sheet metal fabrication

A majority of people use welding and sheet metal fabrication as interchangeable terms. But only a person familiar with both, like a sheet metal & auto components manufacturer in Faridabad, knows what difference the processes share.

If put in a layman language, welding is joining two or more pieces of metal through fusion. On the other hand, sheet metal fabrication turns flat sheets of steel or aluminum into structures or products. The metal sheets go through cutting, punching, folding, and assembling that transform them into structures.

To begin with, understanding the difference between welding and sheet metal fabrication, let’s take a look at their processes explained.

Sheet Metal Fabrication Process

Fabrication is turning flat sheets of metal into structures. It involves a series of processes like cutting, bending, shaping, and others to form finished products. The end product in the process is ready for installation. 

To help you understand better, here are all the processes involved in fabrication is explained below:

Die-cutting: Cutting a sheet metal by applying sheer force using a pressing die.

Punching: It is a forming process in which a die is forcibly punched on the sheet to create a hole.

Hydroforming: It is a shaping process involving hydraulic pressure to press the die upon the metal sheet. In this process, the die presses the metal sheet to form the desired shape at room temperature. The process is mainly used for ductile materials.

Roll Forming: In the process, mounted rollers are used to bend long metal sheets at desired cross-sections.

Spinning: The formation of axially symmetrical components is done in the process by spinning a disk or tube on a high-speed chuck.

Stamping: It is a hot metal fabrication process performed to achieve the desired shape of the sheet metal. However, the metal sheet is not cut but pressed with a stamp to get the desired shape.

Finishing: The last and the most crucial step of fabrication is finishing.   An extra layer coating on the product makes it rust-resistant, improves surface finish, and gives it a tarnish resistance.

Types of Metals used in Fabrication

Different sheet metal & auto components manufacturer uses different types of metals in the fabrication process, which are as follows:

Steel: The steel metal comes in various types like carbon steel, stainless steel, and others. The metal is known for its durability and strength.

Aluminum: A lightweight metal with good strength. The metal is good for lower temperatures, making it ideal for use in the aerospace and refrigeration industry.

Magnesium: A structural metal with a very low density and excellent stiffness.

Brass: The metal has acoustic properties and is lightweight and corrosion-resistant.

Bronze: With a low melting point and good strength, the metal is used in coins, cookware, and turbines.

Copper: Known for its ductility, malleability, electrical conductivity, and corrosion-resistant.

Welding Process

As stated above, welding is the process of joining two metals by applying heat. The process is also referred to as metal forming. Filler material and heat are used to create a bond between two pieces of metals. It is a part of the fabrication process and is widely used in the fabrication industry.

There are multiple welding techniques used depending on the industrial requirements, like:

Metal Inert Gas (MIG): The welding technique uses a consumable MIG electrode that comes in contact with a metal workpiece and creates an electric arc. The electric arc further generates heat to melt and join two metal pieces.

Tungsten Inert Gas (TIG): In this technique, a non-consumable TIG electrode welds two metal pieces.

Plasma Arc: A non-consumable electrode is placed in a torch to weld metal pieces by separating the plasma arc from the gas envelope.

Oxy-acetylene (OA): Another welding method in which a tank of oxygen and acetylene is combined through a torch nozzle. Further, the flame heats the metal, and simultaneously a filler rod allows metal fusion.

Major Differences Between Welding And Sheet Metal Fabrication

Different Techniques

In sheet metal fabrication, different techniques are used, and welding is one of them. Welding is a single process that comes under the umbrella of fabrication. Moreover, the purpose of welding is to join two or more metals. On the contrary, fabrication has multiple purposes, like cutting the metal into specific dimensions, bending for shaping, and so on.

Different Tools

The process of sheet metal fabrication demands the use of a specific set of tools. The process begins with cutting the metal sheets into the required dimensions and transforming them into metal structures.  Fabricators can use grinders, welds, lathe machines, sheet rollers, and other similar tools to perform the task. On the other hand, the most common tools used in the welding process are power sources, welding clamps, consumable electrodes, auto-darkening helmets, etc.

Different Skills

Both processes require personnel with different skill sets. While sheet metal fabrication is a comprehensive process, welding is just a part of it. Where welders can deal with the welding part, a fabricator has the skills and knowledge to carry the entire process. 

Gear required to perform both the processes

Both the processes involve a certain amount of risk. Therefore, it is important to wear the necessary safety gear to prevent injury and avoid the risk of accidents.

  • Eye protection
  • Auto-darkening helmet with the proper visor
  • Face shields and goggles
  • Hearing protection
  • High-visibility clothing
  • Leather gloves and aprons
  • Respirators
  • Safety-toed footwear

Every sheet metal & auto components manufacturer in Faridabad must pay attention to workplace safety. They must equip workers with all the required safety gear to safeguard their physical health and enhance safety levels in the production unit.


When it comes to welding and sheet metal fabrication, both processes are important. They are used in almost every industry, ranging from housing and construction to automotive and transportation.

The discussion about the difference between welding and metal fabrication ends here. Both the processes should be performed by experts to achieve desired results in the sheet metal fabrication industry. 

We hope that the article helped you get good knowledge about both the processes. If you have any doubts or queries, let us know in the comments, and our experts will help you out. You can share your feedback via comments


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