Plating vs. Painting for Finishing Sheet Metal Products

Painting Sheet Metal Enclosures

The sheet metal painting process.

Using aluminum for sheet metal fabrication offers a great deal of of flexibility in terms of creating designs and parts with a variety of shapes or designs. Because of this it is often chosen over other materials. However, aluminum is not the strongest or most durable choice, so many fabrication shops offer finishing options, such as electroplating or painting. Both of these options offer significant benefit in either price or durability. Deciding which option makes the most sense will depend in large part on where your enclosure or sheet metal part will be used.

 

Basics of Electroplating and Sheet Metal Painting

There are a number of different methods for protecting sheet metal prototypes and production pieces. In this realm, electroplating and painting occupy the opposite ends of each spectrum.

Electroplating creates a very thin layer of another metal such as iridite joined to the component over the aluminum base. Continue Reading Plating vs. Painting for Finishing Sheet Metal Products

Reducing Fabrication Costs For Better ROI: A Case Study

A&E MFG LogoThe skilled engineering team at A&E Manufacturing always exercise a lean approach to each new sheet metal design and fabrication project. This ensures that a sustainable and cost effective method of fabrication will be used to fabricate your sheet metal piece. Whenever you have a new design and are preparing to start fabrication, we highly recommend engaging A&E’s prototyping services. This step in production allows our engineers to uncover design and fabrication efficiencies before your sheet metal product goes into full production. The following case study will show the value of this process.

Step 1: The Original Sheet Metal Product

A customer came to us with an over-engineered oil tank reservoir design. The original specifications would require a multi-step build process, followed by a costly plating operation in order to complete the part.

A&E moved the piece into the prototyping process following the client’s specifications. During the process we made some discoveries regarding the product fabrication.   Continue Reading Reducing Fabrication Costs For Better ROI: A Case Study

Sheet Metal Enclosures and NEMA Standards

Sheet metal fabrication-prototypesUsing sheet metal enclosures, whether during the prototyping phase or during full-scale production, can play a critical role in maintaining safety both inside and outside the device. Many firms use the standards created by the National Electrical Manufacturers Association (NEMA), but engineers and designers may not know what protections each offers. Whether it has to do with liquids and rainfall, resistance to entrance of fibers or corrosive agents or other needs, one standard or another will likely meet the application you are looking to build out.

Continue Reading Sheet Metal Enclosures and NEMA Standards