3 Factors to Consider When Selecting Thin Steel Sheet
Currently, sheet metal accounts for over $30 billion in U.S. revenue, which is not a surprise because every manufacturing industry utilizes sheet metal in its operations. The automotive, engineering, and aerospace industries have found major uses for thin sheet metal in their manufacturing operations. Sheet metal can be made from various metals, such as aluminum, copper and brass, nickel, steel, and titanium. Thin steel sheet is one of the most versatile, durable, and reliable sheet metal that manufacturers use for their every-day production.
When finding a supplier for your thin steel sheet, you should consider the following factors.
1. What’s Your Desired Thickness?
Thin steel sheet comes in different gauges. Thinner sheets have a higher gauge number, while thicker metal sheets have a smaller gauge number. Knowing the exact thickness of sheet metal that you need is crucial in your manufacturing operations. The thickness of thin steel sheet will influence sheet metal fabrication. Metal fabrication refers to the process of using sheet metal to create your desired products. Fabrication of thin sheet metal can be through welding, shearing, punching, machining, press brake forming, and laser cutting.
To make your metal fabrication process more efficient, it’s important that you order thin steel sheet with the exact measurements. This will reduce wastages and manufacturing errors that are not only costly but lead to operational downtimes. It’s estimated that manufacturers use 30-50% of their operational time to fix manufacturing errors in their products. Almost half of these errors, 24%, are design errors, and they can be prevented by ordering sheet metal of the right thickness. Also, the thickness of your sheet metal may also influence how you finish your products. Sheet metal can be finished through brushing, plating, liquid and powder coating, silk-screening, anodizing, and laser-etching.
2. Order Your Thin Steel Sheet From a Reputable Supplier
A good metal supplier will supply you with customized thin metal strips of the right thickness. The good thing about the top metal suppliers is that they can deliver thin sheet metal that is cut-to-size and has the exact thickness that you desire. This way, you can enhance your manufacturing operations because you won’t need to resize your metal sheets in your factory.
Although you’ll still need to invest in cutting tools such as snips, hacksaws, nibblers, jigsaws, and band saws, you won’t use a lot of time cutting your sheet metal because the supplier will have done much of the cutting. A good thin steel sheet supplier may even visit your factory to get a more accurate idea of how you want your sheet metal to be made and delivered. The supplier should also deliver your thin sheet metal in time so that your manufacturing operations can run as scheduled. Given that the quality of your sheet metal will determine the overall quality of your products, you must trust a top sheet metal supplier near you to provide you with quality thin steel sheet.
3. Look for Fair and Affordable Rates
While thin sheet metal doesn’t come cheap, a good supplier will offer you affordable rates that will give you a better ROI. In North America, 69% of all steel is recycled each year, which accounts for over 80 million tons. As such, there’s enough supply of stainless steel for all industries in the United States. Reputable suppliers may buy steel in bulk and take advantage of the economies of scale. When you buy your thin steel sheet from these suppliers, you may enjoy better prices. With sheet metal being a major raw material for your manufacturing operations, you’ll make great savings when you buy thin steel sheet at a discount. This will help you manufacture more products and increase your company earnings.
When buying thin steel sheet for your manufacturing industry, know your desired thickness and buy from a reputable metal supplier who will deliver top-quality sheet metal at a great price. Such a dealer may also supply thin aluminum strips, copper, brass, and other combined metals.