If you are in the automotive, appliance, hardware, construction, fastener, electronics, or other related industry, you may already recognize the need for precision metal stamping for metal parts. Efficiency in this process allows for accurate and cost-effective manufacturing that lowers your company’s labor costs. It’s also easy to increase the output of complex metal components in different sizes and shapes without increasing your workforce.
American Industrial Company (AIC) is a global leader in precision stamping services. We offer turnkey solutions from prototypes to metal stamping, with the capacity to handle projects regardless of their size or complexity. Here are the answers to frequently asked questions, so you have the information and resources you need about our capabilities.
What Services Does AIC Offer?
AIC is a precise, quality-driven manufacturer offering a full-production service package from design to prototype to completed precision metal stamping. We offer rapid prototyping services for clients who wish to prototype their parts before proceeding to high-volume production.
AIC also offers metal stamping production services, including progressive die heavy and high-speed stamping, laser cutting, manufacturing assembly, and integration. We use in-house engineering designs and progressive tool and die manufacturing to support all metal stamping programs.
The capacity to build dies in-house allows us to optimize costs with materials that match the run size and geometrical needs. We also implement die features that speed up and ease guiding details and press removal.
Does AIC Help Design Metal Stamping Prototypes?
AIC’s expert engineers turn stamped metal part designs into actual components. Our engineering and prototyping services include optimizing the part for the most suitable fit, form, and function. This service helps speed up, ease, and lower the cost of the stamping process. You can test run the parts to ensure the designs deliver the required performance.
Here are the advantages of prototyping:
- Speeds up production, reducing time to market
- Helps identify the strengths and weaknesses of the design
- Removes design flaws that may become expensive in the future
What Materials Can Be Used to Manufacture Stamped Metal Parts?
Each metal has its own unique characteristics and behaves differently during the stamping process. AIC has expertise in manufacturing all types of metal parts with high levels of precision and quality. Some examples of materials we can use in manufacturing stamped metal parts include:
- Beryllium copper
- Hot rolled steel
- Cold rolled steel
- Galvanized steel
- Stainless steel
- Coated steels
How Much Do Metal Stampings Cost?
The cost of custom metal stampings depends on the required tolerance and type of material used. Specialty materials and alloys cost more than common or readily available materials.
However, you can reduce production costs by using an alternative material that offers similar performance to the material you chose in the first place. Another way to save on cost is by using materials in standard thicknesses since they are less expensive compared to those in non-standard thicknesses. This option is worth considering if your parts can be made from materials with a standard thickness without causing a significant change to their form, fit, or function.
Part design also influences the cost of metal stampings. Designs that require angles below 1° (tight tolerance designs) typically need to undergo more machining operations. The parts also need secondary services, which adds cost. Revising the design to reduce certain tolerance needs can reduce the need for secondary processing and/or additional tooling.
What Is a Progressive Die?
A progressive die consists of multiple stations in a single tool specially designed to punch, cut, coin, and bend a metal part. It is a multistep process that progressively forms a final component with every stroke of the press. The progressive die stamping process involves feeding a raw metal coil into the machine, and each subsequent station performs an operation until the part is complete and moves out of the tool on the other end.
Do I Need a Progressive Die to Manufacture My Parts?
Progressive die stamping is ideal for manufacturing both simple and complex parts because it is fast and efficient. In fact, it is among the most cost-effective parts production processes available for larger quantities that need tooling.
Does AIC Make Its Own Tooling and Dies?
Yes, AIC manufactures its own tooling, fixtures, and dies. We have a state-of-the-art tool and die shop where we create high-precision tooling and dies for even the most complex metal fabrication and stamping projects. We also maintain and store dies for our customers at no extra cost.
What Is the Lead Time for Custom Tooling?
Typically, there are three factors that determine the lead time for tool and die manufacturing. These include:
- The complexity of the punch design
- The amount of operations required to produce the part (for progressive stamping)
- The number of parts needed
It usually takes about 4-6 weeks to produce single-stage tooling. Progressive tooling often takes 8-10 weeks.
Why Is Domestic Manufacturing Better Than Offshore Manufacturing?
Working with U.S.-based manufacturers ensures higher quality components, on-time delivery, and better two-way communication. Partnering with a domestic manufacturer means you can expect quick turnaround times and more dependable, accurate deliveries.
Highlighted below are the benefits of domestic manufacturing over offshore manufacturing:
- Consistent high quality: Customers may receive high volumes of products with major defects or flaws from offshore manufacturers. These manufacturers may not notice or fix quality issues, leading to more product waste. Having your parts produced within the country eases communications regarding quality expectations. You can reach out to the manufacturer when problems arise and have them fixed quickly.
- Lower costs: Offshore manufacturing was considered to be cost-effective for a long time. But the ever-increasing cost of shipping finished products across the world and rising wages for workers have erased that advantage. Domestic manufacturing is able to offer competitive costs and better quality in less time.
- Better responsiveness: The distance between you and an offshore manufacturer determines the shipping time for your finished products. Farther distances mean shipping takes more time. Time zone differences can also lead to communication problems. However, with domestic manufacturing, shipping distances are shorter and deliveries quicker. The greatest time zone difference between your location and a domestic manufacturer will only be a few hours.
Does AIC Hold Any Certifications?
AIC has an ISO 9001:2015 certified quality management system. Our customers are assured knowing they are working with a company that operates according to the high standards of this international body.
If you have any other questions about our precision metal stamping services, contact us.