You must have JavaScript enabled in your browser to utilize the functionality of this website. Similar tools sell for over $500, but our 18 in.-long sheet metal fabrication kit is the affordable bead roller kit for auto body workers.
Professional Sheet Metal Fabrication (Motorbooks, 2013) is the number one resource for sheet metal workers old and new.
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By clicking Confirm bid, you are committing to buy this item from the seller if you are the winning bidder and have read and agree to the Global Shipping Program terms and conditions - opens in a new window or tab. By clicking 1 Click Bid, you commit to buy this item from the seller if you're the winning bidder. This is a private listing and your identity will not be disclosed to anyone except the seller. Make your own wheel tubs, battery trays, dashboards, fire walls, floor pans, and other sheet metal parts and accessories. Join veteran metalworker Ed Barr as he walks you through the ins and outs of planning a sheet metal project, acquiring the necessary tools and resources, doing the work, and adding the perfect finishing touches for a seamless final product.
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Otherwise, they can transform perfectly good sheet metal into scrap with astonishing speed and efficiency. Looked like it was extremely rough handled from the manufacturer to the store.Available at the store, no need to orderQuality mandrel wheels from the metal used. Fortunately, once you understand the basics of shaping sheet metal, its responses to your input will be less mysterious, so progress will come quickly—you will not need an arduous seven-year apprenticeship to start seeing results and finding satisfaction in your work. Return policy is 90 days, ease of return to storeCons:Better companies sell it a little cheaper from what I later researched.
For the average person interested in repairing rust spots and making a few patch panels for a historic vehicle, for example, a few basic shaping exercises will endow most enthusiasts with the confidence to move ahead with their intended project.One overriding principle to keep in mind when working with sheet metal is that you often trade thickness for surface area as you shape the metal.
Sometimes you increase the surface area, or stretch the metal, making it longer and thinner.
Other times you will decrease the surface area, often called shrinking or upsetting, making the metal shorter and thicker.
If you were to mash down with your thumb in the middle of a pie crust, for example, you know instinctively that the crust would get very thin under your thumb as the dough compressed. If you mashed the crust a few times in close proximity, the entire crust would spread out ever so slightly as a result. Would take on re-enforcing it to use unless you can weld, don't mind voiding the warranty, and have a mechanical aptitude. Metal doesn’t behave exactly like a crust, of course, but I think this image makes it easy to understand how to change the shape of metal by influencing its thickness.Bending Sheet MetalMetal can be shaped without changing its thickness as well, such as when you bend it in a vise. The bend could be sharp, like when you hammer a piece of metal over at 90 degrees, or the bend could be gradual, like when you bend metal around a large pipe. Practiced on scrap sheetmetal to find it's limits, as long as you don't go over the rated thickness it works well. Frame tends to flex on thicker material or if you go too fast, keep the speed down and it will make nice straight, crisp beads.
According to Butler, shape and form were used by men such as Scott Knight and Red Tweit at the now defunct California Metal Shaping to differentiate between two distinct modes of working.


Out of respect for the tradition of shaping started at California Metal Shaping, and in an effort to develop standardized terminology among metal shapers, Butler continues to use the terms.
I, too, will use shape to refer to a process involving a thickness change and form to refer to a process that does not involve a thickness change.To illustrate the idea of the relationship between the thickness and length or surface area of a piece of metal, I have taken three identical 4-inch lengths of mild steel square stock and heated two of them to make them easier to shape. Obviously, the upset piece got shorter and thicker, whereas the opposite is true of the stretched piece. Sheet Metal Fabrication Kit:I will be using this for auto sheetmetal work and occasional HVAC. Keep these simple principles in mind as you begin shaping metal; they will help you achieve the results you want and hopefully answer some of your questions as you grow in your craft.
Thus, whenever metal is sandwiched forcefully between a hammer and dolly or between two hammering dies in metal shaping machine, we can expect the metal to be squeezed thinner directly at the point of contact.
The shafts were not concentric as received so I turned them on my HF (of course) mini lathe, now they are almost perfect.
Likewise, we can expect an increase in surface area because that squeezed metal must go somewhere—it will compress to a degree, but any metal that does not compress will squeeze out to the sides around the point of impact. The frame of this tool will have to be beefed up if it will be used with heavier sheet metal, but it is OK on 18 gauge if you're careful. There are a few exceptions to the thickness versus surface area equation, but do not be concerned with those now.
For the demonstration, I have selected a hammer with a polished crowned face and a 7-inch diameter 20-gauge steel panel. Lay the panel exterior side down on a blemish-free hard surface, and work your way around the panel with light, overlapping hammer blows beginning in the center.
Just like your finger in the hypothetical piecrust, the hammer mashes the panel so that it conforms to the profile of the hammer’s face.
As you progress from the center out, you displace a miniscule amount of the unworked metal to the outside as you go.
By the time you’ve worked your way to the edge of the panel, you may have lost your mind, your elbow may never be the same, you’ll have a curved panel like the one in the Image Gallery, and most importantly, you will forever be able to predict exactly what will happen when you hammer sheet metal against a hard surface.
You would get the same result by hammering a panel with a flat hammer over a rounded stake as well, only the panel would curve away from you as you progressed rather than toward you.Stretching and Shrinking MetalYou will be pleasantly surprised by the degree to which you can shape metal in a controlled manner simply by thinking in terms of its thickness versus its surface area. To explore this point further, draw a relaxed S curve 14 inches long onto a piece of cardboard or thick paper and cut it out.
I am using a piece of annealed aluminum sheet in the demonstration because it is easy to form. Meanwhile, the rounded edges of the head leave fewer hammer marks than would be the case with a chisel pointed hammerhead, which would mar and possibly cut through the metal. Because you have lengthened the flange you have been hammering, the metal on the adjacent leg begins to curve in response to the added length. If more passes are needed, change the angle at which the hammer face meets the stretched flange to prevent over thinning the metal. As soon as you feel you understand the stretching process, turn your attention to the opposite end of your test piece, which will need shrinking.Shrinking is always more difficult than stretching. One time-honored way of shrinking sheet metal is to create crimps—also called tucks or puckers—in the area needing to be shrunk and hammering the folds of metal flat, thereby upsetting the metal into itself. The best results are obtained when the tucks are restrained in such a way that they cannot simply unfold when they are struck.
These resembled blacksmith tongs, having one single jaw straddled by a double jaw.Tucking tools may be hand-held or mounted in a vise, depending how resilient your metal is. For this exercise you want the tucks to rise up on the topside of the flange so that you can hammer them down against a flat surface.
This decision will be based solely on which orientation gives you the most advantageous position for hammering the tucks flat.


