Mold Design and Manufacturing

What Is a Mold?

Mold is an industrial product that shapes materials in a specific structural form through a certain method. It is also a production tool that can produce industrial product components with certain shape and size requirements in batches. Almost all industrial products must rely on mold forming. The high precision, consistency, and productivity of using molds to produce parts are unequaled to any other processing method.


What Is the Structure of the Hardware Stamping Mold?

Generally, it can be divided into upper mold and lower mold. The upper mold is composed of a mold handle (punch handle), a guide sleeve, a convex mold, a base plate, a fixed plate, a screw, a pin, an upper mold seat (upper support), and a stripping plate. The lower mold is generally composed of a lower mold base, a guide plate (side guide plate), a concave mold, a retaining plate, a bearing plate, a guide pillar, screws, and pins.


Type of Mold:

1. Classification based on process properties:

(1) A stamping die that separates materials along a closed or open contour line. Such as blanking molds, punching molds, etc.

(2) The bending die causes the sheet metal to deform along a straight line (bending curve), thereby obtaining a mold with a certain angle and shape of the workpiece.

(3) A deep drawing die is a mold that damages the sheet material into an open hollow part, or further changes the shape and size of the hollow part.

(4) A forming die is a mold that directly replicates a rough or semi-finished workpiece into the shape of a convex or concave die, while the material itself only produces local plastic deformation. Such as flanging molds, shaping molds, etc.

(5) Riveting die refers to the use of external forces to connect or overlap the participating parts in a certain order and manner, thereby forming a whole.


2. Classification based on the degree of process combination:

(1) A single mold that completes only one stamping process in one stroke of a press.

(2) A composite mold has only one workstation, which completes two or more stamping processes simultaneously on the same workstation in one stroke of the press.

(3) Progressive die (also known as continuous die) has two or more stations in the feeding direction of the raw material. In one stroke of the press, the mold completes two or more stamping processes in different stations.

(4) The transfer mold combines the characteristics of single mold and progressive mold, utilizing a robotic arm transfer system to achieve rapid transfer of products within the mold, highly improving production efficiency, reducing production costs, saving material costs, and ensuring stable and reliable quality.


Mold Manufacturing Process

1. Mold design

(1) Firstly, conduct product diagrams and analysis to identify the difficulties of the product. During the stamping process, there may be factors that affect the size, stability, forming difficulty, part vulnerability, and appearance damage of the product.

(2) Process product drawings, original drawings or drawings, 3D (3D gyration 2D), 2D.

(3) After confirming the above information, perform tolerance processing on product data.

(4) To do the unfolding and forming&bending methods according to experience

(5) Identify difficulties, issues, applied tolerances, burrs, strip point requirements, etc, based on the product structure.

(6) Start process design. We usually need to determine the material, thickness, width, and spacing of the fabric of the product, the height of the punching machine. To indicate material utilization rate and floating height.


2. All processing of the mold (the main structure of the mold).

(1) Mold material is the key to determining the service life of the mold (The high productive mold require material quality).

(2)Measurement and inspection must be carried out after heat treatment and recovery of hardness standards. High precision molds require vacuum and cryogenic treatment.

(3)Plane grinding and template grinding must be within the standard range, which is related to the achievement of subsequent wire cutting accuracy.

(4)Wire cutting is the core of mold processing. The matching between templates, the unification of standards, the matching between mold parts and templates, and the matching between parts are all related to the precision and speed of subsequent assembly of molds.


3. Assembly and adjustment of molds (for inspection and certification of mold accuracy and quality)

(1) The toolmaker must understand the structure and requirements of mold products, and understand the design ideas of design engineers. Fully read the mold drawings and construct according to the drawings.

(2) The toolmaker shall construct according to the mold assembly standards and workflow.

(3) During mold assembly, attention should be paid to areas of insufficient mold design and process capabilities to reduce issues for subsequent debugging.