Processing and Manufacturing Chemicals: Tips for Workplace Safety

Why Metal Fabricators Should Opt For the Oxy-Acetylene Welding Process

Welding is one of the processes by which metal parts are joined together in the fabrication process. There are several different kinds of welding processes that can be used, but one of the most commonly used processes in the metal fabrication industry is oxy-acetylene welding. Despite being one of the oldest welding processes, many welders continue to use oxy-acetylene welding because of the unique benefits it offers.

If you are new to the metal fabrication industry, here is a breakdown of some of the benefits associated with oxy-acetylene welding process.


The oxy-acetylene process is popular for its flexibility since it can be used to weld most types of metal materials. Aside from that, it can be used in different fabrication applications like cutting metal. All you have to do to switch to the cutting process is to replace the welding tip with a cutting tip. And, unlike Metal Inert Gas (MIG) welding, which can only be used indoors to shield the molten weld pool from reacting with elements in the atmosphere, oxy-acetylene machinery can be used almost anywhere.

Quick learning curve

For novice welders out there, oxy-acetylene is an easy-to-learn process. Unlike other welding processes like MIG, people can perform oxy-acetylene welding with a bit of practice and skill. The high-temperature flame used in the fusion welding process is directed by the power source (a welding torch), which performs practically all the work as it fine-tunes welding parameters to suit the requirements of different conditions. 


If you want a pocket-friendly welding solution, you had better opt for the oxy-acetylene process because the needed equipment generally costs less to buy as compared to several other types of equipment used to perform other welding processes. However, keep in mind that the amount of cost savings realised may differ depending on the model or brand of equipment you purchase.

Independent power source

Oxy-acetylene welding equipment gets power supply from external energy sources. The equipment comes with steel cylinders that contain a mixture of acetylene and oxygen gases kept under pressure. With these independent power sources, there are no worries about power outages in the mains electricity supply line disrupting the welding process.


Because they are relatively lightweight, oxyacetylene welding machinery tends to be more easily portable as compared to other welding machines available for use by welders. They can be carried on the back of a pick-up truck or even on a person’s back.

Learn More

Questions to Help You Get the Best Performance from Your Laser Cutter

Fabrication technology has advanced so much that many hobbyists can now afford to buy laser cutters. However, some of those hobbyists may get unsatisfactory results from their CNC laser cutting machines due to having limited knowledge on how to optimise the performance of that equipment. This article discusses some questions that will help you to get the best results from that newly acquired laser cutter.

Are You Cleaning the Cutting Lens Effectively?

The laser beam from your laser cutter reaches the material that you are cutting by moving through the cutting lens. Any dirt in that lens may affect the quality of the cuts that you make. It is therefore crucial that you keep the cutting lens clean so that you consistently have high-quality cuts during your DIY fabrication projects.

Effective cleaning starts with knowing the amount of dirt on the lens so that you apply the right amount of pressure as you rub in the lens polish. Buy a polariser (a device that you place under the lens so that any imperfections on the surface due to dirt are magnified) so that you can see the microscopic cracks caused by dirt. Use light rubbing motions as you apply lens polish in order to remove minor cracks caused by dirt. Use heavier hand pressure to remove more pronounced lens cracks. This method will ensure that your cutting lens remains clean since your cleaning activities will be guided by the magnitude of the dirt in the lens.

Is the Nozzle Centered?

The nozzle delivering the assist gas as you cut needs to be centered so that the resulting cut is straight. Each laser cutter has a specific procedure for confirming that the nozzle is centered. However, you can take an extra step and buy a magnifying light so that it is easier for you to see how centered the test hole that you have cut is. The magnifying light will also save you from straining your eyes as you check how centered the nozzle is.

Is the Light Focused?

Laser cutters operate by concentrating light rays onto a single mark. Effective cuts result from using a laser cutter whose beam is focused well. Confirm that the light is focused by performing the recommended test more times than the manufacturer advised. For instance, the manufacturer may have advised that you enter light focus settings into the controller once you look through the view panel and you see a thin line pointing at the material to be cut. Turn the light beam on and off several times so that you use the average settings that give you a thin line pointing at the material. You will notice that the cuts will be better after you have used settings taken from several focus tests.

Keep practicing how to use the tips above and you may notice a significant improvement in the quality of the cuts made by your CNC laser cutting equipment. Consult an expert for help in case you are unsure about how to implement the tips above.

Learn More

Easy Ways to Sort Your Scrap Metal before Sale

If you have a lot of scrap metal lying around and do not know what to do with it, resist the urge to dump it all in the trash to get rid of it. If sorted properly, scrap metal can be quite profitable, depending on the quality and the amount that you have in your possession. Always remember though that one of the biggest pet peeves for scrap metal recyclers is having to clean and sort your metal for you. That is why unsorted metal does not fetch much when taken for recycling. To begin the sorting, keep a magnet handy with you, as this will make it easier to identify different types of metals. Here are some easy ways to sort your scrap metal before sale.

