Plate rolling is a fabrication method used for rolling metal sheet plates into a desired curved shape, such as cylinders, cones, and arcs. This technique is used by many industries for a variety of applications, such as shipbuilding, aerospace, and automotive manufacturing. To achieve the desired effect, factories use industrial-grade plate rolls – a type of sheet metal fabrication machine.
What is Plate Rolling?
The process begins by taking a large plate of flat sheet metal and feeding it into the powerful rolling machine. The sheet is sandwiched between two or more large rollers, which are then used to bend it into the desired shape as it is fed between the rollers. Multiple pass-throughs may be required to get the sheet into the desired shape, or the machine may focus on a specific section during a pass. However, the machine has the capability to generate angled curves, such as the ones required for conical shapes. The plate roll is powered by a drive system that can be either an electric plate roll or a hydraulic plate roll. This process is overseen by a computer control screen located next to the rollers.
Advantages of Plate Rolls
There are several advantages to using plate rolling for metal forming. First, it is a cost-effective way to bend metal into complex shapes. Since the process is done with a machine, it is much faster and more efficient than manual forming. Additionally, plate rolling can be used to form thicker plates than other methods, such as press brakes. However, this will depend on the size and capabilities of the roller. This makes it ideal for heavier applications, such as shipbuilding and aerospace.
The amount of force can be adjusted to the specific needs of the application, which allows for the creation of parts with different levels of thickness and strength, alongside complex and intricate curved shapes. This can be especially useful for applications that require parts with complex designs, such as pressure vessels and tanks. Usually, materials such as steel, stainless steel and aluminium are used with the machine as they are malleable under force and not structurally brittle. However, the process can form and shape metals such as copper and titanium.
Given the mechanical nature of plate rolling operations, it is a reliable process that produces consistent results. The process is done in a controlled environment, which ensures that each part is consistent and meets the exact specifications. This can be beneficial for applications that require parts with a high degree of accuracy and is more reliable than traditional manual methods.
Safety Considerations with plate rolls
When working with plate rolling machines, there are several safety practices that must be considered. First, the operator should always wear appropriate safety gear, such as eye protection and gloves. Additionally, the machine and its components should be regularly inspected to ensure that everything is in working order. Finally, the operator should be aware of the machine’s capacity and never attempt to roll a plate that is too thick or too large. If your machine is not functioning well or hasn’t been inspected in a while, ACRA Machinery provides industrial machinery maintenance and repair for a variety of sheet metal fabrication machines including plate rolls.
Tips and Techniques for plate rolling
To get the best results when plate rolling, there are several tips and tricks to follow. First, the plate should be placed on the rollers in the correct orientation. This ensures that the plate is bent in the right direction. Additionally, the operator should use a lubricant to reduce friction and make the process easier. Finally, the rollers should be set at the correct speed and pressure to ensure that the plate is bent properly.
Plate rolling is a complex process, but it is an efficient and cost-effective way to create precision parts for industrial applications. The reliability and diverse functionality make it an essential asset to many sheet metal fabrication factories.
Sheet Metal Solutions
Does your warehouse need a plate roll? Or does your plate roll require repair or maintenance? ACRA Machinery supplies industrial sheet metal machinery to cater for all your sheet metal fabrication needs, including plate rolls. Find out more about the Durma Motorised or hydraulic roll plate range. Whether you need slicing, bending, notching or more – ACRA has new and second-hand machinery available for purchase today. Not only that, but we offer maintenance and repair to your industrial machinery as well.