Roll Forming Glossary/Dictionary M-P

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Marking is the reverse of engraving. As a product passes through
the forming roller, a mark is “stamped” into the part.

Metal thinning

The thickness reduction that occurs during any metal forming


An engineered corrugated steel revetment, or bin revetment, barrier system designed as a blast mitigation and/or blast containment barrier.  The Metalith barrier system has also been certified by the Department of State as a K12 barrier, its highest anti-crash rating. The Metalith corrugated steel revetment system is made form 16-gauge and 18-gauge steel panels. See corrugated metal revetment.


Net shape

Net shape refers to the final dimensions of a product that results
after the corrugating or roll forming operation is complete. Typically,
the final finished net shape is a reduced size compared to the initial

Non-ferrous metal

Metals or metal alloys that do not contain any iron.

Notches/punched holes

Punching dies are incorporated directly into the roll form line to allow notches and holes to be punched during the roll forming process.
Place part holes at least three to five times the material thickness
past the bend radius.

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Oil canning

Oil canning is defined as visible waviness in the flat areas of metal roofing and metal wall panels.  Oil canning cannot be a cause of rejection.

Outboard mill

A roll forming machine with housings that support both ends of the
roll tooling shafts. See outboard spindle support machines, inboard
spindle support machines
, and inboard mills.

Outboard spindle support machines

Outboard spindle support machines have spindle shafts are supported
by housings at both ends. Outboard machines can be easily set up to handle any width of material by making the spindle lengths to suit the material width. See inboard spindle support machines.

Outside radius

The formed outside radius of a bend. See inside or bend radius.

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Part length

The length of the cut metal part. Design for cutoff so the shortest
length for precut parts is no less than twice the horizontal center
distance between roll forming stations.

Plastic deformation

The permanent deformation that occurs in the forming of metal after
the elastic limits have been exceeded. See elastic limit and springback.


Pickling is name given to the process of cleaning a steel coil through
a series of hydrochloric acid baths that remove the oxides (rust), dirt, and oil so that further work, such as roll forming, can be done to the metal.

Post-cut roll forming

A roll forming process that uses continuous rolls of metal and does not cut the piece to size until after it has been roll formed. This process is the most common, efficient, consistent, and least troublesome roll forming method. See precut roll forming.

Precut roll forming

A roll forming process that uses material that has been cut-to-length
before entering the roll forming machine. This method is primarily
used for low-volume applications. See post-cut roll forming.

Pre-notch/pre-punch press

A device used to stamp a hole or notch pattern in incoming material
on a roll forming line prior to roll forming.


The process of placing notches or punches into a metal sheet or roll
before the roll forming process.

Pre-punch or Pre-notch tables

A table used to support material exiting a punch press before it
enters the roll forming machine. See runout table.

Press braking

A process that typically includes metal being manually fed by an
operator who then holds a metal workpiece between a punch and die
and against a gauge to provide a pre-set bend or series of bends in
the metal, making it ideal for producing bent parts such as enclosures
and cabinets.

Production speed

The speed the metal sheets or rolls as they are passed under the roll forming rollers typically measured in feet per minute. Most roll forming equipment used in the US averages a production speed between 100 to 180 feet per minute.


The first part of a design which is made to test tolerance capability,
tooling concepts, and manufacturability of the intended production


The process of piercing a metal product to a desired design. See
notching and notches/punched holes.

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