Deep Drawing and Stamping With Aluminum


Aluminum is one of the most commonly used metals in the world. Some of the most typical uses are seen in:

  • Beverage Cans
  • Refrigerators
  • Kitchen Stoves
  • Automobile frames
  • Airplane wings
  • Spacecraft Components
  • Televisions
  • Laptops/External Monitors
  • Cooking Utensils
  • Aluminum Foil

Aluminum is very durable, yet lighter in weight compared to other metals. Because of this, you can find aluminum at the center of many structural supports. Markets that aluminum is heavily utilized in include: aerospace, automotive, architecture, packaging, construction, railroad transportation, marine transportation, electrical appliances, medical devices/equipment, electronics, machinery, and consumer goods.

It consists of many great characteristics including:

  • Excellent Durability
  • Ductility
  • Holds heat
  • Great electrical Conductivity
  • Fully Recyclable
  • Strength-to-weight ratio
  • Corrosion Resistance
  • Rust Proof
  • Weighs about 1/3 less than steel
  • Aesthetically pleasing

Aluminum Deep Drawing Process

Aluminum has inelastic properties, where it is unable to be stretched. This means that it cannot be deep drawn the same as other materials, specifically stainless steel. Aluminum can easily be deep drawn, but in its own way.

Aluminum is deep drawn differently than stainless steel. It has poor elasticity, and cannot be over stretched throughout the draw process. When deep drawing with stainless steel, material flows throughout the process. The material will thin and thicken with the force and stroke of the press. However, when using aluminum, one key to a successful deep draw is to avoid overstretching. This is done by ensuring  the correct draw ratio, using the correct lubricant, and making sure the press is set up to compress the material.

The blank must be placed properly on the press, where it is close enough to the punch to be forced into the cavity, allowing for the proper flow of metal. (If the blank is placed too far or slightly off, the material will stretch, resulting in a fracture or break).

The compression will result in an inward motion of the material, which means that the metal being displaced will come out as about the same surface area as the initial blank. Most materials typically resist metal flow when compressed, which is why the correct amount of material and force is absolutely accurate.

It is also important to keep in mind that lubricants used for stainless steel may not be appropriate for aluminum. Each material requires different lubricants for different reasons, depending on their properties.


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