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Machinability of CNC Steel

The ability of a material to be cut with a cutting tool is known as its machinability. A material is called more machinable if it can be cut or drilled with the least amount of force and it does so without being deformed. In actual use, using machinability-friendly materials offers many

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Choosing the Right Type of Concrete

The planning stages of a construction project require attention to a whole lot of details, and the type of concrete being used is one that should be near the top of every list of priorities. But what type of concrete is best for your project? iMix Concrete will run through

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Steel City Student Accommodation Tops Out

A topping out ceremony has taken place at a new £19 million student accommodation scheme in Sheffield city centre, which is being built by Clegg Construction. The event was held to mark the build reaching its highest point and was attended by representatives from Clegg Construction, Future Generation and Axis

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Featuring J&D Pierce: Interview with Angus Cormie, Chief Engineer

“In this day and age, programme is critical to contractors and businesses,” attests Angus Cormie, Chief Engineer at J&D Pierce, one of the UK’s leading structural steel provider. As a champion designer, supplier and installer of quality steelwork, J&D Pierce offers an end-to-end service that dramatically reduces the supply chain

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BDC 318 : Jul 2024

steel

Machinability of CNC Steel

The ability of a material to be cut with a cutting tool is known as its machinability. A material is called more machinable if it can be cut or drilled with the least amount of force and it does so without being deformed. In actual use, using machinability-friendly materials offers many advantages. Compared to components created from difficult to machine materials, they can be produced more rapidly. Long-term usage of easily machinable materials results in less wearing of tools and the longer tool life, which ultimately saves the money spent on machining. CNC steel has excellent machinability because it is a strong, hard material that is easy to cut and shape. It is also resistant to wear and tear, making it ideal for use in high-speed machining applications such as milling steel. Steel is the primary material of choice for many parts in industries requiring great performance and durability, such as those in the automotive, locomotive, aerospace, and the fastest-growing robotics sectors. Steel and aluminum have extremely distinct physical properties and pricing ranges, steel is much stronger than aluminium and aluminum is also costlier than steel. So, determining which material is ideal for a given work is crucial, when machining metal parts, milling steel may be a more appropriate material choice than aluminum. Factors should be considered when choosing CNC steel for your project Consider the thickness of the material. CNC steel is available in various thicknesses, from thin sheets to thick plates. The thicker the material, the more difficult it will be to machine. However, thick materials are also more durable, so it is important to find the right balance for your project. The type of steel is the second thing you should consider for CNC steel parts. There are two main types of CNC steel – stainless and carbon. Stainless steel is more difficult to machine but is more resistant to corrosion. On the other hand, carbon steel is easier to machine but is more susceptible to rust. After deciding the type, you have to choose the best steel for machining. If you consider stainless steel for your CNC steel parts, you have to choose the perfect grade. The most common stainless steel for machining is 303, 304, 316L, 410, and 416. The surrounding environment also affects the CNC steel machining. Even the best steel for machining can produce bad parts if the temperature, humidity, and dust level are not under control. Operating Environment of CNC Steel CNC steel has high strength, hardness, toughness, and ductility. As a result, this material can withstand high cutting speeds without deforming, making them ideal for CNC machining. However, other materials, such as aluminum and brass, can also be machined using CNC technology. The main difference between machining steel on a CNC machine and other materials is the speed and accuracy of the cuts. The properties of CNC steels allow them to be used in applications where other materials would crack or break under similar conditions. CNC machines are able to make very precise cuts at high speeds. This is due to the fact that CNC machines are controlled by computer programs that can be programmed to make very precise cuts. Other materials, such as aluminum and brass, are not as strong as steel and, therefore, cannot be machined at the same speeds. Additionally, these materials are not as easy to cut as steel and require more time to produce a finished product. While machining CNC steel you have to lubricate the machine properly. Lubricants such as oil, grease, and water are needed to prevent friction during cutting. Dimensional Stability and Tolerance The dimensional stability of CNC steel is a measure of how well the steel can maintain its dimensional accuracy and integrity under different conditions. Dimensional stability is important for CNC steel because it ensures that the steel will retain its dimensional accuracy during the machining process. This dimensional accuracy is known as tolerance. If machining steel is done properly, the tolerance of CNC steel parts can be +/- .5 inches.  If the dimensional stability of the CNC steel is poor, the steel will expand or contract during the machining process, leading to inaccuracies in the final product. There are a few things that can cause steel to warp during machining and hamper the dimensional stability, including: Cutting too deeply into the material Removing too much material at once Using a tool that’s too small for the material Material Costs The cost of CNC steel depends on a number of factors. The type of steel is the most important factor. The different types of steel include: Low-carbon steel: This is the most common type of steel used in CNC steel manufacturing. It is very strong and durable. Low-carbon steel is less expensive than high-carbon steel. High carbon steel: This type of steel is more expensive than low carbon steel. It is also stronger and more durable. High-carbon steel is often used for high-end products. Stainless steel: This type of steel is more expensive than both low carbon and high carbon steel. Stainless steel is very strong and resistant to corrosion. The quality of the steel is another important factor that affects the cost. The higher the quality of the steel, the more expensive it will be. The size of the steel is also a factor. The larger the size of the steel, the more expensive it will be. The quantity of steel is the last factor that affects the cost. The more steel that is needed, the more expensive it will be. Conclusion The machinability of CNC steel has made it a very popular material for many industries. But before you pick a machining steel company you should know their details and working experience. Because CNC steel machining is not an easy thing to do, and it needs years of experience. And a good company can suggest to you the best steel for machining according to your project’s requirement.

