Whether you need large steel pieces for a construction project or tiny steel items for the interior of a product, you'll need a steel fabrication shop to make those pieces. Once your team submits the specs, manufacturing the pieces can be pretty straightforward. However, with these six suggestions, you might be able to get better results.
No matter how many times you've placed orders for steel fabrication projects, you can still make tiny mistakes that affect the finished pieces. Be sure that your company has a protocol in place for double-checking designs submitted to fabrication shops. You might, for instance, forbid people from checking their own measurements again; you might miss the same mistake multiple times. The more eyes you can have on a design before manufacturing starts, the better.
Consider Hot-Rolled Steel
While cold-rolled steel is usually shinier and more "finished" compared to hot-rolled steel, there are still many applications where hot-rolled steel will work. It may look duller, but it is still durable and strong. It's also cheaper. If you need the steel to provide support or know that some steel won't be seen by the end user, you might want to split up your order so that you use hot-rolled steel for the unseen portions.
Using steel alloys — steel mixed with other metals — might be the smartest way to ensure that your fabricated pieces withstand extreme temperatures. Have a discussion about how the pieces are to be used and explore whether temperature is an issue that might require use of alloys.
Get Finishes for Your Pieces
Polishing is usually a finish that makes your finished pieces look good. However, there are other finishing processes that could be useful for you and your clients. If you expect that the pieces will experience a lot of friction and heat, protect them with a simple blackening finish, for instance.
Consider Laser Cutting
Some small companies avoid laser cutting because it can be more expensive than traditional cutting methods. However, laser cutting benefits can be absolutely worth it. Edges won't require as much finishing, the job is done faster, and if you do need some changes they can be administered easily.
Ask About Delivery Speed
Stay on top of delivery times and find out how soon your projects can be completed. Ask machinists what you can do on your end to cut downtime so you can get your pieces quickly and get them out to clients.