How Metal Work Is DoneHow Metal Work Is Done

Metal working is the process wherein metals are used to create different products, such as in jewellery making, roofing, and car manufacturing. There are actually several reasons why people engage in metal working. It is used to express one's artistic creativity, for experimentation, for pleasure, or as a profession. Modern metal working can be done in three major categories of process including joining or welding, forming, and cutting.

Welding is the process of joining two pieces of metal using heat and pressure. In most cases, a third element is used in welding to be melted between the pieces of metals to hasten the process. A perfect welding consists of the two pieces blending together. Other joining processes are soldering and brazing. These two processes are different from welding because they use a filler metal that is melted while not letting the workpieces coalesce. Brazing is done at higher temperatures but using different miller metals, which only makes this process stronger than soldering.

Forming is the process of modifying the metal pieces in metal work without adding or removing anything at all. Like joining, this process also uses pressure, heat or a combination of these two. Forming include doing casting, which involves melting and pouring metal into a mould, and many other processes that are done at room temperature, such as drawing, bending, rolling and stamping.

Cutting is the process wherein metal is separated into two workpieces. This makes use of certain tools and instruments such as a saw or a drill. Aside from cutting, burning can also produce sward and two work pieces. It makes use of the following processes:

• Grinding. This makes use of an abrasive spinning disk that can be used to make smooth edges of metals and a smooth finish in the workpieces. This also doubles as a cutting technique.

• Milling. This cuts away all the unnecessary parts in metal pieces to form the final shape. This can be used to make three-dimensional objects with precision in point. Milling machines are operated partially or completely by computer controls. Milling can be done on most metals though some pieces require different bit speeds and bits, based on how hard these pieces are. Deformation is prevented with the use of a liquid coolant.

• Tapping and drilling. These are processes that are used to make holes in metals with the use of a drill bit and a drill. These are the fastest process to get metals out of the workpieces.

• Filling. This uses a file to take away all the small bits of materials from the metals manually.

• Turning. This can only be done on a lathe. In metal work, lathes turn cylinders or blocks of metal pieces at high speeds. Moreover, there are some tools that are used to shave on the workpieces to form layers until the desired shape is achieved. Turning is the process used to make materials such as table legs.

Learning about all these basic things can be a good start to becoming a metal working artist.
by John Schofield
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