Aluminum: Extrusion, Fabrication, Finishing
The manufacture of extruded, fabricated and finished aluminum products for diverse markets requires that the source have Just-In-Time delivery, dedicated manufacturing cells, CNC machining, documented quality assurance processes and rapid product development cycles. Significant users of aluminum products are the transportation, construction, electrical-industrial and consumer markets. Typical products made include air deflectors, truck components, windows, doors, railings, furniture, exercise equipment, materials handling systems, heat sinks and food service implements.
In addition to versatile manufacturing capabilities, the job shop needs to provide engineering assistance that includes design review of prototypes and the ability to translate ideas into shapes and components. This also requires the knowledge to offer alternative methods for generating specific product profiles.
Considering the range of aluminum alloys used and the equipment employed (variously sized extrusion presses), it is important for the manufacturer to achieve and maintain dimensional consistency and surface quality in what it produces. New isothermal technology installed on a press improves dimensional control, surface quality and productivity. It is comprised of an infrared camera, work station and process control system.
Parts can be finished by painting or anodizing. Painted finishes should conform to or exceed AAMA Standards 603 and 605. Competence in two-tone, textured and skid-resistant painting is important. A range of anodized finishes is also expected by specifiers, along with clean "no-burn" anodized surfaces. The no-burn finishes enable welding after anodizing without burn marks.
The costs connected to anodizing are a function of the space components consume in the tank when arranged on a rack. No-burn anodizing can provide significant time savings and minimize handling damage as it eliminates steps for the production process.
This technical information has been contributed by
Sapa Extrusions North America
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