Deburring removes imperfections in metal parts left behind by mechanical processes like stamping, boring or cutting, or thermal processes like laser cutting. Burrs are raised edges or little blobs of melted and re-hardened metal that must be removed for the part to meet specifications, to fit correctly, and to do the job it was made to do. Finishing is a further process to alter the surface of the metal by polishing it, smoothing out pitting, or removing scaling in order to prepare the piece for coatings or paint.
Both deburring and finishing can be performed manually, and in some cases, still are. But vibratory finishing equipment automates these processes. The benefits of automated deburring and finishing include:
- Consistency – different workers using different tools or with different methods can deburr and finish parts, but it’s unlikely the parts will be of uniform quality.
- Efficiency – consistency decreases the likelihood that the same part will have to be worked on twice. Automated deburring and finishing also expand capacity. Parts can be deburred and finished in large batches, thus saving time. Manual grinding takes time and labor, and slows the fabricating process; as computer numerical control (CNC) lathes and lasers speed up cutting sheet metal into parts, the faster fabricating process runs ahead of manual deburring and finishing steps. Hiring more workers to perform deburring also adds labor costs. Automated deburring and finishing equipment pays for itself in savings after just a few batches of parts.
- Safety- automated deburring and finishing means that workers are not exposed to as many sharp edges. The machines do the work, reducing the incidence of repetitive motion injuries.
- New products and finishes – automation allows shops to offer variations on finishes and work with a broader selection of shapes and sizes of parts. The abrasive media used within deburring and finishing machines can reach all surfaces of oddly shaped small or large parts, removing imperfections from within holes and around awkward curves and folds.
Another benefit of automated deburring and finishing is that it helps shops of all sizes process more parts more quickly, with higher quality and greater consistency of results.
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