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Bigelow's Harman Explains Importance of Cold Forming Parts in "New Normal" Manufacturing Climate

The demand for quality parts that meet strict tolerances and perform reliably is as high as it's ever been.
    SPRINGFIELD, NJ, December 20, 2012 /24-7PressRelease/ -- Today's biggest challenge lies is finding ways to accomplish it more quickly and with greater cost efficiencies. An interview was recently conducted with Brett Harman, President of Bigelow Components, to address these issues and identify viable solutions.

Q: Regardless of shape, material or complexity, it seems that more companies than ever are looking for ways that will deliver a better component for less. One process that's been receiving increased attention is cold forming. In your view what are some reasons for this?

BH: Cold forming offers lots of advantages and virtually no downside. It can produce intricate contours and shapes that cannot be readily fabricated using other manufacturing processes. Cold forming also produces a high quality surface finish and close, repetitive tolerances at high speed.

Q: What about the most critical tolerances? How does cold forming a part compare to machining it?

BH: Critical tolerances can be held more closely with cold forming versus more costly and time- consuming machining. Even more important is the fact that these tolerances are maintained consistently throughout the production process.

Q: How does cold forming affect product performance?

BH: The process actually improves it. Cold forming rearranges the grain structure of the metal to follow the configuration of the finished part. This reduces the potential for fatigue, increases shear and tensile strength, and improves material integrity.

Q: How is the part's surface affected by the cold forming process?

BH: The surface finish is substantially improved when compared to machined surfaces because there are no marks or blemishes caused by turning or grinding. The part's finish can also be improved by relatively simple finishing techniques such as tumbling or deburring.

Q: How significant are cost savings with the cold forming process and why is this possible?

BH: There are many. First, production costs are significantly reduced by the much higher speeds of the cold forming process compared with time-consuming grinding and etching. Speeds can range from 50 to 400 pieces per minute using the cold forming process. In addition, many machined components can be re-designed as cold-formed components for substantial cost savings. Finally, with proper engineering and design, the cold forming process allows the elimination of costly secondary operations, such as brazing, machining and others.

Q: The price of materials can contribute significantly to the cost of a product. How does cold forming affect this?

BH: The cold forming process can result in material cost savings up to 70% because no metal is removed from the finished part, thus avoiding the production of scrap from machining processes such as turning and grinding.

About Bigelow Components Corporation

Bigelow Components Corporation, located in Springfield, NJ has been providing the highest quality parts, innovative solutions and responsive service for more than 50 years. The company provides cold heading and stamping services to manufacturers that require precision custom components for product assembly. For more information, visit www.bigelowcomponents.com or contact Brett Harman at (973) 467-1200 or by email at b.harman@bigelowcomponents.com.


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