Design and manufacture of steel sheds and storage
Asgard Steel Storage design and manufacture steel sheds and storage from their facility in West Yorkshire. Christopher Raby, one of the Asgard longest serving Engineers has kindly offered to answer a few questions for us. He loves the functionality and sturdiness of Asgard’s sheds, and takes pride in being one of the engineers who works on the manufacturing side of things daily.
Workshopshed: Asgard Steel sheds are made from sheet steel. How do you design them so they don’t flex?
Christopher Raby: We design them with added folds and interlocking joints. Strategically positioned stiffeners create rigid panels particularly when parts are screwed together. This makes them solid units, which is why our shed are a popular choice for people who want something that has the strength of a building, rather than an everyday wooden or plastic shed. This construction method has helped us to achieve the much coveted Secured by Design accreditation (Police Approved).
Workshopshed: How else do you ensure the storage is secure?
Chris: Each of our LPCB and Secured By Design sheds have been through a controlled rigorous testing procedure. The enclosures (sheds) are attacked, with numerous tools, over fixed time periods. This includes the (pick and drill resistant) Euro profile lock, which is used on most of our products, Asgard sheds feature interlocking joints, security tags and strategically positioned stiffeners (around doors and attack points). All of which helps to maintain the strength and integrity of the storage.
Workshopshed: How do you design the kits so they can be easily self-assembled?
Chris: Although there are a lot of fixings, we have designed the product to generally only use three types of screw. Self-tapping (BZP) screws are used for fitting the panels together, countersunk machine screws are used for the fitting doors, finally self-cutting masonry screws are used for securing units to floors. This keeps tools required for the erection, to an absolute minimum and simplifies the build. Every shed is supplied with fully illustrated instructions showing the build step by step, showing part numbers, screw type and quantity required at each stage of the build.
Workshopshed: What is the first thing that happens when the metal arrives at the factory?
Chris: Asgard are a fully accredited ISO 9001 company, so everything we do is in line with our Company Operating Procedure. Raw materials, i.e. sheet steel is booked into stock and stored on racks ready to be loaded onto the punching/ bending machines as required. A fully automated MRP system then “calls off” materials as they are needed.
Workshopshed: And how do you turn that metal into a shed?
Chris: Once loaded onto the punch stations, the sheet steel is punched to form the blank that will become the panel or part when folded. The finished blank has all the holes, corner notches etc. that will allow the panel to be folded to the required design. Larger components are generally folded on one of our Salvagnini P4 folders. One is manually loaded with single blanks whilst the P4 Auto can be loaded with a pallet of blanks the finished folded component is then unloaded at the end of the process. Some parts are complete at this stage and are ready for powder painting, others however form part of assemblies when several parts are brought together in our fabrication department these parts are generally, riveted spot welded or welded or all three depending on the part. Smaller components tend to be manually folded. Once complete these will then go to our powder plant.
Workshopshed: How is the steel protected from the weather?
Chris: All Asgard sheds are made from galvanised steel. Each of the panels are washed and pre-treated with a phosphate rust inhibiter before polyester powder painting. This makes Asgard sheds weather proof and durable and of course a great place to store things like electrical gardening equipment, lawnmowers, bikes, and whatever else you can think of that needs to be protected from the elements.
Workshopshed: The newspapers like to tell us about the rise of the robots, do you see a future where Asgard sheds are made by robots?
Chris: The automated folding machine is already essential in the manufacturing process, enabling more volume shorter lead times and excellent quality and consistency. The diversity of the products that we manufacture means that dedicated robot lines for welding corners at the moment would be extremely costly and not practical to set up, we have seen them in operation however, never say never.
Many thanks to Chris for sparing time to explain the process of making steel sheds. If you want to know more then visit Asgard Secure Steel Storage
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