or finishing.
Short Run Stamping
As volumes increase, the next step in the stamping process is to build dedicated tooling for a specific part. Typically a “blanking die” cuts a perimeter and all holes or other features into a flat part. This is done in a single stroke of a punch press. A second “forming die” then completes the part in another stroke in a second press.
Metal Stamping – High Volume
Higher volume, metal stamping involves more expensive tooling but drives the cost of each part down significantly. It can be performed by a machine that incorporates multiple processes and progressive tooling. The tool can perform the cutting of all parts in one press “punch press blanking.” Subsequent pressings form all bends and welds to generate a component that is ready for finishing in a minimal number of steps.
Progressive Die Stamping
A progressive die run from a coil feed into a reciprocating punch press integrates multiple station tools each of which performs a blanking, piercing or forming. As the coil of metal moves through the stations of the die, new features are created. At the end of the tool, a completed part drops out. Progressive dies can range from 2 to 5 or 10 stations. Once the coil has gotten to the end of the tool, a new part is produced with every cycle of the press.
Specialty Metals and Wire forming
Forming of spring materials and wire forming is a special art, different from conventional metal forming. Through Scandic Springs, Avocet Sales & Marketing can provide you with extensive engineering and manufacturing capabilities for these items. Scandic can manufacture parts in these materials using Cam actuated spring winders, CNC Spring winders, Four Slide and water jet cutting equipment.