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Key design tips for working with sheet metal

Prestige SM Director

To get the most out of your sheet metal design, keep a few key tips in mind.

Managing tolerances

Precision sheet metal has many variables that effect tolerance, shape, size, and features. For example, sheet thickness tolerances from a mill can vary from +/-.0035 on the most used gages, which are 14-20 gage (.074” – .036”) to +/-.0075 on the thicker gages.

A common issue to watch is designs with zero clearance between parts. This can create a tolerance stack up, resulting in parts that will not fit during assembly. When assemblies are modeled, the tolerance of the parts should be accounted for in the spacing of the parts to be sure they will fit together when assembled.

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BIZTimes Reports Prestige Metals Relocates to Wisconsin!

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Prestige purchased an 8-acre property at 193rd Street from Cincinnati, Ohio-based Home City Ice Company for $2.35 million, according to state records.

Prestige was founded in 1945. The company has been based in a 20,000-square-foot facility in Antioch with 25 employees who manufacture stainless steel parts that are in soft ice cream machines and topping dispensers, according to the company’s website.

They have current annual sales of $3 million to $5 million and have the goal as well as the capabilities to increase sales to over $8 million.

Read More: Visit the Milwaukee Business Times

KABA Reports Prestige Metals Moved!

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Prestige Metal Products has chosen an 85,630-square-foot building in the Bristol Business Park in Kenosha County as the new site for its metal fabrication operations and company headquarters. The project, located at 19241 83rd St. in the Village of Bristol, will bring 46 jobs to the area and represents a $2.5 million investment for the company, which is now based in Antioch, Illinois.

“The support from the community has been overwhelming,” said John Annessi, owner of Prestige Metal. “First, the Kenosha Area Business Alliance – who then introduced us to the Milwaukee 7 and the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation. Everyone treated us like we were the next Amazon. We are very grateful and excited to be here in Wisconsin.”


To Read More: Visit the Kenosha Area Business Alliance

Following DFM Guidelines for Working with Sheet Metal

Prestige SM Director

Engineers designing sheet-metal enclosures and assemblies often end up redesigning them so they can be manufactured. In fact, research suggests that manufacturers spend 30% to 50% of their time fixing errors and almost 24% of those errors are related to manufacturability. The reason behind these preventable engineering errors is usually the wide gap between how sheet-metal parts are designed in CAD systems and how they are actually fabricated on the shop floor. Many engineers developing 3D models for sheet-metal products are unaware of the fabrication tools used to form the part or product, and instead design models for an “ideal” world.

In the ideal world, everything is perfect Tolerances and allowances are exact, and there’s no need to add any feature or change the design to accommodate the shop floor or real-world material behavior. But the truth is, numerous factors including chamfers at the edges, collars near hole, and spaces between drilled holes matter in the sheet metal world.

This gap between the ideal and real-world sheet-metal design usually proves costly. The overflowing engineering change orders (ECOs), fixing the design errors, and sending revisions back to the shop floor turns into a vicious cycle, one that is often difficult to break.

Read more: Following DFM Guidelines for Working with Sheet Metal 

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