Die (Manufacturing): Definition, Types, Components, Materials & Die Making Process [PDF] (2023)

Last Updated on February 27, 2021 by

This paper on Die (Manufacturing) consists of an overview of the basic die. how it makes, types of dies, and die materials. Also, you can download the PDF version of this paper for free, the link is at the bottom of this article.

What is a Die?

Die is a kind of solid or hollow metal of customized shape that is mainly used in stamping or cutting any shapes or coin, embossing, drawing wires, extruding, press, etc.

It is a thing that can be customized according to the requirement or necessity. Along with that, anything from simple to complex shapes can be made through a die.

The dies can be used in the formation process or casting process and can be termed as Mould. Die is mainly used in the manufacturing departments of industries. The sections of the die, which are made for forming or cutting, can be made of special metal and hardenable steel and it is also known as Tool steel.

Die (Manufacturing): Definition, Types, Components, Materials & Die Making Process [PDF] (1)

Components of a Die:

Stamping dies have several components. They are as follows:

1. Die Sets, Die Plates and Shoes:

Die Plates, Die Sets and Shoes are made of either aluminum plates or steel plates. In a critical tolerance, these parts are flat or parallel. So they can be grounded or machined-milled. From these all, the popular one is grinding. So that as ground surface, the milled surface also should be accurate.

The die set can be created by attaching lower die shoes and upper die shoes by guide pins. The lower shoe of die contains holes, that are made by flame-cut. These holes help to create scrap and slugs as the die can freely fall on the press. These holes also help as in the clearance of other components as gas springs.

2. Bushings and Guide Pins:

Guide pins are used as guideposts. Guide bushings are used with guide pin to align lower and upper shoes together. Guide pins and guide bushings are the components of precision-ground.

They are made of 0.0001 in. To install the components in the method of numerous specialty, mounting can be used. Two types of bushings and guide pins are present.

They are Ball bearing-style pins and friction pins. Guide bushings are slightly bigger in inside diameter than the pins as they are precision-ground pins. Bushings are made of a special wear-resistant material known as aluminum-bronze and the guide pins are made of hardenable steel. As the aluminum-bronze contains graphite, so it reduces friction.

3. Heel Plates and Heel Blocks:

A special kind of steel block is a heal block. Heal block is screwed, precision-machined, welded and dowelled to lower and upper shoes. At the time of forming process and cutting, side thrust generates.

(Video) Introduction to Tool and Die Making: Part 1

This thrust is then absorbed by the wear plates and the functional components. The one-directional force may deflect the pins, which can be the cause of misalignment at forming or cutting. So it is necessary to observe that any one-directional force occurred or not.

Heel blocks are mostly made of steel heel plates. In the opposite shoe, there is a wear plate that is made of some dissimilar metals like aluminum-bronze. Heat, cold welding or galling occurs because of the friction made by the same metal in two opposite plates.

As in all directions, the die has a heel, box heel blocks are to be used. In another hand, to heel any or all directions, heel blocks are used.

4. Screws, Keys, and Dowels:

Screws secure and fasten the components which are working in both lower and upper shoes. In stamping dies the fastener is the cap screw socket head.

In Milled pockets of die shoes, the key, rectangular, small block, can be inserted. Keys heel and locate the components and the sections of die.

Dowels are used to locate the proper location of the die section and die shoes. Dowels are usually precision-ground, hardened pins.

5. Pads:

At the time of forming and cutting process the pads, flat, pressure loaded plates, used to control and hold the metals.

According to the functions, pads are made from either hardenable tool steel or soft low-carbon steel. At the mating section of the die, it must be closely fit with contoured pads. In stamping dies, there are different types of pads. They are as follows:

Die (Manufacturing): Definition, Types, Components, Materials & Die Making Process [PDF] (2)

a. Stripper Pads:

At the cutting punches, a stripper pad is used to strip or pull the metals. Stripper pads are usually spring-loaded and flat. When it cut, the metal used to collapse on the shank or body. The stripper pads used to mount the die shoes, mainly the upper shoe.

b. Pressure Pads:

Before the contact of forming punch with the metal, in the lower section of die, metal has to be taken down. It is done at the time of the wipe bending process. The amount of bending force and the force pressure pad should be equivalent.

c. Draw Pads:

On the sheets of metals, the amount of downward force and pressure is exerted. This determines that how much flow in the metal can be agreed and the die cavity by drawing can enter. According to that, flow in metals can be controlled by the draw pads.

