Robotic body assembly
Automotive Manufacturing: Body Shop

Automotive Manufacturing: Body Shop

  • When people think of an assembly plant, this is the picture they have in their mind – the body shop, also known as body-in-white (BIW), entails a complex mix of mostly automated welding, fastening, and bonding applications to assemble the frame of the vehicle. Not only is precision paramount in frame assembly, but so is surface cleanliness prior to paint.

    3M’s automotive manufacturing solutions can help in both automated and manual body shop applications like laser brazing, weld finishing and cleaning, deburring and many other jobs ensuring metal and composite materials are cleaned, conditioned and ready for the paint shop.

Typical Process Steps

  • Body in white automotive assembly
  • 1. Component Assembly

    Welding and joining of metal parts to create auto components

    2. Body Assembly

    Known as Body in White (BIW) this is the stage where the vehicle frame is joined together before paint and any assemblies or trims are installed

    3. Weld Cleaning

    Meant to remove weld residue and burrs to avoid contamination issues down process

    4. Weld Finishing

    Provides a smooth paintable weld surface

Featured Body Shop Applications

  • Robotic brazed weld finishing animation
  • Brazed Weld Finishing

    In this step, body panels are brazed together with silicon bronze —rather than welded — then blended to create a uniform surface segment and finished with an abrasive wheel to smooth the surface.

  • Straight-shaft tool ideal for heavyweight applications like stock removal and weld leveling. Numerous upgrades have been added to enhance the strength and durability of the tool, while maintenance and compatibility improvements make this tool easy to use and maintain.

  • Designed to blend and finish imperfections left by laser brazing during automotive production. It combines Scotch-Brite™ non-woven material with 3M™ Precision Shaped Grain for faster cutting action and greater durability on Silicon Bronze and other metals.

  • Close-up of spot weld
  • Spot Weld Cleaning and Deburring

    This important process step involves refining the finish of the bare metal in preparation for paint. Using the right abrasive and tool combination helps ensure a pristine paint job and less rework down the line.

  • Lightweight and rugged, designed with a high power-to-weight ratio to help you get more work done in less time – and with less strain. 3M™ Gripping Material and a 97-degree angle head allow more comfort and control. Great for grinding, blending, weld leveling and metal prep.

  • 3M Ideal for spot weld cleaning and deburring, This disc reflects the benefits of Cubitron™ II and Roloc™ products — coupling the sharp, consistent cutting action of Cubitron™ II discs with an easy-to-use Roloc™ attachment.

  • Our 3M™ File Belt Sander is a lightweight hand-held sander with an arm attachment that extends from the handle, enabling the operator to maneuver and manipulate the abrasive belt, turning and rotating as necessary — up to 360 degrees — to blend hard-to-reach areas.

  • Engineered with medium pressure industrial applications in mind, using 3M Precision-Shaped Grain, which cuts exceptionally fast and self-sharpens during grinding. This high-performing belt contains a ceramic and aluminum oxide blend that delivers cost-effective performance on medium-pressure applications, where a full ceramic belt may be underutilized.

Two workers on automotive assembly floor
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