A variety of forming machines are used to form metals and thermoplastics. The spectrum ranges from presses and bending machines to rolling machines. In addition, there are numerous models within these categories that differ in their specific functionality. For example, companies use special machines without a stamp for hydroforming.
All forming machines are characterized by the fact that they bring the raw part into a desired shape. In this process, the machine does not add anything to the raw part, nor does it remove any material: the shape changes, the weight remains the same. This distinguishes forming machines from other production machines such as milling machines.
Forming machines: These variants exist
Forming machines can be divided into several main categories:
These machine types are each suitable for one or more forming processes. Presses are used, for example, in drop forging, deep drawing and hydroforming. In principle, machine tools can also be equipped with several different tools, so that they combine different forming techniques.
Example: Forming machines in hydroforming
In the innovative process of hydroforming, most companies use forming machines equipped with a hydraulic press. This applies, among other things, to the FormBalancer from FF Fluid Forming GmbH. There are similarities with these forming machines to machines that carry out classic deep drawing. These variants are also based on pressing technology.
However, there is an important difference: the FormBalancer and other machines for hydroforming do not require a tool stamp, this function is performed by an active medium. This increases flexibility and is particularly recommended if companies want to produce prototypes and small series.
Requirements for forming machines
When companies want to purchase a forming machine, numerous aspects deserve attention. Which forming process do you want to use? What kind of components do you want to manufacture? What quantities are you aiming for? Which quality criteria are relevant for factors such as the surface finish?
The FormBalancer from Fluid Forming is recommended, for example, for complex components that companies produce as prototypes or small series. This forming machine proves to be efficient, among other things, in rapid prototyping.
When choosing the right forming machine, cost efficiency plays an important role. The advantage of hydroforming machines is that there is no need to produce a punch. This speeds up the preparation process and reduces costs.
Another criterion can be the construction. Compact machines take up little space. At best, forming machines can be used to perform a wide range of tasks, while multifunctional machines save the purchase of additional systems. With the appropriate special equipment, the FormBalancer can be used for forming metal blanks and tubes.
Frequently asked questions about forming machines
These machines implement one or more forming processes such as deep drawing, bending or hydroforming. The term forming machine is a generic term: there are numerous variants!
Presses can be classified in many ways. An important difference is whether the presses are displacement, energy or force-bound. Power presses include hydraulic presses found in many forming machines. Hydraulic presses provide valuable services in various forming processes.