Metals/Materials Articles

The metals/materials technology area has information on the most commonly used materials in metal fabrication ̶ carbon steels; stainless steels; high-strength, low-alloy steels (HSLAs); and the 6000 series aluminum ̶ and those that aren't as common, such as the red metals, refractory metals, titanium, and magnesium.

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The wide world of welding stainless steel

November 11, 2015 | By Mike Barrett

Welding stainless steel is not much different from that required in welding standard carbon steel, with a few exceptions. First, you must exercise more care and control with regard to heating and cooling stainless steel. Second, it’s important to properly match filler metals with the material being welded.

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Lightweighting, downgauging bumpers without buckling

October 26, 2015 | By Madhu Jampala

The advantages of ultrahigh-strength steels are that they can absorb energy at thinner gauges than mild steels, so metal formers can reduce mass by up to 20 percent by using them. This article, converted from a presentation from the Great Designs in Steel 2015 conference, evaluates optimizing geometries for three different forming processes--hot-forming, hot-stamping, roll forming--to solve challenges to forming thin-gauge materials to achieve light-weighting.

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Sheet aluminum alloys for cans and cars

September 14, 2015 | By Daniel J. Schaeffler

Not all aluminum sheet is created equal. It pays to know your grades before selecting the type for your job.

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Shop technology and 3-D CAD: Forming sheet stock

September 8, 2015 | By Gerald Davis

Columnist Gerald Davis demonstrates the flexibility of forming tools in CAD modeling by working on the body of a not-ready-for-prime-time tricycle.

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Will this stainless steel weld rust?

September 3, 2015 | By Tim Heston

Is a stainless weld truly passivated, or will some unexpected rust emerge down the road? New testing technology, used in-house by fabricators, helps answer this question

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How to work with your industrial plating provider

August 10, 2015 | By George Gatto, Jr.

When it comes to working with your plating provider, good communication is key. The more your plater knows, the better the plating results will be.

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Part identication in manufacturing: A mark of improvement

August 4, 2015 | By Kevin Talbott

The industrial marker is so pervasive that it’s often taken for granted. But it’s really a tool just like any other on the shop floor, and one marker doesn’t work for every application.

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A closer look at low-carbon sheet steels

July 20, 2015 | By Daniel J. Schaeffler

Ever wonder what makes up low-carbon steel? Material expert Daniel Schaeffler provides a quick overview.

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Behind the hype of additive manufacturing

July 7, 2015

Additive manufacturing, otherwise known as 3-D printing, is here to stay. It won’t change the world overnight, but for the right application, an additive process can be a true game-changer.

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New coil-applied nonmetallic coating protects press-hardenable steel

June 23, 2015 | By William E. Fristad

Press-hardening high-strength steel is an important component in automotive construction to provide crash-worthiness. Several coating options are available today for use on stamped, press-hardened steel parts. However, none of these options are without limitations or challenges, such as cracking, coating transfer, fumes, weldability problems, and the need for shotblasting. A new coating technique has been developed and shows promise. The coating is a very thin (2- to 3-μm-thick), paint-like, rather than metallic, coating. It consists of a siloxane resin acting as the binder with aluminum flake to act as the sacrificial filler, so it meets the requirements to be inorganic and to contain a sacrificial oxidized material.

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The unique characteristics of dual-phase steels

May 7, 2015 | By Daniel J. Schaeffler

The microstructure of advanced high-strength steels (AHSS) can be tailored to produce specific properties that are engineered for each application. This is why usage of AHSS grades is growing in the automotive industry, and dual-phase (DP) steels are leading the way.

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Metallurgy Matters: Influencing weld strength

April 24, 2015 | By Bob Capudean

Weld metal strength: It’s a subject that’s often discussed, and just as often misunderstood. To fully consider how strong weld metal will be or how you can strengthen it, you have to think about not only the preweld decisions that influence weld strength, but also the postweld reactions and...

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Metallurgy Matters: Reactions speak louder than words

April 6, 2015 | By Bob Capudean

Before we get into nonferrous gas-metal reactions, let’s look at one of the ways you can identify potential cold-cracking problems in steel. In the May/June 2004 issue, we looked at cold cracking—also known as hydrogen cracking, delayed cracking, and under-bead cracking—as it relates to...

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Stainless Steel Workshop: Storing and reconditioning filler metals

April 6, 2015 | By Jeff Heagey

For years fabricators have questioned the need for properly storing opened containers of electrodes in a controlled environment. The cost of holding ovens, as well as the discipline required to use them, has had fabricators second-guessing the benefits of such a practice. Regardless of the type of...

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Improving the performance of transfer dies

April 1, 2015 | By James Kaszynski

The use of high-strength work materials has dramatically increased the performance requirements on the stamping and forming tools. The selection of the proper tool steel grade at each transfer die station plays a large role in optimizing productivity. The tooling’s performance may be enhanced further with the addition of a coating.

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