Metal finishers are the artist of any fabrication operation. Mastering the finesse need to perform the transformation of product from an unfinished state to a flawlessly completed product.
What appears to be the simplest of task, if improperly done, can destroy the cosmetic appearance of the finished product. Often the artful skill of their workmanship provides the foundation of a superior paint finish but not in all cases. Our prominence in the finishing of Stainless Steel and Aluminum provides an insight to the expertise of our highly skilled finishers.
The fabrication process presents many inherent opportunities for the finishers to prove themselves. The finisher is responsible for smoothing of welds, finishing of corners, removal of imperfections, and for safety reasons the removal of sharp edges. When touring our facility I often reiterate the fact that our finishers are, blessed or cursed however they choose to look at it, with the task of making our welders look amazing.
With the simplest of tools the transformation to product is performed. Often the process begins with an Angle Grinder the most critical of the finishing operations. The angle grinder is a large bulky hand tools, requiring 2 hands to operate, and a disc spinning at 2,800 to 11,000 rpm. Various grits of sand paper are applied to the spinning disc providing flexibility in the amount of material and in the material type being finished. Mastering the correct amount of material to remove, angle of the tool, and correct application of pressure to achieve the desired results is the key to the artistry and the beginning process to a superior finish.
Once the grinding operation is completed smoothing out the ground surfaces, removal of sharp edges, and an overall smoothing to the surface of the product is required. This is most often accomplished with the use of a Dual Action (DA) sander. Various grits of sandpaper can be applied to the random orbital pad providing flexibility in the material type to be finished and control in the smoothness of the surface to be finished.
In areas that are difficult or cannot be reached with the traditional finishing equipment, a Belt Sander, characterized by a continuous loop of sandpaper driven around an arm, maybe be used. Arms are interchangeable allowing extended reach areas, small reach areas, and various angles. Optional grits of belts can also be used to obtain various finishing requirements.
Contamination of product such as Stainless Steel is possible when tools are used on carbon steels and then used on Stainless product. The carbon is embedded into the material and can result in recurring rusting of the carbon that becomes embedded into the Stainless Steel. This concern is addressed with the separation of material processed. Carbon steel product is processed in one department while Stainless and Aluminum are processed in a separated work area. The division of work areas has been established to prevent contamination through dust in the air and through the possible use of equipment that had previously been used on carbon steel materials.
As demonstrated in any process that is centered on the talent and ability of the craftsmen, our operators are assigned to the department that best suit their skills. This allows each finisher to demonstrate the commitment to their craft through the exceptional appearance of our finished product.