When you think of metal plated pieces, be it the chrome on a slot machine, or the delicate tools used by the dentist to clean your teeth, smoothness is often one of the first things to come to mind. All metal objects start our rough and get finer and finer with metal polishing. Metal polishing helps the object become smoother taking it one step closer to the finished product. In our two part series on metal polishing we’ll talk about the two types of services offered by Bend Plating – automated metal polishing with robots and manual or hand polishing.
Automated Metal Polishing
Automated metal polishing has it’s place in the finishing industry. Currently only about 10% of metal finishing shops use robots and provide automated metal finishing services. Automated metal finishing with robots is ideal for large volumes of work, as hand polishing is very labor intensive. Automated robots can polish pieces ranging in size and shape, which makes it a great alternative to hand polishing.
When it comes to speed and efficiency, robotic metal polishing has a distinct advantage over hand polishing. Automated robots are programmed to specially polish the metal parts. At Bend Plating, we’ve built our own tooling for the polishing robots and completed our own programming. For large scale projects, automated metal polishing with robots has many advantages, including:
- Handles large volume projects with ease
- Polishing raw metals, including steel in different steps
- Decreases manual labor, which saves time and money
- When a robot doesn’t understand complex geometry, hand polishing can be used to touch up after the automation finishes
- Blasting and grinding by robots allow for texture to be applied during the polishing process
- Removes burrs, sharp edges and fins from metal parts
- Automated robots can work long hours without fatigue
- Quicker turnaround compared to hand polishing
Metal polishing is a repetitious, tedious job that is ideally suited for automated robots. Robots provide consistency and precision in a fraction of the time of manual polishing. Robots apply just the right amount of pressure, which results in evenly polished metal parts. Automated metal polishing saves time and money while increasing quality, but it’s not to say that there isn’t a time and place for hand polishing, as well.
Contact Bend Plating for more information about automated metal polishing with robots and check back soon for the second part of our series. Next time we’ll talk about the advantages of hand polishing.