Powered presses apply force to sheetmetal through hard tooling, producing a variety of parts. Sheet or sheetmetal blanks can be fed manually or automatically into a press or series of presses to produce the parts. Often, automation such as robots or transfer mechanisms are used to transfer material from press to press or from die to die for various part-forming operations.
Progressive dies, making use of a single die where multiple operations are performed in consecutive stations, allow all main forming processes to take place in a single press. In-die capability for tapping, coining, bending, deep drawing and other processes makes stamping an even more capable process.
Stamping produces a multitude of parts and panels for home appliances, home electronics, furniture, fixtures and residential construction. Other parts typically produced via stamping include computer cases and interior parts, electrical boxes, switches, connectors, control panels, fasteners, machine panels and parts, and material-handling parts as well as a multitude of airplane and space parts and panels.
Some parts are produced in rapid fashion, as presses can move at speeds above 2000 strokes/min. At such speeds, high-volume runs are accomplished quickly, with various control and measurement checks built-in to ensure parts meet specifications. Presses run at much lower speeds for deep-drawn parts or parts requiring in-die work or longer forming time. Simple two-dimensional parts are created with ease in the stamping process, while the addition of in-press tooling allows for creation of complex curved and shaped parts. Generally, hard tooling used in stamping provides superior dimensional precision and uniformity throughout a production run, and in successive production runs.
Stamping presses provide low, medium and high runs, ranging from a few hundred to millions of parts. Due to tooling costs, stamping is not recommended for one-off parts, short-run prototypes or low-volume one-time production.