Perfecting Your Metalwork Craft

by Jessica Amey

Whether you’re an established business keen to drive sales or a hobbyist looking to reach the next level, use this guide to perfecting your metalwork craft to achieve your goals.

Create a dedicated workspace
Whatever your job, the right environment is essential to efficient and effective working. Everything from the lighting to the ergonomics of your equipment can impact your productivity. Especially if at home, having a clearly defined workspace will help you stay focused while working and switch off when you’re finished for the day.

Create a dedicated workspace in a suitable part of the house such as the garage or a small room you can repurpose as an office. Make sure to take all safety precautions such as putting down heatproof mats and implementing secure tool storage for when they’re not in use.

Keep your space tidy to minimise distractions, and make use of natural light and oxygenating houseplants to stay calm and motivated throughout the day.

Use the right tools
High-quality work starts with the right equipment: in metalwork, this means superior metals and tools. Investing in the essential tools is a cost that should help you to make more profit on your projects in the long run.

Ensure you have the basics including a grinder and polisher, vices, files, saws, gauges and indicators, punches, hooks and a drill. Weigh up the advantages of advanced models and invest in those that will significantly improve your metalworking capabilities. For example, solder guns can work at a higher heat than irons to speed up your work and enable you to use metals with higher melting points.

Experiment with new materials
Do you feel like you’ve hit a wall with your work? Testing yourself with unfamiliar materials could help open doors to previously inaccessible projects. Different metals have different properties and so each is suited to a unique range of products.

For example, steel is hard and strong and can be magnetised, perfect for chains and cases. In contrast, brass is soft and has a relatively low melting point making it perfect for casts and other delicate decoration. Copper is expensive, but its excellent ability to conduct electricity makes it a must-have if you’re planning on diversifying into making electronic circuits.

Upskill on a regular basis
No matter how experienced you are in something, there will always be aspects unknown to you. Upskill on a regular basis to make sure you stay at the top of your game and earn yourself a reputation as one of the best in the business.
Your upskilling endeavors could stretch beyond metalworking. Look into website development and marketing to help publicise your business and promote your products far and wide.

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