6. Spools, Keepers and Shoulder Bolts:

The shoes die used to move from up to down. The Spools, Keepers and Shoulder Bolts are used as the fasteners of this movement. By screw or dowels, Spools, Keepers and Shoulder Bolts are secured with lower and upper die shoes.

(Video) Sheet Metal Stamping Dies & Processes

7. Retainer:

The retainer can be used to secure the components with lower and upper die shoes at the time of forming and cutting process. The popular retainer among all is a ball-lock retainer. It is a high-precision retainer. It is used to align and secure the forming and cutting punches accurately.

It uses a spring-loaded ball-bearing. In the teardrop shape, the spring-loaded ball-bearings are locked not to come out the punches. This ball-lock retainer gives advantages to the technicians to reinstall the punches by removing it quickly. It is a ball-lock retainer’s advantage.

8. Springs:

Spring is a component that can be used to supply force to the strip, form metal and hold it. Different springs can be used here. Most popular springs are gas spring, coil and urethane springs.

Gas springs are filled by nitrogen. It helps by giving a good amount of force. Coil spring is used, when there is a need for the force of a reasonable amount. Urethane spring is worked at short-run stamping. These Coil and Urethane springs are also known as Marshmallow spring.

Die (Manufacturing): Definition, Types, Components, Materials & Die Making Process [PDF] (3)

Types of a Die:

According to the use in the operation of sheet metal, die are of six types. These are:

  • Simple Die
  • Combination Die
  • Compound Die
  • Progressive Die
  • Transfer Die
  • Multiple Die

Simple Die:

The simple die is that die where at one stage, one operation can be done by one stroke.

Advantages of Simple Die:

Here are some advantages of a simple die:

  • It is the simplest form of the die.
  • It is one stroked die.

Combination Die:

The Combination die is that die where at one stage, multiple forming and cutting operation can be done by one stroke. Such examples of combination die are as follows:

  • Combined deep drawing and blanking
  • Combined deep drawing and punching
  • Combined bending and blanking

Advantages of Combination Die:

These are some advantages of using a combination die:

  • Productivity is too high as the operation is done as a combination of forming and cutting.
Die (Manufacturing): Definition, Types, Components, Materials & Die Making Process [PDF] (4)

Compound Die:

The compound die is that die where at a stage, multiple operations can be done by one stroke.

Advantages of Compound Die:

There are couple of advantages of using compound die, and some of those are:

  • Multiple components are produced in one stroke.
  • Productivity is high.

Limitations of Compound Die:

Here are some limitations of compound die:

(Video) [ Sand Casting ] - Learn More about Sand Casting Process

  • The required force is high.
  • No usability of punch forces reducing methods.
  • Difficult manufacturing and design of the combination of die and punch, for greater than 3 operations.
Die (Manufacturing): Definition, Types, Components, Materials & Die Making Process [PDF] (5)

Progressive Die:

Multiple operations of cutting can be performed in a stroke. But blanking is the last operation as different punch sheets and stages are progressing to complete the operation of punching from one to another stage.

Advantage Progressive Die:

Here are the list of advantages using Progressive die:

  • By one stroke, multiple components can be produced.
  • Productivity is the same as the compound die.
  • Force is reduced by providing staggering or shear.
  • Manufacturing and design of the combination of die and punch are easier.

Disadvantages of Progressive Die:

Here are some disadvantages of progressive die:

  • Force balancing is difficult.
  • Precision alignment and setup procedure is required.
  • Much heavier than single die.

Transfer Die:

Transfer die is that die which is the same as the progressive die. With that here, the first operation is the blanking. So that as a first stage, black procedure travels one to another stage and completes the punching.

Advantages of Transfer Die :

These are some advantages of using a transfer die:

  • More economical production than progressive die.
  • Large parts are transferred in more than one presses.
  • More versatile.

