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Tag Archive: custom metal stampings

  1. Steel Alloys Used in Custom Metal Stamping Process

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    Steel is one of the most widely used alloys and is comprised of carbon (less than 2%) and manganese (1%). Other small amounts of silicon, phosphorus, sulphur, and oxygen are also present. Steel is an integral component to almost all forms of production and construction, ranging from surgical equipment to household items.

    This type of metal is 100% recyclable, and steel products last for approximately 40 years. It is produced from either the Blast Furnace Basic Oxygen Route (BF-BOF) or from the Electric Arc Furnace (EAF) route. Both of these routes contribute to the production of crude steel. The Blast Furnace Basic Furnace Oxygen Route utilizes the following to manufacture crude steel:

    • Iron ore
    • Coal
    • Limestone
    • Steel scrap

    The Electric Arc Furnace Method utilizes all of these and electricity for crude steel manufacturing.

    Since the magnetic properties remain unchanged, this metal can be continuously recycled. Recycled steel can serve as input for BF-BOF and EAP methods, contributing to the production of many new steel products. They contain approximately 37% of recycled steel. Because of its lightweight structure, cost efficiency, corrosion resistance, and energy efficiency, steel is used in almost every type of building and construction process. Applications constructed with this material include:

    • Automobiles
    • Buildings and infrastructure
    • Metal products
    • Mechanical/electrical equipment
    • Domestic appliances

    Types of Steel Alloys

    There are more than 3,500 grades of steel that are integral to engineering and construction projects. All contain forms of sulphur, phosphorus, and manganese. Manganese is beneficial to steel’s sustainability; however, too much phosphorus and sulphur in the alloy can have detrimental effects on steel’s durable properties.

    There are four categories of this material:

    Carbon Steels are used in 90% of steel production and contain trace elements of alloy products. They are classified into three subcategories: low, medium, and high. Low carbon steels contain up to 0.3% carbon, medium steels contain 0.3-0.6% carbon, and high steels contain more than 0.6%. They can be formed into a variety of shapes, ranging from Flat Sheet to Structural Beam.

    Alloy Steels are used for pipelines, transformers, auto parts, power generators, and electric motors. Heat applications soften the material for welding and cutting applications. They contain:

    • Manganese
    • Silicon
    • Nickel
    • Titanium
    • Copper
    • Chromium
    • Aluminum

    Stainless Steels are extremely resistant to corrosion, due to its high chromium content (10-20%). They are grouped into three subcategories, based on crystalline molecular structure:

    • Austenitic (piping, kitchen utensils)
    • Ferritic (automotive, appliances, industrial equipment)
    • Martensitic (cutting tools, dental, and surgical equipment)

    Tool Steels are durable and heat resistant. The addition of tungsten, molybdenum, cobalt, and vanadium makes the raw material suitable for the production of dental and surgical equipment.

    Learn More About Using Steel Alloys for Your Next Project

    At Keats Manufacturing Company, we provide custom steel metal stamping. Since 1958, we have produced assortments of components for industries ranging from aerospace and automotive industries to communications, construction, medical, and military industries.

    Primary steel alloys we use in the custom stamping process:

    • 1008 /1010 – Cold Rolled Steel / Low Carbon / Usually cold formed and post plated
    • 1050 – Annealed Spring Steel / Considered High Carbon for us / Usually heat treated after stamping – Used for clips mostly
    • 1075 – Annealed Spring Steel / Considered High Carbon for us / Usually heat treated after stamping – Used for clips mostly
    • HSLA – (High Strength Low Alloy)

    We engineer our tool and die sets in-house and frequently work with high-volume production projects. We offer multi-slide and full-slide stamping, which is best suited for complex bending operations for metal parts. We also offer full-service customer metal stamping (heat treating, plating, e-coating, screw insertion, tape and reel). Our focus is on quality control as we strive to customize stamping parts to clients’ specifications, budget, and turnaround time.

    To learn more about our products or if you’d like to get started on your steel alloy project, contact us today and a member of our team will walk you through all the details.

     

  2. Copper Alloys for Metal Stamping

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    Copper is widely regarded as one of the oldest metals used by man. For centuries, copper has been forged and shaped into a variety of useful everyday items from tools and jewelry to, more recently, electrical equipment and household appliances.

    Copper possesses a broad range of desirable mechanical and chemical properties, making it one of the most versatile and extensively used engineering materials. The properties of copper can be further enhanced by alloying it with other metals, creating solutions for applications that would otherwise be unsuitable for either material alone.

    The construction industry is the single largest consumer of copper, with an annual consumption rate of 47%. The electrical industry is also known for its heavy reliance on copper, with an annual usage of 23%. Other sectors such as the transportation, consumer products, and machining industries account for the remainder of copper usage.

    The usage of copper and its alloys continues to grow exponentially, with the total annual consumption across all industries currently exceeding 18 million tons per annum.

    Copper Alloys

    Copper alloys usually come in the form of brass, phosphor bronze, aluminum bronze, silicon bronze, cupronickel, and nickel silvers. Each of these alloys enhances the properties of copper and can be stamped for use in numerous applications across a broad spectrum of industries. Typical applications for copper alloys include, but are not limited to:

    • Electrical wiring and circuitry
    • Spark plugs
    • Refrigeration tubing and coils
    • Power transmission lines
    • Cooking utensils
    • Heat exchangers
    • Plumbing
    • Arms and ammunition
    • Roofing
    • Architectural cladding

    Compared to other metals, copper possesses the highest level of electrical conductivity. second only to silver—the conductivity of copper is 97% that of silver. This attribute, coupled with other unique properties make copper ideal for electrical components such as connectors, coils, and terminals.

