While chemical etching is the main process we offer for flat metal components here at Qualitetch, we also offer fully formed and finished metal components using our own in-house toolmakers.
We offer various options for bending, forming and shaping metal component parts in a vast array of metal types and thicknesses via our own very knowledgeable tool-making staff. Metal forming is an industrial manufacturing process, that is completed by working sheet metal into shape using hardened steel tooling.
A common forming process often used here at Qualitetch is sheet metal bending the required form into shape to create the metal component to your desired drawing. This works particularly well with photo etched flat blanks and ensures we keep everything in-house to ensure no additional sub con required for our customers. The parts would be photo etched to your precise profile dimensions from sheet metal, then bent between two dies. The top die is called the punch and the metal is then formed whilst cold.
The two dies that become the form tool are then put in presses to create the force able to bend the raw material. Options at Qualitetch include a choice of manual fly & toggle presses, mechanical power presses and hydraulic presses, usually dependent on quantities and tolerances required. All these various press options offer different forming forces, which ensures we have availability to bend various thicknesses and metal types for all our customer needs.
an image of a form tool used in the photo etching industry
This method can form very simple 90° bends through to more complex shapes including twists within the component. Simple bends can also be manufactured via a half etch process; this is when we chemically etch the depth halfway through the material so we can bend by hand, often without any tooling making the cost significantly cheaper.
We also offer “knife and fork” tooling options which can produce simple angle bends and we have many on site already that can be used by our customers as universal tooling so would only require a set up cost and again help reduce costs.