Sort the ferrous metals from the non-ferrous metals

One of the easiest ways to sort ferrous from non-ferrous metals is by using a strong magnet. Ferrous metals are magnetic, hence, they will always get attracted to your magnet. Some of the ferrous metals that you may come across include steel, iron and more. Non-ferrous metals, on the other hand, include copper, aluminium and more. Once you have sorted them into these two broad categories, you can segregate your metals further.

Individually sort your non-ferrous metals

Once you have your two piles of ferrous and non-ferrous metals, it is time to start placing each individual metal type in its own pile. The different metals are typically identified visually at this stage. Some of the metals you may find include:

  • Copper: Typically found in cabling, piping and wiring. It is copper coloured.
  • Red brass: Appears to be a redder shade of copper. However, it is not a pure form of copper.
  • Brass: Typically yellow in colour.
  • Aluminium: A silver metal that is lightweight.

Individually sort your ferrous metals

After sorting your non-ferrous metals, you should now segregate your magnetic metals. Some of the metals you may have in your stock include:

  • Steel: Although this metal appears silver when new, weathered steel will typically be the colour of rust due to corrosion. Steel is also quite heavy compared to the other ferrous metals.
  • Lead: This metal will have a greyish appearance. In the event that you also have lead batteries, such as car batteries, categorise them in a separate pile altogether.
  • Tin: This lightweight metal is typically silver in colour. Tin is easily malleable and will bend if you apply pressure to it. 

For more information on scrap metal recycling, visit a website like

Learn More

Unique Corporate Trophy Ideas You Can Buy Online

If you are the owner of a business, or you are the office manager who is in charge of selecting trophies to hand out to workers who have achieved specific goals or are outstanding at their job, you have a lot of choices. To help you out, here are some unique trophies you can order online that are more distinct and creative than the standard trophies that most companies give to their workers.

Curved, Beveled Glass Trophy — This type of trophy is made of beveled glass cut from jade crystal that curves inward, giving the trophy a unique and non-traditional look that is eye catching. This type of trophy is freestanding, which means that it doesn’t rest on a pedestal, so it will stand up on its own power on a flat surface. You can etch whatever message you want into this glass trophy, and you can also create unique designs and patterns in the glass. You can also customise the beveled glass by adding a frosting that makes the glass opaque.

Cultured Stone Trophy — Cultured stone has the exact appearance of natural stone such as granite and marble, but it is composed of recycled stone and is much more affordable than natural stone. It is an example of an eco-friendly trophy that is becoming more popular as people endeavour to do more to protect the environment. One of the most unique cultured stone trophies is one that is cut from a slab of stone that is then etched with whatever award design, logo and lettering you want. For example, you can have bronze or copper lettering stamped onto the cultured stone to create a bas-relief effect in which the design and words project off the surface of the stone.

3D Lucite Trophy — Lucite is a clear, solid plastic that is made from the same type of material that is used for Plexiglas. You can make a 3D lucite trophy in which the design, logo and graphics are layered or embedded between sheets of lucite, which results in a three-dimensional trophy that stands out from standard trophies. You can create a free standing trophy that rests flat on a surface, or you can have the trophy mounted on top of a base or pedestal made out of lucite or another type of material such as cultured stone, acrylic or metal to create a nice contrast between the base and the actual trophy.

For more ideas, start looking at online trophy retailers. You should be able to find the perfect trophies to represent the hard work of the people in  your office. 

Learn More

How to fly the Australian flag with business etiquette

The Australian flag is a classic symbol that can be put to good use for many a merry occasions. It can contribute a sense of pride and unity to ceremonies and celebrations, and be used for commercial purposes in the business realm too. But the national flag needs to be used with care and treated with respect.

An innocent misuse of the flag could cause offence and even discredit your business or organisation. Here’s the low-down on how you can fly your flag correctly and courteously, and make the most out of its popular appeal:

When to fly

National holidays are a great opportunity to join the public in celebration, commemoration or mourning. These occasions include, Businesses and organisations can display their flag publically to show participation in events like Australian National Flag Day (3rd Sep), Australia Day (26th Jan) and ANZAC (25th April), but any day of the year is suitable if you’re using it correctly.

You may choose to fly your flag on a pole, distribute mini flags around the office to get into the spirit of things, or even suspend a flag in a shopfront or foyer.

Flag flying

If you’ve got a traditional flag and flagpole, there are a few things you need to remember before making use of your flag. Firstly, it’s considered good practice to raise your flag in the morning and lower it before sundown. Never leave your flag out in the night unless it is specially lit up. There are also a few rules for the height of the flag. Put your flag at the very top of your flagpole for use in ceremonies, celebrations and special events, and put it halfway, or at “half mast” on days like ANZAC day as a sign of mourning.

