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Back to Basics: Materials Used for Precision Metal Stamping and Rapid Prototyping in Minneapolis, MN

May 19th, 2016 · No Comments

With every distinct part, there is a specific material that will best serve the functional purpose of that part. Stamping parts out of soft, expensive gold would be counter-intuitive engineering if those parts are meant to be repeatedly put in high stress, industrial situations. Thomas Engineering Company has over 50 years of experience in producing parts, utilizing the best material possible for our precision metal stamping,
and rapid prototyping in Minneapolis, MN.

Though we use many different types of metal for parts production at TEC, these types can be broken down into several categories depending on their molecular content.

Ferrous Metals: Any metal containing iron is categorized as ferrous. For example, steel is derived from iron ore and is therefore typified as a ferrous metal. In almost all cases, ferrous metals are magnetic. The benefits of using these metals are many, but ferrous metal parts are also more likely than nonferrous metal parts to deteriorate from oxidation or rust corrosion.

Steel is one of the most common ferrous metals we use for precision metal stamping and rapid prototyping. The hardness of different grades of steel is determined by the carbon content. Carbon is one of the basic elements of steel, and the levels of carbon in a type of steel will change other mechanical properties along with the hardness. However, there are many other factors that decide how a type of steel will act during production and industrial situations.

Nonferrous Metals: Nonmagnetic and lacking in the iron that ferrous metals contain, nonferrous metals have many differences between their varying types. Aluminum, copper, brass, bronze, and tin are common metals used at TEC for precision stamping and rapid prototyping, but some parts will occasionally demand the use of silver, gold, or alloys that are a combination of nonferrous metals.

Alloys: The most basic definition of an alloy is a mixture of at least two metals. However, the mixture must be completely homogenized, and in many cases, stabilizing or catalyzing elements are needed. The point of using an alloy over other metal types is that the combination of metals can provide many benefits.

For more information about the materials we use in precision metal stamping and rapid prototyping in Minneapolis, MN, contact Thomas Engineering Company at (763) 533-1501 today.

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