Metal Fabrication

Metal Fabrication Case Study – Automotive Aftermarket Metal Brackets

Metal Fabrication Case Study

Customer:  Automotive Aftermarket

Product:  1/4 Plate Metal Bracket

Type of Fabrication:  Laser Cutting, Press Brake Metal Forming, Powder Coating

Problem:  Taking a new design from the PPAP to production

Noble Industries solution:

Noble Industries has an automotive aftermarket customer that will periodically change the design of one of their metal brackets based on the vehicle design changes.  As an ISO 9001:2008 metal fabricator, when a design change is made, we will provide the customer with test metal parts and their PPAP documentation.  After the customer tests the brackets they will place an initial supply of the new custom metal bracket.  For this particular metal bracket we made 3 test brackets.

Once the customer completed their testing they placed an initial production order of 750.  This specific part is made out of HRPO (Hot Rolled Pickled & Oiled) .25 X 60 X 120 sheet metal.  This material is also known as HRPO ¼ plate material.   Purchasing order sheet metal in the size of 60 inches by 120 inches because that is the sheet size for our Mazak Lasers.  To produce these parts, we have estimated that laser cutting will be performed at 35 parts an hour with 1 set up.  Our Virtek will inspect the first article part before the remaining 749 are laser cut.  After the parts are laser cut, the job folder and flat parts will go to the Press Brake area for metal forming.

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Metal Fabrication from a shipping department perspective

Handling multiple metal fabrication projects at one time can be a challenge to many metal fabrication companies but at Noble Industries it is something we do well every day.  As I watched trucks come and go from our facility this week, I decided to look past HRPO .25 X 60 X 120 sheets, or 7 gauge A36 material, tube being cut and formed or parts just sent into our facility for powder coating and look at what shipped out of the building.  I didn’t want to look at Purchase Orders, Production Schedules, Quotes or Job specific information.  I was interested in parts shipped to what industries and how much each shipment weighed.   It was surprising to see the diversity and the locations we shipped to in just a 3 day time period.   To give you some insight, here are just a few of the items that were shipped from our facility in Noblesville, Indiana on October 29 – 31, 2012 and the weight of metal parts fabricated in that 3 day time frame.

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Shorter lead times in Metal Fabrication

Noble Industries is a metal fabrication company serving the states of Indiana, Ohio, Michigan, Illinois, Kentucky, Tennessee, Missouri,  Arkansas, Georgia, Minnesota, Wisconsin and surrounding states.  Even with the current gas prices, we have customers in California, Texas, Montana and other states west of what is known as the “Midwest”.

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Metals, Alloys and Carbon and a simplified approach on how it relates to metal fabrication

Pure or unaltered metals are found in nature.  Metals are known to be good conductors of electricity and heat.  Taking pure metal and mixing it with carbon and other elements make it a great product for metal fabrication.  A metallurgist can go into great detail of the elements in each sheet metal product.  This can become so complicated it will make your head spin.  We will leave that to a metallurgist.  Highlights of common sheet metal materials used in metal fabrication at Noble Industries will be covered in this article.

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OEM Metal Products

GM, Ford, Caterpillar, John Deere, Kubota are just a few OEM companies that most everyone will recognize by name alone.   Have you ever considered the number of OEM metal fabrication companies that make components for these companies?  There are quite a few 2nd tier companies supporting the quality workmanship that is represented in a popular OEM product.

By working for Noble Industries, an OEM metal fabrication company, I have the luxury of seeing Original Equipment Manufactured components daily.  Many parts we make are for OEM products scarcely heard of yet they provide a useful purpose to people all over the country.  Noble Industries is a large ISO 9001 certified custom metal fabrication company with capabilities to fabricate sheet metal, tube and wire parts.  Our ISO certification makes us a great metal fabrication company for OEM products.

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