Metal Stamping 101 


Metal stamping is a process that makes use of dies and stamping presses to change sheet metal into different shapes. The metal pressing machines use heated material to form these shapes. Types of metal pressing include progressive stamping, fourslide stamping, precision metal pressing, hot metal pressing, and deep draw stamping. 

These types of metal pressing use machines with stamping dies that cut or form the metal into specific designs for different projects in high volumes of identical parts in precise movements. Metal pressing is an ideal process for industrial production of parts for the automotive, public transportation, military, and manufacturing sectors. Its use is advantageous because it is cheap, there is a high turnaround of products and materials produced are of high quality and durability.

Basic methods of metal pressing involve blanking, punching, coining, bending, flanging, and embossing. Punching and blanking are somewhat similar in that they involve a die to cut sheet material into specific forms. The difference comes in the process of punching: scrap metal is removed from the sheet metal on the dire as the punch enters whereas, for blanching, the desired material is removed from the primary sheet material. Bending is the forming of metal sheets into L, U, and V-shaped figures whereas for flanging introduces a flare or flange on metal workpieces using presses with unique designs. Coining involves the stamping of a punch on the metal placed between a die and the press to penetrate the metal sheet resulting in an accurate, repeatable bend containing deep penetrations. This method relieves the metal workpieces’ internal stress resulting in no spring-back effects. 

Still on the types of metal stamping, progressive die stamping is the fastest producing minimal waste. The metal sheet is taken through multiple stations that perform different and separate actions – cutting, punching, or bending. This process is ideal for metal parts that will have complex geometrical shapes. This process has a higher repeatability process; a shorter process run length has a faster turnaround, and its labor costs are low. Fourslide or multi-slide stamping involves four tools moving simultaneously to shape the metal piece to the desired product. This method best suits crafting complex components of numerous bends and twists. No dies are used in this process. Hot metal pressing uses extreme heat to form metal into different shapes. Boron steel, the kind of metal used in this process, is heated to 1700° F and formed into high-strength lightweight steel parts by being quenched in the die itself. This process allows the formation of complex parts that will negate welding or amalgamating measures. Products produced from this method do not tolerate spring-back or warping and are so hardened to cut them unless by powerful lasers. 


Precision metal stamping is the method of creating three-dimensional pieces resulting in products with tight tolerances. The process involves fewer movements between machines of the materials used fastening its process. Precision metal pressing allows the formation of intricate designs that tightly adhere to tolerances of 0.001 to 0.002 inches for length and 0.0005 to 0.001 of roundness. Telecommunication equipment, engine parts, and aircraft components are fashioned using this method. A dissimilation of precision metal pressing is micro-precision stamping which forms intricate parts for medical or electronic industries whose tolerance ranges in 0.002 to 0.005 inches. Another type of metal pressing is short-run stamping which necessitates nominal upfront tooling expenses and therefore, an ideal solution for small projects or prototypes. Custom tooling components and die inserts drill, bend, or punch the metal blanks created reducing tooling costs and therefore, cost-effective for many projects requiring a faster turnaround.