The Relationship Between Sheet Metal Curvature Radius And Plate Thickness
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The Relationship Between Sheet Metal Curvature Radius And Plate Thickness

Views: 659     Author: Site Editor     Publish Time: 2023-06-26      Origin: Site

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1. Understanding Sheet Metal Bending


Brackets, covers, cabinets, chassis, electrical enclosures. The manufacture of these and countless other sheet metal parts seems fairly simple, but achieving part accuracy involves some fairly complex bending calculations. This is because the metal plate elongates when it is bent.


The amount of elongation and the necessary "bending margin" are determined by several factors. These include the workpiece material and thickness, the bending angle and inner radius, the method used to bend the metal, and the often misunderstood K factor, also known as the neutral factor or Y factor.


K Factor

For example, a piece of No. 12 brass or aluminum is about 3-1/2 inches square times 0.083 inches thick. Now, bend it evenly on the edge of the countertop, then the surface contacting the counter will be compressed and its outer surface will be stretched.

bending machine

Somewhere between these inner and outer surfaces, there is an imaginary plane that lies in a transition zone that is neither compressed nor tensioned. This is the neutral axis, and it tends to move toward the inner surface during bending. Therefore, the K factor is the ratio between the position of the neutral axis measured from the inner surface (t) of the elbow and the total material thickness (Mt). Because the Y factor takes into account certain metallurgical properties, it provides a more complex version of the industry-standard K factor. However, it is rarely used.


Assuming that the inner bend radius used is smaller than the material thickness, in our example, the K factor is 0.33 for air bends, 0.42 for bottom bends, and for larger bend radii, both gradually increase to a bend radius of 0.5. The K factor also increases with the increase of harder materials such as steel and stainless steel, but it never exceeds the 0.5 just mentioned.


Tolerance of Curvature And Curvature


So, what about all the other things you see on the manufacturing site? These values are very important for anyone doing manual bending calculations and need to generate an accurate "flat" layout of the 3D part model. Here are some brief instructions that all sheet metal part designers should be familiar with:

bending machine

External curvature: In addition to its position and height, each flange is also defined by the amount of indentation on the vertical and horizontal (X and Y) axes. For example, on a 90° flange, OSSB is equal to the outer diameter. This in turn is equal to the bending radius plus the material thickness.


Bending allowance: Remember the hypothetical neutral line in the K-factor discussion? If you want to "unfold" or lay it flat, this will be the bending allowance. Search for "bending allowance" and you will see it described on many websites as "bending arc length measured along the neutral axis of the material"


Bend discount deduction: These same venues will show that the bend deduction is the difference between the bend allowance and twice the OSSB or the external intake. When flattening a 3D model, this bend deduction is the amount that must be subtracted from the workpiece to account for any stretching.


Other Sheet Metal Design Considerations


In other words, the thickness of the material in any sheet metal part should be the same. They are flat at the beginning, so don't try to design a part with a thickness of 1/16 inch (1.5875mm) in one area and 1/32 inch (0.03125mm) in other areas.


When placing holes, slots, and similar features in a part design, make sure to place them at least 4 times the material thickness from any edge or inner corner. This can be traced back to the entire stretching phenomenon described above. Pasting a round hole closer to the bending line than this, the round hole may be slightly elliptical due to metal deformation.

bending machine

You can freely specify different radii to fit the mating part, to fit the mating part, or where a clear inner corner is needed, but any value you choose should be called on all flanges found on the part. Otherwise, it will mean additional settings and higher parts costs.


Speaking of corners, you should also plan to bend and relieve pressure wherever the two flanges are connected. These are small notches of approximately 0.030 inches (0.762mm) wide to prevent the material from swelling outward at the joint. Many CAD systems are smart enough to create these bend reliefs.


2. The Relationship Between The Radius of Curvature of The Sheet Metal And The Tthickness of The Sheet


The bending radius of the sheet metal is a value required in the sheet metal drawing. It is difficult to determine how large this value is in actual processing. The bending radius of the sheet metal has a certain relationship with the thickness of the material, the pressure of the bending machine, and the width of the lower die groove of the bending die.


The actual experience in sheet metal processing has concluded that when the thickness of the general plate is not greater than 6mm when bending, the inner radius of the sheet metal bending can be directly used as the radius of the plate thickness.


When the plate thickness is greater than 6mm and less than 12mm, the bending radius in the plate is generally 1.25 to 1.5 times the plate thickness. When the plate thickness is not less than 12mm, the bending radius in the plate is generally 2 to 3 times the plate thickness.

bending machine

When the bending radius is R=0.5, the general sheet metal thickness T is equal to 0.5mm. If a radius size larger or smaller than the plate thickness is required, special mold processing is required.


When the sheet metal drawing requires the sheet to be bent at 90°, and the bending radius is particularly small, the sheet should be grooved first, and then the sheet metal should be bent. It can also process the upper and lower molds of special bending machine molds.

bending machine

The bending radius of the sheet metal has a certain relationship with the width of the lower die groove of the bending die.

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