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Less Force, Greater Control: The Advantages of Stretch Forming

Stretch forming is a metal forming process that offers several advantages over conventional press forming methods. One of the key advantages is the requirement of significantly less force compared to other forming techniques. In this article, we will explore the benefits of stretch forming in terms of reduced force, controlled springback, low residual stresses, cost-effectiveness, and the resulting quality finish of metal parts.

Less Force

Stretch forming requires substantially less force compared to conventional press forming methods. Let’s delve into the reasons why stretch forming excels in this aspect:

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  • Reduced Force Requirement: Approximately 70% less force is needed in stretch forming when compared to conventional press forming methods. This reduction in force is attributed to the stretching of the material rather than relying solely on compressive forces. By distributing the force along the material’s length, stretch forming achieves the desired shape without subjecting the part to excessive stress or deformation.
  • Controlled Springback: Springback refers to the tendency of a metal part to return to its original shape after being formed. Stretch forming greatly reduces springback, and any remaining springback can be easily controlled through over-forming. Over-forming involves stretching the material slightly beyond the desired shape, compensating for any anticipated springback. This allows for precise control over the final shape of the part.
  • Low Residual Stresses: Stretch-formed parts exhibit low residual stresses, which are internal stresses that remain in a material even after forming. The stretching action of the stretch forming process induces work hardening, which increases the material’s strength while reducing residual stress. Low residual stresses minimize the risk of part distortion and springback, resulting in parts that maintain their shape and dimensions accurately.

Comparison of Advantages in Stretch Forming

Less ForceStretch forming requires approximately 70% less force
Controlled SpringbackSpringback is reduced and can be controlled through over-forming
Low Residual StressesResidual stresses are low in stretch-formed parts

4 Benefits of Less Force in Stretch Forming

  • Material Cost Reduction: The requirement of less force in stretch forming can reduce material costs, as less material is required to achieve the desired shape.
  • Equipment Savings: The reduced force requirement enables the use of smaller and more cost-effective equipment, resulting in potential cost savings for manufacturers.
  • Improved Forming Integrity: The controlled application of force minimizes stress and deformation, ensuring the integrity and dimensional accuracy of the formed parts.
  • Enhanced Surface Finish: Stretch forming results in metal parts with a quality finish, free from scuffs or markings that may occur with other forming methods.


Stretch forming offers distinct advantages over conventional press forming methods, particularly in terms of the force requirement. By requiring approximately 70% less force, stretch forming reduces material costs, offers greater control over springback, and minimizes residual stresses in formed parts. The controlled application of force ensures the integrity and dimensional accuracy of the parts while resulting in a quality finish.

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The benefits of less force in stretch forming extend beyond cost-effectiveness. Manufacturers can achieve material and equipment savings while producing high-quality metal parts free from scuffs or markings. This stretch forming process‘s ability to induce work hardening further strengthens the material while reducing residual stress, ensuring the final parts maintain their shape and dimensions accurately.