This past week I participated in an evening sheet metal workshop at the Idea Foundry in C-bus. One of my long-term projects is a 1968 Mustang I intend to autocross. Learning to weld and work sheet metal will be integral to its success. I’m also building a repair stand from black iron pipe and sheet metal for the bike build.
In less than an hour we had covered the operation of stomp and corner sheers, leaf and finger brakes, punches and a bar folder. Then we jumped right in bending, cutting and shaping metal.
This introductory class was focused on the basic, hand-operated machinery used to work sheet metal. This is by no means new technology, but as a heuristic it was invaluable. By the end of the session we had all produced an aluminum tool caddy, as I’m sure many before and many after me will. But, the class also produced something else within me—a connection to the heavy, industrial machinery used to produced a simple, delicate object.