Making up 8.1% of the Earth’s crust, aluminum is the most abundant metal on the planet. Aluminum has applications in a wide range of industries and products. Finding machined aluminum parts for custom applications can be a challenge. In New Jersey, where the industrial revolution began, there is no shortage of aluminum fabrication companies to choose from.
When shopping around for custom aluminum parts, the number of options may overwhelm you. To help you choose the best New Jersey metal fabricator, we’ve put together this guide.
Read on to learn where to find custom aluminum parts machining services!
Aluminum: An Overview
In addition to its abundance, aluminum has physical properties that make it useful.
Aluminum has a low density and weight which makes it an excellent material for custom machining. This material is also resistant to corrosion and oxidation, so it doesn’t require protection from the elements.
Custom aluminum fabrication is an important part of the manufacturing process. Outsourcing machining helps companies be more efficient by saving time and money.
Aluminum fabrication companies can create custom-made aluminum parts perfectly suited to their customer’s needs. Customers also don’t have to re-engineer something every time they need a new part created.
Machined Aluminum Parts: What to Look For
When you need to have a fabrication shop machine your parts custom, there are several factors to consider. To choose the shop that’s best for your needs, you should take them all into account.
The demand for raw aluminum in the United States exceeds domestic production. As a result, many manufacturers import aluminum from other countries.
Find out where your local aluminum machine shops source their materials from. Not all suppliers have the same standard of material quality.
A higher-quality material will be easier to machine. Generally, a more pure metal will also have better weldability.
Depending on the scale of your project, you may need a smaller or larger metal fabrication company.
A smaller shop will probably be more open to projects that only require a few final products. Larger companies, on the other hand, make more money on projects with more extended production.
In addition to the scale of the shop, find out what kind of equipment capabilities they have. If your project has especially tight tolerances, it’ll take more than a manual mill.
For complex aluminum parts, you’ll want a fabrication shop with CNC milling capabilities. Other equipment you may need a shop to use for custom aluminum fabrication includes:
- CNC lathe
- Vertical mill
- Horizontal mill
- 5-axis mill
In addition to how long it takes to complete a job, the time it takes to get a quote is also crucial. Once you reach out to a company and explain the scope of your project, you shouldn’t have to wait days on end to hear back.
Taking too long to get a quote back is a good indicator of the turnaround time for a job. Avoid a shop that takes too long to get back to you.
Once you get an estimated turnaround time from a few companies, it will be a useful comparison. You can weigh the turnaround time against the cost to make a final decision.
Finally, consider the overall cost of a project. This should never be your only consideration, as the other factors are just as important.
Even if you want the best deal, unusually low quotes should raise a red flag. The price of a service usually reflects the quality, so an extremely cheap company likely cuts corners to turn a profit.
Be sure to factor in things like delivery costs or other fees that might not be readily apparent.
Applications for Machined Aluminum Parts
Aluminum is lightweight and durable, having an excellent strength-to-weight ratio. The metal also offers high ductility, making it easy to form elaborate shapes.
This combination of properties makes it useful for many industries.
Air and space travel both require a metal that’s light and strong. Machined aluminum parts are perfect for internal structures like seating.
By using a lightweight metal, vehicles can achieve greater speeds and fuel efficiency. The following are some of the most common machined aluminum parts used in aerospace manufacturing:
- Airframe components: Complex machined aluminum parts such as skins and stringers, wing spars, bulkheads, and landing gear
- Engine components: Engine mounts, engine brackets, and engine covers.
- Rotor blade: Rotor blades for helicopters or other rotary wing aircraft.
The military’s need for machined aluminum parts has increased considerably over the past decade. Over this time, aluminum parts have become more widely used for aircraft carriers, submarines, and other naval vessels.
Aluminum machining has become an essential skill in this industry because of the greater demand for these parts. Aluminum’s ability to absorb impact force makes it a good choice for military applications.
The manufacturing industry covers a broad range of businesses, such as farming, mining, and factories. Any business that produces materials, components, or end products is a manufacturer.
One of the biggest uses for aluminum in manufacturing is machinery. As technology becomes more advanced, manufacturing machinery uses more complex machined aluminum parts.
Aluminum’s ability to bear weight despite its low density makes it a good building material. Machined aluminum can be used for all sorts of architectural applications, such as:
- Window frames
Depending on building specifications, construction teams often need custom aluminum parts.
Finding High-Quality Machined Aluminum Parts in New Jersey
Aluminum is useful for almost every industry. The unique metal is the most abundant on Earth, and a good solution for mass production.
In the industrial northeast, New Jersey is home to many manufacturing companies. Finding the right machined aluminum parts for your needs can be difficult.
New Age Metal Fabricating has offered manufacturing services in the New Jersey area since 1979. We provide our community with custom machining, fabrication, and dip brazing services.
No matter what your project is, we have the advanced equipment to make it happen. Contact us today to learn more about our machining services!