Formed sheet metal sections
Formed sheet metal work with curved forms can be produced in several ways whereas straight line bending is always produced with V block tooling in a CNC press brake.
Forms with a curved shape can be rolled if the curved form is a constant radius without any problems. This works best if the whole sheet metal component is rolled for example a round ring or tube. We can roll part of a form and have straight sections like this picture but it is more difficult to start and stop the roll form within the component accurately so we tend to not part roll components. We can form shapes with curved sections using multi-bend techniques on our CNC press brakes. This programming technique allows us to simulate the curved form with a series of small bends acting as flats or tangents to the curve form. The smaller the gaps between the bends the more smooth the form will be but the longer it takes to produce the component. This CNC multi-bending technique is particularly useful when forming curves that have a compound cross section such as 2 or more radius forms blended together. We use this method in production volumes and for prototyping curved forms for our customers to test their designs before committing to tooling.
These sheet metal air condition fan guards were manufactured using form tools to form the curved shape in one operation on one of our CNC press brake forming machines. The advantage being the speed that each part can be produced. This type of manufacturing is suitable for higher volume or batches that repeat quite often and then there is a quick pay back on the time spent making the tooling. If a design is likely to need to be changed quite often it is better to stick with multi-bending where changes do not involve any tooling just a program change. With all these forming methods we are here to help you make the right decision and keep your production costs to a minimum when selecting sheet metal component forms.
Formed mild steel channels
If you look carefully you can see 2 sheet metal formed sections on this pallet. Both formed channels have been laser cut from Zintec coated mild steel sheet using compressed air as the laser cutter assist gas. The sections on the left have been formed up on our Trumpf 7036 CNC press brakes with two 90 degree bends to form a channel. The sections on the right have been bent on the same machine with the same tooling but only have 135 degree bends. These two sheet metal components are a good example of the flexibility that can be achieved with CNC press brakes using a standard range of tooling and simple program changes to create a wide range of forms.
Formed mild steel end caps
No post on formed sheet metal work would be complete with a look at sheet metal brackets. These parts are used on air conditioning / heater assemblies to secure the fan units and motors to a standard fan deck. Again as the example above they have been formed up on one of our Trumpf 7036 CNC press brakes with standard V bend top and bottom tooling. They were CNC punched out before being formed up and then had mild steel zinc plated hank bushes inserted before being spot welded to the fan deck.
Perhaps you have a sheet metal product that needs straight or curved forms and you are not exactly sure how to go about having it produced. Just send us your drawings and we will be happy to advise you on the most appropriate forming method to suit your design, material type, thickness and production volumes.