As with any process of shaping metals and alloys, there are advantages and disadvantages to consider with aluminum alloy forgings. In general, aluminum alloy is forged using heat, but it can also be done in what is considered a cold process, where the alloy is not heated prior to applying the force.
There are several types of processes used to make aluminum alloy forgings. For high volume types of orders for parts and components, drop forging is one of the most common methods. This uses precisely timed, controlled blows to the aluminum work-piece by drop hammers, which force the aluminum into a die and create the final shape.
Press forging is another common option, which creates aluminum alloy forgings through the use of large press machines that are hydraulically controlled. In this process, the force is applied continuously to the work-piece, not with the individual drop hammer blows.
There are few disadvantages to the aluminum forging process when completed by an inexperienced metal forging company. Most of these types of issues occur when quality control is not maintained in the process, which can allow the die to shift, overheating of the aluminum stock causing structural issues in the alloy, or issues with incorrect equipment setup that prevents full shaping of the forged part due to incorrect pressure or force.
Selecting forging over extrusion, machining, or other options in manufacturing parts results in stronger end products that do not have the internal stress issues found with other types of aluminum part production. This is a fast production option, making it ideal when turnaround for large orders is a consideration.
This is a cost-effective way to create even complex shapes in aluminum alloy parts, and it will not require the number of secondary operations, such as deburring, grinding, and stress relieving options that are required with other manufacturing methods.
Aress is a leader in aluminum alloy forgings, providing precision, quality controlled forging operations for customers around the world.