Disadvantages of Transfer Die :

Although there are some disadvantages of Transfer die:

  • More costly.
  • In each stage, has to set the blank.
  • More sensor for protection of die is necessary.

Multiple Die:

More dies attached parallelly to produce more components are known as Multiple Die.

Advantages of Multiple Die:

These are the some advantages of using multiple die:

  • Productivity is High.
  • In the existence of more than one dies, more products can be produced.
  • It consumes less time.

Materials of Die:

To make a die, so many materials are needed to be present. These contain so many steels of different kinds and the material of non-metallic and the casting of non-ferrous and ferrous.

Carbon Steel:

Manganese 0.20 to 0.45, Carbon 0.90 to 1.15, Sulphur 0.025, Phosphorus 0.025 and Silicon 0.16 are present in this Carbon steel.

Carbon Block Steel:

Carbon Block Steel contains manganese 0.50 to 0.70, carbon 0.55 to 0.65, chromium 0.60 to 1.10 and nickel 1.25 to 1.75.

Tungsten Oil Hardening Steel:

This Tungsten Oil HardeningSteel contains manganese 0.25, tungsten 1.75 and carbon 1.20.

(Video) Proof of evolution that you can find on your body

High-Alloy Oil-Hardening Steel:

This High-Alloy Oil-Hardening Steel is the non-deforming in nature. It contains about chromium 12.00, carbons 2.15 and manganese 0.35. Other elements, Tungsten, Nickel, and Vanadium can add to this steel.

Manganese Air Hardening Steel:

This Manganese Air Hardening Steelcontains manganese 2.5, carbon 0.90, molybdenum 1.00, chromium 1.5 and silicon 0.30.

Chromium Air Hardening Steel:

This Chromium Air Hardening Steel contains chromium 5.00, carbon 1.00, manganese 0.50, molybdenum 1.00, silicon 0.25, and sometimes vanadium 0.50 can be added.

High Alloy Air-Hardening Steels:

This High Alloy Air-Hardening steel is as same as the High-Alloy Oil-Hardening Steel. It contains chromium 12.00. The carbon varies between 1.00 to 2.15, molybdenum 0.80, silicon 0.35, manganese 0.35 and sometimes vanadium 0.50 can be added too.

Materials for Producing Low-Cost Die:

In the aircraft manufacturing process as well as in some other cases a die needs to be developed by a die maker through different materials that can be a better choice rather than using some cast steels or steels.

Although, a die maker needs enormous practice and skill to do the same thing. This type of scenario occurs during the die making that related to aircraft manufacturing to reduce the material utilization cost.

Apart from that, it is also true that the quality of metal that is produced through magnesium or aluminum may not be up to the mark as compared to the quality of cast steel or steel.

Generally, the materials taken into account by a die maker to make a die are Cerrobend, Kirksite, which are non-ferrous material in nature. On the other hand, non-metallic materials such as bakelite, plastics, Masonite and different kind of woods are also can be utilized to make a die. Moreover, these materials are going through the stretch forming process to make a die.

Die Making Process:

First of all, the die shop within a mechanical workshop has to ensure that every die maker should be properly trained as well as aware of the fact through which a die can be developed. In this era of modernization, in most cases, every die maker creates a design in AutoCad and tests that through a prototype tool. Apart from that, the processes that should be incorporated with the die making process are discussed below briefly.

The die maker imports the design from the database and checks the precision of the drawing. In the next step, the die maker counts the time through a blank design and determines the phases of completion. Such as the width of a strip distance between pitch, angle and so on.

Now it becomes a fact that most of the companies compare the drawing with a standard drawing through the visualization process. The next step is developing the shapes according to the requirements.

In regards to this finite element analysis, that should be carried out by the die maker to analyze the draft angles, safety zones as well as the other calculations. In the other step, errors are encountered by the die maker. Henceforth, the layout is made and developed a free form shape.

(Video) Semiconductor production process explained

ECO or Engineering Change Order can be utilized to design the tool. After that, a template should be created according to the standard deviation. Then in the next step, the die maker deals with the making process of the prototype tool. In this case, Cimatron’s NC is used regarding the same. Through this NC, set up of a high-quality die can be developed and its precision can be secured appropriately by the die maker.

