Precision Metal Stamping Process
Complicated products or mockups often need a more sophisticated procedure to ensure proper design. When presented with this issue, manufacturers seek a stamping company that uses new stamping methods to achieve a more intricate result. Advanced technologies make it possible to execute cuts and engravings with an exactness that was not possible with previous equipment.
Precision metal stamping is a way manufacturers use press lines and stamping dies to produce large quantities of sophisticated products that require careful attention. These machines forge sheets of metal into components or complete parts. This process can manipulate workpieces by making stamps, cuts, bends and folds in even the most minuscule products.
Press Lines and Stamping Dies
Precision stamping machines are capable of engraving designs and markings into hard metals such as copper, aluminum and steel. There are two kinds of devices most typical in a metal stamping press line. They include both mechanical and hydraulic presses.
- Mechanical presses use a flywheel to transfer and store rotational energy. This press is usually smaller than a hydraulic counterpart and can be anywhere from 20 to 6,000 tons, whereas hydraulic machines are as big as 10,000 tons. When a component is tiny, mechanical presses are the preferred machine and can stamp metals as small as 5 millimeters.
- Hydraulic presses transfer liquid under immense pressure to a workpiece to achieve the stamping. Adjustable piston heads make it possible to change the amount of water being displaced and allow for better control. The speed and stroke can also be modified to tailor a project to the manufacturer’s expectations further. Using a hydraulic press provides for greater versatility compared to the mechanical press, and is best used on workpieces as small as 10 millimeters or large, intricate pieces up to 800 millimeters.
These machines are also unique in their ability to manufacture parts that appear shiny and more finished than a dull industrial-grade alternative produced through a traditional method. While other materials sometimes see use, metals have an advantage in maintaining their ductility and malleability after stamping is complete. The mechanical press is faster than a hydraulic press, but are more specialized in the work they can achieve. If the component’s creation is complex, the hydraulic press will likely be the machine of choice.
Stamping dies are unique precision tools that cut and form sheet metal into any desired shape. Heat does not need to be applied while stamping a die, however, due to the friction from cutting and forming, parts often leave the stamping die very hot. Instead of relying on heat to manipulate each piece, the die gets the force required from a press. The metal then gets stamped between the dies in a piece part press.
Some companies have been experimenting with new technologies to optimize the stamping process further. DIE-TECH is ahead of the curve with our patented New Technology (NewT), which revolutionizes the stamping process. New tools and strategies drastically reduce the stages of die construction that take the most time.
Our exclusive techniques cut the entire design and delivery process to as little as four weeks or less. Some of the most challenging projects that require special care take no more than a couple weeks longer than usual.
Two main applications use these strategies:
- Precision metal microstamping: Micro-precision stamping machines can support parts with diameters measuring on the micron level. Sizes as small as 0.002 inches are common specifications. The precision metal microstamping process uses 3D computer software and photo etching technology to achieve a highly specialized operation.
- Intricate precision metalwork: When complicated products and innovative designs require a more specific process, a company specializing in “impossible” designs is essential to ensure satisfaction. DIE-TECH has vast experience creating products with detailed geometries, cuts and folds. We use in-die extrusion and tapping, progressive die design, deep draw stamping, transfer stamping, magnified optical devices and class A dies to make intricate precision metalwork possible.
Comparison to Traditional Methods
Most in this industry would never be able to compete with the turnaround time gained through NewT technology while maintaining such perfect precision. In contrast to other methods of complex stamping, this precision metal stamping process poses numerous advantages. Precision stamping increases accuracy, quickens processes, reduces risk and improves flexibility while manufacturing small parts. Traditional methods cannot compete with achieving the degree of tolerance and flatness that we can obtain.
Using automated processes such as piercing, folding and drawing allows for a lower cost operation that reaches completion at a faster rate. The process also gives you the ability to implement necessary changes in product designs more easily than with any alternative stamping method.
For these reasons, precision stamping plays a vital role in manufacturing high-volume metal products. It is also most commonly used on larger orders because of the tooling costs incurred throughout the acquisition and fabrication of a contract order. It is common for businesses to choose expert machining companies to perform their stamping for them and may also prove to be an option to make smaller production runs more financially feasible.
DIE-TECH’s experienced and innovative staff provides complete in-house services from concept through production. We offer assistance in the design, prototyping, building, development and all phases of producing custom precision metal stampings.