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Applied Engineering Design offers clients the latest advances in steel connection software

A pioneering Scottish engineering design specialist has become one of the first independent consultancies to exploit the advantages of IDEA STatiCa, the first software in the world which can design and check all steel connections and joints regardless of complexity. Applied Engineering Design (AED), which has offices in Edinburgh and Bath, is one of the few smaller firms to offer clients the revolutionary system which designs and checks welded or bolted connections, 2D or 3D joints, anchoring or footing of all topologies. IDEA STatiCa streamlines fabrication for clients and provides clear pass/fail checks according to EC/AISC/CISC standards as well as importing data from the most widespread FEA and CAD programs. AED is using the technique on a major project for the multi-billion pound Battersea Power Station development in London, which is providing 4000 new homes on the south bank of the River Thames. Together with its client Icon Fabrications, AED has been tasked by the Robert Bird Group with creating a high-level temporary roadway at the site which is capable of carrying heavy construction traffic. Once its use as a site connection is finished, the structural beams and columns will be encased in concrete and flats will be built on top of the deck. Tim Hetherington, Director of AED, said: “It is a particularly complex commission and we have become early adopters of IDEA STatiCa because its advanced design and check process is both powerful and quick enough to be a useful tool in our everyday work as structural engineers for fabricators. “I had become aware of the limitations of commonplace software and I had been looking for an alternative. IDEA STatiCa is very expensive, which is why it is largely used by bigger consultancies, but I have been persuaded by the value that it adds to our offering.” AED has also employed the software on work for the new £12.5 million Laidlaw Music Centre, which is being constructed at the University of St Andrews. The building will house a performance venue, a rehearsal space and a high-tech recording facility. IDEA STatiCa’s advanced steel connection designs have also been introduced by AED into the steel podium for a new Edinburgh flats development at Waterfront 3, where the unique capabilities of the software have enabled the use of innovative connection types, delivering better value for AED’s clients. AED was founded in 2008 and now has offices in Edinburgh and Bath. It has a turnover of £650,000 and employs 10 people. It undertakes most of its detailed design and coordination work in house. The company serves individuals and businesses in sectors including industry and commerce, sport and education, infrastructure and property maintenance.

