Omni Mfg. Inc. in St. Marys, OH, relies on coatings to prevent galling and heating during severe draws, and to improve punch performance in certain piercing operations. One challenging application involved cutting and drawing heavy-duty door hinges from 5-mm-thick, high-strength, low-alloy steel. The die required frequent reconditioning. Tool room manager Bob Prater wanted to try something new.
With a carbide-based thermal diffusion (TD) coating, form inserts in the die lasted 20,000 to 25,000 hits before they needed to be recoated. Prater thought they should last for at least 100,000 hits. He first experimented with conventional coatings on different tool steels. Then he contacted Phygen to test DC53 tool steel treated with FortiPhy™ XVD technology
Prater had two sets of inserts made from the same bar of steel. One received conventional chemical vapor deposition TiC coating; the other was treated with FortiPhy XVD. Both combinations improved tool life, and more than met Prater’s performance goal—but the inserts with FortiPhy XVD still outperformed the TiC coatings by 43 percent, lasting for 199,000 hits.
“We like new technology. We’re fairly aggressive about trying new things.”