4 Sheet Metal Bend Design Mistakes to Avoid in Car Restoration

4 Sheet Metal Bend Design Mistakes — And How to Avoid Them in Car Restoration Work

Bending sheet metal for car restoration projects can be tricky. One mistake in the bend radius or flange width can derail your metal fabrication process — and your entire project. So before you place sheet metals in a press brake, give some thought to your design and avoid these common bend design error:

1.Bend Radius That is Too Tight

When the bend radius is too tight, it can create a weak point in the metal, causing it to break easily. It can also cause a deformity that alters the dimensions of a car part you’re trying to recreate.

To prevent this problem, make sure to understand bend radius-to-thickness ratios. For instance, the harder and thicker the metal, the greater the minimum bend radius. The minimum inside bend radius is also typically larger when you’re bending with the grain than across the grain. For best results, determine the ratios based on the data provided by your material supplier — no matter the chosen grain direction.

2.Holes and Slots That Are Too Close to Bend Radius

Placing slots, notches, holes and other features too close to the bend radius can affect the proposed function of the metal part. For instance, it may no longer have the capacity to hold necessary hardware near the bend radius. If you are to follow the best practice, do not place holes and other features near the bend radius. But if you really need to have a feature close to bend radius, consider extending the die opening of the equipment past the bend line before doing the punch.

3.Wrong Use of K-Factor

K-factor allows you to estimate the length of flat sheet metal needed to make a bend of a specific radius and angle in design. It is defined by the location of the material’s neutral bend line with respect to its thickness. But apart from thickness, k-factor varies depending on the bending process you choose.

Make sure you are aware of the k-factor rules of thumb for bottoming, air bending, and coining. Otherwise, you’ll waste a lot of time figuring out the right metal length needed for your bend

4.Flange Width That is Too Narrow

While specifying flange width of your design, make sure it doesn’t go below four times the thickness of the sheet metal. When the flange width is too narrow, the press brake will create unnecessary marks on the sheet metal while bending it, distorting the car part you’re trying to restore.

Having a viable bend design before fabricating metal is a crucial element in your restoration work. Even if you have the best equipment, such as a hydraulic sheet metal brake from Baileigh that can bend materials up to 135°, it will be difficult for you to bend metals into necessary car parts if you made mistakes in the design process. You’ll probably end up doing fabrication revisions and delaying project completion.

If you want to know more about hassle-free bends for car restoration work, feel free to talk to us . Our team will help you find the right equipment for your project.