How to make metal plate?

I’m looking for advice on how to make a metal part I need. It’s basically a flat, roughly trianglar part, maybe .75mm thick, 1cm long, with three bumps/dents on one side and another bump on the other side. I know I can cut a blank with a laser cutter, but how do I make the bumps/dents? I tried a hammer and blunt nail, but that didn’t work. I tried making a die on a 3D printer and pressing it with a vice, but the plastic wasn’t strong enough and I think the details might be too fine to work.

what are all the bumps for, ie are they functional on both sides? For example, if the middle dimple is needed and the 3 lower bumps, then a piece of flat 1/8" or so material, with a drilled hole for the center socket, then drill 3 holes and press in some brass brads for the 3 bumps. Tabs might be a brazed or welded on option.

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It’s a sliding electrical contact. The center bump is a socket for a spring that presses the contact into place, and the other 3 are the contacts. They’re only functional on one side.

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so you could probably do what I mentioned but making it all from brass.

I can imagine how I might do this.

Given brass of the right thickness, I would cut a square or circle; something where I could identify the center accurately. I would use layout fluid or marker to coat both sides. On one side, I would mark the center, and on the other, I would mark a triangle for the dots; on one side, I would also mark an outline including tabs.

I would use a center punch over a piece of soft wood to punch the center on one side deeply, and the three vertices of the triangle on the other side less deeply. I would use a fret saw or jeweler’s saw to cut the outlines (including the tabs), and then bend the tabs over a hard wood form using pliers to hold the body in place and a small hammer to bend the tab.

If the brass is springy, I’d start by annealing it first, by heating it with a torch to dull red and letting it air-cool. (It may distort if you quench it in water.)


I agree with everything Michael wrote and would try his method first. That said, if you’re willing to spend a bit for a new tool then you might look into jewelers’ “doming” or “dapping” sets. Here’s a screenshot of a set on Amazon:

What sort of metal is the part?


Thanks, lots of good ideas.