Aluminum punchingMinifaber has over 50 years of experience with metal punching operations and knows well all the ups and downs of the aluminum punching process.
As we all know, aluminum’s mechanical characteristics make it a very soft metal, that can be cut easily. However, this doesn’t mean that aluminum punching is made any easier.
On the contrary: there are a few downsides to the process of aluminum punching as well and Minifaber, thanks to its expertise, knows very well how to approach them and overcome them, to make sure that the end product is perfectly manufactured as expected.
The aluminum punching process done by Minifaber
In order to guarantee successful aluminum punching operations, Minifaber relies on 4 technologically advanced, completely automated, combined punching machines, which ensure the highest standard of precision, and a highly qualified technical team.
Minifaber has always believed in the power of innovation, which is why it invests considerable amounts of money every year to keep up the with the ultimate, top-notch machinery on the market.
Our technical staff is prepared to sit down with the client and discuss about the best way to approach the process of aluminum punching, in order to get to the desired finished or semi-finished product.
The challenges of aluminum punching
Thanks to its technologically advanced machinery and its long-established experience, Minifaber can successfully overcome the challenges of aluminum punching. But what are these challenges?
As we said earlier, aluminum has a lower resistance than most metals, which makes it very easy to punch it. However, this is not necessarily an advantage.
In fact, there is one very frequent issue that it’s easily encountered when punching aluminum: galling; which is a form of wear caused by the adhesion between the punch and the die, sliding against each other.
Aluminum shows a gummy characteristic, which causes it to adhere to the surface of the punch when it gets punched. This accumulation of residual aluminum on the punch is known as galling (also called adhesive wear). The elastic nature of the aluminum causes it to collapse back into the hole as the punch is extracted, creating drag and pull on the punch.
How to avoid galling in aluminum punching operations
The aluminum galling deposited on the punch tip over time can cause the hole size to expand; which would create an out of tolerance hole quality issue on the metal part.
However, there is a solution to this: reducing the co-efficient of friction between the punch and the aluminum sheet. The most common way to reduce the adhesive influence of the aluminum is by using a low coefficient of friction coating on the punch.
Also, punch to die clearance is a key factor that needs to be carefully considered during aluminum punching operations. The recommended die clearance is directly related to the type of aluminum, its tensile strength, and the aluminum sheet thickness.