Engineering experts at DIE-TECH understand that the metal forming process is more efficient than other methods such as forging. Metal stamping makes it possible to produce large amounts of products without sacrificing speed or accuracy. Especially in the case of basic, similar parts, turnaround time is remarkably fast.
We also can use a variety of metals that yield a robust and durable product in comparison to other metal forming processes.
After we form the desired shape for your product, it goes into a mechanical or hydraulic press depending on your specific needs. We tailor our metal die stamping process to serve many different functions such as:
- Creating templates to be modified for a finished part
- Metal coining for currency or coin-shaped pieces
Our presses can shape metals such as aluminum, copper, and stainless steel up to 1/16 inch thick.
The design phase of the metal stamping process is critical. A finished part is only as good as its model, so finding a professional company that is capable of bringing your idea to life is essential for the right manufacturability. The designers at DIE-TECH work with you to ensure designs are aligned with your vision and can be adapted to plan for future modifications. Working with an expert in the industry can save time and quicken development.
At DIE-TECH, we have nothing else in mind but perfection. Communication with our clients to ensure a clear objective helps us balance your budget without sacrificing quality. We are always planning for any pitfalls that could occur so that we can prepare for any situation.
We start by choosing the correct metal type, grade, and thickness that will be best suited for the project. Then we conduct an in-depth analysis of the part’s shape to understand what function it will serve. We work with our customers to ensure the correct die geometry and process is used and create a final layout that will save you the most time and money.
By the time that the design phase is complete, we have taken steps to ensure a mistake-proof, quality print is ready for manufacturing. We complete every detail on the print as designed with no further room for interpretation. Our employees stay true to the design and do not make any adjustments without the client’s instruction.
A problem many businesses face is producing cost-efficient, useful prototypes that can see completion on time. Some precision stamping companies will help clients develop a prototype design while avoiding expensive tooling processes. The prototype’s design stays true to the vision of the final product and provides a solution for eager product providers trying to get new components available to their customers. Getting products to market on time is essential in today’s competitive environment. Being sure each part of your product is free of defects or bugs allows for success.
Typical techniques take several days or weeks to create a tooling device, but a specialized prototype design manufacturer can come up with a deliverable in as little as 24 to 48 hours. The computer programming equipment used in advanced stamping techniques is partially responsible for the improved turnaround time.
Choosing a flexible, low volume prototype platform such as that used by DIE-TECH can keep your development schedule on track without spending a fortune. In-house design of right-tolerance precision metal stamped parts and larger components, including enclosures and assemblies, are made possible by two major processes:
- Single-part transfer prototyping: Individual parts move manually throughout stations in this process. Different stations serve different operations such as blanking and metal forming. The main advantage of this process is reduced warehouse tooling costs. However, parts may be more expensive or incompatible with microstamping or complex pieces.
- Progressive strip prototyping: This method moves prototype material through the design process using step-by-step die guides. The die runs the piece through each station until it reaches its final stage. The ability to control the movement manually is available, but the process can be automated as well to cut down on labor costs. Progressive strip prototyping excels at handling small parts and quickening the speed of production while offering more features.
The tools and dies used in the precision stamping process are built to last. Premium tool rooms created uniquely for building new dyes allows any requirements to be completed on time with minimal stress. Separate tool build shops and maintenance shops make the transition between design, building and production go very smoothly. In-house die building processes also result in shorter lead times, which helps your customers by getting your products out to the market very quickly.
Our pre-designed options also unlock potential to expedite the design process, saving you one week or more while building a die, and can reduce total design time by 30 percent per connector.
By this time in the precision metal stamping process, we have already taken account of what could have gone wrong and continually adapt our techniques to reduce risk. Our employees understand the metal type and behavior such as thickness, chemistry, elongation and hardness entirely.
We never attempt to develop a die without having all the required data in our hands. We conduct length-of-line analysis to measure the linear distance through different areas of the part. These tests show us how much metal we need for each partial region, and determine which forming operations to use. Once we take these precautions and define the tip area, the die is ready for production.
When your product leaves the production phase, you will have a part that functions correctly no matter the condition. We work on projects that include making metal stampers used in the harshest environments throughout many industries, and year after year, customers are left satisfied.
In addition to our robust builds, cost-effectiveness is where DIE-TECH adds more value to the customer. Our unique process reduces scrap to less than 0.03 percent, trimming material costs by 30 percent, and saves tens of thousands using simplified process automation. We achieve these advantages by miniaturizing, fixturing, handling, locating and orienting features in our unique precision metal stamping process.
We also slash time to market by finding the most efficient way to get the job done through our NewT process.
