Nickel plated sheet metal fabrication
When you want to fix 2 or more sheet metal components together you have many design options. If the joint needs to be permanent and depending on the material and gauge you may wish to have the components spot welded or Tig / Mig welded together. If however you need to separate the different parts at a later stage this will not be a practical solution. With low volumes the simplest method of assembly will be to used a screw or bolt with washers and nuts with mating clearance holes or slots in each part, which is quite acceptable. When the volumes increase and a more efficient method of assembly is needed then sheet metal inserts such as anchor rivet hank bushes or self clinch nuts can be used to take away the need for loose nuts. These “captive” nuts have the advantage of being in place where it may be difficult to access a nut by hand. The other solution is to insert a fixed flush head stud into the sheet metal and then have a loose nut and washers to fix the 2 or more parts together. Either fixing type can be inserted with our Haegar Bush / Stud inserter.
If the volumes are greater still then a formed plunge in the component’s parent sheet metal is an elegant design solution. The plunge on its own can be useful with self tapping screws where the sheet gauge is very thin and would be prone to stripping if the screw is over tightened. If the screw needs to be removed and inserted several times a thread form will be a better solution. This manufacturing operation can be carried out on our Trumpf 3000R CNC punch press, the pilot hole is CNC punched in the sheet metal, a pin is forced through the hole to form the plunge form and finally a CNC tapping head is used to create the formed thread.
CNC plunged and tapped threads in sheet metal fabrication
You can see here a thin mild steel nickel plated front panel support bracket that has been CNC punched, plunge formed and tapped all in the Trumpf 3000R CNC punch press.
If you want to know more about this process and its advantages and limitations please give us a call.