Proper Die Management Saves Time, Money

by Mark Porter, Dienamic MIS Software Inc.

A large number of companies in the print finishing, trade bindery, diemaking, packaging and diecutting industries use steel rule, foil and embossing dies. Any user of dies can save a tremendous amount of money simply by managing those dies correctly.

Generally, die users have a large inventory in their plant, but the ability to find these dies is often a time-consuming – if not a time-wasting – exercise. The result is remaking dies that already exist, which wastes thousands and thousands of dollars and cuts into profits.

By using a system with extensive searching and sorting provisions, you can find the right die to meet a customer’s needs. These sorts should include the die specs, as well as the finished product specs.

Images of the die and the finished product will allow you to quickly identify that you have the correct die. Using a bar coding system, a location finder and computerized take-out and put-back process, you can ensure dies are located where expected. Once a die is found, record all specifications about the press run to ensure you can get the die quickly up to speed on the next run.

A die management system should track the components (i.e. type of rule, punches, wood, etc.) including costs that make up that die and track all employees that assemble or maintain the die. The condition of the die should be monitored to ensure you are aware of any retooling requirements. Automatic notifications help the Die Shop foreman know when a die needs attention. A good system also tracks the disposal of dies.

By utilizing a die management system, you no longer have to stop production to retool a die or lose valuable press time and/or risk late jobs because a die was not ready to be used at the beginning of a press run. This can save thousands of dollars in lost press time and/or overtime charges to keep jobs on schedule – not to mention risking your relationship with the customer by delivering the job late.

Dienamic MIS Software Inc., St. Catharines, ON, Canada, provides estimating, MIS and online software systems designed specifically for print finishers, binderies, diemakers and users of dies and foils. For more information, call 800.461.8114 or visit