As advances in technology continue to open, even further, the possibilities for the engineer, the need for far greater precision in the manufacture of components such as metal pressings is growing in parallel. The demand for these quality components is not just widespread but also diverse; arising from industries such as mining, defence, medical, aviation and electrical as well as numerous others that are involved in precision manufacturing. A company specialising in the production of such components for use by South African manufacturers is Fine Blanking.
To those in the know, the company’s chosen name serves to define precisely the nature of its business. It is a process used to create metal components that are totally free of any rough edges. This is achieved by simultaneously compressing and shearing the metal in a process that resembles extrusion rather than punching and that combines an upper and lower punch to extract the blank. This serves to reduce any tendency of the resulting product to tear at the edges.
Although the process tends to be somewhat slower than when employing a traditional punching operation and involves a slightly higher tooling cost at startup, it also results in a wide range of benefits that can more than justify both the extra time and cost.
Among the most important of the benefits to be derived when employing fine blanking techniques for the preparation of metal pressings are:
In practice, however, a skilled manufacturer such as Fine Blanking is able to produce products of very similar quality using either this precision technology or the more traditional stamping procedure and thus it is not easy to cite one as better than the other. Which may prove to be more appropriate is dependent upon the metal to be used as, in the case of fine blanking, the materials from which metal pressings may be created is limited to copper, brass, aluminium, carbon fibre alloys and stainless steel.