When your part volumes increase, stamping slides you down the pricing curve exponentially.
Fotofab's metal stamping process takes your part design, proven successful by our chemical etching process, and reproduces it in mass production quantities economically.
The advantages of our stamping operation are:
- Consistency: Fotofab assures stamped parts meet the exact requirements as your etched prototypes
- Flexibility: Our skilled toolmakers solve the most difficult design challenges
- Repeatability: We ensure you receive the same level of quality from the first article to the end of the parts life
- Cost: We offer competitive pricing on tooling and part production
- Continuity: Prototype through production with a single vendor and point of contact
Fotofab products are made in the USA and distributed worldwide.
Precision Metal Stamping Capabilities
With metal stamping, a tool is used to both punch out the blank and form the part. It is a completely automated process that saves time and costs. These tools can take several weeks to make, but once completed, parts can be made in a matter of seconds with production costs at a fraction of a penny per piece. Fotofab offers two types of stamping: progressive die and 4-slide.
Progressive Die Stamping is the most flexible type of metal stamping, allowing the production of designs ranging from 0.002” to 0.036“ thick for parts up to 4” wide. The die used in progressive metal stamping contains several stages, each performing a portion of the operations on the metal coil. As the die opens and closes, the coil progresses with each stroke from stage to stage. With the final operation, the part is cut from the coil.
4-Slide Stamping is suitable for smaller parts (narrower than 1.375”) between 0.002” and 0.036” with less complex geometry. A 4-slide is a horizontal press with 4 moving tools that strike the workpiece from 4 directions. It is less expensive to tool than a progressive die and, since it works in 4 axes, it is extremely versatile. More on 4-Slide Services
Considerations for Choosing Precision Metal Stamping
There are many considerations to think through when choosing precision metal stamping for thin metal parts. The timeline, cost, and delicacy of the part features matter greatly when selecting which type of stamping method is best for your project. Below are a few items to consider.
Burrs - Unlike chemical etching, stamping creates a small burr on the part edge. Fotofab keeps the thickness of this burr within the industry-standard 10% of the metal thickness and can control the location of the burr based on your requirements. We offer several optional post-stamping deburring operations, including tumbling, etching/ chemical deburring, and vibro-deburring to your specifications.
Packaging - Due to the high quantity and low cost per part, packaging labor may be a major cost driver. Bulk packaging is the most economical. For those parts which will be handled by pick and place, are especially delicate, or which you would like to limit the amount of unpacking labor, Fotofab offers several other methods, including tape and reel, trays, and “nest-and-stack” per your specifications.
Oil Cleaning - Fotofab uses vanishing oil on both progressive die stamping and 4-slide stamping parts. Although this typically evaporates completely prior to shipment, there is a possibility of residue. Upon request, we will clean the parts after stamping to meet any specific cleanliness spec.
Plating - For parts that require plating, there are two options: plate individual parts or stamp from metal that is already plated. Using pre-plated material is typically less expensive, however, the parts’ edges will be unplated and some non-standard metals and/or plating specs may not be available as pre-plated stock.