Whether you work in the metal fabrication industry yourself, or you use a metal production partner, you’ve probably noticed rising costs and have some pretty expensive metal production projects on your hands. Metal prices have seen a steep increase recently and don’t appear to be going down anytime soon.
So what can you do? Find a new metal production supplier? Write off your metal production project completely? Not so fast. First, consider these four aspects of your metal production project to see where you might be able to save money.
If possible, consider choosing a less-expensive metal. Your metal production partner can help you pick the best, most cost-effective metal for your project. A few things to keep in mind:
- Standard, off-the-shelf materials can always be a cost savings.
- If your metal fabrication project calls for stainless steel, consider specifying 316 over 304.
- Carbon steel is usually the most cost-effective option, while aluminum will always be the highest-cost material.
While powder coating is the optimum finish for a metal fabrication project, it may not always be necessary. Painting or galvanizing is less expensive than powder coating and can be equally effective — depending on what your product is used for and where it is located.
Understand what your metal fabrication piece will be used for, and communicate that clearly to your metal production partner up front. This saves on design costs and helps fabricators provide a more accurate estimate for creating the part you’re looking for.
If you have the ability, create your own shop drawings ahead of time. This cuts down on your metal fabricator’s design time. It also helps to speed production time because materials can be ordered sooner.
Simplify your design. Complex metal fabrication projects or parts can have intricate bends, weld joints that are difficult to reach, and possibly more corners to cope or miter. Many times, intricate designs look nice but don’t add to the overall function of the end product. Making your design as simple as possible helps save money in the fabrication process because it will take less time to produce.
Last-minute design changes, expediting parts, shipping partial orders — these can all add up quickly. Avoid these additional costs by pre-planning carefully.
Place your metal production order as early as possible to give your fabricator time to find the ideal materials at the best pricing. This also helps them fit you into their schedule.
Metal Fabrication On Time & On Budget
At Mid-Atlantic Steel Fabrication, we specialize in a variety of custom steel fabrication processes for our customers across a vast range of industries. From simple components to complex parts and products, we can work with many different types of metal, including steel, stainless steel, aluminum, and copper. To learn more about the type of work we can produce for you, contact us today!