This work shows by numerical simulation how the die edge geometry in a standard deep drawing process influences the maximum wear and the wear distribution over the die edge. By experiments with physical simulation of deep drawing, the numerical model is verified. The model is then used for optimization of the die edge with respect to tool wear. Different edge geometries are used: a standard circular edge, an elliptical edge, a tractrix edge and an edge geometry designed especially to make the wear distribution more uniform. This investigation shows that the maximum wear on a die edge is influenced by the geometry. To achieve a uniform wear distribution around the edge it is however necessary to use an optimized geometry. (C) 1997 Elsevier Science S.A.