Types of Steel Used in Mold Making
The world of mold making relies on robust and durable materials to shape the products we encounter daily. One of the key elements determining the success of this craft is the choice of steel for mold production. In this post, we’ll delve into the types of steel commonly used in mold making, exploring their characteristics and applications.
P20 is a versatile, low-alloy tool steel that is widely used in mold making.
Known for its excellent machinability and polishability, P20 steel is often preferred for making plastic injection molds.
It offers good wear resistance and toughness, making it suitable for high-production runs.
H13 is a hot work tool steel prized for its exceptional heat resistance and hardness.
Commonly used in die casting and extrusion molds, H13 steel can withstand high temperatures without losing its hardness.
Its ability to resist thermal fatigue makes it a preferred choice for molds subjected to repeated heating and cooling cycles.
S7 is an air-hardening tool steel known for its shock resistance and high impact strength.
This steel is often chosen for molds subjected to high-stress applications, such as forging dies.
Its exceptional toughness makes it suitable for cold and hot working applications.
420 Stainless Steel
420 stainless steel is a corrosion-resistant material often used for molds that require good polishability.
It is commonly employed in molds for the production of medical devices, optical components, and consumer goods.
Its corrosion resistance makes it suitable for applications where molds come into contact with corrosive materials.
D2 is a high-carbon, high-chromium tool steel known for its wear resistance and hardness.
Widely used in forming and stamping dies, D2 steel is also suitable for certain types of plastic injection molds.
Its ability to retain sharp cutting edges makes it valuable for applications requiring precision.
Tool Steel Grades (A2, O1, L6, etc.)
Various other tool steel grades, such as A2, O1, and L6, are chosen based on specific application requirements.
These grades offer a range of properties, including good machinability, toughness, and resistance to wear.
The choice of steel for mold making is a critical decision that directly impacts the performance, longevity, and precision of the molds produced. Different types of steel bring unique properties to the table, allowing manufacturers to tailor their selection based on the specific demands of the application. By understanding the characteristics of each steel type, mold makers can craft tools that stand up to the challenges of modern manufacturing, ensuring the efficient and reliable production of a wide range of products.