Rider Tool Blog

welding

How to weld aluminium

A lightweight, thin metal, aluminium is commonly used in welding workshops. Welding aluminium needs to be done at low temperatures. A reactive material, this metal forms an oxide layer when exposed which could be tricky as this results in porous welds. 

Welding any material can be a challenging process, especially lightweight materials. This requires the utmost precision to ensure a strong bond. In order to successfully weld aluminium, you need to assemble the right tools, exercise caution and patience and, gain experience. 

Assemble your tools

You will need:

  • A Tungsten Inert Gas welder with AC capability (not only DC). This type of welder uses a tungsten electrode and an inert gas to shield the welding area. 
  • An aluminium filler rod. This tool is needed to bond the two pieces. Make sure that the rod is free of rust or dirt as this may lead to a weaker weld.
  • A canister of argon gas. The gas’s purpose in the welding process is to shield.
  • Protective clothing. Opt for a 100% cotton long sleeve shirt and long pants with no cuffs. 
  • Use safety equipment. You’ll need a heavy welding helmet, a thick pair of gloves and a respirator. 

Get your workspace ready

  • Clean away the aluminium oxide. Aluminium forms a thin coat of aluminium oxide on its exterior over time. This melts at a much higher temperature. You’ll need to do this mechanically by using a wire-brush, a grinder or filing away the oxides.  
  • Clean the filler rod. Use an abrasive cleaning pad with acetone to ensure the rod is free from contaminants. 
  • Clamp your workpieces together as tightly as possible
  • Preheat the aluminium workpiece. You can heat your workpiece by placing it directly into an oven or by using a propane torch. Benchmark a temperature between 300 degrees Fahrenheit and 400 degrees Fahrenheit.

Make sure that your workspace is ventilated and a cool environment.

  • Always keep a fire extinguisher on hand. 

Get welding!

  • Set your welder’s amperage. Aim for 1 amp per 0.001 inch of your workspace’s thickness. It is recommended to set the welder’s amperage to a higher notch than you expect to need and then to tone the current back down with your foot pedal. 
  • Place your tools and workspace into position. Extend the tungsten electrode by no more than diameter of your torch’s nozzle. Press the button on the torch and use the foot pedal.
  • Create the puddle. Begin melting the workpiece until you create an adequately sized puddle no wider than the diameter of your filler. Add the filler rod to fill in the joint and then move onto the next portion of the weld. Complete this process until the weld is complete. 

For more information on welding, contact us today! 

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custom metal fabrication

5 misconceptions about custom metal fabrication

A new on-demand metalworking project can be intimidating in many ways. From finding a partner who understands your unique project’s requirements to budget, time and quality restraints, it is important to separate the facts from fiction and to be able to identify the following five misconceptions when it comes to custom metal fabrication

  • Mechanical engineering isn’t necessary 

A design-engineering collaboration is the first essential building block for a successful custom metal fabrication project. Before a design heads into fabrication, you need to ensure that the correct pieces are in place to translate the metal design into the various components. Following this, the visualization process can begin. 

A custom steel product project often begins in the design process, moves onto the manufacturing design process, which is followed by product design, engineering, prototyping and lastly, manufacturing. 

Industry leaders often advise using mechanical engineers in the metal fabrication process. 

  • Their products must be as good as their professional presentations

A sophisticated, professional PowerPoint presentation pitch does not represent a quality custom metal fabrication project. Do your research; cross-check with multiple references, meet with the operations team and request a site tour – take note of the condition of the facility’s equipment. 

  • The lowest bid will be the more cost-effective option

The cost of manufacturing the project is one of the major factors you’ll always need to consider. You need to view the cost of the entire value chain in order to avoid unexpected incurring costs when budgeting solely on the supplier’s quote. You need to go through each quote with a fine-tooth comb; some metal fabrication companies may offer a low manufacturing quote but down the line, incorporate unexpected fees and charges. 

  • Galvanization is an expensive option

With recent advances in galvanization, it has become an increasingly popular (and affordable) component of custom metal fabrication. This process ensures that every area of the steel is coated, and the final product requires very little maintenance, saving money in the long run. 

Before commencing with the galvanization, your supplier should inform you of the potential cost issues, the strain-age embrittlement, working parts with undue friction or, an insufficient zinc coating. 

  • Professional metal fabricators do not need to institute regular product inspections 

You need to find a supplier who offers quality control experts. Would they be willing to work with third-party inspectors? It makes more sense to maintain regular quality control over time than to be faced with massive repair job down the line. 

Partner with Rider Tool and Manufacturing Company and allow us to steer you through your custom metal fabrication process to reach your end goal. Contact us today for more information. 

 

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quality control metal fabrication

5 Benefits of Quality Control in Metal Fabrication

Quality control is a non-negotiable element in all manufacturing processes. We can’t speak for other industries, but as a business in the field of metal fabrication, we understand the particular importance of quality control. From our point of view, quality control brings the following five primary benefits, which creates a win-win situation for us and all our clients and their stakeholders.

First and Foremost – Safety!

The main outcome of excellent quality control is increased safety – both in the manufacturing process and the final product itself. If our workmanship is good, and if the materials are impeccable, resulting in a final product that is made to exacting standards, it will translate into many years of safe use for the customer.

