A good steel services company should be capable of meeting not only your materials needs, but should also provide CAD-CAM work, plasma and flame cutting services, reverse engineering, and industry-specific problem solving. Understanding each of these technical problems completely will help you select the right steel services house to meet your needs, and keep your operation producing.
A good steel services firm should provide a variety of materials. Including but not limited to mild steel, stainless steel, carbon steel, and steel alloys. The firm should also produce each of the following materials in a variety of steel types: tubing, plate, sheet, and coil. This list shouldn't be limited by anyone but you as the consumer. Your imagination should be the only limitation as to what materials are available to you, and a good steel services house should recommend materials that are an improvement when considering your manufacturing needs.
Fabrication and cutting:
Getting the right steel in the wrong shape or size is of use to no one, so finding a steel service that can cut, bend, weld, mill, and shape the steel you need into the shape you need is a key concern. Cutting should be available in CNC Plasma, hand plasma, and gas in order to accommodate any thickness you might need. Milling should be available in both CNC and hand milled forms. Welding should be available to many strength specifications as well as finished looks. From the strongest thick stick welds, to the most beautiful and artistic TIG welds.
Design, engineering, and metallurgy:
A good steel services firm will have a staff engineer to help you solve mechanical, structural, and metallurgical problems. Finding the right design, and design application to solve the problems you have with a mind for both form and function should be a provided service. A good engineer will also be able to predict any routine maintenance considerations, know the shelf life of parts ordered (giving special consideration to their direct application), and suggest any areas for improvement not thought of by your in house design. Alternatively, they can be contracted for the entire project if you don't have an in house engineer, and will always warrantee their work.
Delivery of your steel is a critical consideration. Do you require on site assembly of multiple pieces delivered by lowboy? Can you meet your own delivery needs? Do you expect delivery to a job site in a remote area for mining outfits? The right steel services firm can provide these services, or help you to contract them out.
In today's busy manufacturing world, the right steel services firm can help you stay on track to meeting your production goals, and can be a treasured lifelong business partnership.