I recall distinctly my very first exposure to constructing a die which had been supposed to aluminium die casting china right into a deep, contoured shape. Not knowing much about aluminum, I assumed that it should be extremely formable-all things considered, they make beverage cans as a result, don’t they?

My first thoughts were, “This could be a cake walk. I’ll bet these things stretches a mile. Yep, it needs to stretch a great deal because it’s really soft.”

This thought process was obviously a testimony to my ignorance regarding aluminum.

I think I lost a sizable portion of my hair attempting to make that job work. I have to have spent weeks fighting splits and wrinkles. It wasn’t well before I got to the actual final outcome that drawing and stretching aluminum were not as elementary as I had thought.

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Since I am just just a little wiser with respect to the formability of aluminum and aluminum alloys, I recognize that my problem was not the fault of the aluminum, but instead the fact that during the die tryout stages, I used to be thinking like steel instead of aluminum. Up to then, all of the things i will have done to correct the issue using a die which was forming steel, I have done using the aluminum. Naturally, I failed.

The reality is that aluminum is just not steel. It doesn’t behave like steel, it doesn’t flow like steel, and yes it certainly doesn’t stretch like steel. So performs this make aluminum challenging to form? No, not if you consider like aluminum.

Aluminum is not a bad metal; it’s only a different metal. Like every metal, it provides advantages and disadvantages, and the secret is to comprehend the material’s behavior before designing a part or creating the method and die which are to generate it.


If you are comparing aluminum to deep-drawing steel, generally you will see that aluminum does not have close to the elongation ability of steel. As an illustration, typical deep-drawing steel has elongation somewhere around 45 percent, while a 3003-O temper, meaning “dead soft,” aluminum will have elongation near 30 percent.

Generally and according to the alloy, aluminum has poor stretch distribution characteristics compared to deep-drawing steel. It is regarded as a material that strains locally, which means the majority of the stretch that occurs when the metal is subjected to a stretching operation will occur in a small, localized area.

However, keep in mind that the forming punch geometry carries a greater affect on exactly how the metal stretches compared to metal itself. Stamped parts being produced from aluminum needs to be designed in order that the part shape forces the metal to distribute stretch more evenly.

Aluminum ironing process

Figure 2Generally speaking, aluminum is an excellent material when ironing may be used. During ironing, the metal is squeezed down a vertical wall to enhance the surface area while decreasing the metal’s thickness. Ironing is definitely the basic process used to make beverage cans.

Parts requiring a lot of stretch in a small area with small male radii are doomed to fail if designed of aluminum, particularly if the final geometry is going to be made in just one forming operation. In comparison, large, liberal radii and flowing, gentle geometries are the best-suitable for aluminum.


First, don’t confuse drawability with stretchability. Drawability is the metal’s ability to flow plastically when subjected to tension, while stretchability is the increase of surface area as the result of tension.

Depending on the type, aluminum can draw well (see Figure 1). It has a good strength-to-weight ratio and is well-fitted to the deep-drawing process, as well as multiple draw reductions. The reductions percentages are extremely much like those often used when drawing deep-drawing steel.

Tooling Interface

Although aluminum is soft, it can nevertheless be abrasive. Even though it is not going to rust conventionally, it forms a white powdery substance called aluminum oxide, that is utilized to produce 10dexppky wheels. Which means the same abrasive that you may have been using to grind your tool steel die sections could be present around the aluminum sheet surface.

It is possible to prevent this poor interface by using high-pressure barrier lubricants, which retain the aluminum from touching the tool steel sections during forming and cutting.

Generally, aluminum is a good material when ironing works extremely well. During ironing, the metal is squeezed down a vertical wall to enhance the outer lining area while reducing the metal’s thickness. It increases the metal sheet’s surface area by squeezing the metal instead of exposing it to tension. Ironing is the basic process accustomed to make beverage cans (seeFigure 2).

When aluminum is ironed, it almost compressively flows such as a hot liquid down the wall from the die cavity and punch, and yes it shines to some mirrorlike surface finish.

Aluminum has more springback than soft draw-quality steel. However, the level of springback that takes place can be controlled by designing the stamped product with regards to the springback value.