Author Topic: Making springs  (Read 571 times)

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Offline Carpenter84

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Making springs
« on: July 04, 2018, 02:24:29 PM »
Would I be a goof if I believed I could undertake the task of making a spring?

Specific case; I have a Benjamin classic .22 air rifle with the Canadian limited mainspring. Canadian law states the rifle has to be below 500 feet per second.
There are several mods you can do to get the gun back up to its marketed 1000 fps. Nitro gas cylinders, moded pistons, filling the vent hole they drill in the end of the piston, or in my case increasing the spring wire diameter from .99 to .128".
In the interim of asking for this machining section to coming to post this, after several days of internet/soul searching I fiiinally found the spring online for $37 to my door. However, there was a period where i considered the task of making a spring.
ThisOldTony on YouTube did a spring making video a while back but it covered light springs made with piano wire.
I'd be making a compression spring about 12" long, 5/8"ish in diameter with a wire thickness of .128 or close.

Since I no longer need to make the spring, I'm good, but I'd still like to learn about it. What's the metal needed? where could I find such metal? what's the heat treat process? What kind of longevity or strength could I hope for in a homeshop atmosphere with a home made forge (I'd have to make one)? You know, questions like that...

Offline Yadda

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Re: Making springs
« Reply #1 on: July 04, 2018, 03:37:52 PM »
I look forward to seeing responses. Plierenches have spring making jaws.  I've always wanted to know what was needed to make good springs.
You might say I have a tool collecting problem....

Offline DeadNutz

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Re: Making springs
« Reply #2 on: July 04, 2018, 03:50:05 PM »
I think you are smart to buy the proper spring rather than try to make it Shawn.
I have never attempted to make a spring but I made thousands of parts that were heat treated to a spring temper. We used 1044M 1/4" flat bar for our parts which I ran through the punch presses to punch holes and chop to length and then formed to a complex curved shape. We sent them out to our heat treater who did a great job on the spring temper and would get maybe 1 part out of 5 thousand fail the spring test I did after they came back. I have never checked but there has to be plenty of info available out there on how to make a spring.

Offline Spartan-C

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Re: Making springs
« Reply #3 on: July 04, 2018, 03:59:02 PM »
Shawn,

That's a tough spring to wind in the home shop.  Not saying it can't be done, just a tough one to do.

Going forward, if you have a True Value hardware store in your neighborhood, check them out. Mine carries music wire in sizes out to around .150" in diameter.  MW is a common wire used in making springs.  I don't have my spring design handbook handy, there are many different materials available for springs. If your pockets are deep enough, you can buy Inconel X750 at around $15 a pound to Elginloy at over $50 pound. ASTM A228 Music Wire is a high carbon steel with a touch of chrome added to give it some strength. Another good spring material is ASTM A229 Chrome Vanadium spring steel too.

As for making them, as you noted, there are many YouTube videos on making them.  Me, I have access to many different configurations almost at my fingertips almost free of charge.  Also, my True Value hardware store has a pretty good supply of springs to select from.  McMaster-Carr carries springs too.  Plus with all of the special springs I've designed in my past, I know several spring manufactures that will work with me on one of a kind springs when needed, but there are strings attached to it.

There are some spring manufactures up in Canada, I just don't know their names right now.

Ken
Ken

Offline Carpenter84

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Re: Making springs
« Reply #4 on: July 04, 2018, 04:55:40 PM »
Obviously, attempting to make this one spring for less than the $15 it is for sale for, is foolish. This purchasable spring is purpose made for this application and is designed to do this one job.
I know the heat treat necessary is extremely precise and my oxy torch on a stack of fire bricks ain't gonna do it. Haha. But it's an interesting idea.
And we had to kick off our new found home with something!

Offline kwoswalt99

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Re: Making springs
« Reply #5 on: July 04, 2018, 05:30:15 PM »
Obviously, attempting to make this one spring for less than the $15 it is for sale for, is foolish. This purchasable spring is purpose made for this application and is designed to do this one job.
I know the heat treat necessary is extremely precise and my oxy torch on a stack of fire bricks ain't gonna do it. Haha. But it's an interesting idea.
And we had to kick off our new found home with something!

It doesn’t need to be as precise as you think I’ve done it before just trial and error. The trick with trial and error heat treating is to start soft and work your way up so they don’t break. Youll still break one though lol.

