The Ultimate Guide to Metal Forging-Everything You Need to Know

The knowledge of the Metal forging will help you choose the best technique and practical application. Today’s guide explores the metal forging process.
So, before choosing the forging process, read this guide.

The History of Metal Forging

Forging is an ancient technique that involves shaping metals using fire. It dates back 6000 years and is believed to have originated in Mesopotamia. Early humans used it to produce hand tools, weapons of war, and jewelry. The forging industry saw significant advancements in the 19th and 20th centuries due to the invention of the steam engine and solid-state electrical induction heaters. Today, computer-controlled hydraulic and air hammers are used for forging, with steel forging being the most commonly used method. It is used in various industries such as aerospace, automotive, agriculture, and energy.

What is The Metal Forging?

Metal forging is a forming process that presses the material into a custom shape under the pressure of forging dies. It’s crucial in delivering forces to shape metal through hammering, pressing, or rolling and takes an important role in the steel industry and significantly contributes to productivity.

Metal Forging Process

Different Types of Metal Forging Process

Buyers have various forging options to produce a metal component. Each technique has advantages and disadvantages based on costs and logistics, making it hard to choose. However, selecting a forging method offers unique benefits.

Metal forging provides the most value regarding price and quality, especially when maximum part strength, custom sizes, and critical performance specifications are required. Common methods include:

– Closed die forging

– Open die forging

– Ring rolling

– Radical forgingDifferent Types of Metal Forging Process

Open Die Forging, Closed Die Forging, and Roll Forging

The most common metal forging processes are open-die forging, closed-die forging, and roll forging.

What is Open-Die Forging?

Open die forging, also known as free forging, smith forging, or hammer forging, is a metal forming process that heats pieces to a very high temperature using a tool to obtain a wide range of shapes.

What is Closed Die Forging?

Closed die forging is a manufacturing process that involves two dies moving towards each other to shape heated raw material. The top or bottom die incorporates the shape as a negative image. The impact of the top die forms the material into the required shape. This process is used to manufacture parts ranging from a few ounces to 60,000 lbs.

What is Roll Forging?

Roll forging, or roll forming, is a forging process that uses opposing rolls to shape metal. It involves two horizontal rolls that deform a bar stock, reducing thickness and increasing length. The precisely shaped grooves on the rolls forge the part to the specified dimensions. Roll forging produces parts with superior mechanical properties and is used in the automotive industry and knife and hand tool production.

Forging Equipments and Operations

 Forging Equipments

Forging metal requires several primary tools, which vary depending on the specific method used. the primary tools are:
1, presses, used for applying continuous pressure
2, forge, used for heating
3, hammers, used for deforming the metal
4 ring rollers are used for producing one-piece rings.
5, upsetters, used for horizontal forging

Forging Operations

Common forging operations:

(a) Open-die forging, including cogging, ring forging, and upsetting.

(b) Impression die forging with flash.

(c) Flashless forging.

(d) Heading processes.

How Does Forging Strengthen Metal?

Metal forging is a manufacturing process known to produce some of the strongest parts available. Compared to other methods, metal forging is more effective in sealing minor cracks and closing empty spaces found in the metal. 

During the hot forging process, impurities in the metal are broken up and redistributed, resulting in fewer inclusions in the final part. Inclusions are compound materials embedded inside steel, which can cause stress points in the product. Although these impurities should be managed during the initial casting process, the forging process further refines the metal.

Another way that forging strengthens metal is by altering its grain structure. It means the material’s grain flow is improved as it deforms, creating a favorable grain structure that makes the forged metal sturdier.

Materials for Metal Forging

Although any metal can be forged, certain alloys and metals are better suited for specific applications. The most commonly forged metals include:

Carbon Steel

Carbon steel forgings contain many alloys, including chromium, titanium, nickel,etc. Pressure and strong blows from hydraulic and mechanical presses make pieces the desired shape. It results in improved mechanical properties. Forged carbon steel parts are more economical to produce than other forging metals.

Stainless Steel

Stainless steels are widely used for their excellent corrosion resistance and solid and stable features; they are applied in various industries, such as automotive, aircraft, and agriculture.


