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The Craftsmen Industries Industrial division focuses in highly engineered and executed specialty industrial fabrication, containerized and mobile solutions.

Our Industrial Group serves a variety of market segments including power generation and distribution, water treatment, mobile kitchens, offices, command and control centers, military and first responder disaster management services. Craftsmen Industries is dedicated to building products of the highest quality, achieving and maintaining ISO 9001:2015 Certification to ensure consistent results every time we build a project for our valued clients.

Craftsmen Industries offers a host of specialty services to cater to the unique needs of our global clients.

Craftsmen’s team of industrial fabrication specialists service a wide range of custom and production projects for corporations, governments, and non-profit organizations.

Projects manufactured onsite include specialty maintenance stands, a large variety of mobile implementations for the defense and aerospace industries, as well as any number of containerized solutions to restore food, medical services, power and water to areas affected by disaster.

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Dean | Craftsmen Fabricator/Welder | 17 Years

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CONTACT US

3101 Elm Point Industrial Drive

St. Charles, MO 63301

Toll Free 800.373.3575

Built For Safety and Longevity   

Our industrial fabrication services (also known as metal fabrication services) are responsible for manufacturing items that keep communities safe and prosperous.  We manufacture products that serve government agencies, emergency responders, U.S. military, and the country’s core manufacturers and industrial companies.  

This process is responsible for manufacturing far more products than the typical consumer realizes; common products in industrial services, including many made by Craftsmen Industries, Inc, are:

  • Aerostat Launch Stands
  • Aircraft Maintenance Stands
  • Disaster Relief
  • Command Centers
  • Mobile Kitchens
  • Water Treatment
  • Energy Storage
  • Mobile Laboratories
  • Mobile Training Centers
  • Mobile Veterinary Units
  • Mobile Healthcare
  • Fire Suppression Systems

What is Industrial Fabrication?

Industrial fabrication refers to the manufacturing of complex, large-scale items and equipment either for on-site or field-site locations.  This process requires skilled designers and workers as well as the use of specialized technology and production equipment that can manage the manufacture and assemblage of large pieces of materials, typically metals, into a finished product. 

Materials

Industrial Fabrication services work on a wide variety of materials, including carbon steel, stainless steel, aluminum and alloys.  Each material has its own strength and weakness for a particular application. Due to the complexity of industrial product mechanics and design, customers can benefit by consulting an industrial fabrication service to determine which material would be best for a specific project by taking into account its purpose, the client’s budget, and shelf life requirements.  Although there are a wide range of metals and alloys used in industrial fabrication, some of the most common metals include the following:

Stainless steel

This metal has superior durability and strength; it is able to maintain its strength as it is highly resistant to impact, structural damages, and corrosion and can hold its rigidity in temperatures up to 1400 degrees Fahrenheit. One of the most unique abilities of stainless steel is its ability to repair itself because of its chromium content, which forms a chromium oxide film on the surface of the steel once the metal becomes damaged and exposed to oxygen.  Another advantage is that it allows for easy cleaning and sterilization, making it a very important material in the medical field.  The disadvantages of stainless steel are that it is expensive and that it tends to collect dirt.

Carbon steel 

The content of carbon in steel can vary from .05% (low) to 2.5% (high).  The carbon in high carbon steel gives this material superior hardness and strength.    On the other hand, low carbon steel (also known as mild steel), the most common of the carbon/steel alloys, is ductile and malleable.  Carbons steel’s other advantage is that it is relatively inexpensive.

Titanium 

Commonly used in the aerospace, military, automotive, medical, and sporting industry, this metal is corrosion and rust resistant and has the highest strength to density ratio of all the metals.  However, it can not be cast like aluminum, and it tends to be more expensive than other materials.

Aluminum 

This metal has a high strength to weight ratio, allowing the engineering of very wide spans.  It also acts as a good thermal and electrical conductor. In addition, it is known for its high corrosion resistance, making it optimal for long-term exposure to environmental and chemical hazards.  Its disadvantages are that it is not particularly strong and is expensive compared to steel. 

Copper 

Copper is lightweight, versatile and easy to bend and to work with.  It is also a very good thermal and electrical conductor. One of the biggest disadvantages of copper is its tendency to corrode. 