Quality control over the fabrication and installation processes also secures the safety of our engineers, technicians and operators, as well as our clients.

Ensuring Strength and Good Functionality

The metal industry has more variables than many may believe. Steel is never just steel; there are many varieties of different alloy compositions, strengths and qualities. Our quality control standards begin at the selection of materials, guiding our acquisition of only the best steel from trusted suppliers. This means high quality and strength in the end product.

Quality control also dictates the process of building a particular piece of equipment commissioned by the client. We need to ensure that it is made to exact specifications and that the finished tool will do exactly what is required both effectively and efficiently. This involves a series of careful checks, inspections and tests throughout the job’s duration.

Consistency

It doesn’t do us or our clients any good to do one excellent job followed by others that are mediocre or poor, or simply of differing quality. Materials and processes must be standardized to ensure that everyone benefits from exactly the same high level of workmanship and materials, regardless of the specifics of the job. A steady quality control protocol ensures this ongoing consistency.

Repeat Business and Good Customer Relationships

It’s simple: satisfied customers will keep coming back and/or they will recommend you to others. The more consistently satisfactory work you deliver, the more likely you are to bring those clients back. The more you work with them, the more familiar you will become with their needs, and the more able you will be to meet them.  

Reduced Maintenance Costs

Quality control leads to the production of well-made products that will operate effectively for years to come, requiring fewer repairs and maintenance. During the fabrication process, it is worth taking the time and care to smooth out any wrinkles, so as to ensure that you won’t have to patch up any faults later.

Rider Tool and Manufacturing Co. takes quality control very seriously. Are you looking for quality, custom-made, fabricated metal products? Contact us and see what we can do for you.

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fabricated industrial equipment

How to Achieve a Successful Fabrication Field Installation

The onsite installation of fabricated industrial equipment is a service that is in considerable demand among our clients. It has tremendous benefits for the client because it enables the building and installation of their equipment by a single service provider, cutting out any need for a long chain of contractors that could potentially break down at the weakest link.

Because field installation is such a complex process, it requires a few key elements to work in tandem to make it successful.

Expertise

First off, not to put too fine a point on it, you need people who know what they’re doing. From the very beginning, even as the various components are being planned, you need an expert team that understands the materials involved, the client’s needs, the processes required to fill the brief, the logistics necessary to move the components to site and what is needed to assemble and install the end product, as efficiently as possible.

Quality Control

As important as expertise is an absolutely rock solid quality control protocol. The entire value chain, including labour, planning, parts, materials, transport and installation, must be monitored under a unifying, end-to-end quality control procedure. This ensures that each and every stage of the process is up to standard in its own right, and it also maintains consistent quality throughout the job as a whole. This is vital when working on a project with any number of variables, becoming all the more important as complexity increases.

Clear Communication

As with any value chain, field installation requires clear and unmistakable communications between all role players, both internally and between the client and service provider.

Logistical Planning

The way a job is carried out depends not only on the specifics of the job itself, but also on the distances between the fabricator’s premises and the installation site, the number, size and weight of the components involved as well as the type of transport needed. The fabricator may have to set a limit on the distances they are willing to travel to do the installation. It may be necessary, for example, to serve clients only within a 500-mile radius. Anything beyond the designated limit could make the costs in outlay, transport and manpower unfeasible.

Keeping it Simple

Simplicity is the key to handling complexity. Whatever steps can be eliminated without adversely affecting the outcome should be bridged or dispensed with. This is why Rider Tool and Manufacturing Co. provides an end-to-end fabrication and field installation service that cuts out any intermediate steps and players. By cutting down on the variables, we provide a more streamlined service that makes the client’s life easier.

Contact us to discuss your equipment manufacture and installation requirements.

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Stainless Steel

Stainless Steel – Long-Term Value that Beats the Initial Cost of Investment

Stainless steel is the go-to metal for most metal fabrication projects, and is the number one choice that the majority of contract manufacturing companies will recommend to their clients. Below, we take a look at why stainless steel provides such impressive long-term value and how this value makes it worth the initial cost of investment. 

 

It is Resistant to Corrosion

 

This fact is undoubtedly the main reason why stainless steel is so popular in the mechanical engineering sector. Due to the fact that it is corrosion-resistant, it can also be used in a wide variety of industries, all the while promising maximum durability. 

 

It is Eco-Friendly

 

Stainless steel is a sustainable metal that is 100% recyclable. Nowadays, it is important that every company pays attention to its carbon footprint; making every effort possible to reduce it. Stainless steel is the ‘greenest’ choice that you can make for your metal fabrication projects. 

 

It Is Resilient

 

You can expose stainless steel to both extremely high and extremely low temperatures without having to worry about damage. Therefore, it can be used to create products that may be exposed to these temperatures on a regular basis, such as pressure valves. 

 

It is Easy to Work With

 

Custom metal fabrication experts should have no issue working with stainless steel. In fact, as long as they have the right tools and equipment on hand, stainless steel is one of the easiest metals to weld, stamp and cut. 

 

It Is Hygienic

 

Keeping stainless steel products and surfaces clean is rather effortless. This means that it is ideal for use in industries where hygiene is of the utmost importance, such as the food industry. 

Here at Rider Tool & Manufacturing Co., we specialize in custom metal fabrication and stainless steel fabrication. For more information about our services, do not hesitate to get in touch. 

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