Material Titanium is abundant everywhere. It has the following characteristics:

Highly strong

Corrosion resistant

It withstands high temperatures up to 1,000°F


Alloy Steel

Alloy steel has good mechanical properties. It’s affordable, easy to machine, withstands up to 900°F

Brass and Copper

Bronze, copper, and brass forgings offer outstanding properties not available in other metals. The excellet characteristics include the following:

* Excellent machinability

* High ductility

* Remarkable joining and plating features

* Superior polishing and finishing features

* Non-magnetic properties

* Non-sparking characteristics

* Fine solid colors

It’s hard to say which material is best; it depends on the customer’s needs.

Surface Finishes For Metal Forging

Various surface finishes help improve the functionality and aesthetics of Metal forging.

As forged

“As forged” means without any surface treatment after the metal forging process, marks from the forging process are visible but can be quickly and cost-effectively removed.

Color Painting

Color painting is the most popular surface finish method for metal forging. 

Powder coating 

Powder coating is a dry powder coating type that is applied free-flowing. It is usually used for appearance components, and various colors are available for metal forging process.


Clean the surface with extensive sands driven by compressed air. Sandblasting removes the dirt on the forged parts, so further surface treatment can be done later.


Electroplating refers to applying a protective zinc plating to steel forging to prevent rusting. 

Applications of Forging

Forging applied in Various industries due to the big needs:

  • the rising demand for passenger and commercial vehicles
  • the growth of commercial aircraft production
  • the increased demand for metal-forged parts in the nuclear power industry.
  • The machine part forging industry has a big need due to the increasing demand from various industries, such as sugar, metal rolling, and cement manufacturing. 

All three of these industries are witnessing a significant rise in demand, which puts a high demand on the industries that manufacture parts for them.

2022 the automotive industry had the largest market share, accounting for 37.87%. It is projected to maintain this position throughout the forecast period. Forged components are preferred in this sector due to their durability, strength, and reliability. The construction and aerospace industries follow the automotive industry. The metal forging process is used to create components for machinery and equipment, such as pistons, molds, and fabricated parts.

Forging Products

When metal forging was first used, it was primarily for making jewelry, coins, and various tools, which was achieved by hammering metal with tools made of stone. Forged parts now include

  • bolts and rivets
  • large rotors for turbines
  • gears
  • cutlery hand tools
  • numerous structural machinery components
  •  railroads
  • aircraft

Metal Forging Cost

Forged parts can be quite expensive when produced in smaller quantities due to the high upfront cost of manufacturing forging die and other expenses related to setting up shop. However, once everything is set up and the dies have been purchased, the operating costs become more reasonable, especially with automation playing a significant role. Therefore, this metal fabrication method is best suited for products that are being produced in larger quantities.

Metal Forging Market

There will be an increasing demand for high-quality forged parts. The global metal forging market was valued at USD 86.25 billion in 2023 and is expected to grow at a CAGR of 7.7% from 2023 to 2030.
The USA market is expected to grow at a CAGR of 7.4% from 2023 to 2030.

APAC is expected to hold most of the metal forging market share over the forecast period, with the developing manufacturing sector in China, India, and other economies driving demand. China is the largest producer and consumer of forged products. North America and Europe follow APAC in market share, with North America expected to hold a significant share due to the increasing demand for metal forging in the aerospace and automotive sectors.

                                                              Metal Forging Market
Base Year2022Forecast Period2023-2029
Historical DataCAGRMarket Size in 2022Market Size in 2029
2018 to 20226.3%US$ 95.84 BnUS$ 147.00 Bn
Segments Covered
by Process Open-die Forging Closed die Blocker Conventional Precisionby Raw Material Carbon Steel Alloy steel Aluminium Magnesium Stainless Steel Titanium Othersby Application Automotive Aerospace Oil & Gas Construction Agriculture Others
Regions Covered
North America United States Canada MexicoEurope UK France Germany Italy Spain Sweden Austria Rest of EuropeAsia Pacific China S Korea Japan India Australia Indonesia Malaysia Vietnam Taiwan Bangladesh Pakistan Rest of APACMiddle East and Africa South Africa GCC Egypt Nigeria Rest of ME&ASouth America Brazil Argentina Rest of South America

Source: MMR


Metal forging is crucial in industries; choosing the right method is essential based on its unique features and characteristics, such as the materials used and the design and manufacturing process.

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