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Difference Between Metal Fabrication and Welding | Fabrication vs Welding

 Fabrication vs Welding

Welding and fabrication are the two most important metalworking processes.

Fabricated metal is utilized in everything from tools to cars and building structures. Metal fabrication is a multi-step process. 

Fabrication is the process of converting raw metal materials into something new. While welding is a metal fabrication method that involves welding two metal pieces together to form a smooth and finished structure.

Let’s take a closer look at both metalworking processes:

What is Metal Fabrication?

The process of making products from metal sheets is known as metal fabrication. Metal fabrication is the process of metal cutting and shaping them in a multi-step manner. Metal fabrication requires far more than the simple connecting of two metals.

The processes involved in metal fabrication are listed below.

Die-Cutting

Die-cutting is the process of using a compressing die to transmit shear stress to a low-strength material or sheet metal to cut it.

Punching

Punching is a shaping method in which force is applied to a die that is strongly punched on the metal sheet to create a hole.

Hydroforming

Hydraulic pressure is used to press the die on the metal sheet in the hydroforming process. The metal sheet is compressed by the die to give the required shape at room temperature in this method. For ductile materials, hydroforming is widely applied.

Roll Forming

A long metal sheet is passed over strategically installed rollers to bend at desired cross-sections in the roll forming process.

Spinning

This method involves spinning a disc or tube on a high-speed chuck to manufacture axially symmetrical components.

Finishing

Finishing is the most important step in the metal fabrication process. The process applies an extra layer of coating to the metal to make it rust-free and improve the surface polish. Finishing or metal polishing provides surface smoothening with an abrasive material.

    Read: What are the 5 types of Welding Processes

    What is Welding Fabrication?

    Welding is a metal fabrication process. It is the process of using heat to fuse two metals. Welding is also known as metal forming. It is a process that uses filler material and heat to join two metal pieces. Welding has a wide range of applications from the metal to automobile industries.

    Different welding processes are utilized based on industry requirements. There are mainly three types of welding:

    Metal Inert Gas (MIG) Welding

    Gas metal arc welding (GMAW) is also a term for MIG welding. A reusable MIG electrode is used to create an electric arc when it comes into contact with a metal workpiece. Heat is generated by the electric arc, which is used to melt and fuse two metals.

    Tungsten Inert Gas (TIG) Welding

    A non-consumable TIG electrode is used to weld two metals. TIG welding process is used for welding lawn mowers, bike frames, fenders, door handles, and much more.

    Plasma Arc Welding

    Plasma arc welding is somehow similar to TIG welding, with the exception that the electrode is held in a torch and the plasma arc can be isolated from the gas envelope.

      Read: Buffing vs. Polishing

      Fabrication vs Welding

      Fabrication vs welding

      The difference between welding and fabrication is mainly determined by involving tools and processes. Let’s take a look at the tools, processes, and safety precautions involved in metal fabrication and welding: 

      Tools Required for Metal Fabrication and Welding

      Welding requires unique and more advanced tools metal fabrication tools. Here is a complete list of common fabrication tools for beginners, including different angle grinding wheels and a set of fasteners. 

      • Abrasives
      • Welding clamps
      • TIG rods
      • Electrode holders
      • Consumable electrodes
      • Hand file
      • Cylinders with custom carts
      • Soapstone
      • Vice and vice grips
      • Chipping hammers
      • Benders

      Processes Involve in Fabrication and Welding

      As we have discussed earlier in this article about the metal fabrication processes. In short- Welding is a metal forming process that comes under metal fabrication, both metalworking process involves common procedures to develop the final product, such as welding, shaping and bending.

      Some other types of welding processes, including oxy acetylene, TIG (the most popular in metal fabrication), and gas metal arc welding.

      Metalworking Safety Precautions

      For beginners as well as professionals, metal fabrication and welding can be hazardous at some point. To avoid such hazards employees need to take some safety precautions. Wear safety equipment and follow all welding safety tips to be safe from any possible risks.

      Conclusion

      When it comes to sheet metal fabrication and welding, both processes are important in metalworking industries. All industries from construction to housing, automotive to transportation take advantage of metal fabrication.

      Read More: Everything You Need to Know about Spade Bits

      Previous article How To Clean Metal Before Welding

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