Wave springs for all applications

Louise Smyth

As an innovator of wave spring technology, it is common for engineers to approach Smalley with their unique design challenges. Often a custom spring is necessary to achieve target application performance. Smalley has always focused on providing engineered solutions, not just a standard part number. With its No Tooling Cost manufacturing process, custom springs can be manufactured quickly and economically to nearly any diameter. 

Material selection is critical to the wave springs’ performance. Smalley employs engineers who have designed springs for nearly every environment. From the surface of Mars to the ocean floor, the harsh chemicals of the oil and gas industry or to the medical industry and beyond, hundreds of alloys are readily available for production.

Smalley stocks standard springs in carbon steel and 17-7 stainless steel. Carbon steel is the most commonly specified material. Stainless steels, although more costly than carbon steel, provides far superior corrosion resistance and has a higher temperature operating limits.

The company manufactures wave springs in a variety of exotic alloys as well, including various types of steel, copper, and Inconel X-750 nickel chromium alloy. It’s always best to choose a material based on the requirements of the application and the usage environment. To meet the engineering needs of its customers, Smalley has a large materials warehouse, ready for production, stocked with exotic alloys such as:

316 Stainless Steel

* Inconel X-750

A286

Elgiloy

Beryllium Cooper

Phosphor Bronze

Smalley’s Edgewinding manufacturing process allows the company to coil other special alloys not listed above. A few examples include Hastelloy, Waspaloy and Titanium. Its engineering team partners with the customer, to select the material that will maximise the spring performance in their application.

One commonly selected alloy for harsh environments is Inconel X-750. Inconel is an exotic alloy that is very well suited for use in extreme temperatures, up to 704°C. It has a high relaxation resistance, which makes it particularly useful in springs. If your spring is not intended for use in an extremely high-temperature environment, there are many less exotic, and less expensive materials that may be better suited for your application.

Smalley only manufactures wave springs through its Edgewinding process. The springs are coiled on edge, not stamped, producing nearly no scrap. This process reduces the cost of manufacturing with special alloys.

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