Posted on: 1 August 2016
If you are buying sheet metal for the purpose of constructing or fabricating, you can either have the pieces cut at the supplier's shop or you can choose to have them cut on site using your own tools or a third-party firm. Both are practical solutions with their own merits. However, which option is better? Evaluate the pros and cons below to find out.
When it comes to cost, it is likely that the sheet metal cutting process will cost less at the supplier's shop. This is because your supplier or fabricator has a larger operation compared to onsite firms. In that regard, the supplier has more customers and more equipment. This allows them to enjoy better economies of scale, hence the lower costs. Besides, on-site fabricators will charge a transport cost to come to your location while a fabricating shop will not.
Again, off-site sheet metal cutting is slated to be cheaper than the onsite option in regards to material transportation from the supplier. This is because when sheet metal is cut at the supplier's shop, the gross weight drops and so a lighter load is eventually moved to the base of operation. However, with onsite processing, all the sheet metal is transported as is and is therefore heavier.
Which takes longer, having your sheet metal cut at the factory or on-site? The answer here is more straightforward. The factory cutting process is much quicker because they have larger and more cutting machines. Your order will therefore be worked on faster This is as compared to onsite cutting where you first have to wait for the machinery to arrive then wait longer for the process to be undertaken. With factory cutting, the sheet metal arrives on site ready to be installed.
In the end, the option that offers the best quality takes the day. The factory has more experience due to the huge number of clients it handles. It is also likely to have superior machinery such as laser cutting equipment. At the same time, onsite sheet metal cutting operators can be just as skilled. The surest way to determine who has the better quality is to evaluate the results of each.
When you think about it, if you order sheet metal in bulk, it's simply less cumbersome to have the stock cut at the point of purchase. However, if you need last minute fabrication on site, then it makes more sense to have an onsite solution at that point.Share