Stainless steel as a material is one of the finest for manufacturing precision parts. The material is durable and flexible enough to get moulded into any desirable shape. The stainless steel is corrosion-resistant, making it a favourite for marine, aerospace and automotive industries. Custom stainless steel parts get used in the food and beverage industry as they are easier to clean. 

The manufacturing of stainless steel parts is evolving, and with the help of technology, we’ve come a long way to get desired CNC machined parts in no time. Are you fascinated by what stainless steel can achieve in the manufacturing sector? Find out about the manufacturing process of stainless steel parts. 

 

Process of getting desired custom stainless steel parts 

Stainless steel has to go through various steps for the desired product. When making the stainless steel parts the manufacturer has to keep the steel grade in mind. They need to choose the steel grade according to the industry. Here are the three most common grades of stainless steel: 

  • Stainless Steel Grade 302
  • Stainless Steel Grade 303
  • Stainless Steel Grade 430F

Once you have decided on the steel grade and gathered the raw materials, the rest of the stainless steel manufacturing process can begin. Here are the steps: 

  • Melting the raw materials
  • Removal of excess carbon
  • Tuning
  • Forming the metal
  • Heat treatment
  • Descaling
  • Cutting and shaping
  • Finishing 

 

#1. Melting the raw materials 

The varied stainless steel components get heated to their melting point in a furnace (usually an electric furnace for current stainless steel production applications). This procedure might take anywhere from 8 to 12 hours to complete. Stainless steel production can move to the following phase when the metal has melted. Some of the common shapes include slabs, blooms, billets and rods. 

 

#2. Removal of excess carbon

The molten material gets placed in the VOD or AOD system to remove any excess carbon present in stainless steel. Depending on how much carbon you want to remove will affect the quality of the final product. It can impact the tensile strength and hardness of the machined part. It can result in a standard or low-carbon variant of the alloy. 

 

#3. Tuning 

The next step is to fine-tune the quality of the final product. For this, the manufacturers need to stir, helping to distribute and remove the specific stainless steel components from the mixture. It ensures that the stainless steel is of uniform quality. And will meet the specifications set by the manufacturer. 

 

#4. Forming the metal 

The semi-finished steel shapes now undergo a series of forming operations. For example, stainless steel is hot-rolled, and the blooms and bars mentioned in point 1 get converted to bar and wire. The slabs get formed into plates, strips or sheets. It is easier to turn semi-finished steel shapes into bars as they are the most versatile stainless steel form. It is all-around because it comes in all grades and sizes. You have plenty of options to choose from for different applications. 

 

#5. Heat treatment 

The heat treatment is the following procedure. The stainless steel gets heated during annealing. Then it’s cooled down in a controlled environment. The reason for this heat treatment is it relieves the pent-up stress that is present in the stainless steel. It softens the material to make it suitable for a variety of applications. The operator has to be careful while carrying out the annealing process about the control conditions as even minute changes in the pressure, temperature, duration or cooling rate result in a faulty product. 

 

#6. Descaling 

On the stainless steel surface, many scales form. It occurs as a result of the heat treatment process. Descaling can get used to removing these scales. One of the popular methods is pickling to carry out the descaling process. 

 

#7. Cutting and shaping

Now, the stainless steel gets put through various cutting and shaping processes to manufacture the ideal product for the application. The specific operations used to cut the stainless steel will vary depending on the size and the shape of the bloom and the final product. For example, the steel may get cut mechanically via large metal shears if the manufacturer makes thick metal plates. If you want to cut thin metal sheets you can use CNC punch or laser cutting machines. MDA’s manufacturing team manufactures custom metal cutouts from metal sheet plates by using up-to-date machining processes. 

 

#8. Finishing 

The stainless steel manufacturer might apply different surface finishes according to the requirement of the final product. Finishing gets applied to help the stainless steel product achieve an appealing appearance. Finishes are also required to make the stainless steel part smooth, and easier to clean, which is a top-most requirement in most industries. 

 

Which Tips You Should Know Stainless Steel Manufacturing?

Machining stainless steel is a complex process due to certain complications. Here are some ways to avoid them: 

  • Lubricants and coolants are applied to the tools.
  • Large equipment gets used to help dissipate heat.
  • Consistent feeds and light cuts are required.
  • Chip breakers get used to deflect debris.
  • Choosing a machine that is vibration-free.
  • Keep the cutting edges sharp at all times.

 

Read more: Why Steel Is Ideal For Custom CNC Machined Parts

 

Choose Machining Design Associated for all your custom steel parts requirements

Metal contract manufacturing partners must be dependable, competent, and knowledgeable to enable manufacturers and OEM organizations to produce steel and metal finished products effectively and to the highest standards feasible. Choose MDA if you need a precise metal production firm to fulfill your specific business needs. 

For over the years, MDA has been assisting companies in producing parts more efficiently using cutting-edge production and manufacturing procedures. From initial design and engineering support through laser cutting, 3D machining, and steel and metal welding procedures. Our contract metal production services cover it all. 

For more information on contracting for custom metal manufacturing, contact us today. Call us at tel:1(888)440-4435 or request a quote online.

 

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