You can use different techniques to fabricate aluminum. While techniques such as casting, forging, and rolling work well in some cases, extrusion is sometimes the best way to work with this metal.
How does the aluminum extrusion process work? What are its benefits?
How Does Aluminum Extrusion Work?
Any kind of aluminum fabrication applies some kind of force to the metal to change its shape and size. Extrusion uses a push force to create changes to the aluminum. It can create solid, hollow, or semi-hollow shapes.
At the start of the process, the base metal is heated to make it pliable. It is then forced through a die on an extrusion machine. The inside of the die contains the shape and characteristics that the metal needs to take on in a cross-section format.
As the hot aluminum is pushed through the die, it fills internal spaces and changes shape to fit them. While you can extrude individual parts one at a time, you often get a long strip of shaped metal at the end of the extrusion process. You then cut the strip to size to make smaller parts if necessary.
What Are the Benefits of Aluminum Extrusion?
Extrusion is typically a fast and low-cost manufacturing process. You simply heat your aluminum, run it through the extruder, and wait for it to cool down. Your parts will be ready to package up quickly even if you need to cut extrusions to size at the end of the process.
Plus, if you have multiple orders, you can run them on the same machine virtually seamlessly. You simply change the die to change the shape of each new part at the start of its production run. The less time you waste here, the faster your order will be completed.
Extrusion is also a versatile process. You can use it to create basic shapes or more complex designs. Each die you use will also produce the same results over and over again, meaning you don't have to worry about quality issues or wastage.
If the finish on your parts is important, then extrusion helps here too. Extruded aluminum typically has a high-quality finish. It is smooth and unmarked. So, you might not have to run any finishing processes on your parts at the end of the production run. This saves you time and money.
To find out more about the advantages of using extrusion to make your parts, contact an aluminum fabrication company such as Barndt's Welding.