Custom Fabrication:The Facts You Need.
Custom Fabrication: What can it do for your company?
Sometimes you just can’t get what you need, so you have to make it. Whether it is a part that is no longer available to buy, but your machine is working great otherwise or you are creating something new or improving upon an existing design, getting a part made may be your best or only option. When you have these needs, you have entered into the realm of custom fabrication.
What is Custom Fabrication?
Custom fabrication is the process of creating a new item from scratch. This item may be based off an existing item that needs replacement or improvement or it could be an entirely new design. Custom fabrication is the process from design through prototyping and production.
The machines used in custom fabrication are quite varied and exactly which one(s) used depends on the necessities of the part being fabricated. A variety of different rollers, presses, cutters (shear and non-shear), saws, lathes, drills, and other machines may be used to create a custom part.
In completing a custom fabrication there are a number of steps that need to be completed:
- Research and Development (R&D)
- Assembly and Joining
How much time is spent in each part of the process is dependent upon the part and your needs.
With proper care through the processes, custom fabrication can produce the exact part that you need to your specifications and within the tolerances required for your application. Working closely with your fabricator gives you a good idea of your timeline and can help keep you on track to finishing the perfect part.
Why you might need custom fabrication.
A number of different industries may find a need for custom fabrication. Heavy industry such as aircraft or automobile uses seem obvious with the large machines that used in their internal processes but uses industries such as medical and micro-technology are also abundant.
Cause for custom fabrication
The need for custom fabrication can arise when a part, a machine, etc. is needed, is in need of improvement, or is not available. This need creates a process that can be categorized in a number in different ways such as reverse engineering or new build.
Problems that can require custom fabrication
Custom fabrication can also be used to help in solving issues in existing machinery or parts. Through inspection and measurement weaknesses and other faults can be found, troubleshot, re-designed, and fixed. Custom fabrication can be much less expensive than an entirely new design or machine when it comes to fixing problems.
Detail and Accuracy
As technology has grown, the expectations and tolerances for parts and machines have gotten higher and smaller respectively. Fortunately, our machining and fabricating technology has grown to meet or exceed the needs and expectations of most of today’s applications.
Just how detailed can you get with custom fabrication?
While different machines will give different amounts of accuracy, many of the machines used in custom fabrication can be accurate to fractions of a micron when given the time and directions to be such. It is possible to create duplicates that can only be discerned by the most sensitive of measuring devices. As such, this generally means in application, the duplicate will perform the needed task.
Turnaround On Projects
Turnaround on projects is not instant, especially if the process has not undergone R&D or prototyping. Once past these phases, the amount of time can vary depending on a variety of factors. It is important to keep this in mind when starting your project.
How long does it take?
The length of time a project can take varies from days to months. If you are working on a project from the very start, the R&D and prototyping stages will need to come first before moving into production. Once those are done, the length of time it takes to produce a product will depend on factors such as:
- Material used
- Detail and accuracy needed
- Amount of assembly/joining needed
- Type of finishing
Just to name a few of the factors. Talking with your custom fabricator can help you get the best idea of exactly what timeline you can expect to be working with.
Custom fabrication can be an extremely helpful and extraordinary process for creating what you need. There are so many options and choices that you can make, however, it can be overwhelming. Calling in the experts is a definite must as they can help you navigate the entire process from R&D to finishing. Feel free to contact us at Engineered Mechanical Systems so we can help bring your project to life.