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What is Sheet Metal Fabrication Process?

metal fabrication method

Sheet metal fabrication is the method with which you can turn flat sheets of steel or other metals into products or give them a structure, by cutting, bending and assembling. Sheet metal can be fabricated into almost any shape, which is usually done by cutting and burning the metal. There are many ways to fabricate sheet metal in this article we have discussed some of the most commonly used techniques.

Resistance Welding

Resistance welding is the process of welding metals where force is exerted and current is passed for a length of time through the metal area which is to be welded together. The primary benefit of resistance welding is that no other materials are needed to create the joint, making this process extremely cost-effective.

Expanding Metal

Generally, if you need open space in a metal object, you’d use a wire mesh, or cut holes into a piece of sheet metal using a CNC punch/laser. However, other ways of adding open space are to take sheets or coils of metal and put it through an expanding machine.

The expanding machine stretches out the metal, and a knife is designed specifically to cut a series of symmetrical shapes into the metal—typically diamond shapes, though hexagons, squares, and other shapes can be made. The holes are formed on these sheet metal when the sheet metals expand around the expansion machine’s “knife” and no metal is lost in this process.

Expanded metal is generally stronger than woven wire mesh of comparable thickness, lighter than solid metal sheets, and less raw material is wasted than just cutting sheet metal with a punch or laser.


Bending is one of the easiest and effective sheet metal fabrication services. The metal is generally hammered across mold or a metal grate; the precision of the angle and therefore the shape of the bend both depend upon the technology used.

3D Hubs uses dies to make round or angle bends in the choice of metal. 3D Hubs can fold metals up to a thickness of six millimeters and with a bend angle tolerance of 1-degree. Bending is commonly combined with other fabrication techniques; most sheets of metal are both cut and bent before the project is finished.

3D Hubs apply very high pressure to the sheet to quickly and easily achieve bends of any desired angle.

Laser Cutting

Many times a piece of metal may be stretched accidentally to the wrong size, or a complicated shape of sheet metal is required which cannot be acquired by solely expanding the metal.

Laser Cutting machines can help you achieve the sheet metal in any shaped which may be required by you and give out a perfectly smooth, stress-free cut. Laser Cutting technique is typically used instead of CNC punching as it exerts less physical stress on the material surrounding the hole so the sheet metal is stronger overall.


Shrinking is often utilized to reduce the size of sheet metal and remove imperfections. This can be achieved by exerting heat to the overstretched piece of metal; as it cools, it will shrink down into shape.

Shrinking involves various other methods one of them is “tucking” the metal with a hammer or a hand-held tool. Tucking bends the metal and reduces the overall surface area. Tucking is usually used to form round shapes or unique edges on an object.


A stretching process involves hammering or flattening sheet metal, it includes any technique that reduces the sheet to make it thinner or to increase the surface area. Stretchers are often used to add an outline or to form the metal beyond the limitations of normal bending.

Like shrinking, stretching is frequently used to remove imperfections from a piece of metal. Stretching helps to smooth out the affected area when a sheet has been dented or bunched. Both shrinking and stretching impact the molecular structure of the finished object.

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What is Sheet Metal Fabrication Process?

by Piping Mart time to read: 3 min