If you have started looking for a custom metal fabrication company to start your new custom fabrication project, you know how overwhelming it can be to get answers to even the simplest questions. Even the term “metal fabrication” can seem a little confusing. What does it entail? Metal fabrication is a broad term that refers to several processes that go into shaping, cutting, molding, welding, or machining materials into the product they are to become. Full-service custom metal fabrication companies aren’t just a business– they are an integral grouping of several technologies that are used at particular stages of production in order to fabricate the end product that was custom designed. As you do your research, it is important that you are not distracted by any misconceptions in regard to the capabilities of custom metal fabrications. You should be aware of what you can expect from a fabrication company.
Misconception #1 – All Metal Fabrication Companies Are the Same
Metal fabrication companies can offer several services or just one. They are not all the same and the services offered can widely vary from shop to shop. Narrowing down your choices will mean looking at which shop can fulfill the needs of your project. It is important that you find the right fabrication company with the services and capabilities needed to finish the project to your level of satisfaction. How do you narrow it down? First, assess each shop’s capabilities. The company must be able to perform the fabrication method needed to complete your project’s shape and form and be aware of the materials that are needed to fabricate it. Does the fabrication company serve your industry? And do they have enough space to accommodate your project? The building will have to be big enough to fulfill the needs of your project without having to slow down or stop production. Take the time to find a full-service metal fabrication shop that will be able to meet all of your project’s needs.
Misconception #2 – You Don’t Need an Engineer If You’ve Already Created Your Design
People tend to think that if they submit their own design, they don’t need any input from an engineer to move forward. However, to get your design from paper to a physical product there is a multi-step process that will require an engineer’s input throughout. Even once the final design has been submitted for production, an engineer will be needed to test, tweak, and prototype the product. Fabricators work side by side with engineers through each process to ensure that the products work as expected.
Misconception #3 – The Lower the Cost, the Better the Return On Your Investment
While there is truth in that, when you find something for the best price with the best quality, you will get the most for your dollar. The lowest price does not always bring the best return on investment. When researching ideas for your fabrication project, it is important that you prepare a budget to reflect what profitability you are expecting from that project. Choosing the right fabrication shop includes shopping around for the best price as this is essential to ensuring the financial success of the project. But you should keep in mind that the most affordable fabricator is not always going to provide you with the best return on investment. In general, there are two business structures that custom metal fabrications adhere to as they compete for your business– one competes by offering the best price, while others emphasize the quality of their work. Cost versus quality is the clear distinction. Instead of leaning towards one side of the spectrum, find a balance between the two. But if your main focus is a better ROI, you should invest in overall value.
Misconception #4 – Metal Applications Can Be Interchangeable.
There is a plethora of metals you can choose from when you design your project, and some are similar in composition. This doesn’t mean that these metals can be used interchangeably to get the project completed. Each metal consists of a unique material composition, properties, and specific characteristics that work for certain applications and final products. One example of this misconception is that you can substitute steel for aluminum and vice-versa for your fabrication project. Aluminum is more ductile, significantly lighter, and softer than steel. It is used to fabricate parts and components in the automotive and transportation industries. However, aluminum is more costly and lacks the same strength that steel has. If you want a durable and resilient metal, choose steel for your fabrication project.
Misconception #5 – Fabrication Shops are Known to Use More than One Vendor
It is not impossible for a third-party vendor to be brought in for specific projects, however, it is rare that a full-service fabrication company will require help from one or several vendors to get a project done. Even the most complicated and unique projects can be done in-house throughout the entire process of design, engineering, fabrication, and assembly. As you search for the right custom metal fabrication company, you will find that you are better served using a company that offers the abilities to fabricate several metals using top of the line equipment operated by skilled craftsmen all under a single roof.
When researching custom metal fabrication companies for your project, it is important that you take the time to figure out what expectations you should have throughout the process. Want to learn more about our fabrication services, contact our team at Palmer Tool Company today! We would love to help you get started.
Palmer Can Help With ASME Code Fabrication and Welding
Palmer has extensive experience in the areas of power piping, pressure piping systems, pressure vessel design and fabrication, and vessel installation. At Palmer Tool, you will encounter expert fabricators for all of your welding needs. Our highly experienced fabricators are skilled with steel plate, abrasion resistant grades, pressure vessel quality (PVQ), clad and overlay plate, nickel alloy plate, stainless steel plate, inconel, and titanium. We are an experienced ASME code certificate holder of the “U”, “S”, and National Board “R” stamps.
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