Understanding What Goes On in the Metal Forming Machine Shop

Metal Forming Machine Shop

The act of producing metal consists of numerous manufacturing processes. During these processes, the material is deformed plastically to take a permanent shape. The tools used for deformation may vary depending on the process to be employed.

Conventionally, the material to be deformed is usually pressured by a force that exceeds the material yield strength where strain hardening occurs. To successfully form a shape, the material to be deformed should have low yield strength. This is why it is often pressured by a force that exceeds its strength.

Increasing the temperature of the process to be used will help reduce yield strength. In this way, it becomes easier to deform the material. This is the reason why some types of forming are performed hot.

Metal forming can also be said to involve a production process involving structural parts and components. These parts and components are usually created out of metals. This is why a forming process will bend a metal work piece to any geometric shape you want. You should know that no matter the forming process used, reshaping is the ultimate technique

Most processes are done by reshaping raw materials into a finished work of another permanent shape.

What is Reshaping?

Reshaping is carried out through a mechanical process known as plastic deformation. It is when materials are deformed then reshaping is done. That is, a material is changed from a particular form to another shape. This is why during reshaping, a greater force than the yield strength is applied to the material. This force causes a change in the shape of the material. When this change is done, it is most times in a permanent form.

It must be understood that it must be exposed to stress, tension, and bending for the shape to change permanently. There are various processes involved in metal forming. Below are the different forming processes involved.


One of the processes for forming metal is the bending process. It involves the application of force to a metal piece. The force applied causes the metal to bend. The idea behind bending is to get it to the specific shape.

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This operation also causes the deformation of an angle of the sheet. When this process is repeated, more angles are deformed. For a sheet to bend, it must be exposed to compression and tension. Where the outer portion of the sheet stretches to a greater length, the inner portion shortens. The bending process is often referred to as press brake forming. This is because it is performed on a machine called a press brake.

Roll forming

Another process of metal forming is known as roll forming. A series of bending operations do this process. This process is done by passing sheet metal stock through a series of roll stations. It’s usually performed on a roll-forming line. Each station has a roller referred to as a roller die. The roller die can be found on both sides of the sheet. Forcing the sheet through the roller die on both sides causes it to deform and bend.

When this process is carried out, the chosen shape is created. However, each roll station must perform a stage in the total bending of the sheet. Example of roll-formed parts includes panels and shelving. They are commonly used for roofing and storage units, and appliances. You can check this link  for more on metal forming techniques. 

Deep drawing

This is another type of metal forming procedure. In this process, the material is stressed into the required shape. It is done by pushing a tool down the sheet metal, forcing it down the die cavity. It is forced into a die cavity and drawn to fit the shape desired. Force must also be applied when carrying out this process.

The force applied alter its structure to create a cup-shaped item. This procedure requires a blank, blank holder, punch, and die in that order. The empty holder presses down the blank over a die. The die has a cavity in the external shape of the craft. The punch has to draw the material in the blank into the die cavity. When this is done, a new shape is formed. This process is most active in the manufacturing of cups and pots.  

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Stretch forming

Stretch forming as a metal-making process involves the stretching of sheet metal. The stretched sheet is then bent to form several parts with the aid of a die. This procedure is performed on a stretch press.

The material intended to be used is gripped along the edges of the stretch press while the forming die is rolled into the sheet, which is held tightly at its ends, the force increases, which causes deformation.

The deformed plastic then assumes the new shape. The stretch passes used for this process can either be vertical or horizontal. Nonetheless, the vertical stretch passes are the most common.


This is another type of metal-producing process. However, it is majorly used to form cylindrical materials. To do this, a sheet disc is required. The disc is rotated at high speed while the rollers press the sheet against a tool. The tool used in pressing the sheet is known as the mandrel. By the tripartite function of these three tools, the shape chosen is formed. Therefore, for a spinning process to be complete, it requires a blank, mandrel, and roller tool.

Final Note

Metal formation requires different types of procedures. It all depends on the type of material you intend to create. It also depends on the type of shape you desire to make. All this will determine the procedure to be used. You can check the UHI Group’s website for consultations if you need professional assistance for your machine forming operations. 

Nevertheless, whatever process is used, reshaping is the whole idea. The tools used for this process have to be maintained. This is to avoid sudden wear and tear. When the tool is damaged, it becomes difficult to get the best result from the procedure. Also, when buying a tool, attention needs to be paid. This is to get quality tools.

This is because of the rigorous process it is going to undergo. There are machines for whatever shape you intend to make. Get the right tools and engage in the right process. When you do this, your desired shape will be formed.

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