So this is a complete paper on Die, I hope you have understood the key factors regarding dies. If you have doubts, feel free to share it in the comment section, we will love to help you back. And in the meantime don not forget to share this resource in your favorite social media handles.

References (External Links):

Media Credits:

  • All the images used in this paper are made by Learn Mechanical under Creative Common License [Attribution Needed].


How do you define die in manufacturing? ›

What Is a Die? A die is a pre-shaped tool that works in conjunction with a press to manipulate the material into the desired size and shape. The press forces the material — plastic, metal or composites — into the die's cavity, thus creating a new object in the same size and shape as the die.

What are the 3 types of die? ›

Types of Dies
  • Progressive Die.
  • Transfer Die.
  • Combination Die.
  • Compound Die.
  • Multiple Die.
Jun 4, 2020

What are the components of a die? ›

Dies also can contain cutting and forming sections made from carbide or various other hard, wear-resistant materials. Most stamping dies are constructed of several basic components, including die plates, shoes, die sets, guide pins, bushings, heel blocks, heel plates, screws, dowels, and keys.

What material is used for die making? ›

The high-speed steel 1.3343 (HSS) is used as a standard material for dies and cutting elements. Compared to the material 1.2379 it has a higher wear resistance and hardness. It is used for medium strength (up to approx. 500 N/mm²) strip material and especially for thick sheets.

What are five basic die operations? ›

The basic die operations divided into several categories such as cutting, bending, forming, drawing and squeezing. All of these operations require that portions of the workpiece undergo plastic deformation.

What are the 5 types of dies according to method of operations? ›

This blog gives further information on types of dies based on their method of operation. According to this type of classification, dies can be further stated as single operation or single dies, compound dies, combination dies, transfer dies, progressive dies and multiple dies.

What is die and its types? ›

A die is a specialized machine tool used in manufacturing industries to cut and/or form material to a desired shape or profile. Stamping dies are used with a press, as opposed to drawing dies (used in the manufacture of wire) and casting dies (used in molding) which are not.

What is the die process? ›

The die stamping process, also known as pressing, includes a number of techniques such as punching, blanking, piercing, coining, and several other operations. Designs are required to be precise so that each punch produces optimal quality.

What is the difference between a tool and die? ›

In metal stamping, a tool can be almost any mechanical device used to cut, form, support, or mold metals. By that definition, jigs and fixtures are tools, as are drills and cutting blades. Dies, on the other hand, are only those tools that functionally change the shape of the metal.

What are the requirements for making die? ›

Design requirements for dies
  • A drawing depth as uniform as possible.
  • No free forming (wrinkles of the second order); the blankholder should be close to the punch contour.
  • Small, included angles with large drawing depths should be avoided.
  • Large, round drawing projections; and large, soft excess material areas.

Which steel is used for die? ›

High-speed steels (HSS), are the most highly alloyed tool and die steels and maintained their hardness and strength at elevated operating temperatures.

What metal is best for die casting? ›

Aluminum is one of the most popular metals used in die casting. Aluminum is a very lightweight metal, so it's great for creating lightweight parts without sacrificing strength. Aluminum parts can also withstand higher operating temperatures and have more finishing options.

What metal is used for dies? ›

Die casting is a metal casting process that involves feeding molten nonferrous alloys into dies under high pressure and at high speed to rapidly create molded products. The main materials used in die casting are alloys of aluminum, magnesium and zinc.

What are the major components of a die set? ›

8 Basic Die Components and Their Functions
  • Die Plates (Shoes, Sets) Also known as die shoes and die sets, die plates serve as the foundation for where other die tools and components are mounted. ...
  • Die Guide Pins and Bushings. ...
  • Die Punches. ...
  • Die Buttons. ...
  • Die Springs. ...
  • Die Retainers. ...
  • Custom Die Details.
Sep 5, 2022

What are the different types of die cuts? ›

The Different Types of Die Cutting Methods

Three of the most popular types of die cutting method include flat bed die cutting, rotary die cutting, and waterjet cutting. Each of them may be better suited to specific types of materials or fabrication.