Reproducing your flag

Businesses and organisations can make use of the flag in products and for advertising purposes. To do so, you’ll have to make sure that the flag is reproduced accurately, that means no variations in colour or design as this may be considered offensive.

An easy mistake to make is to have other objects stuck onto the flag, such as images or characters. This too is considered a faux pas and should be avoided for good business practise and courtesy.

Finally, if you’re importing products for your business which depict the Australian flag, your imports need to be approved by the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet, so be sure to get in touch with customs if you’re doing so. To learn more, contact a company such as Carroll & Richardson with any questions you have.

Learn More

5 Ways You Can Integrate Laser Cutting into Your Wedding

Popular in commercial and manufacturing sectors, laser cutting is becoming an increasingly popular solution for creating unique, customisable stationary and decorations. Using computer technology, your design can be etched onto wood or cut out of a variety of mediums, producing a dynamic, intricate and precise result.

If you’re looking to set your wedding apart from the rest, laser cut stationary and decorative pieces might be the answer. Look at some of the different ways that you can integrate laser cutting into your wedding.


Your laser cut wedding invitation is only limited by your imagination and your budget. Some ideas to get you started include:

  • A written invitation wrapped in intricate laser cut lace
  • Laser engraved onto thin sheets of wood
  • Inkless invitations, with the text cut out of the paper before overlaid on contrast paper, photo or wood
  • Three-dimensional pop-up invitations housed in a beautiful box

Envelope seals

If your budget doesn’t stretch to intricate custom designed invitations, laser cut envelope seals are a beautiful and cost-effective way to customise your wedding stationary. A design that reflects the personality of the bride and groom, or echoes the wedding theme is a stunning finishing touch on your invitations.

Programs and menus

A special way to create a distinctive yet functional keepsake, laser cut programs and menus turn practical elements of your wedding into works of art. Using laser engraved wooden menus mounted on small woodblocks is a stunning way to lay out a wedding table, acting as an extra decorative feature.

Table decorations

Wooden place cards and napkin holders laser cut and engraved is a highly personalised and sophisticated way to decorate your wedding tables. Go one step further and have laser cut wooden cake stands on your dessert table. Go another step, and adorn each wine glass with a delicate laser cut butterfly, or create a plate garden from 3-dimensional laser cut flowers.

Thank you cards

After your special day is over, and you’re back from your unforgettable honeymoon, commemorate your wedding and guests by sending out unique laser cut thank you cards. Create a seamless theme by designing a stationary set at the very beginning of your wedding planning, with everything from your invitations to your thank you cards having a similar design flavour, such as using the same lace design for all laser cut elements.

Let your imagination run wild, and work with your laser cut specialist and designer to come up with a truly exceptional laser cut feature for your special day. Consult with companies like Hygrade Laser Profiling to learn more.

Learn More

How to Choose the Best Method of Steel Fabrication for Manufacturing or Construction

Steel is commonly used in many areas of manufacturing or construction, which means that anyone who oversees these processes will probably need to have pieces of steel fabricated in one way or another. If you own a manufacturing facility or construction company, you may wonder if it’s worth the expense to invest in the machinery that fabricates steel to your specifications, or if you should send out these pieces to a machine shop as needed. Understanding the best methods for steel fabrication can help you to make the right choice, so note the following.

1. Bending

To bend steel very inexpensively, ram bending is usually the method used. This involves a piece that is literally pressed or rammed into the axis of the metal, while two other pieces push against the outside of the axis. While this type of machinery is very inexpensive, it also doesn’t offer the most accurate bend.

Ring roll bending is a much more accurate way of bending steel pieces. A steel piece is fed through the machine and three rollers bend it into place. Two rollers are on the outside and a third roller runs along the axis, creating the curve or bend. This protects the outside of the piece more readily and creates a smoother curve that is more accurate than one you create with ram bending.

Induction bending involves heating the steel so that it can be bent. This is often done for larger pieces that won’t fit in machinery or for thicker pieces that don’t bend easily. Induction bending equipment can be expensive it requires some skill to bend steel as it’s being heated, so that the piece is not ruined in the process.

2. Joining and fastening

Welding is one of the most common processes of joining any types of metal and may be used when steel needs to be joined to another material with a very different melting point. Each material is attached to a metal plate and this acts as the connector. Welding steel requires skill and specialized equipment since the material is so strong; if you decide to invest in welding equipment for your facility, you will also need to keep a skilled welder on staff to ensure fastening is done according to specifications.

A simpler solution for joining and fastening is the use of rivets. These are like large metal nails; the back end is pounded flat once inserted into steel pieces, so they don’t simply slide out. Riveting equipment is easy to use on a jobsite and doesn’t require the skill of welding, so it may be a good solution for fastening and joining for your construction crew.

For more information, check out companies such as Bronson Sheetmetal Fabrications Pty Ltd.

Learn More