In spite of recent GM plant closings and anxiety over steel tariffs, more than 304,000 jobs were added to the U.S. economy last January and hourly earnings have increased by over three percent from last year. American spending is also on the rise, including the demand for high-end kitchens, modern bathrooms, and luxury automobiles, especially SUVS.
All of these luxuries require metal formed parts that please in both form and function. But without cost-effective metal part manufacturing, home and auto OEMs would be unable to reap the profits of the growing consumer demand. Fortunately, advanced metal forming techniques like hydroforming and raw extrusion enhancements can deliver a lavish look without breaking a production budget.
Advanced Metal Forming for Luxury Automotive
Advanced metal finishing and hydroforming can transform inexpensive, light-weight aluminum raw extrusions into highly aesthetic, superior class A surface parts for luxury automobiles.
With the increased demand for upscale SUVs like the GMC Acadia and Cadillac XT5 crossovers, more automobile manufacturers are benefiting from advanced metal forming capabilities such as:
- Forming: Tubular hydroforming, stamping, roll forming, and bending
- Machining: Drilling and tapping, punching, automated deburring, and sanding
- CNC Machining: Fully-integrated prototyping, including 3D modeling, and production CNC machining
- Finishing: Superior powder coating and brushing/polishing
From hydroformed, custom visor arm tubes to anodized, plated SUV luggage racks, advanced metal forming techniques are delivering a high level of finishing and forming to automotive OEM designers.
Advanced Metal Forming for Today’s Kitchen
Hydroforming’s high strength-to-weight ratio produces high dimensional stability in fewer operations than traditional stamping or welding, so it’s the cost-effective choice for kitchen OEMs to produce flexible, aesthetically-pleasing designs with class A finishes. From refrigerator shelving trim to cabinet and drawer handles, this advanced metal forming produces flexible design options such as radius sweeps, cross-sectional shape transitions from round to elliptical, multi-sided cross sections, and variable expansions of diameters.
And when OEM designers combine hydroforming with advanced finishing techniques such as knurling, brushing, and tinted clear coating, they can provide kitchen consumers with an elegant and luxurious look to their premium, kitchen appliances.
Advanced Metal Forming for the Modern Bath
Advanced metal forming is also enabling bathroom OEMs to cost-effectively move beyond practical, aluminum bathroom fixtures into titanium alloys with brass finishes and never-before produced shapes, textures, and colors. Beer budget consumers with champagne tastes can now afford bathroom fixtures that are both elegant and ergonomic, including:
- Bronze-tinted towel bars
- Copper-coated cabinet handles
- Nickel-brushed faucet spouts
- Brass-finished bath racks
- Knurled-patterned safety handles
Additionally, hydroforming virtually eliminates value-draining flaws associated with traditional metal forming methods, such as burrs, scuffs, and stretch lines. Bathroom metal parts can now be produced without springback, with less waste, and with a wide range of metals in almost any desired shape.
Advanced Metal Forming Delivers Cost-Effective Luxury
At Mills Products, we specialize in thin-wall, tubular hydroforming, which is often half as expensive to produce than matched die tooling. This advanced metal forming technique produces the complex shapes associated with high-end metal designs, including large radius sweeps and multi-sided cross sections.
The benefits of cost-effective hydroforming include:
- Weight and part reduction opportunities
- Excellent bending strength and torsional stiffness
- Flexible design and engineering options
- High stiffness to weight ratio at low per unit costs
- Thin wall tubing capabilities
- Class A finishes
Want to learn more how Mills uses hydroforming and other advanced metal forming innovations to help OEMs achieve highly aesthetic, superior parts? Contact us today.