Progressive dies: technical, functional and economic overview

Minifaber is specialized in progressive die metalworking. Let's learn about prog dies in their technical, functional and economic features. When to use them? What are their advantages?

Progressive die is a metalworking tool designed to include punching, stamping, bending, and several other ways of modifying the metal raw material into a single process. 

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A progressive die is designed and engineered to make one or more parts simultaneously with each press hit. The material strip, which runs inside the dies, takes the desired shape through several processing steps within a single die. The part remains attached to the strip and is detached from the strip only at the end of the cycle. All dies are designed to a very specific feed length, which must remain constant throughout the forming process. By changing the feed length, the position of the hole in the washer relative to the washer itself can be changed. When processing is complete, the part is ready for possible next steps such as burnishing, surface, or electroplating finishes.

If you are interested in Minifaber’s progressive die process, don’t hesitate to contact us! We will be happy to assist you. Contact our experts!


How a progressive die is made

A prog die is a complex tool consisting of multiple dies and punches in a sequence where the part is produced in multiple stages. The construction of the die requires trained and experienced partners in various technologies. The die also requires feeding systems connected to the press, usually a strip decoiler, a strip sheet straightening system, and a feeder that brings the right size and amount of material into the die.

Within the sheet metal progressive die you can realize:

  • Threading
  • Coining
  • Countersinking of holes for coining
  • Blanking
  • Drawing
  • Curling
  • Folding
  • Toothing


progressive dies


How a sheet metal progressive die works

Progressive dies work on a metal sheet: the piece is formed through several steps, each occurring at a different station of the die; hence, the name "progressive" die: the part is formed progressively, step by step.


When to use a prog die

The more complex a die is, the more it will cost, and the more production will be required to amortize its cost over time. Therefore, this type of die is made to produce:

  • Parts that are complex in shape;
  • With high production volumes.

In addition, with a progressive die, each step of the pressing process is performed with different dies, so the die has a rather complex design and requires a sheet guide, lifter, or other components necessary for its operation. Each work step is dependent on the others, and the material is moved off the strip. During these movements, therefore, the base material cannot be removed from the pressed piece and the final shearing operation must be waited for. Eventually, progressive dies are considered more suitable for producing sets of smaller components.


The advantages of progressive stamping dies

The advantages of a prog die are many and in different aspects:

  • Technical:because the production cycle is optimized;
  • Economic: because it has a high hourly production output;
  • Management: the press set up cost is low and it can be easily installed on various presses similar to each other.

Translated into practice, with a progressive die fewer parts are moved, and the production is less prone to failure. Eventually, since the prog die is equipped with different dies and different punches, it allows you to adapt the system to different types of presses. Basically, several individual stations take care of the part, with heterogeneous operations, capable of supporting even high intervention volumes and considerable savings.


sheet metal progressive dies


At Minifaber, we design and build custom progressive dies

At Minifaber, we are also involved in the design and construction of custom-made dies: progressive dies, transfer dies, shooting dies, block dies, blanking dies and deep-drawing dies. Our Technical Department and uptodate machinery are the base of progressive die manufacturing service: we can design and build dies for all manufacturing sectors, from electromechanical to vending, from medical to household appliances. All our progressive dies are UNI EN ISO 9 001:2008 certified.

Looking for a qualified service of custom progressive dies design and manufacturing? Contact us without obligation for more information.