A new press/die system for restraining force control has been developed in order to facilitate an increased level of process control in sheet metal forming. The press features a built-in system for controlling drawbead penetration in real time. The die has local force transducers built into the draw radius of the lower tooling. These sensors are designed to give process information useful for the drawbead control.This paper focuses on developing models of the drawbead actuators and the die shoulder sensors. The actuator model is useful for developing optimal control methods. The sensor characterization is necessary in order to develop a relationship between the raw sensor outputs and a definitive process characteristic such as drawbead restraining force (DBRF).Closed loop control of local specific punch force is demonstrated using the die shoulder sensor and a PID controller developed off-line with the actuator model.