Cold Heading & Forming

We manufacture the following types of Cold-Headed Parts (a partial list) per your Drawings and Specifications. Click on the Links Below for Additional Information.

What is Cold-Heading?

Cold-heading (or cold-forming as it is often called) is the process of forming metals at or near room temperatures. In cold-heading, metal is formed at high speed and forced at high pressure into hardened dies. The cold working of the metal increases the hardness and overall strength. The cold-heading process specifically refers to the upsetting of a volume of metal into a head like on a nail, screw or into some other type of shape.

Starting with a metal slug, which is cut from a continuous coil of wire material; the cold heading machine uses a series of powerful hammers and dies to form a part. This process creates very little to no waste, offers significant material cost savings and the volume of the starting slug is about the same as the finished part. The net volume remains the same since the material is being formed into the die, rather than cut from the blank. The cold heading process creates a stronger part, with smooth continuous surfaces while enhancing the grain flow of the material.

The cold-heading process is highly flexible in regards to the types of parts that can be made. Parts can be hit once or multiple times while staying in one die (one die, one or multiple blows) or transferred from die to die to progressively form various geometries (multi-die, multi-blow forming). The more complex the part, the greater number of dies and blows (hits) are required as metal can only flow a given amount per hammer strike without cracking.

Simple Animated Single Die, Two Blow Cold-Heading Process:

NOTE: More complex parts can have multiple dies and additional blows (operations).

Cold-Heading vs. Machining

Unlike machining, where there is a tremendous amount of scrap, in cold-heading, material is used at almost 100% utilization, having very little scrap. Because of the high efficiency of material use and the speed of manufacture, cold headed parts have significant cost and strength advantages. Cost savings are mentioned above; high speed production and very minimal scrap. Strength is superior to a machined part in that the process of cold heading (unlike machining) actually causes the material to “work harden” giving the finished part greater strength than the initial material the part was made from. However, cold-heading requires the use of more “project specific” tools than does machining.

The range of possible shapes is extensive, including heads, shoulders, steps, knurls, chamfers, grooves, undercuts, and tapers. Some features that cannot be directly made in the cold-heading process can be added in secondary operations, such as threading, pointing, finishing, grinding or rolling. Typical parts made using cold-heading processes include standard mechanical fasteners (screws, nuts, bolts, rivets, washers) electrical contacts, and tools. In addition to these high volume standard parts, there are literally thousands of custom configurations made in the cold-heading process.

Examples of Cold-Headed Parts
Mechanical Fasteners 1

When considering the manufacturing of a new component, if it can be cold-headed instead of machining, cold-heading is the preferred choice for manufacturing speed, cost savings and improved strength.

  Click Here to VIEW a Cold-Heading Machine Operation Video 

PLEASE CALL US FOR QUESTIONS OR A QUOTE: (916) 202-1104 TOLL FREE FAX LINE: (866) 265-0011   or  Email Us