Analyzing the system of metal stamping

A system analysis of the forming process reveals the many variables that lead to success or failure. Most of the variables in forming are related to:

  • Material behavior.
  • Loading.
  • Boundary conditions.

From anisotropy to lubrication, your ability to measure and manage these variables is key to efficient production and troubleshooting, ensuring you can form quality components efficiently. Equally important, when you understand, measure, and manage these attributes, you can identify the sources of problems and remedy them.

Stamping as a System
When you look beyond the hardware, stamping is primarily a system of inputs, processes, and outputs. When you analyze them, you begin to see the many attributes that influence the quality of your processes and components. When you’ve identified these attributes, you can:

  • Develop a plan to understand those attributes and their influence on forming,
  • Measure the properties of inputs and supporting process components to determine their compliance with specifications, identify correlations between attribute values and production events, and determine possible causes of undesirable events.
  • Manage operations and material inputs for better production results.

In a simple, high-level process diagram (see Figure 1), the inputs include the blank and control attributes for the stamping operation. Outputs include the formed components and status information generated from the press and monitoring devices.

Once you know the general categories of inputs and outputs, you can start to break down each category into the information and attributes that influence forming results. A brief, but not comprehensive, list of measurable attributes is shown in Figure 2.

If you measure your important attributes, software can help identify the properties, control attributes, and process measurements most likely to lead to equipment and component quality failure, as well as the range of attributes most likely to build quality components. Using this information, you can:

  • Manage the design, specification, receipt, and quality of coils and blanks.
  • Improve your simulation results for die design.
  • Identify issues and manage press controls and operations.
  • Plan equipment maintenance for reliability.

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