Is Hydroforming Right for Your Next Metal Fabrication Project?

When it comes to aerospace hydroforming, aerospace component manufacturers and their customers often have an interest in the sustainability and efficiency that comes from the hydroforming method. Efficiency and sustainability are tied into aerospace hydroforming when customers are in need of precisely fabricated parts.

Below, we will take a short look at the aerospace hydroforming method and what makes it a sustainable, efficient method when looking to have aerospace components formed.

Aerospace Hydroforming – A Closer Look

Aerospace hydroforming that is often employed by aerospace component manufacturers. It is an efficient method of fabricating highly complex parts that need to meet industry set standards and often have irregular shapes.

So, how does aerospace hydroforming work?

The hydroforming process happens when a hydroforming press is employed. The hydroforming press has a metal blank placed onto the ring and works as the female or upper die element. Once the die is in place, a high pressure hydraulic fluid is used to press the metal blank.

Once the fluid is pressurized in the forming chamber, the punch is raised through the ring that the metal blank was placed on. Since the upper die element is made of rubber, the metal blank will be formed into the proper shape with little to no scratches that you typically see in traditional stamping methods.

From there, the metal blank will then take on the shape of the punch. Once the aerospace hydroforming process is done, the pressure that was present in the forming chamber will be released and the punch is pulled back from the completed part!

Aerospace component manufacturers offer hydroforming services because it is an efficient alternative to other metal fabrication methods. Not only is the method itself efficient, but it provides a number of advantages including:

  • Cost savings: aerospace hydroforming has inexpensive tooling costs and a reduced setup time
  • Materials and general blank thickness can meet specifications for optimal use, also providing more cost savings
  • Conventional methods of fabrication that require multiple cycles can typically be done in one cycle with aerospace hydroforming
  • Irregular and complex shapes can be formed with little secondary finishing needed

Sheet Metal Fabrication for Aerospace

Aerospace component manufacturers often perform sheet metal fabrication for aerospace customers because of the versatility that comes with the material. Since aerospace hydroforming is quite suited to limited runs of metal parts and components that often have irregular or complex shapes, sheet metal fabrication for aerospace parts works well.

Aerospace component manufacturers use thin sheet metal of a variety of materials to fabricate parts. These materials can include:

  • Stainless steel
  • Titanium
  • Cobalt
  • Clad metals
  • Brass
  • Copper
  • Nickel
  • Hastelloys
  • Inconels

The metal variety that manufacturers can work with for aerospace hydroforming also often require little to no further finishing services since hydroforming results in a high quality finish.

The method is overall highly efficient for customers that are looking for precisely made parts with a high variety in potential materials.

Seek Out Experienced Aerospace Component Manufacturers

As a potential customer in the aerospace industry looking for parts to be fabricated in a sustainable and efficient manner, consider looking for experienced aerospace component manufacturers. When it comes to sheet metal fabrication for aerospace, aerospace component manufacturers will have the experience and hands on knowledge to ensure that each part and component meets the industry set standards that it needs to.