    Copper is also widely praised for its excellent corrosion resistance, especially in freshwater and high-temperature environments. When exposed to air and moisture, copper forms a thin, durable, and tightly adherent oxide film known as patina. The patina layer acts as a barrier which blocks moisture from coming into contact with the underlying material, thus preventing further corrosion.

    Finally, the copper property most pertinent to metal stamping is its formability. Copper is highly malleable and ductile, allowing it to be formed into a variety of shapes for almost any application. Copper alloys such as brasses, bronzes, and nickel silvers increase in strength during cold working in a process known as work hardening. This process readjusts the copper’s crystalline structure, making it resistant to further deformation. Deep drawing, coining, bending, and stretching are some of the forming methods used to create a wide range of components, such as bathroom fixtures and household appliances.

    Other desirable properties of copper include excellent biofouling resistance, non-magnetic structure, superior thermal conductivity, and ease of joining (bolting, welding, riveting, brazing, soldering).

    Learn More

    At Keats Manufacturing Company, we implement a robust material requirements planning (MRP) system to ensure an efficient production process. Quantities of copper and other raw materials are planned, scheduled, and controlled to ensure that they are always available when required. For the fastest turnaround for your project, we recommend that you select common copper gauges and common alloy types.

    Our manufacturing facilities are outfitted with more than 142 metal stamping and wire forming machines that operate around the clock five days a week. Our specialized tools and qualified staff are capable of meeting almost any production demand and have served the aerospace, medical, construction, military, communications, and electronics industry for 60 years.

    If you would like to learn more about metal stamping and the best materials for your application, feel free to download our free eBook: Choosing the Best Raw Materials.

  3. Custom Metal Stampings for the Appliance Industry

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    Since 1958, Keats Manufacturing Co. has been outfitting specialty industries with high-performance, long-lasting custom metal stampings. With years of experience and a deep understanding of unique application needs, our expert team can handle even the most intricate small metal stampings, wire forms, and assemblies.

    For decades, customers have turned to our facility for its unique combination of comprehensive quality control, superior efficiency, and advanced technological innovation. Our team boasts 25 of the industry’s most experienced die makers, and our stamping, forming, tapping / threading and assembly services easily meet and exceed the most demanding standards and regulations.

    Custom Stamped Metal Components

    Appliance manufacturing utilizes some of the most complex metal components in modern industry: Custom Terminals, Brackets, Clips, Ground Straps, Contacts, Shields, Bushings, Inserts, Clamps, Springs, Covers, Sleeves, Washers, Heat Sinks, Cases, Antennas, Plates are just a few of the specialized parts frequently used in modern-day appliances.

    Keats Manufacturing and all Keats plants provide small metal stampings suited to customers’ exact specifications while maintaining consistently tight tolerances. Making use of four-slide, multi-slide, and progressive die punch press technologies, we can offer unique appliance components such as:

    • Assemblies, including multistage tooling to eliminate secondary processes
    • Clips made from annealed spring steel and subsequently heat treated to custom HRC requirements using the austempering, vacuum hardening, oil quench processes.
    • Unlimited RoHS compliant plating resources such as Zinc, Nickel, Tin. and other finish options, including, Dip and Spin & Black Oxide
    • Bushings and Brackets for instrument panels, door panels, and more
    • Lead frames for electronics and microchip management
    • Shields and Heat Sinks in a wide range of sizes and imprints
    • Terminals with pre-post, selective, and precious metal plating (pre & post)
    • Wire forms, including fasteners, links, springs, rings, hooks, and terminals

    Common Appliance Industry Applications

    Stamped metal components are essential parts of nearly all domestic and commercial appliances, including:

    • Ovens and stoves
    • Washers and Dryers
    • Dishwashers and in-sink waste disposal units.
    • Refrigeration systems, including walk-in and beverage coolers
    • Grills, rotisseries, and outdoor kitchens
    • Security systems & Garage door systems
    • Hoods and ventilation, dehumidification, fan & vacuum systems
    • Thermostats and temperature control devices
    • Water Heaters and HVAC units.
    • Irrigation Systems
    • Pool & spa pumps and filtration systems

    Industry groups and associations

    At Keats we have a commitment to continuous improvement and the development and utilization of the latest manufacturing technology.  In order to stay on the cutting edge in our marketplace Keats management remains in leadership positions within the following industry trade groups:

    • PMA – Precision Metalforming Association
    • SMI– Spring Manufacturers Institute
    • TMA – Technology & Manufacturing Association

    Precision Manufacturing from Keats

    Keats Manufacturing is proud to provide customers with some of the highest-quality custom metal stamped parts, wire forms and assemblies on the market. Our facilities are certified to the following standards:

    • ISO 9001
    • IATF 16949
    • ISO 14001

    We collect data at each and every step of the manufacturing process, and follow up with final inspection before every delivery to ensure the best possible part quality. No matter how complex the job, clients can rest assured that all final products will meet their exact specifications.

    To learn more about our stamping work for the appliance industry, or to request a quote for your next precision machining job, reach out to the team today.