The automotive industry requires a lot of customized, high-precision metal parts of different sizes and shapes. Automotive metal stamping companies play a crucial role in the automotive value chain, as they use metal stamping techniques to create such metal parts with high accuracy and repeatability cost-effectively.
The quality of automotive stamped parts like car doors, hoods, connectors, etc. all depend on the metal stamping techniques and selection of the material. This article is a complete guide to help you understand how to choose the right metal for automotive stamping.
What is Automotive Stamping?
Automotive stamping refers to the metal stamping process for the automotive industry. It involves operations such as forming, cutting, and shaping metal sheets to create automobile components.
Why is the selection of metal important for Automotive stamping companies?
The metal undergoes a lot of high-pressure forming and cutting operations during the metal stamping process. A metal that cannot sustain such conditions could render the whole process meaningless, wasting resources and money.
The selection of metal also affects the quality of the automotive metal parts and ensures a practical, cost-effective manufacturing process. The appropriate metal for automotive stamping ensures the quality and longevity of the finished product.
Factors that Automotive Metal Stamping Companies must consider selecting the material
Mechanical properties include ductility, tensile strength, and hardness, and need due consideration while making a material choice. For example, soft metals may not be able to withstand the stresses of regular use, and hard metals with less bend rate and machinability would be difficult to form into the desired shape.
Based on their mechanical properties, these are the most popular materials among automotive metal stamping companies:
- Steel: strong, durable, and easy to form.
- Aluminum: lightweight and excellent strength-to-weight ratio
- Copper: Excellent electrical conductivity
The main concern over selecting a metal for automotive parts is that these components are highly prone to corrosion and have a high chance of rusting over time. Corrosion can weaken the metal and reduce the lifespan of the part. Automotive metal stamping companies prevent this and increase the lifespan of an automotive component by choosing a metal with good corrosion resistance like:
- Stainless steel- a corrosion-resistant alloy for automobile parts like exhaust systems.
- Zinc-coated steel or galvanized steel is a popular choice for automotive parts like Engine and under-the-hood components, power steering, brake systems, etc.
- Aluminum- Popular choice for automobile externals.
The ability of a metal to form into the desired shape without cracking or breaking is crucial for automotive stamping companies.
A brittle or hard metal with low formability can easily break during the metal stamping process, rendering it useless.
Some commonly used metals for automotive stamping based on their formability are:
- Stainless Steel.
The strength-to-weight ratio measures how strong a material is with its weight. A high strength-to-weight ratio means that the material is strong but lightweight, making it ideal for automotive applications where weight is a concern.
Some commonly used metals for automotive stamping based on their strength-to-weight ratio include:
- High-Strength Steel
The cost of metal can vary depending on factors such as availability, processing costs, and market demand. When selecting a metal, it’s important to consider how the cost fits within the project’s budget.
Some commonly used cost-effective metals for automotive stamping are:
- Low-Carbon Steel
- Galvanized Steel
Evaluating the factors mentioned in the article helps in selecting the right metal, so you can ensure that your automobile components will be strong, durable, and long-lasting.