Productivity in sheet metal working suffers from the need for lubrication. Reasons are high costs for purchasing the lubricating agents and machines, disposing the waste oil and washing of the formed parts. In working of stainless steel and aluminium lifetime of the forming tools is mainly limited by cold welding of the formed metals. Thin hard coating systems based on diamond like carbon (DLC) have already shown a high potential for lubrication reduced sheet metal working in forming tests. For use in production lines at SMEs it is necessary to further develop these coating systems by using inexpensive deposition processes. As conventional coating deposition processes under high vacuum conditions suffer from high costs, it is an important task is to optimise coatings from a fine vacuum process, which have advantages concerning coating and equipment costs, the potential for process up-scaling and increased productivity. Forming processes to be investigated are deep drawing with a high forming degree and stamping/cutting of above mentioned materials. Aim of this project is to develop suitable coating systems, optimise their properties and proof satisfying lifetime in laboratory and production tests in dry forming. Rules are to be worked out for future industrial application of this coating technology in sheet metal forming.