Metal punching can be very cost-effective for batch production or series manufacturing. Here are a few questions to answer for determining if punching is the right fit for your needs.
First, how many parts are you looking to produce? The setup of a turret punch press can easily take 30 minutes, depending on the complexity of the job. If the volumes are small and the parts are flat, it’s entirely possible that the same job can be performed on a laser cutter in less time than it takes to even set up the turret punch, making it a much more cost-efficient alternative.
Second, does your project need custom punches and dies? Standard shapes like circles, ovals, and rectangles are available in many sizes. More complex shapes may require the manufacture of custom dies and punches first. This kind of tooling can cost quite a bit, starting from £200-300 per piece for punching and even 10x of that for blanking jobs. Also, custom tooling needs may prolong the total delivery time by ca 2 weeks.
Third, what is the part size and thickness? The average CNC punch press works with medium-sized sheet metal (2500 x 1250 mm) and in the 0.5…4 mm thickness range for carbon steel, stainless steel and aluminium. Anything outside that scope might not be the best fit.
We would encourage talking to our engineers about your project needs to establish the best possible way to produce your parts.