A-Z List of Sheet Metal Terminology [Updated]

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Sheet Metal Terminology, Definitions & Phrases 2021 [Updated]

sheet metal fabrication
Sheet metal terminology is important for beginners to understand. Below is a list of common vocabulary terms.

Working with sheet metal involves many specialized tasks and techniques. Like other metal-related professions and traditional crafts, the terminology and phrases related to the techniques used by sheet metal workers may seem foreign to everyday people or those new to the industry.

Below are some common words used within the sheet metal world that may be applied to similar topics. This vocabulary is essential for those interested in pursuing work with sheet metal and for those interested in metalworking more generally.

While not an exhaustive list of all words related to sheet metal, this article will provide a great foundation for your sheet metal research or work.

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Sheet Metal Second Edition
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Binding metal with adhesives and bending in the form of a crimped seam through the process of welding.

Band saw 

A tool with hardened blades that feeds sheet metal to ensure even cutting.  

Base metal

Metal to be welded or cut. 

Bend allowance

The length of flat sheet metal required to make a bend of a specific angle and radius. 

Chop saws

A tool that has an abrasive disc specifically designed for cutting sheet metal. 

Corner relief

A technique involving the removal of a circular section from sheet metal to meet the design intent by accounting for material stretch while modeling. 

Cut solid

Removing solid sections of material from the sheet metal wall. 


The length of flat sheet metal required to make a bend. 

Die cutting

Process that cuts metal pieces without the formation of chips or the use of burning, or melting; known as shearing. 

Extruded wall 

A solid structure of sheet metal that extends from an edge into space.

Fab shops

Abbreviation of fabrication shops. 

Form die 

Device used for cutting out or stamping material. 

Form tool 

A tool used as a cast or mold to manipulate the shape of sheet metal. 

Fully formed 

Attaining a definite structure as intended.


A cut in the surface or edge of sheet metal. 

Relief point

Point from where a sheet metal wall is sheared or torn, especially along seams. 

Saw cut 

Toothed cut.

Sheet metal 

Metal formed into thin, flat pieces. Can be cut and bent to endless shapes and sizes. 


Using a tool to cut or emboss sheet metal. 


The main focus of fabrication. The use of a torch or electric arc to join together metal pieces.

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