Spotlight on Forming in Sheet Metal Fabrication: Part 2

Amada HG 8025 NT Press BrakeThis week, EVS Metal is pleased to publish the second part of our interview with Greg, from our New Jersey sheet metal fabrication facility. 


Q&A with Greg, Forming Engineer, EVS Metal NJ


EVS: How many people are involved with forming processes overall at EVS?

Greg: We have 7 press brake operators, 1 assistant for robots, and I take care of programming and robotic press brake setups, so 9 total.


EVS: Are there different specialties within forming?

Greg: Typically, yes. Usually, there is a programmer, set-up specialists, and operators. Different skill levels within specialties as well. At EVS NJ every operator sets up the machine by himself because the programs I create with Dr.ABE_bend take a lot of the forming difficulty away from operators, leaving them to do more with fine adjustments instead. 


EVS Metal: Are there any certifications or specific knowledge areas required to become an expert in forming?

Greg: Definitely strong math — especially geometry and physics; mechanical understanding is a must. Being open-minded, detail-oriented, creative, very good at troubleshooting and problem solving. Someone who likes a challenge and is able to think “outside of the box” would be a good candidate.


EVS: What types of systems/software/machines are used in forming, and what are they used for?

Greg: We use Sheetworks and AP100 system from Amada with Dr.ABE, Astro-Cam and AR-CAM software to program our manual and robotic press brakes. Our machines are:

  • Amada HDS 1303 x2: most difficult parts (big opening and 10’ bed)
  • Amada FBD1253  x2: medium/high difficulty parts
  • Amada FBD1025 x2: smaller/medium parts, medium-difficulty parts
  • Amada HG8025: smaller/medium parts, medium-difficulty parts
  • Amada HG1003 ATC: prototype work
  • Astro100ME-8025: x3: longer runs, medium-sized parts
  • Astro100MH-1253: longer runs, bigger parts
  • Amada EG6013-AR: small parts robot for smaller and larger qty. 


EVS: Are there common products that are fabricated via forming?

Greg: There are a wide variety of products that can be fabricated via forming. From simple brackets, boxes, and electrical panels, to super-complicated chassis and assemblies.


EVS: What are the most common forming processes completed at EVS?

Greg: Most common are bottom bending, airbending and bumping.


EVS: Are there any special forming processes available at EVS that are fairly unique for the industry or of special interest? 

Greg: Rolling, bumping, wipe forming, embossing, flattening, benching, airbending, bottom bending — we are able to complete a number of processes between our four facilities.


EVS: What was the most complex forming challenge you have encountered? 

Greg: The most complex forming challenges are always related to robotic forming. The actual bending is not always the hardest part. Picking the part up, regripping or stacking them is a super difficult task at times. As for manual brakes, the complexity usually involves finding creative ways to form parts that would generally require custom tooling with standard tooling, or forming complicated parts on a single multi-staged set up to achieve a complete part (the time we did a 30 bender for one of our customers with multiple radiuses comes to mind here).


EVS: What was the largest forming project that EVS has completed, to your knowledge?

Greg: The latest project that comes to mind was a retail SIM card kiosk prototype for a global telecom company. It involved a large number of parts and we were given a super-short lead time. None of it would have been possible without our Amada software (Sheetworks, Dr.ABE_Bend).


About EVS Metal

EVS Metal is an American precision metal fabricator headquartered in Riverdale, NJ. Our machinists and operators utilize the latest technology to cut, bend and finish stand-alone items as well as parts for integration or assembly into more complex products. EVS Metal’s four ISO 9001:2015-certified locations comprise over 250,000 square feet of vertically-integrated manufacturing space and feature the most modern equipment available, from lasers and CNC machining centers to automated powder coating lines.

We serve a diverse customer base across North America, providing a range of services from ITAR-compliant, quick-turn prototypes to high-volume production runs. Request a personalized metal fabrication quote online or call 1-888-9EVSMET to speak with a specialist today.

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