H13 Tool Steel (Studio System)


Rapid manufacturing of complex geometries parts with H13 Tool Steel

H13 Tool Steel's properties are high hardness and toughness. Traditionally manufacturing parts with the H13 tool steel is not only time-consuming and costly to fabricate, but it is almost impossible to obtain complex geometries. H13 is a chromium molybdenum hot work steel with exceptional hot hardness and abrasion resistance, thus, making it suitable for many work applications.

H13. Carbon-Steel Toolmaking 

To manufacture tools, you need the best materials with distinctive hardness, resistance to deformation, and the ability to hold a cutting edge at elevated temperatures. These materials are carbon and steel alloys (tool steels) that are well suited to shape other materials.

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H13 Asthma Inhaler Mouthpiece Mold_Vertical

With H13 tool steel, chromium-molybdenum hot work steel,  used on Studio System™’s, a metal 3D printer based on Bound Metal Deposition (BMD) technology, you can achieve complex parts that are difficult to machine and that often require specialty holders, cutting tools, low feed rates and conditions. In addition, by applying the BMD process to H13, you can rapidly fabricate complex geometry parts that are almost impossible to produce through machining, such as molds with conformal cooling channels.



Industry Applications

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Die casting cores, inserts and cavities

Proto3000_Icon_Jigs Fixtures

Extrusion dies

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Injection molds

Hot Forging Dies

Zipper_Mold_studio system

Zipper Mold

Material: H13 Tool Steel

This part is an injection mold insert for manufacturing zinc zippers.

Full Description

The 3D printing of the mold inserts shortens production run lead time and allows rapid iteration and refinement of zipper designs. Using a high-resolution printhead allows for smaller parts with finer features, requiring less post-processing.


Size (mm): 46 x 27 x 18
Cost to print ($): 16.00


Bound Metal Deposition (BMD)™

H13 Asthma Inhaler Mouthpiece Mold_Vertical

Mouthpiece Mold

Material: H13 Tool Steel

This mold insert is used to injection mold medical inhaler mouthpieces.

Full Description

3D printing the hard steel insert to near-net-shape eliminates 95% of the required CNC machining and associated tool wear.

Because cooling accounts for 95% of the mold cycle time, the ability to incorporate conformal cooling channels into the mold, can reduce mold cycle time and increase throughput.

  • Size (mm): 104 x 93 x 48
  • Cost to print: $345.00
  • Cost to machine: $716.77
  • Cost reduction: 51.87%
  • Bound Metal Deposition (BMD)™


APG Coining Fixture

Material: H13 Tool Steel

This coining fixture is used to achieve critical tolerances on metal injection molded (MIM) parts.

Full Description

Fixtures like this require custom geometry for each application, as well as superior wear resistance. The faster these parts are manufactured, the quicker a company can get manufacturing lines running.

Printing these parts with the Studio System eliminates CNC lead time and frees up the machine shop for more critical work.

  • Size (mm): 110 x 57 x 31
  • Cost to print: $92.00
  • Cost to machine: $392.00
  • Cost reduction: 75.63%
  • Bound Metal Deposition (BMD)™

Material Performance

Thanks to its stability in heat treatment, excellent hot hardness, and abrasion resistance, H13 is a tool steel that is widely used not only in hot work applications but also in cold ones.


Proto3000_Icons_Tensile Modulus

650 MPa (as sintered)


Proto3000_Icons_Tensile Strength

1325 MPa (as sintered)


Proto3000_Icons_Tensile Modulus

2.3% (as sintered)



35, ASTM E18 (as sintered)

High & Cold Temperature Resistance
Deformation Resistance

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Mechanical Properties

As sintered, ASTM E8*
As sintered, ASTM E8*
  • Yield Strength: 650 MPa
  • Ultimate Tensile Strength: 1325 MPa
  • Elongation at Break: 2.3%
  • Hardness (HRC): 35
  • Density (relative): ≥93.5%

*Specimens tested according to ASTM E8 with a modified crosshead displacement rate of 0.009 mm/mm/min.
Heat Treated*
Heat Treated*
  • Yield Strength: 1250 MPa
  • Ultimate Tensile Strength: 1720 MPa
  • Elongation at Break: 5.8%
  • Hardness (HRC): 45
  • Density (relative): N/A

*Heat-treated samples were air quenched at 1040ºC and double tempered at 540ºC

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