Cold Work Steels

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Characteristics of cold work tool steels

Cold work tool steels are employed for the manufacture of tools for applications involving surface temperatures of not more than 200 °C (392 °F).  In this temperature range, they must feature the following properties in order to guarantee tool resistance to the high stresses arising from the numerous machining and shaping procedures:
• Superior hardness
• High wear resistance
• Good toughness
• Excellent compressive and impact strength
• High dimensional stability in heat treatment

• Sufficient machinability





Effect of carbide contents on wear resistance

The wear resistance of tool steels not only depends on hardness of the steels alone, but also significantly, on the contents of carbide in the steel matrix in the as hardened condition.





PM Grades  Description  Download 
Extremely high toughness with shock resistance; punches and dies for heavy cutting heavy guage materials, woodworking tools, shank tools for pneumatic equipment, coining tools, tablet punches, hot work tools for low thermal stresses.
BÖHLER K490 - Closes the gap in material demands between high wear resistance and good toughness at a very high level! Your benefit: longer tool life! Further benefits lie in the very good machinability and in the flexibility of its heat treatment.
Extremely high toughness PM steel with characteristics of HSS, very high abrasive and adhesive wear resistance and compressive strength, high retention of hardness, suitable for nitriding and PVD coating; for tooling which requires a high edge stability and therefore a high capacity for plastic yield and a high fatigue strength, e.g. cutting and blanking, fine cutting, cold forming, cold massive forming, powder compaction, warm forging at lower temperature.


Remelted Grades  Description  Download 
Al and Nb alloyed, excellent toughness, very high adhesive wear resistance and compressive strength, high retention of hardness, suitable for nitriding and PVD coating; high performance cold work tools for blanking and punching, forming, bending, deep drawing, especially dealing with stainless steels, and extrusion tools, shear blades and slitter knives for cutting light to heavy gauge materials, press tools for ceramic and pharmaceutical industries, cold rolls and roller guides, pipe forming rollers, thread rolling dies, trim and form tools for semi-conductor industry, woodworking tools, and shear blade for recycling of metals, plastics and paper.
Al and Nb alloyed, excellent toughness, very high abrasive and adhesive wear resistance and compressive strength, high retention of hardness, suitable for nitriding and PVD coating; high performance cold work tools for blanking and punching, forming, bending, deep drawing, especially dealing with stainless steels, and extrusion tools, shear blades and slitter knives for cutting light to heavy gauge materials, press tools for ceramic and pharmaceutical industries, cold rolls and roller guides, pipe forming rollers, thread rolling dies, trim and form tools for semi-conductor industry, woodworking tools, and shear blade for recycling of metals, plastics and paper.


Conv. Grades  Description  Download 
Good toughness with high abrasive wear resistance and suitable for nitriding and PVD coating; high performance cold work tools for blanking and punching, forming, bending, deep drawing and extrusion tools, shear blades and slitter knives for cutting light gauge materials, press tools for ceramic and pharmaceutical industries, cold rolls and roller guides, pipe forming rollers, thread rolling dies, trim and form tools.
Exhibits spring properties with high toughness and wear resistance; clamping tools, collet chucks, arbors, punches, lettering punches, nail sets and punches, guide poles for die sets.
A universal 8%Cr cold work tool steel alloyed with Al and high Mo with excellent toughness, high hardness and high adhesive wear resistance; it exhibits high retention of hardness, suitable for nitriding and PVD coating; suitable blanking and punching, forming, bending, deep drawing, especially dealing with stainless steels, and extrusion tools, shear blades, especially good for woodworking tools such as chipper knives.
Extremely high toughness with shock resistance; punches and dies for heavy cutting heavy guage materials, woodworking tools, shank tools for pneumatic equipment, coining tools, tablet punches, hot work tools for low thermal stresses.
Cutting tools such as dies, blanking and punching tools, clamping plates and punch holders for stamping toolings, thread cutting tools, woodworking tools, machining knives for wood, paper and metal working industries, measuring tools.
Extremely high toughness; shear blades and punches for heavy gauge materials, highly stressed coining tools, cutlery dies, hobbing tools, plastic moulds.


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Example of cold work tool steel application