Selected articles from July/August 2003 issue published on TheFabricator.com:
Sheet metal manufacturers are under constant pressure to improve and document quality while reducing costs. Furthermore, original equipment manufacturers are shifting responsibility for quality inspections to suppliers, adding extra burdens. New, complex product designs and rigorous processes, such as deep drawing and the growing use of exotic materials, are placing greater demands on both quality assurance and development departments.
Stretching or embossing, not to be confused with drawing, is the process in which the part's geometry is obtained by stretching the metal into a forming cavity.
A blank, stamped in the first station of a progressive stamping operation, usually is subject to subsequent forming processes to form a designated part. If the blank is subject to straining, deformation, bending, stretching, or lateral expansion in later stations, its edge condition should be carefully examined.
Mechanical presses are challenged to provide high-speed production with a greater number of hits per minute, smaller batch runs, and quicker die changes.
Just as office managers look for the most efficient way to store files, shop managers must look for efficient ways to store heavy, expensive dies. Many offices have file cabinets with an index system for locating files quickly. The shop equivalent for storing and retrieving dies may be air-powered rollout shelf units.
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