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Choosing the Right Type of Concrete

The planning stages of a construction project require attention to a whole lot of details, and the type of concrete being used is one that should be near the top of every list of priorities. But what type of concrete is best for your project? iMix Concrete will run through various types of concrete and the applications they’re best suited for. Small wall footings, sheds and floors – C15 C15 is ideal for these kinds of projects. This particular type of concrete allows for non-permanent finishes to be placed on top, such as tiles, which means it is perfect for flooring. It is worth noting that it is only suitable for flooring without any embedded metal, such as steel rebar. Foundations and floor slabs – C20 For foundations for single storey buildings, internal floor slabs and oversites, you need C20 concrete. With a 28-day strength of 20 Newtons, it is strong enough to withstand the loads expected in these environments, without possessing the strength of other, heavy duty concretes. Footings, foundations, groundwork and trench fill – C25 For this variety of applications, a versatile type of concrete is needed, and C25 fits that bill. Used in domestic and commercial applications alike, most commonly in foundations for houses and extensions, it is strong and durable, with a 25 Newton 28-day strength. Driveways – PAV 1 Driveways are expected to withstand a high amount of wear and tear, as well as heavy loads on a regular basis. PAV 1 concrete is ideal for a driveway as it contains air-entrainment additives that create small bubbles, protecting the concrete from freeze-thaw damage. Paths, patios and pavements – C30 With a 30 Newton 28-day strength, C30 is the recommended concrete for those looking to lay a patio or path in their garden , or for the laying of pavements. It can be used for garage bases, too – ‘external light use applications’ also fall into the category of suitable uses for C30 concrete. Reinforced floors, walls and workshop bases – C35 Floors in certain environments are going to have to endure greater impacts than your average domestic flooring. Think of warehouses and other industrial environments – vehicles, machinery and materials make for a very heavy load, and as such the floor needs to be made of a heavy-duty concrete, such as C35.

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Steel City Student Accommodation Tops Out

A topping out ceremony has taken place at a new £19 million student accommodation scheme in Sheffield city centre, which is being built by Clegg Construction. The event was held to mark the build reaching its highest point and was attended by representatives from Clegg Construction, Future Generation and Axis Architecture. A total of 324 rooms will be delivered as part of the Steel City scheme, which is being built for Future Generation in the city’s St Vincent’s Quarter. As part of a new build ranging between three and five storeys, a mix of cluster flats and studio flats will be provided and 247 beds will be delivered. An existing Grade II listed building dating back to 1833 is also being redeveloped and refurbished providing a further 77 beds. Other facilities will include reception, laundry, security office, fitness studio and rooftop terrace with café bar. Designed by Axis Architecture, the buildings will be finished mainly in brick with natural slate pitched roofs; the buildings will be highly sustainable with a CHP energy centre and green and brown roofs. The new development is situated on Hollis Croft close to the University of Sheffield’s School of Engineering. “We are delighted that the Steel City build has reached its highest point and we are on track to complete the building in time for the start of the 2019 academic year. We have delivered a number of high quality student accommodation developments across the UK and this is one of the biggest projects we have worked on so far,” said Simon Blackburn, Clegg Construction Managing Director. Clegg Construction has already delivered 1,400 rooms across Sheffield, including Provincial House in nearby Solly Street which completed for the 2017-18 academic year. The company has also completed student accommodation across Leicester, Birmingham, Nottingham and Cambridge, and is currently on site delivering nearly another 1,000 beds across three further sites.

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Featuring J&D Pierce: Interview with Angus Cormie, Chief Engineer