What is the difference between die and Mould? ›

Dies and molds are both tools for shaping. Dies are used to shape sheet metal and other metal forms. A typical application is the making of automobile body parts. On the other hand, molds are used in injection molding such as with melted resin or casting molten metal.

What are the two main types of death? ›

There are two types of death that can be declared: Heart/respiratory death and brain death. The first type of death means an irreversible stopping of heart and lung function, whereas brain death means an irreversible stopping of brain function.

What material is used for sheet metal dies? ›

Most tool materials for sheet metal forming are cast iron, cast steel, or tool steels. Cast iron grades used for stamping applications are gray cast irons (like G2500, G25HP and G3500) and pearlitic ductile irons (D4512, D6510, and D7003, among others).

What is the purpose of a die? ›

die, tool or device for imparting a desired shape, form, or finish to a material. Examples include a perforated block through which metal or plastic is drawn or extruded, the hardened steel forms for producing the patterns on coins and medals by pressure, and the hollow molds into which metal or plastic is forced.

Why is it called a die? ›

The word die comes from Old French dé; from Latin datum "something which is given or played". While the terms ace, deuce, trey, cater, cinque and sice are generally obsolete, with the names of the numbers preferred, they are still used by some professional gamblers to designate different sides of the dice.

What is the full meaning of die? ›

to stop being alive, either suddenly or slowly: Twelve people died in the accident.

What is typical die size? ›

Current Die Sizes

The current mainstream standard offered by both Intel and AMD is 14 nanometers (nm). Remember, one nanometer is 1/1000 the size of a micrometer, making it substantially smaller than the carbon filament.

What is die in metal forming process? ›

Die forming is a widespread sheet metal forming manufacturing process. The workpiece, usually a metal sheet, is permanently reshaped around a die through plastic deformation by forming and drawing processes. Simulations can be carried out in order to avoid cracks, tears, wrinkles, too much thinning, and stretching.

What is a Class A die? ›

Class A - Type 1

The first type of class A die typically is a larger drawing and stretching die for producing parts that require a completely smooth and defect-free surface. Exterior automobile body panels such as outer doors, hoods, roofs, fenders, and trunk lids are classic examples of parts made with this tooling.

What is the tool in tool and die? ›

Tool and die makers construct precision tools or metal forms, called dies, that are used to cut, shape, and form metal and other materials. They produce jigs and fixturesdevices that hold metal while it is bored, stamped, or drilledand gauges and other measuring devices.

What type of tool holds a die? ›

You need a die holder to hold round dies. The dies are inserted there with the notch facing upwards. Then the fastening screws are tightened with a slotted screwdriver. Usually the dies have a cut on both sides, so it doesn't really matter which side you use for cutting.

How can I learn tool and die? ›

Start your career as a tool and die maker by earning a high school diploma or GED certificate. Enroll in an apprenticeship or vocational training program to gain on-the-job training in machining, computer-aided design (CAD), computer-aided manufacturing (CAM), and other key job skills.

What are the four steps in die casting? ›

To recap, high-pressure die casting generally consists of four steps: preparing the mold, injecting the mold with molten metal, ejecting the newly created cavity from the mold, and separating scrap metal from the cavity.

What are the 4 basic steps of casting? ›

Basic Steps in Casting Process

Patternmaking. Coremaking. Molding. Melting and pouring.

What are the eight stages of death? ›

Template:Stages of death
  • Pallor mortis.
  • Livor mortis.
  • Algor mortis.
  • Rigor mortis.
  • Putrefaction.
  • Decomposition.
  • Skeletonization.
  • Fossilization.

What chemicals are used in die casting? ›

The main die casting alloys are: zinc, aluminium, magnesium, copper, lead, and tin; although uncommon, ferrous die casting is also possible.

What are examples of die products? ›

In fact, die-cast parts can be found in many things; you are probably just unaware that they are made from die-cast metal. Locks and gears are common finished products. Other examples are hooks, toys, door handles, pumps, power tool housing, golf clubs and general engineering castings.

What is tool and die making process? ›

tool and die making, the industrial art of manufacturing stamping dies, plastics molds, and jigs and fixtures to be used in the mass production of solid objects. The fabrication of pressworking dies constitutes the major part of the work done in tool and die shops.

