Tool & Die

Thermal Processing for Tool & Die

Properly processed tooling and dies are critical to the success of the entire manufacturing process, from small machine shops to global OEMs. 

We Align With Your Priorities

We’ve been working with leading tool and die manufacturers for over 75 years, so we’re familiar with the challenges you face in your business. In fact, we’ve shaped the way we work to align with your priorities.

Turnaround Times. Your tooling or dies play a key role in the smooth functioning of the entire supply chain. Delays in the heat treatment process create a ripple effect that can ultimately lead to factory downtime for your customers and chargebacks for you.

Preventing Distortion. Accurate geometry of your tooling and dies is essential to your customers’ ability to produce parts that meet tolerance. We’ve developed techniques for minimizing distortion during the heat treatment process, and our precision furnace controls ensure proper processing time after time. We also meet all NADCA guidelines for high-pressure die casting dies.

Data and Quality Control. As an industry leader in heat treating data collection and quality control, we can provide the most comprehensive assurance that your tooling and dies were processed correctly. Our PICS system and automated furnace controls work together to give you scientific certainty in the results of your dies’ thermal processes.

Specialty Processes and Overflow Capabilities. We can augment your in-house heat treatment capabilities to provide processing for complex dies or specialty materials. We can also help you meet your commitments to customers by fulfilling your needs for overflow or emergency processing.

Tool & Die Thermal Processing Capabilities

We are a full-service commercial thermal processor with a comprehensive range of capabilities and a vast equipment array. These are a few of the services we most commonly perform for our tool and die customers.

  • Vacuum hardening. Also known as through hardening or neutral hardening, this process is performed in our vacuum furnaces. It provides the wear and impact resistance, along with the strength necessary for your dies to withstand strike after strike during manufacturing operations such as metal stamping and fineblanking.
  • Ferritic nitrocarburizing (FNC). Performed in an atmosphere-controlled furnace, FNC creates a ceramic outer layer on your block that provides wear- and corrosion- resistance without distortion. FNC is performed on finished tooling often as a final step after neutral hardening and finish machining. FNC is ideal for HPDC dies, and we can perform it on dies as large as 30,000 pounds.
  • Gas nitriding. Similar to FNC, gas nitriding is often performed as a final step on finished tooling to lend wear resistance against effects such as galling. Gas nitriding is well suited for parts used in load-bearing applications where sliding wear is a chief concern. It is conducted at a relatively low temperature (usually around 1,000 degrees Fahrenheit), which allows tooling blocks to remain in their ferritic state, thus preventing distortion from occurring.
  • Quenching for large dies. Paulo has the largest 20 bar quench furnace in North America. It can accommodate dies in excess of 6,000 pounds.


Tool & Die Components We Process

  • Automotive tooling
  • High pressure die casting dies
  • Aluminum stamping dies
  • Transmission housing dies
  • Cutting tools
  • Metal stamping dies
  • Molds
  • Rotary dies
  • Rotary anvils
  • Gears

Handling Capabilities

You may know that recipe parameters for your processes are stored in our PICS system which works with our technology to automatically make adjustments to our equipment during heat treatment. In addition to your thermal processing specifications, we also store and communicate handling information digitally in a way that follows your tooling throughout its entire journey through our facility. A few ways we can help with specialized handling are…

  • “White glove” handling for finished parts
  • Photo capture of your tooling throughout its process
  • Cranes and rigging equipment to move extra large and heavy parts

Trust Your Parts to Paulo

From precise processing to testing, handling, and more, Paulo’s team can provide a vital link in your supply chain. Our team of in-house metallurgists can also help identify and resolve issues that a previous heat treater may have had to bring your parts to spec. Bottom line? Bring us your challenges, and let’s work on solving them together.

Connect with a Paulo expert today to get started. 

See what the experts at Paulo can do for your company.

Contact us.