How can i copy a metal part?

Sheet Metal Fabrication techniques, questions and help. "Tricks of the Trade"

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marcofsiny
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How can i copy a metal part?

Post by marcofsiny » Mon Feb 27, 2017 1:05 pm

I have a piece of metal about 1/4" wide mainly that bolts to a cars valve cover. The part has a few 90* bends to make humps for mounting clips, a section to hold spark plug wires and some odd angles. The part is about 5 inches long (almost shaped like a cross) in its bent form maybe,,,but if i wanted to trace it onto flat paper i could hammer it totally flat, lay it on paper and draw around it to get the total length and a bending pattern. This would wreck the part i have which is somewhat hard to find.
What i tried was holding paper against each bend and cut it with scissors trying to keep the paper from sliding off. That didnt work well. Then i tried a paper plate which was firmer but kept pulling away as i made each bend.
Im thinking maybe i could try a thinner metal to bend along with my part? I think a soda can might be too springy?
Any ideas?

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warmstrong1955
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Re: How can i copy a metal part?

Post by warmstrong1955 » Mon Feb 27, 2017 1:23 pm

Try the attached.
You can measure the formed part, as is, and develop a flat pattern.

Bill
__Bend-O-Matic Calculator.xls
(47 KiB) Downloaded 98 times
EDIT: When I saved this file, from .xlsx (2010) to .xls (2003) , it had a couple glitches.
Those are fixed in the file below.
If you saved this one....can it, and use the one below.

:? Bill
Last edited by warmstrong1955 on Mon Feb 27, 2017 9:37 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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marcofsiny
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Re: How can i copy a metal part?

Post by marcofsiny » Mon Feb 27, 2017 7:16 pm

Thanks for the quick response but i have no clue how to use that program. I opened it and didnt understand a thing. :(
Im a bent paper kind of guy.

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warmstrong1955
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Re: How can i copy a metal part?

Post by warmstrong1955 » Mon Feb 27, 2017 8:45 pm

Here's an example. (See attached)
FSS Actuator Bracket.pdf
(17.49 KiB) Downloaded 88 times
__Bend-O-Matic Calculator.xls
(64.5 KiB) Downloaded 72 times
Using the drawing made by measuring the formed part,(upper left) and then entered into the excel sheet, I develop the flat pattern shown in the drawing.(Lower right)
Dim's from the excel worksheet for the flat pattern are calc'd automatically, and hi-lited in blue. Shown, and numbered on the flat pattern drawing in red.
Enter only in yellow hi-lited cells.

Normally, I round off the dim's to fractional on the flat pattern. I didn't for this to make it easier to understand....I hope. :)

Take a look....let me know if that helps.

Bill
Today's solutions are tomorrow's problems.

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ctwo
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Re: How can i copy a metal part?

Post by ctwo » Mon Feb 27, 2017 9:07 pm

You might be able to put masking tape on the part, trim the edges, then peel off.
Standards are so important that everyone must have their own...
To measure is to know - Lord Kelvin
Disclaimer: I'm just a guy with a few machines...

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BigDumbDinosaur
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Re: How can i copy a metal part?

Post by BigDumbDinosaur » Tue Feb 28, 2017 2:37 am

warmstrong1955 wrote:Try the attached.
You can measure the formed part, as is, and develop a flat pattern.

Bill

__Bend-O-Matic Calculator.xls

EDIT: When I saved this file, from .xlsx (2010) to .xls (2003) , it had a couple glitches.
Those are fixed in the file below.
If you saved this one....can it, and use the one below.

:? Bill
Please be careful with passing around Microsoft Office files. They can, and not infrequently, do carry viruses.
————————————————————————————————
Science makes it known. Engineering makes it work.

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warmstrong1955
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Re: How can i copy a metal part?

Post by warmstrong1955 » Tue Feb 28, 2017 8:40 am

BigDumbDinosaur wrote: Please be careful with passing around Microsoft Office files. They can, and not infrequently, do carry viruses.
Careful getting on the Internet BDD. It can, and frequently, carries viruses.

:wink:
Today's solutions are tomorrow's problems.

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ctwo
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Re: How can i copy a metal part?

Post by ctwo » Tue Feb 28, 2017 11:55 am

Hi Bill. Thanks for the file. Did you script it personally? I'll have to get some time to study how to use it, but I really love Excel and it's application to machining.
Standards are so important that everyone must have their own...
To measure is to know - Lord Kelvin
Disclaimer: I'm just a guy with a few machines...

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warmstrong1955
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Re: How can i copy a metal part?

Post by warmstrong1955 » Tue Feb 28, 2017 12:05 pm

ctwo wrote:Hi Bill. Thanks for the file. Did you script it personally? I'll have to get some time to study how to use it, but I really love Excel and it's application to machining.
You're welcome CTWO!
Yeah, my own creation. I made it a long time ago to save some time on figuring out flat patterns so I could get a drawing to the plate shop for them to burn & brake parts.
Saves some time over the old fashioned way, although, I did have one programmable calculator with the formula in it. It was only good for one bend though.

Wonderful tool Excel, for any kind of metal working or mechanical work!
I have others I've made.

:)
Bill
Today's solutions are tomorrow's problems.

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warmstrong1955
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Re: How can i copy a metal part?

Post by warmstrong1955 » Tue Feb 28, 2017 1:39 pm

Here's a couple more samples, less complex:
Angle Bracket.pdf
(10.94 KiB) Downloaded 82 times
U-Bracket.pdf
(12.63 KiB) Downloaded 59 times
Using the Bend-O-Matic for the 90 degree Angle Bracket:
(Note the dim's required are in red on the drawings)
-Row 3, enter the plate thickness, Inside rad of bend, bend angle, and the Length of 'L1'
-Row 10, plate thickness should automatically be there, Enter the inside rad of bend, and bend angle at '0', since there is only one bend,enter the length of 'L2'.
Boom. There is your flat pattern. From datum, to first brake line, to the end of the plate.

For the U Bracket, repeat as above.
Flat pattern done....like falling off a piece of cake....or something like that.....
90 Degree Bracket.xls
(38 KiB) Downloaded 54 times
I make these Excel things, cause I'm in a hurry....and....lazy I suppose... ;)

:)
Bill
Today's solutions are tomorrow's problems.

Russ Hanscom
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Re: How can i copy a metal part?

Post by Russ Hanscom » Tue Feb 28, 2017 5:53 pm

For odd angles or the computer challenged, I have had success making patterns using light cardboard and tape.

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marcofsiny
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Re: How can i copy a metal part?

Post by marcofsiny » Wed Mar 01, 2017 7:03 am

Thanks for the program but i ended up using masking tape. I thought it would stretch when taking it off but it worked well. I burnished the edges and that gave me a good outline. Then i cut/tore the scrap away, peeled it off and stuck it on thicker paper.

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