06481259 is referenced by 45 patents.
A method for precision bending of a sheet of material (
) along a bend line (
) and the resulting sheet are disclosed. A method includes a step of forming and longitudinally extending slits (
) through the sheet of material in axially spaced relation to define bending webs (
), forming stress reducing structures such as enlarged openings (
) or transversely extending slits (
) at each of adjacent ends of pairs of slits in order to reduce crack propagation across the bending webs. In another aspect, the elongated slits (
) are formed with pairs of longitudinally extending slit segments (
) proximate to and on opposite sides of and substantially parallel to the desired bend line. Longitudinally extending slit segments further are connected by at least one intermediate transversely extending slit segment (
). Sheets of slit material suitable for bending also are disclosed.