“In this day and age, programme is critical to contractors and businesses,” attests Angus Cormie, Chief Engineer at J&D Pierce, one of the UK’s leading structural steel provider. As a champion designer, supplier and installer of quality steelwork, J&D Pierce offers an end-to-end service that dramatically reduces the supply chain and provides clients a competitive edge in terms of both time and cost. As Cormie continues, “With an all-encompassing structural steel service, we eliminate the need for multiple parties, manage interfaces and offer guaranteed excellence, every time, for every client.” Established in 1975, J&D Pierce has retained its family-run approach while diversifying and expanding into areas beyond purely steel fabrication and is now able to provide a comprehensive service from early design right through costing, fabrication and protective treatment to erection. A specialist in design and fabrication, J&D Pierce has continued to develop further capabilities, and can effectively carry a project through from inception to completion. Although subcontracting can be an economical way of procuring specialist works, it can also give rise to various kinds of problems. Within differences of opinion, organisation and interfacing issues, it can present significant delays and programme slippages for main contractors and become a cost burden to which clients simply cannot subscribe. Attending to that concern and delivering an end-to-end service, J&D Pierce offers an alternative, financially risk-free mode of construction, as Cormie makes clear: “Because we don’t sub-contract any services out, we have complete control over a project. Main contractors like to de-risk; if they can hire a single firm to carry out all works they will because it prevents problems of coordinating works on site and allows them to concentrate on their own objectives. We allow them programme certainty; our wide range of skills and expertise more than capable of shouldering an entire contract.” J&D Pierce has established itself as a one-stop-shop in structural steelwork and boasts divisions dedicated not only to design, production, erection, roofing and cladding, but stretching right the way across transport, delivery, crane, and access. It’s with concentrated investment that the company has been able to develop its services and establish manufacture, delivery and erection processes which are each unrivalled in both speed or quality and, combined, provide significant advantages to customers. That broad spectrum of capabilities is only set to widen as the development of new facilities adjacent to J&D Pierce’s existing site gets underway. The 15-acre development beside their existing facilities will host a new steel fabrication process for the manufacture of plate girders. The company is investing millions in state-of-art tooling equipment and technology for this for external sales and with a view to gaining even greater production efficiency. Primarily though, the new facilities will enable the company to take on an even greater proportion of works, as Cormie details further, “There are some specialist products that are used, particularly in high-rise buildings, that we would ordinarily have to outsource from specialist manufacturers. The new facilities will allow us to start manufacturing those ourselves therefore affording us greater control over production, as well as the ability to shorten the lead-in times and enhance the programme we can offer our clients.” Indeed, the company’s development has long been informed by the desire to exceed clients; expectations across the board. Despite widening its catalogue of services, J&D Pierce has only further emphasised quality within their expansion, with state of the art machinery incorporating intelligent software and direct linkage with J&D Pierce’s design system, it is also highly efficient, can identify how best to to minimise wastage and produce a precise replica of the computational drawing on-screen. So esteemed in design is J&D Pierce that it regularly offers both partial and full design, as well as design advice on projects. Whether approached at the stage of conception, integration, value engineering or connection analysis, the company is able to provide critical design solutions via a number of industry standard software operated by experienced engineers. With unrivalled expertise in design at a planning, development and operational level, the company’s manufacture and erection processes are significantly enhanced and J&D Pierce has, on more than one occasion, found itself heading the pack on construction projects. During a recent contract at Bristol Sports Club, the company was tasked to redevelop the West Stand and, as an informed contractor, paved the way for others to follow, as Cormie outlines: “The aim was to tie in work with the existing stand and erect a complicated three-dimensional roof design with a main trusse spanning 108m. We carried out the interface detail and, despite having our own cladding division, worked alongside an external cladding supplier and the precast supplier sourced by the main contractor. “We had a very tight footprint in which to erect the project and immediately envisaged the difficulties that would pose to both ourselves and the cladders. We re-thought the engineers’ methodology of erection (a system of building temporary towers to build the truss on) and suggested that we could, in fact, build the entire truss from the ground and lift it into place with two large cranes. While it took intricate crane movement for final placement, it meant that we had much better safety control because the majority of work was conducting on the ground rather than at height, as well as giving us significant advantage in programme, preventing stoppages and delays in schedule.” Characterised by its ability to add value and decrease the costs associated with programme, J&D Pierce also designed bespoke hinge details on the supporting rafters; the innovative solution allowed the company to pre-erect the rafters in pairs and then swing them up to the truss and complete the structure in less than a day, As a specialist in design, manufacture and construction, the company has a key understanding of each phase of development and effectively guarantees a project’s success with quality and control endowed. Of course, those ethics and successes come as the result of focused attention on training and development. J&D Pierce has worked hard to up-skill its

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