Equipment

There is a wide range of equipment that can be used by industrial fabrication specialists, depending on the raw material as well as the shape, size, and design of the end product.  Some of the most common equipment used by industrial services fabricators to do their work are the following:  

Metal Fabricator

This type of machine cuts, shapes, positions, and aligns different types of metal.  

Brake Press

This machine bends sheet and plate materials of steel, aluminum, brass and sheet metal. The brake press’ bending force, known as tonnage, determines how much pressure is to be applied.  They are used in a variety of industries, including the automotive and aircraft industries.  

Plate rollers  (plate bending machine or a roll bending machine)

Suitable for bending medium and thick plates, this type of machine will roll different types of metal sheet into round or conical shapes. 

Ironworker 

This equipment has stations for different activities; they can be used to punch plate, angle, and channel iron and shear flat plates and round and square raw metals.

The Production Process

Because of all of the steps involved in producing the final product, from the design and selection of the material to the development and testing of a prototype, the fabrication of industrial items takes time and expertise as well as close collaboration between all parties.  Some of those steps may involve the following:

Designing for Industrial Services

While some clients walk into an fabricators with drawings in hand, others need the expertise and creativity of the industrial services fabricators to help them design the end product.  Most fabricators use computer aided design programs (CAD) or computer aided manufacturing (CAM) software to aid them in their design process. During the design phase, fabricators will work to determine what the best type of materials are most suitable for the product, what machine and tools can do the job, what type finishing will be required, as well as decide the safest and most reliable designs and methods. A prototype of the object is typically produced and tested before actually beginning work on the final product.

Cutting, Bending, and Forming 

Once the design has been completed, the raw materials are purchased and readied for manipulation, often cutting and bending.  Cutting of the raw material is done by sawing, sheering, chiseling, or torching.  

Forming is another type of manipulation that involves the conversion of flat metals into 3D parts without removing any of the material.  In this process, a metal sheet is stretched or bent by machines, but not to the point of failure. Bending is one type of forming, done by manual hammering or through the use of equipment like press brakes. Another type of forming is metal spinning, which literally spins a metal disk and a preformed block together to rotate it high speeds to create a round metal part.

Punching and drilling may also be used in order to add holes; these holes can be used for assemblage or installation.

Welding and Assembly

Once the parts have been cut and formed, fabricators use various techniques to assemble the product.  Welding, riveting, threaded fasteners, and binding with adhesives are all methods used to join the pieces together into a cohesive whole. 

Using welding, our specialists assemble and tack weld formed and machined parts into place. Once the piece’s assemblage has been reviewed for accuracy, a welder then completes the work either using design drawings or their own experience. 

Finishing – Adding the last touch

After the industrial product has been assembled, finishing is the final step in making it more resistant to chemical, environmental, electrical, and tarnish threats as well as making it safe for further handling.

Deburring 

Finishing can involve the process of deburring to ensure that there is no excess material.  This step ensures that there are no sharp edges remaining that might cause damage to other machinery or to injure either workers or customers. 

Painting

Paints can be mixed for various color matching uses and special effects. Entire trailers may be painted solid or stencils may be used to spray on specific messages. Craftsmen’s facilities include 65’, 60’ and 45’ controlled paint booths. 

Powder Coating 

Materials such as epoxy, polyurethanes, polyester, and hybrids are added to components, creating a very hard and protective coating. In this dry finishing process, a precoating preparation, which can involve a cleaning, rinsing, and application of a sealer, is often employed, and then fine ground particles, which are electrically charged, are melted and fused onto the piece in a uniform coat. 

Metal Plating 

Plating is a manufacturing process in which a thin layer of metal, like copper, nickel, chromium or aluminum, is applied to the material.  This technique creates several benefits, included improved resistance to corrosion, greater strength, increased paint adhesion, and aesthetic appeal. 

Production Timeframe and Cost

Production timeframe and cost are both heavily dependent on the type of material, the complexity of the design, and the stage of product development when the process first begins.  Pricing may undergo frequent changes due to the worldwide fluctuation in metal and materials prices. Customers should contact an industrial manufacturer fabricator to get an estimate of both cost and time needed to complete the project. 

Advantages and Disadvantages 

As discussed in this article, industrial manufacturing services can produce a wide variety of products in different sizes and materials, and the wide breadth of tools and machinery available make constructing almost any idea possible.  However, this can also be a costly process due to all of the material inputs and expertise needed. Working closely with an industrial fabricator may help alleviate some of these costs through a thorough review of alternatives and overall project goals.