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  Progressive Forming Dies

Progressive forming dies are probably the most common type of tooling.  These can be as ndie shoe,small as a carton of cigarettes to as large as dining room table. 
•The important factors in designing and building these tool are the raw material, part print  tolerance and quantity to be produced. 
•If you are stamping thicker raw materials you must adapt for strip growth.  This means making the pilots spring loaded and smaller than you normally would.
•Since the forces required to stamp and form are greater, the tool operations should be spread out equally or balanced throughout the die area over the die shoe and bolster.
•The part print tolerances should be liberal enough to account for such things as strip growth, thickness and temper variations.  It is next to impossible to consistently produce a part to nominal, depending on the thickness, tolerance and number of stations.
•The quantity, type of alloy to be stamped and annual production really define the type of attributes the tool should have, such as carbide or wear resistant tool steel.
Designing for minimal raw material consumption is of great importance to be competitive.  This is where a multiple part die would benefit. Die design software can also help minimize material.  Always calculate the force required to make a form prior to designing the die.  This will help determine the proper hold down force and area for springs or nitrogen.
Die side slug retention and double thickness indicators are essential with this class of tool.  In higher production applications  electronic gaging, vision systems and attribute gages should be utilized.
•Another important element to success is employing a servo feed and stock straightener.
•Proper lubricant application is also critical to success.
•Stamping high strength low alloy steels requires more thought in the design, especially using stainless steel fasteners to secure all dynamic components, utilizing undercuts, and specialized steels and coatings depending upon the application.
•Incorporating die electronics and sensors will improve efficiency.
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