At Capitol Stampings, one of our primary fabrication methods is progressive die stamping. This method is one of the most widely used to produce parts for the automotive, electronics, and appliance industries. The progressive die stamping process consists of several different workstations performing one or more operations on a constant strip of sheet metal being fed from one end. These workstations (or stamping presses) can include punching, coining, and bending the metal as it moves from station to station. It can even include the addition of other parts into the process. This method is used to produce a large number of parts at the lowest cost possible.
The Progressive Die Stamping Process
Progressive die stamping begins with a feeding system that pushes a strip of metal from a coil. Usually, pilot holes along the strip are used in conjunction with conical or bullet-shaped pilot pegs to ensure precision as the material is fed through the system. Not only does this control the precision of the feed, but it also allows the system to maintain control over the material as it feeds through it. Alternatively, the material can be moved through the systems using a method called transfer presses. These presses transfer the material from one station to the next using mechanical appendages. Underneath the system is a conveyor belt that carries away the parts that are punched or cut away to scrap bins.
As the material moves through the systems each station utilizes a reciprocating stamping press to do the work. Each station in unison moves down to simultaneously perform the work of each station, lifting up together to allow the material to feed through to the next station. Depending on the part, these stamping systems can produce well over 800 parts/minute, although some systems are slower out of necessity. In some cases, the operation being performed has to be done more slowly to produce better quality. In other cases, the number of operations needed can affect the speed of production. Each station performs its work until the part arrives at the final “cutoff” station, which separates the completed part from the “carrying web”.
One of the most obvious advantages to this method of fabrication is the speed at which the parts are able to be produced. One of the biggest disadvantages of this method is that it is not suitable for certain processes, such as high precision “deep drawing”. In this process, the depth of the stamping exceeds the diameter of the part.
Bring It To Us
Progressive die stamping requires planning and, in some cases, special considerations. We here at Capitol Stampings want to find the best solution for your part fabrication needs. Call or stop by to talk to our specially trained engineers to see what type of solution is right for you. In fact, take a look at our “Creative Solutions” page to see a couple of examples of the solutions we have designed for customers with particularly challenging parts.