What is a die assembly? ›

Assembly by Die Casting is used as the joining medium to assemble multiple small components up to 6 in. (150 mm) in diameter, and as the production method to form additional components directly on the assembly.

What is the difference between tap & die? ›

A tap is used to cut or form the female portion of the mating pair (e.g. a nut). A die is used to cut or form the male portion of the mating pair (e.g. a bolt). The process of cutting or forming threads using a tap is called tapping, whereas the process using a die is called threading.

What is the best material for cutting dies? ›

Foam is among the best material to die cut as it has many applications.

How many types of die steel are there? ›

The most widely used types in chromium hot work die steels are H11, H12, H13, and, to a lesser extent, H19. The high chromium in this group, coupled with low carbon, ensures depth of hardening, and hence these steels can be air hardened to full working hardness.

What is the cheapest metal to cast? ›

Aluminum is an easy material for metal casting because it is inexpensive, widely available, and melts quickly with a propane torch or in an electric kiln.

What is the cheapest metal to die cast? ›

Aluminum is one of the most affordable die casting materials. It's widely available and comes in many different alloy formulas to match your exact needs. Zinc and zinc aluminum are common as well within the die casting industry, but they do cost more than aluminum alloys.

Can you die cast stainless steel? ›

Stainless steel is one of the most flexible materials utilized in casting manufacturing and is aesthetically pleasing and known for its strength and corrosion resistance. The process of stainless steel die casting is widely known and used across many marine and automotive industries.

What are the different types of forging dies? ›

There are four types of forging manufacturing processes that are commonly used to shape metal parts. These processes include impression die forging (closed die), cold forging, open die forging, and seamless rolled ring forging.

How many types of threading dies? ›

There are generally three types of taps: taper, plug, and bottoming. A tap cuts a female thread on the inside surface of a pre-drilled hole. A tap is lobed and does not have any cutting edges. It is forced into a hole and the material is changed into the required thread form by the lobes.

What is a die in Moulding? ›

Dies and molds are both tools for shaping. Dies are used to shape sheet metal and other metal forms. A typical application is the making of automobile body parts. On the other hand, molds are used in injection molding such as with melted resin or casting molten metal. Image of a mold for injection molding.

What type of metal is die cast? ›

Die casting is a metal casting process that involves feeding molten nonferrous alloys into dies under high pressure and at high speed to rapidly create molded products. The main materials used in die casting are alloys of aluminum, magnesium and zinc.

What are two meanings of die? ›

: to stop living : expire. died of old age. : to pass out of existence : come to an end. their anger was dying down. : to disappear or lessen gradually.

What is the highest sided die? ›

This d120 die has one hundred twenty triangular faces numbered 1-120. The shape is a fully-symmetrical polyhedron (an isohedron) known as the disdyakis triacontahedron. This shape is the ultimate fair die allowed by mathematical symmetry.

What shape is a die? ›

Hence,the shape of die is a cube.


1. Everything You Need to Know About Taps & Dies - Gear Up With Gregg's
(Gregg Distributors LP)
2. All House Framing EXPLAINED...In Just 12 MINUTES! (House Construction/Framing Members)
(The Honest Carpenter)
3. [CLASSIFIED] "Only a Few People On Earth Know About It"
(Be Inspired)
4. How your digestive system works - Emma Bryce
5. How The World’s Biggest Pasta Factory Produces 1,400 Tons Of Pasta Per Day
(Insider Food)
6. Extrusion Processes
(Tooling U-SME)
Top Articles
Latest Posts
Article information

Author: Cheryll Lueilwitz

Last Updated: 02/04/2023

Views: 6605

Rating: 4.3 / 5 (54 voted)

Reviews: 93% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: Cheryll Lueilwitz

Birthday: 1997-12-23

Address: 4653 O'Kon Hill, Lake Juanstad, AR 65469

Phone: +494124489301

Job: Marketing Representative

Hobby: Reading, Ice skating, Foraging, BASE jumping, Hiking, Skateboarding, Kayaking

Introduction: My name is Cheryll Lueilwitz, I am a sparkling, clean, super, lucky, joyous, outstanding, lucky person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.