What Is Structural Steel Fabrication?
Structural steel fabrication is the process of cutting, bending and shaping steel alloy to create a product. Unlike various types of welding in which steel alloy is repaired or strengthened, steel fabrication takes many pieces of metal and attaches them together in the form of a predefined shape and size. Structural steel fabrication requires a skilled technician who is experienced in taking raw components and transforming them into marketable items, thus there is very little room for mistakes. Fabrication is a must in heavy industrial projects. Even at home, if you want to build a small footbridge, walkway or a staircase, you will need the help of steel fabricators. The companies like hatchengineeringltd.co.uk that work in a variety of projects, from building homes to fire escapes, door frames or tower legs. They utilise machinery to bend and weld steel in order to give it different shapes and patterns. This fabrication process includes three steps:
- Cutting (done by sawing or shearing or chiselling using the tools like plasma torches, laser cutters or water jets);
- Bending (done through hammering which can be either manual or machine powered, depending on the project), and
- Assembling of the molded metal parts to create complete structures (done through welding where steel fabricators slowly apply heat to steel parts to join them together. Assembling can also be done by riveting of threaded fasteners or binding together with adhesives).
After the procession of the steel, fabricators need to determine its shape. There are two factors that play a role in this, the software package and the available equipment in the machine shop. Most metal fabrication companies prefer using cutting-edge technology to keep track of the operation and maintain the proficiency of the process. Most companies rely on laser steel-cutting devices for acquiring a smooth edge for superior accuracy, as the steel fabricator equipment is equally essential. Galvanizing, sand blasting, and painting may also be used during structural steel fabrication.
Welding is the main focus of the structural steel fabrication process. The cut or bent metal parts or machine-made parts need to be assembled, and this is done by welding. Following the detailed designs by a structural engineer, welders complete the fabrication process. After the welding, the structure is sand blasted and primed and finally painted. Before it is shipped to the customer, the finished product needs to be inspected properly to ensure quality.
From vehicular parts and bridges to household appliances, structural steel fabrication makes the world a more comfortable place by providing strong and durable material.