Why do we CNC punch plastic coated sheet metal?
CNC punching plastic coated steel
There are 2 forms of plastic coating on sheet metal. They basically split into plastic that is applied to protect the sheet metal and plastic that is a cosmetic finish.
A peelable low tack plastic film can be applied to sheet metals like aluminium and stainless steel at the material stockists. These materials can then be CNC punched or laser cut leaving the plastic film in place. This plastic film helps to protect the sheet metal surface from scratches, finger prints and oil. They can be left in place during subsequent operations such as CNC bending, CSK, rolling and during the insertion of bushes. They do have to be peeled back locally where any heat is applied such as spot welding joints or TiG / MiG welding corners.
The second “cosmetic” plastic coating is similar to pre-painted materials. This plastic coating will also have a peelable film to protect it during manufacturing. The coating again can be CNC punched but not laser cut. The coatings can be specified in different colours and textures and are used in place of painting or powder coating finishing processes.
CNC punched plastic coated steel
Here I have shown a great example of CNC punching plastic coated sheet metal. These end plates have been CNC punched on our Trumpf 3000 CNC punch press using a common line programming technique to reduce punching time and saving materials used.
Perhaps you are currently purchasing a sheet metal component that you are having painted or powder coated. It might be worth considering a pre-painted / plastic coated material. We often look at parts and with a small design change we can reduce costs and reduce production leads times. If you want to know more about these materials or want to see some samples please contact us on 01489 577786.
CNC punching plastic coated sheet metal is just one of the manufacturing techniques we use to save time and money for our customers. Please take a further look at these blog posts for design ideas to improve your sheet metal designs.