This week, SNIPS is at the annual FABTECH metal forming, fabricating, welding and finishing expo in Atlanta, Georgia. With so many companies in the sheet metal fabrication industry exhibiting, there’s a lot to see. (Follow us on Facebook for live coverage of the expo and new product releases).

Here are six sheet metal fabrication tool releases we are excited to see:  

1. New 60-ton Autoform press brake from Cincinnati Incorporated 

60 Autoform Press Brake

Cincinnati Incorporated (CI) is set to debut its newly enhanced 60-ton Autoform Hydraulic Press Brake. This next iteration of the 60-ton Autoform is the company’s first compact hydraulic machine available with a six-axis backgage and a full 6-foot long bed length.

Key features of the new Autoform include exceptional ram repeatability (± 0.0004”), longer stroke length (11”) and fast forming speeds (programmable from 1 to 120 inches per minute). The available six-axis backgage gives it the ability to excel at fabricating small, complex parts with greater throughput than a larger machine.

2. Chicago Pneumatic CP3550 series grinders and sanders

Chicago Pneumatic CP3550 series

Chicago Pneumatic expands its line of CP3550 grinders and sanders, which are designed for use in high volume metal casting and fabrication environments. The company calls the CP3550 series its efficient and affordable solution for grinding, chamfering, weld preparation, and cleaning, cutting, finishing and sanding.

(Follow SNIPS on Facebook to see the tools put to the test live).

3. Optrel’s Crystal 2.0 welding helmet

Optrel Crystal 2.0

Optrel’s new Crystal 2.0 welding helmet features a lens with a fully automatic shade 4 to 12 arc brightness detection and a Twilight feature to gradually bring the lens back into light state from welding state, reducing eye strain. Autopilot adjusts the shade level based on the brightness of the arc or flame. The auto-dark lens can also be operated in fully manual mode with infinite shade adjustment between shades 4 and 12 for a custom view of the arc. Need we say more? 

4. CleanSpace Ultra air purifying respirator


The CleanSpace Ultra powered respirator face mask has no hoses, belt mounted battery packs or cables, making the device one of the lightest and easiest respiratory units to wear. Additional CleanSpace Ultra product specifications included:

  • NIOSH approved, APF 1000 and IP66 rating
  • Lightweight (power unit (1.5 lb, with high capacity HEPA filter) and compact
  • Few parts. No hoses, cables or belt mounted battery packs
  • Up to eight (8) hours run time
  • High capacity HEPA filter
  • Mask has speech diaphragm and built-in PortaCount® adaptor
  • Polycarbonate visor with tear-off visor protectors
  • Low maintenance, durable and reliable (2 year warranty)

5. Mazak’s 6kW direct diode laser-cutting


Mazak Optonics introduces two laser-cutting machines and one automation system; the highlight being the launch of the OPTIPLEX 3015 DDL 6kW. 

OPTIPLEX DDL utilizes a flying optics, 2 pallet changer design with a new MAZATROL PREVIEW G control and high performance digital drive package. The OPTIPLEX DDL also features a helical rack and pinion positioning system that delivers higher cutting speeds for maximum throughput. 

The OPTIPLEX 3015 DDL combines Mazak’s Intelligent Functions with the Multi-Control Torch to directly increase the productivity of the end user by allowing the machine to optimize setup automatically per program.

6. Hypertherm’s X-Definition class plasma system and HyPrecision Waterjet pump system 


Hypertherm’s X-Definition class plasma combines engineering advances and refined high definition plasma processes to deliver superb plasma cut quality on mild steel, stainless steel, and aluminum. Additionally, Hypertherm’s HyPrecision Waterjet pump includes technology designed to provide warning of upcoming maintenance needs.