Most solid materials have the ability to flex when a force is applied and return to their original shape, although for some materials the amount of flex before breakage may be very small. Some materials may not be regarded as a spring materials at all, one good example is paper. When formed into an “origami” type frog it will display the characteristics of a spring when flexed and jump when released.
Most mechanical springs are designed with the ability to store energy and release it when required. The amount of energy that can be stored is dependent on the size of the spring and the material from which it manufactured. Springs, wireforms and flat pressings can be manufactured from a wide range of materials including the following:
High Carbon Steels
High Carbon steels are the most common materials for the manufacture of springs. Hard drawn wires for low stress applications are lower cost, whereas higher tensile materials are more suitable for higher stressed applications and are more expensive. Carbon steels may need additional corrosive protection such as a pre-galvanised coating.
Stainless steel is the most popular alloy steel for springs where higher corrosion or heat resistance is required. Specific grades are available for elevated heat and corrosion resistance requirements. Stainless steel spring wire is manufactured by cold drawing and in a spring temper condition will be slightly magnetic. Stainless steels springs, which are stress relieved after forming, may be a light brown colour, requiring an extra cleaning operation if a shiny finish is required.
Chrome Vanadium and Chrome Silicon alloy steels are cold draw steels suitable for shock loads, such as engine valve springs.
Cold drawn copper alloys are excellent for applications where good electrical conductivity is required. Some alloys can also be used for elevated temperature applications or high corrosion resistance is required.
High Temperature Alloys
Cold drawn Nickel and Chromium alloys are excellent materials for applications that require good corrosion resistance at elevated temperatures.
Here at Airedale Springs we manufacture springs made from all of these materials. For more information on any of these materials, and which may be the best choice for your spring application, contact us today and our friendly staff will be more than happy to help.