In this demonstration the crimps were easily created by hand with a tucking tool and then hammered flat against a metal surface with a rawhide mallet.
When cold-shrinking, or shrinking without heat, you will be less likely to stretch the metal accidently if either your hammer or your work surface is softer than the metal work piece.On the S-curve panel, create a single crimp and first try holding the metal firmly against a hard surface by hand while you hammer the pucker flat.
If the crimp wants to unfold, clamp the panel to a table on each side of the crimp so that the metal has no choice but to upset when you hammer it. If you lack a suitable table, clamp a flat steel bar or piece of angle iron to your panel straddling the pucker.
Clamp the piece in one of the ways just described, heat the crest of the crimp until it’s a dull red, and then gently hammer it flat with a steel hammer. The heated spot in each case will be softer than the colder surrounding metal and will readily upset or shrink. Because the metal will be soft while it is hot, you will not need to hit the metal very hard—the blow is similar to driving a tack.
If you hit the metal too hard you will compress and therefore stretch it, which is the opposite of what you are trying to do. Consequently, the adjacent leg of the panel curves toward the flange you have just shortened because of the pulling action the shrinking induces.The process of tuck shrinking you used on the S-curve panel is useful for shrinking metal when you do not have access to more elaborate machines for the same work. If possible, try tuck shrinking first with annealed aluminum because this soft metal responds so well to coldshrinking. Create a crimp in the edge of a test piece at least an inch long either by hand or using a homemade vicemounted tucking tool.
Now lay the panel down on a hard surface and begin hammering the pucker flat with a plastic hammer, starting with one hit on the outer end of the tuck, then back to the origin of the tuck, and finally working your way out to the edge. The traditional way to shrink a tuck is to start at the origin of the tuck and move toward the edge. Ryan Heller, a former student of mine, suggested an alternative method to me two or three years ago, and I think it works better, however. Hitting the end of the tuck first creates a tiny cul-de-sac into which you can chase the rest of the tuck. By hitting the outer end first, you work-harden the end of the tuck ever so slightly so that it is less likely, in my opinion, to unfold as you hammer the rest of the tuck. Whatever sequence of hammer blows you follow, remember that you are just flattening the raised fold of the tuck to upset the metal against the resistance offered by the wrinkled sides of the tuck and the work surface. You should not hit the metal so hard that it is compressed against the table and therefore stretched. Plastic hammers don’t have a lot of uses, but their lack of mass and soft faces are easy on annealed aluminum. Experiment with tucks on the inside of the panel, which are shrunk against the table, and tucks on the outside of the panel, which may be shrunk against a stake. If your tucks try to unfold, try supporting the back side of your tuck against a hollowed out stump or concave depression in a piece of wood. The curvature of the wood offers additional support to prevent the tuck from unfolding.If you are working with steel for your tuck-shrinking exercise, you should be prepared to try the stump technique just described or heat shrink the tuck. Cold-shrinking is certainly possible with steel, but the puckers left by your tucking tool are much more likely to unfold as you work them than if they were of aluminum. Simply heat the end of the tuck until it’s red hot and gently hammer it about halfway down.



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