Steel Dies are both expensive to create and absolutely critical to many metals-related industries. By choosing qualified testing programs, you can protect your investment and production levels. Supporting production with data that will help you get the best performance from your dies and other materials, helping you build a productivity forecast with greater peace of mind.

Element offers die steel qualification services to a variety of industries. Die steel qualification involves a variety of Element capabilities which include impact testing, heat treatment and metallography.


These tests are conducted in order to mitigate common causes for reduced die life. These causes include poor material quality and improper heat treatment of the material. 

Die Steel Testing Methods

Element uses a number of tests to certify the quality of die steel plate and barstock.

Methods include:

  • Verifying that the material has sufficiently low hardness and acceptable microstructure after spheroidize annealing
  • Rating its inclusion cleanliness
  • Rating its degree of micro-segregation and banding
  • Conducting heat treatments, hardness testing
  • Charpy impact testing to verify that it meets minimum impact energy requirements and can be heat treated properly.

Element qualifies commercially heat-treated dies by determining Charpy impact toughness, hardness and microstructural rating of test coupons. These test coupons have been attached to and heat treated, along with the die inserts. 


Element Die Steel Testing Standards

Element performs H13 die steel testing according to North American Die Casting Association (NADCA) Specification #207-2003.

It also performs testing according to Ford Specification AMTD-DC2010, and GM's Worldwide Specification DC-9999-1.


The Element Advantage

Element are experts in alloy steel and heat treatment perform routine metallurgical qualifications and failure analyses of steel die. We are one of only a handful of companies that can provide a full scope of metallurgical engineering and testing services. With years of testing and product analysis experience, we can assist with any project, no matter how complex.

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The Effects of Alloying Elements on the Continuous Cooling Transformation Behavior of 2¼Cr-1Mo Steels

The following paper investigates the effects of alloying elements on the continuous cooling transformation behavior of 2¼ Cr-Mo steels. In this research, the authors use dilatometry and metallography to develop CCT diagrams and determine the change in length, microstructure, and macrohardness for each CCT sample examined.  DOWNLOAD

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Explore our case study providing insights into the behavior of materials through determining factors such as hardness, flexibility, strength, and chemical composition.


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