Sheet Metal Tools | Cutting , Marking , Bending Tools
Introduction to Sheet metal :
Sheet metal is simply metal formed into thin and flat pieces. It is one of the fundamental forms used in metalworking, and can be cut and bent into a variety of different shapes. Thicknesses can vary significantly, although extremely thin thicknesses are considered foil or leaf, and pieces thicker than 6 mm (0.25 in) are considered plate. The thickness of the sheet metal is called its gauge. The gauge of sheet metal ranges from 30 gauge to about 8 gauge. The higher the gauge, the thinner the metal is.
There are many different metals that can be made into sheet metal, such as: Aluminum, brass, copper, steel, tin, nickel and titanium. For decorative uses, important sheet metals include silver, gold, and platinum.
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Sheet Metal Tools:
1. Cutting Tools
2. Striking Tools
3. Supporting Tools
4. Marking and Measuring Tools
5. Bending and Folding Tools
6. Other Tools
1. Cutting Tools: (Chisels, Snips or Shears)
This is used to cut the sheets. It is also used to remove the unwanted metal form the surface of a job by chipping. Mostly flat type and round nose type chisels are used. Flat chisel are used to obtain flat surface and its cutting edge is V-shape. Its cutting angle is 60° and the cutting edge varies from 20 to 25 mm in width. But the cutting edge of the round nose chisel is round in shape and used for making grooves. Its cutting angle varies from 35° to 40°.
b) Snips (or) Shears:
The tool similar to scissors used for cutting or shearing thin metal sheets is called snip. Its length varies from 200 mm to 600 mm. Mainly Straight Snip and Curved Snip is used. Bench shear is used to cut the sheet metal of 3 mm thickness.
2. Striking Tools: (Hammers and Punches)
These are used on the sheet metal for straightening, bending, leveling, riveting, removing nails, forging, chipping etc., with the application of impact load exerted manually. Mainly Ball peen hammer, Cross peen hammers and Mallet used in practice.
This is used for marking out work, locating centres etc. There are four types Dot punch Centre punch, Letter punch and Number punch.
3. Supporting Tools: (Stakes, Anvils, Swage Block)
The stakes are used for doing various operations like forming, bending, hemming, seaming, etc. There are different shapes of stakes available but based upon the purpose, the required shape of stake is selected. They are Beak Horn stake, Funnel stake, Half moon stake etc.
The anvil acts as a base for smithy work while hammering. The body of the anvil is made of mild steel (MS), wrought iron or cast iron (CI). The weight of the anvil varies from 100 to 150 kg.
c) Swage Block:
It is a CI block having number of slots of different shapes and sizes along its four side faces. It also contains number of through holes of different size and shape from its top to bottom face. This block can be used for bending, punching and shaping of metals.
4. Marking and Measuring Tools: (Steel rule, Scriber, Trammel, Divider, Swing Blade Protractor, Wire Gauge)
a) Steel rule: It is used for linear measurements up to the accuracy of 0.5 mm.
b) Scribers: It is made up of hardened steel with pointed end used for marking lines on the sheet.
c) Trammel (or) beam compass: It is a big size compass used for marking large arcs and circles.
d) Divider: It is used for dividing straight and curvilinear lines, marking circles and arcs.
e) Swing Blade Protractor: It is used for marking and measuring angles.
f) Wire Gauge: It is used for measuring the thickness of sheet metal.
5. Bending and Folding Tools: (Pliers, Folding Bars)
The pliers are mainly used for bending the sheet metal to the required shape. It is also used for holding and cutting the sheet metal. There are mainly two types – Pipe pliers and Combination pliers.
b) Folding Bars:
The folding bars are used for bending and folding operation of the sheet metal.
6. Other Tools:
a) Grooving Tools: It is used for making locked joints in sheets like wired edges, slots etc.
b) Bench Plate: It is plate having the holes of different shapes and sizes.
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