Extrusion & Fabrication: Why Deburring is an Important Step

Deburring ServicesCreating custom aluminum extrusions is a great way to design the exact product or part that you want without wasting a lot of time and money on secondary operations. In most cases, the specific patterns and nuances that you want in your designs can be engineered into the die or profile to expedite extrusion and fabrication. However, there are still some instances where operations, such as sawing and deburring, are required. Aluminum fabrication shops can take care of these details for you to ensure a well-made finished product. The one stop shop fabrication opportunity available at Silver City Aluminum helps to do all of this and more, while reducing your lead time considerably.

What are Burrs?
While most people who work with manufactured parts have heard the term deburring, most are not aware of what a “burr” is and why it needs to be removed. Every time you do any type of fabrication, such as cutting or punching, little burrs or sharp edges can form. These tiny pieces can become a potential liability, either to the integrity of the finished product, or as a safety issue for the end-user. This is why you often see a combination of sawing and deburring or punching and deburring mentioned by the manufacturer, as it is a good idea to provide deburring services after any type of extrusion and fabrication.

There are different types of deburring machines that are used to remove these edges, depending on the size and method that you want used. A one stop shop fabrication facility, such as Silver City Aluminum, often includes deburring as part of the process in their aluminum fabrication shops to ensure a smooth and safe finished product every single time. While there is no industry standard that defines what makes a product truly “burr free”, it is important to work with a manufacturer who takes pride in delivering a quality result.

Types of Deburring Processes
Silver City Aluminum provides deburring services as a standard part of the process after all of the punching and fabrication has been completed. While most of the burrs that you would see on other types of products created using methods other than extrusion and fabrication are eliminated by design, there can still be a few small burrs left behind due to the materials being used. This is just one of the many measures we employ to ensure quality control and client satisfaction.

  • Vibratory Deburring – One of the techniques that we use for deburring is known as vibratory deburring. Our technicians use a large, vibrating and fully automated tumbler encasement to get the job done. Porcelain media is used inside to effectively remove the burrs from the parts and products as they are all moved and vibrated around together inside of the encasement. This provides great results without damaging or scratching the materials themselves.
  • Tumbler Deburring – This method is very similar to the vibratory deburring, as the deburring occurs inside of an encasement with moving media. However, the big difference here is that the tumbler is moved continuously for a set amount of time at 360 degrees in order to achieve success. So it is more of a tumbling than the vibrating that gets the deburring work done. The amount of time depends upon the size and shape of the piece, according to the settings prescribed by our skilled technicians.

Different types of burrs that can form on extrusion and fabrication pieces will depend upon the type of work that has been done on them. For example, a thermal burr describes a burr that occurs during laser cutting. It is sometimes referred to as either a dross or a slag. This type of burr can be reduced by making improvements to the way that the lasers cut the metal. Other types of burrs include scallops or “nibble marks,” which typically form on the vertical edge of the piece and are created during the repetitive motion of punching. True burrs should only be found on the surface work. Each type will require different methods for deburring at the one stop shop fabrication shop to remove them.

Creating Quality Results
The biggest reason why manufacturers choose to provide secondary services, such as sawing and deburring, is to create the best possible, highest quality end result. Aluminum fabrication shops that have many years of experience working with extrusion and fabrication won’t require as much deburring as others that may be unfamiliar with the methods or the materials. However, it still pays to deburr your products and pieces with every run just to ensure that you are creating quality results. Products that have been deburred are safer and increase safety for handlers and end users. Finishings, such as paint and powder coatings, will adhere better to products that have been deburred.

To learn more about all of our options for extrusion and fabrication at our one stop shop fabrication facility at Silver City Aluminum, give us a call at 508-542-7200. Our team of highly trained and experienced engineers and technicians can help you choose the best methods for custom aluminum extrusion and standard extrusion development available to suit your needs. Call today for a FREE estimate or to ask questions about our services.