7. Additional Services
In addition to precision metal stamping, DIE-TECH broadens our expertise by offering wire EDM services, which is perfect for jobs involving sensitive metal formation issues such as small radius inside corners or tight slots. Once your purchase order is received, we can have a completed part for you within 48 hours.
Our value does not stop there either. DIE-TECH is a full-service facility that designs, maintains and manufactures assembled components. We also handle packaging parts according to our client’s exact preferences. We strive to integrate ourselves as an essential piece of our customer’s supply chain.
Many different industries benefit from precision metal stamping, and DIE-TECH employs experts in these types of businesses. These professionals not only ensure the job can be done but also that it can be handled by those who know what to expect out of the component and the function it will serve in the market.
1. Medical Devices
Devices used in the medical industry must follow strict standards. Each part that goes into a medical tool must comply with or exceed industry standards without any fault. Precision stamping methods allow for better design, prototypes and products that pass FDA inspection.
Common medical instruments that undergo these techniques include needlestick prevention devices, surgical instruments and implants that use tiny brackets and clamps and clips that demand more than typical machining practices.
DIE-TECH has decades of experience perfecting stampings on products that medical practitioners rely on and is the answer for many in the field of medicine.
2. Aerospace and Military
The need for reliable parts in every product while staying on budget is arguably most important concerning the military and aerospace industries. Malfunctioning of devices that use precision metal stamped products can contribute to the risk of fatal accidents.
These industries often require custom designs and builds according to strict quality standards. Some companies need the client to do a large amount of the design work themselves, which usually means allotting a significant amount of company time and effort that delays time to market.
If you have talked to manufacturers and have been told that a particular component is not possible to create, DIE-TECH is right for the job. We are known for our microstamping capacities and intricate metal precision work by using breakthrough technology that allows for almost any component to be made with ease.
The automotive industry uses stamping dies in larger bodywork, but where precision stamping sees use is in wiring connector fixtures that control components within vehicles such as engines and brakes. Proper press processing and careful inspection guarantee results that deliver exemplary results to ensure no malfunctions occur. Products within this domain typically require compound processing which allows for two materials within one die.
In the automotive industry, it is essential to introduce product concessions early to ensure getting that product changed. Once we are ready to engineer the part, we have already run key tests to ensure the part will perform its desired function.
We stay on top of market trends and are always searching for ways to innovate. We are committed to maintaining our reputation as one of the best providers of automotive precision metal stamped parts.
4. Consumer Electronics
Competing with the global marketplace of consumer electronics is not easy. Businesses are continually trying to differentiate their business from the competition and accelerate their supply chain.
Consumer electronics are often thin, small and delicate products that require high precision to manufacture. The infrastructure of these products needs 0.07-millimeter stamped products. Such devices that require precision stamping include cell phones, digital cameras and DVD players.
DVD players use optical components such as laser pickup devices that are 2 millimeters in diameter and have a 0.07-millimeter protrusion height. Smartphones and cameras use FPC connectors that would otherwise have a much thicker connector pin width without the help of precision metal stamping. The parts are also better quality through microstamping and can be manufactured at a faster rate.
DIE-TECH understands the battle between time to market and a quality product, and have refined our processes in the communications and consumer electronics industry to produce exactly the precision stamping you have been searching for.
Certifications and Qualifications
In addition to providing reduced time to market and expenditures, DIE-TECH makes sure we are doing everything we can to serve the public to help create a better tomorrow.
When it comes to precision metal stamping, DIE-TECH is ISO 9001 certified and committed to quality, customer service and continuous improvement. Our quality management system allows us to establish, measure and review objectives better so your parts are in good hands through every step of the manufacturing process.
Our company complies with OSHA workplace safety and health requirements that exceed some of the best practices in the industry. We have instated a safety committee that includes management and labor representatives to catch any hazards or unsafe work practices to maintain an accident and injury-free workplace.
DIE-TECH also refrains from using materials such as tin, tantalum, tungsten and other derivatives that are considered “conflict resources.” These materials come from zones that armies and rebel groups profit from mining them while perpetuating violence. We also are Restriction of Hazardous Substances (RoHS) compliant, which limits hazardous substances such as lead and mercury in our products. We take pride in supporting requirements to end violent tyranny in countries that gain finances through exploiting and trading these conflict minerals and hazardous materials not safe for use in production.
Incorporating these values have built a reputation for us in the metalworking industry that has gained the trust of stakeholders, customers and all of the people we serve.