Die Setting Procedures 300

This class describes how to change a die and explains proper setup procedures for die setting.

  • Difficulty Advanced

  • Format Online

  • Number of Lessons 21

  • Language English


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Course Outline
  • Objectives
  • What Is Die Setting?
  • Understanding Press Specifications
  • The Safety Block
  • Preparing to Remove the Die Assembly
  • Loosening the Die Assembly
  • Preparing for a New Die Installation
  • Installing Pressure Pins
  • Selecting Die Installation Bolts
  • Selecting the Proper Clamps
  • Installing the New Die
  • Centering the New Die
  • Shut Height Adjustment
  • Adjusting Shut Height Without a Shank
  • Rough Adjusting Shut Height With a Shank
  • Installing the Clamping Devices for the Die Assembly
  • Completing Clamping Device Installation
  • The Knockout Bar
  • Setting the Counterbalance Air Pressure
  • Testing the New Die
  • Summary
  • Define die setting.
  • List the information on the press specification plate.
  • Describe the proper use of the safety block during die setting.
  • Explain preparations for removing the die assembly.
  • Describe how to loosen the die assembly.
  • Explain preparations for installing a new die.
  • Describe how to install pressure pins.
  • Describe how to select die installation bolts.
  • Describe how to select the proper clamps.
  • Describe how to install the new die.
  • Describe how to center the new die.
  • Explain common methods for shut height adjustment.
  • Describe how to adjust shut height when the die set does not have a shank.
  • Describe how to adjust shut height when the die set has a shank.
  • Describe how to install the clamping devices for the die assembly.
  • Describe how to complete a clamping device installation.
  • Explain the purpose of the knockout bar.
  • Describe how to set counterbalance air pressure.
  • Describe how to test the new die.
Vocabulary Term

adjustment rod

A rod located on the press that is periodically adjusted during die setting to allow for adjusting the shut height.

air cushion

An air-actuated press accessory that is placed below or inside a bolster plate or die block, which is used to increase pressure on the die using pressure pins. The air cushion can also be used to lift the part out of the die.


A plate that is designed to hold the lower die shoe in place. The bolster plate is attached to the top surface of the press bed.

bolt head

The top portion of a bolt.

bottom dead center

The lowest position in the ram's stroke. BDC is also referred to as stroke-down position.


An overhanging object that is designed to support another object.


A part of the clamp through which a bolt passes to secure the die on the bolster or slide face. One side of the bridge rests on the die shoe and the other rests on the fulcrum block.


Any type of chip or scrap on a surface that is considered an imperfection.


The maximum amount of force that a press can exert.


A device that usually consists of a bridge, bolt, and a fulcrum block, which is used to secure the die set to the press.

counterbalance air pressure

A setting on the press that correctly counterbalances the weight of the slide and its attachments so that the press exerts the proper amount of pressure.

die assembly

The collective assembly of upper and lower die shoes, guide pins and bushings, and punch and die retainers.

die clamp

A workholding device that maintains the position of the die by holding it in place.

die lifter

A device located in the bed of the press that lifts the die assembly up so that fork lifts can get under the die assembly and easily lift it out of the press.

die setter

An individual who installs the die in the stamping press.

electric slide adjust button

A feature on some types of presses that allows the press operator to adjust shut height electronically.

feeler gauge

A device sometimes used in stamping to determine if there is proper clearance between the punch and die components.


The main device located in the crown of a mechanical press that is attached to the power source and regulates the reciprocating motion of the ram. The flywheel moves in a circular motion; the pitman converts this circular motion to an up-and-down motion.


A device used to precisely align the bridge with the slot in the bolster. The fulcrum block can either be two interlocking triangles or one square.

guide pin

A fixed pin or post that is located in the lower shoe and fitted to bushings in the upper shoe that ensures precise alignment of the upper die shoe and lower die shoe.

hold-down bolt

Another name for a lock-down bolt.

inner diameter

The interior surface of a hole in a workpiece or tooling.

knockout bar

A device used to assist in ejecting parts from the die.


A type of nut that is used to install the die. Locknuts have their name because they lock down on the part.


A safety procedure required by OSHA that takes steps to dissipate all stored power during maintenance work. Never try to operate a machine that is under lockout.

machine bolt

A threaded bolt. A machine bolt does not have the same bolt head as a t-bolt and must never be placed in a t-slot.

model number

A number that identifies the style of press with which you are working.

operator control

The controls on the press that, when depressed, cause the press to cycle. Operator controls often contain safety devices that prevent the press from cycling accidentally.

outer diameter

The exterior surface of a shaft in a workpiece or tooling.


Two pieces of steel that are the same thickness and either sit on or get bolted to the upper die shoe to achieve proper shut height for the press.


The device that links the crankshaft to the ram. The pitman converts the circular motion of the flywheel into up-and-down motion for stamping.

press operator

An individual who operates and monitors the stamping press during production.

press specification plate

A plate attached to the side or back of the stamping press that identifies important information about that specific press.

pressure pin

A pin used in conjunction with an air cushion that transfers pressure from the air cushion to the bottom of the die.

punch shank

A device used to clamp the punch die shoe into the ram face.

quick die change positioning locator

A device that centers the new die in the press if the new die is the same width as the previous die. Ususally more than one quick die change positioning locator is used.


The main upper portion of the press that slides up and down within the press frame during operation.

rough adjust

A term used to describe the initial adjusting of the shut height of the press.

safety block

A device used during press maintenance. The safety block is placed in the die area to ensure that the press cannot accidentally stroke down.

safety plug

A plug on the press in which the safety block is inserted. When the safety block is not plugged into the safety plug, the press is disabled.

serial number

A number that identifies the specific press with which you are working.


A device located on the die set that ensures that the part does not stick to the upper half of the die. A shank can also be used to clamp the upper half of the die to the press.

shedder plate

A pin, rod, or plate, operated by mechanical means that ejects blanks, parts, or scrap from the die.

shut height

The distance from the slide face to the bolster when the slide is at bottom dead center.

shut height adjustment readout

Either a mechanical or electrical device on the press that indicates how much the shut height was adjusted.

slide face

The surface on the press that comes into contact with the upper die set.

slide hole

A hole in the ram face into which the shank on the punch die is inserted. A collar is placed on the shank so that it does not come out of the slide hole.

spring-loaded pin

A pin used in conjunction with springs to transfer pressure from the springs to the bottom of the die.

standardized tooling

Any of various types of tooling used universally. Types of standardized tooling vary only slightly in their dimensions.

stop block

A block or blocks that are normally located near each guide pin to ensure that the press does not close too far. Stop blocks can also determine the correct shut height adjustment.

striker mechanism

An adjustable switch that activates an air-operated valve and controls automation.

stroke length

A measurement from bottom dead center to top dead center that indicates how far the press opens during a stamping operation.

strokes per minute

The amount of times that a press strokes down in one minute.

tapped hole

A hole with internal threads cut by a drill-like tool called a tap.


A type of bolt that has a "T" shaped head. T-bolts slide into t-slots.

top dead center

The highest position in the ram's stroke. TDC is also referred to as stroke-up position.


A space in the shape of a "T" sometimes located in the bolster and the slide face. Matching t-bolts are slid into the t-slot.


A flat metal disc used beneath a nut or axle bearing or a joint to relieve friction, prevent leakage, or distribute pressure.

weight-to-air pressure plate

A plate attached to the side or back of the stamping press that provides air pressure settings for various upper die weights. The weight-to-air pressure plate is important when setting the counterbalance air pressure.