custom extrusion vs rectangular bar
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    Default custom extrusion vs rectangular bar

    Those who use your own custom extrusions. Where will the ballpark justification point quantity wise be on something like this vs using 2x3 rectangular bar. Finish length is 2.5 inches.
    This is just the extrusion profile. Extrusions would still need machined on every face.



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    You may want to call some extrusion companies and get quotes for that profile to be tooled, then per 100lbs (or whatever) of product. The payback may be faster than you expect, given the relative low Al pricing the big users can get.

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    Many variables. Topping the list is supply chain reliability, i.e. the extruder. A bad supplier can erase all your gains.

    Is this 6061?

    Quantity and frequency of customer POs on this part?

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    Being all sides need machined, I would skip extruding the holes. Way cheaper die and easier to control hole size in house, plus really fast to drill for that length.

    After that you need to weigh time savings on machining, increase throughput per hr/ day, material savings. One downside right now is probably leadtime to get a run made, used to be a couple weeks for a die and then 3-4 weeks to run a say 1k lbs, these days could be multiple months.

    Its possible after all that and cost to have die made maybe a few bucks in improving setups in mill etc are all that is needed to produce close to same parts per hr from common bar stock. Also need to factor in customer longevity. I had some extrusions done, then customer (in another state) up and bailed on me and left me with 1k lbs of custom extrusion to pay for and no one to collect from.

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    Quote Originally Posted by GENERALDISARRAY View Post
    Extrusions would still need machined on every face.
    Unless you're doing hundreds of thousands of these I don't see much of a benefit of paying to have these extruded. It's a small enough part, AND it's aluminum. You could easily bang these out on a 3 axis vmc in no time.
    Hell it's a perfect job for a 3+2 vmc if you get 2" stock for holding.

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    Extrusion I buy is at 28 weeks....

    You have to buy 1000 pounds usually

    plus die cost

    aaand you are already loading it in a machine, so you are only saving the roughing time which is x seconds, and maybe volume material cost long term

    you can make a lot o parts with that money

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    Use a form cutter for that arched right side with grooves. Right setup, tooling, and programming and you can bang those out fast in quantity. As said above you'd hardly save anything going to extrusion; I'd say tens of thousands of parts to make it pay off.

    It may actually be faster and cheaper to make from bar, since you can put a dovetail on a 2" x 3" x a couple foot long bar, saw to lengths, and really rip on it, then flip and deck, vs having to hold the extrusion carefully. Less chance of scrapping parts due to misloading. Recycling the chips can get back some of the material difference cost.

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    Our usage of this part is around 400 monthly. I have horizontal time so where and how is no biggie.

    I did some figurin, the extrusion blank (with holes)would weigh .7556 lbs (the holes weigh .1217)
    solid bar is 1.5894 (dividing a bar with no remnant)

    Best quote I have so far on 6061 is $3.78 per. So as material usage goes the extrusion would be half?

    I guess if i had a die cost I could figure when it would amortize. I reached out for quotes to some extruders but haven't heard back.


    The way it sits now is I have to make some from bar because our Taiwan supplier has dipped on us. But long term, without an extrusion I dont think there would be any hope of permanently re-shoring this. Purchasing will find a new Asian connection.
    The old asian price complete on this part, machined on every face and anodized, less than $6.

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    Quote Originally Posted by GENERALDISARRAY View Post
    The way it sits now is I have to make some from bar because our Taiwan supplier has dipped on us. But long term, without an extrusion I dont think there would be any hope of permanently re-shoring this. Purchasing will find a new Asian connection.
    The old asian price complete on this part, machined on every face and anodized, less than $6.
    The price of less then $6 means nothing now, its no longer available so forget about that. Everything has gone up. Make the part in house as cheap as you can and adjust the sale price accordingly and move on.

    I would stick with bar stock. Not huge savings in material, ordering extrusions will be way less flexible then bar stock, and your machining ever side anyway, kind of defeats the purpose.

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    Tell me more about that fat rad with the notches...

    Can you tackle those from the top view (the one in the print you show?) Or are those notches driving a 3rd operation to hit them from an axis that is more normal?

    If those features are a big limit on the production process and you can get them for "free" with the extrusion, that would make a big difference in the calculus.

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    One of my customers who buys about 3 truckloads of custom extrusions a week told me that new profiles are almost a year out now if nothing goes wrong. I used to be able to get them done by Tower by Fort Worth in six week if I asked nicely.

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    Quote Originally Posted by gkoenig View Post
    Tell me more about that fat rad with the notches...

    Can you tackle those from the top view (the one in the print you show?) Or are those notches driving a 3rd operation to hit them from an axis that is more normal?

    If those features are a big limit on the production process and you can get them for "free" with the extrusion, that would make a big difference in the calculus.
    They are purley cosmetic. There is a Tapped hole and some slots to chamfer on that face.

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    Quote Originally Posted by GENERALDISARRAY View Post
    They are purley cosmetic. There is a Tapped hole and some slots to chamfer on that face.
    Ah, that changes everything. You said it had to be machined on every face.


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