Offline Spartan-C

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Re: Making springs
« Reply #6 on: July 04, 2018, 05:40:12 PM »
It will blow your mind to see a spring winder wind a spring as Shawn mentioned in his opening post.  That 5/8" diameter x 12" lg out of that size spring wire only takes about 5 seconds to make and ends cut off.  It takes more time to square up the ends than winding the spring.  There is no heat treat other than doing a stress relieving operation.  And the wire is spring tempered starting out.  They load a coil of spring wire that may have over 1000 feet to start off with. 

Take a look at this  http://www.acewirespring.com/high_speed_coiling_machine.html

gives you an idea how springs are made in volume.
Ken

Offline Carpenter84

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Re: Making springs
« Reply #7 on: July 04, 2018, 08:09:52 PM »
In Canada we have a show called How it's made. Love it.
https://youtu.be/WeU89tdq55c

Id love to watch a screw machine work for hours. All run by cams, I'd spend 15 mins just watching each operation going around.

Offline DeadNutz

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Re: Making springs
« Reply #8 on: July 04, 2018, 10:50:22 PM »
On those shows they slow the speed of the machine down with the camera and editing so you can see how it works. The actual speed is too fast to follow and some parts spit out like expended brass out of an automatic weapon.

Offline Carpenter84

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Re: Making springs
« Reply #9 on: July 04, 2018, 11:06:37 PM »
They actually did an episode of a place I used to work. I spent the 7 minutes laughing my head off screaming at my wife in the other room all the people I knew. Lol.

Offline Carpenter84

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Re: Making springs
« Reply #10 on: July 05, 2018, 04:28:08 AM »
Ha, I found it.
https://youtu.be/2qz4xJj3D9E

The spiral winders you see wrapping the paper, I ran those. Then prior to working there I did the same job elsewhere but instead of making food cans made cardboard tubes for stretch wrap industries on MUCH larger winders. Sample pictures are below. I was the operator, similar to the gentleman tending to the brakes.

Actually, I took a video years ago of my winder. The whole process. That’s Dave at the end being a goof. https://youtu.be/D3DCh4t33z0

Oh, and here’s a video of the very same grease line as the how it’s made, only several years prior before they did a bunch of upgrading to machinery. This was the head office factory in Montreal. I spent 3 months there helping them run because they were short handed after a layoff. https://youtu.be/LyJWmsibDlc

Online lptools

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Re: Making springs
« Reply #11 on: July 05, 2018, 03:12:36 PM »
Hello, Thanks for sharing the video, fascinating & mesmerizing!! I would love to see a video of how the production machines are built. Regards, Lou
Member of PHARTS-  Perfect Handle Admiration, Restoration and Torturing Society

Offline terrywerm

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Re: Making springs
« Reply #12 on: July 06, 2018, 07:45:34 PM »
I spent 3 months there helping them run because they were short handed after a layoff.

Hmmm.  Sounds kinda funny to me. Just think about it for a second... Lay a bunch of people off then wonder why they are short handed!   DOH!!

Not picking on ya, just couldn't ignore the comedic irony in your statement.

Offline Carpenter84

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Re: Making springs
« Reply #13 on: July 06, 2018, 07:55:46 PM »
That company did layoffs almost every year during slow season. Most often it was only a couple weeks. This particular year it was almost a month. Obviously most people had to go find other jobs, and most stayed there when the company called people back. So, once slow season was over things picked up then quickly became too much for the short handed crew.
When I was there the production lines ran through breaks and lunch. The management staff, right up to the vice president and the owner came out to relieve you on break. NEVER seen a multimillion dollar company owner come and actually get dirty. And they ran well too! Obviously at some point they were all actual skilled operators. Was actually really refreshing to work there. The management really cares about the work force. many of the employees that worked there had been lifers. I have to imagine because the company took care of them. Drastically different than how my home base in Ontario was run. Everyone was miserable because the plant manager was not a good person. I actually wanted to transfer and move to Montreal. My life was in the dumps at that point and a major change would likely have done me well.
The vice president was on board when I spoke to him but said I had to approve it with my local plant manager, who kyboshed it. Turns out he was making a file to fire me. He himself wound up getting fired. Turned out he paid his secretary wife wayyyy too much and was skimming off the top for years. Things like when maintenance ordered a new ladder, the bill of lading listed two ladders but only one showed up in maintenance...... Hmmmm