What is Open Die Forging?

Open die forging comprises the shaping of metal using a top and bottom die attached to a ram and a hammer, bolster, or anvil. It is also commonly known as smith forging. Metal parts are worked at their appropriate temperatures, ranging from 500°F to 2400°F, and then shaped into the desired pattern through an expert hammering or pressing of the item.

Open die forging is unique due to the fact that the metal is never completely closed in the dies. Most open die forgings are created on flat dies, though mandrels, pins, or loose tools may also be used depending on the configuration and size of the part. The operator often needs to manipulate and reposition the piece to get the perfect shape.  

Better fatigue resistance

High-strength parts that are created and improved in terms of both mechanical properties and physical integrity, are at the core of the open die forging process. Some of the most significant benefits of this forging process are:

  • Reduced chance of voids
  • Greater strength
  • Continuous grain flow
  • Finer grain size

Open die forging is a vital method for creating parts used in several types of manufacturing. It provides both rough and finished shaping of different metal types like steel and steel alloys. The process typically uses a die that is open on the sides, allowing for the forging of large items. These can be anything from windmill blades to large cylinders or gears. These products can at times weigh upwards of 150 tons, and be over 80 feet long.

There are multiple open die forging techniques used today. Cogging is used to shape raw metal to the right thickness along its length. Once the thickness is reached, it is then shaped into the proper width using the edging technique. This process works the ends of the piece into shape, which then leads to fullering. Fullering thins out the remainder of the metal and prepares it for further forging.
Some items that can be forged using an open die forge are:

  • Mandrel Rings
  • Disks
  • Rolled Rings
  • Crane Hooks
  • Step Shafts
  • Gears

Open Die Forging Cont.

Open Die Forging also allows metals to be worked into different shapes more easily. These can be shapes as simple as discs, or as complicated as step down shafts and flanges. Custom shapes are available as well.

The options for open die forging are numerous and can increase the metal’s strength by aligning the grain within the metal. It is even possible to rough shape ingots to prepare them for later processes.

At Cliffe Metal Products, we offer custom shape die forgings, split die forgings up to 25,000 lbs., and custom-shaped items. Reach us today at 513-885-7600 to discuss your specific needs, and we’ll make sure you get the superior parts and quality service you deserve.