Common Mistakes To Avoid When Bending MetalMac-Tech Inc.
Identifying your mistakes is crucial to preventing common sheet metal bending problems. Mistakes made by operators account for many sheet metal bending problems, and the solutions to these issues are generally only a few preventative measures. Rather than wait for equipment downtime to find out that you have been making mistakes, undergo proper training to ensure machines remain operable. Read about common mistakes to avoid when bending metal to keep your equipment running smoothly and make it less prone to operator error.
Mistake #1: Creating Issues Because of the Bend Radius
First, you don’t want a bend radius that’s too tight because this results in broken equipment and inaccuracies in your final product. Ultimately, the bend radius will depend on the type of sheet metal you use and whether you perform longitudinal or transverse bending.
Further, don’t add items too close to the bend radius. To prevent distortion and avoid complicating the manufacturing process, consider keeping features such as cuts, holes, notches, slots, and other indentations away from the bending radius. If you can, keep ample space between the feature and bend line—after all, this distance should be at least three or four times the sheet’s thickness. Otherwise, form the bend line first, then create the features.
Mistake #2: Failing To Clean and Lubricate Machinery
Dirt and grime can accumulate on your machinery and keep it from performing as it should. Fortunately, you can prevent unnecessary damage to your most important equipment. To avoid malfunctioning machinery, regularly clean and lubricate all machine parts, including ram gibs and other critical components.
Mistake #3: Opting For Narrow Bending Flanges
Bending flanges can also promote tooling damage. To refrain from overloading your equipment, you don’t want a narrow bending flange. Use the correct bending flange length, which you can determine by accounting for your bend radius and material thickness.
Mistake #4: An Upset Ram
When bending sheet metal, you must achieve a specific bend angle. However, you don’t want to damage the machine’s center. Additionally, overloading the equipment can result in over deflection and, ultimately, ram upset. You may need to employ careful tonnage, re-machine the ram, and maintain the press brake.
It is essential to know that not investing in a quality setup can be a colossal mistake in sheet metal bending. Luckily, Mac-Tech has a reputable CNC sheet metal folding machine line. All our equipment is ideal for a small shop to light gage roofing, HVAC, sign making, enclosure manufacturers, precision metal fabrication, and those when a press brake doesn’t meet their needs. Now that you know the most common mistakes to avoid when bending metal, hopefully, you are motivated to investigate a folder that works for you.