What is Sheet Metal Fabrication?

Sheet Metalworking and Fabrication Explained

What is sheet metal fabrication?  Large subcontract metal fabrication company, Hydram Sheet Metalwork, maintains a number of technical articles to help explain, amongst others, how sheet metal bending works, how powder coating works and how laser cutting works to explain how sheet metal components are fabricated.

Check out the full sheet metal design guide, giving you hints and tips on successful sheet metalworking design to aid manufacturing and reduce costs.

With over 40 years of sheet metalworking experience, Hydram’s metal fabrication experts work in partnership with customers to find the best, cost-effective, manufacturing solutions.

Have you ever wondered how things are made?


Explained:  What is sheet metal fabrication?


Laser cutting sparks

Laser Cutting

Laser cutting metal has been a popular method of sheet metal profiling for over 30 years.  The technology has constantly developed and improved performance and efficiency of the process.

How does laser cutting work? >

Laser cutting service >

TruPunch 5000 with tower

CNC Punching

Computer-controlled mechanical punch presses can profile and form sheet metal rapidly, and the process is a popular sheet metalworking fabrication technique.

Sheet metal punching service >

Tube cutting laser close up

Tube Laser Cutting

Laser cutting metal tube can be achieved with dedicated tube laser machines or flatbed laser cutters with a rotary attachment.  Fabricator Hydram uses a dedicated tube laser machine.

How does tube laser cutting work? >

Tube laser cutting service >

air bending picture

CNC Folding / Panel Bending

Folding sheet metal using a CNC pressbrake is a common sheet metalworking fabrication technique, often operated manually or with a robot.  Dedicated panel bending machines are fully automated sheet metal bending machines.

How does sheet metal bending work? >

Sheet metal bending service >

cnc tube bending machine

Tube Bending

Metal fabricator Hydram uses a dedicated CNC tube bending machine to form metal tube to varying radii and bend axis rotations.  Maximum metal tube diameter handled is 52mm.

Metal tube bending service >

HAAS VF-3 operating in a factory

CNC Milling / CNC Turning

Traditional metal machining using a rotating tool (milling/drilling) or a rotating part (turning) is achieved with modern CNC milling and CNC lathe machinery.  Computer control optimises the process allowing multiple operations to be carried out during a single setup.

CNC machining services >

Folded parts stacked up


Forming sheet metal using dedicated press tooling to force material into shape requires expensive heavy-duty tooling and presses with high tonnage capacity.  Sheet metalworking company Hydram has presses with up to 200 tonne capacity and 200mm stroke.

Metal pressings and presswork service >

cnc tube bending machine

Robot & Manual Welding

Metal fabricator Hydram uses both MIG and TIG welding techniques, programmable robotic MIG welding cells, and manual stud, spot and projection welding.  Certification/ coding to multiple standards.

Welding and fabrication services >

HAAS VF-3 operating in a factory

Powder & Wet Painting

Subcontractor Hydram has four dedicated paint plants.

How does powder coating work? >

Achieving quality powder coating >

Powder coating FAQ >

Metalwork powder coating services >

Metal enclosure product line

Advanced Assembly

Sheet metal cabinets and assemblies are bolted, screwed or bonded together in Hydram’s dedicated assembly area.

Complete sheet metal fabrications >

Sheet metal design

Sheet Metal Component Design

With over 40 year’s experience in sheet metal fabrication, Hydram has put together a design guide for design engineers to consider when working on sheet metal components.

Sheet Metal Component Design Guide >

Hydram quality accreditations

Quality Certification

Sheet metalworking company Hydram is certified to the following quality standards:

  • ISO 9001:2015 Quality Standard
  • ISO 3834-2 Welding Standard
  • BS EN 15085-1 CWRVC Welding Standard
  • EN 17460 / DIN 6701 standard for adhesive bonding in rail industry

Hydram is also certified to:

  • ISO 14001:2015 Environmental Standard
  • ISO 45001:2018 Health and Safety

Full Certification Details >