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CATALOG AND CUSTOM SPRINGS


To design or search for a particular type of spring click on a picture below.

Compression Springs
Compression Springs
Extension Springs
Extension Springs
Torsion Springs
Torsion Springs

MSDivisions
14 Montgomery Street
Middletown, NY 10940

Toll free
800-633-7734
Local
845-343-9078
Fax
845-344-2175
Email
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Other spring types

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Organizing your thoughts:
For designing springs or selecting catalog springs

 

General Information
1) In general, we find it best to have some idea what OD (Outside diameter) you are looking for. Is the spring a quarter inch or two inches in diameter?
The OD is the first group of numbers in our part numbers.

2) After that, you should have some idea what the length of the spring might be (with no load on it). Is it a quarter of inch long, or 6 inches long?
The Free Length is the second group of numbers in our part numbers.

3) And, last but not least you should have some idea of the loads that you want.
The "Spring Rate" is the last group of numbers in our part numbers.
 
While you may think think you don't know this, you probably do have a pretty good idea.
* Is it going to hold a feather, or an elephant?
* When you put the elephant (or the feather) on the spring does it move 1 inch or six feet?

4) Some food for thought:
  * Cost:
If your spring has a reasonably close catalog equivalent then minimums run from $35 (for most smaller springs) to over $100 (for large stainless steel springs).
If your spring does not have a reasonably close catalog spring equivalent, then custom spring setup charges run several hundred dollars.

* Cycling:
Does the spring cycle 10,000 rpm 24/7 360 days a year and it must last 20 years
or is it used/adjusted just once
or is it installed and then moves only a little bit
or .... whatever.

* Max Deflection:
What is the maximum deflection that the spring must accomplish without failing.

* Failure: What does "Failure" mean - in your application? That is a serious and important question.
Is weakening or breaking over time unacceptable. Or can the spring be replaced periodically.
IF the spring does not return to it's original position after being fully deflected is that a problem. Sometimes, it is not not.
or ..... whatever'

* Shock Loads:
Springs do not tolerate shock loads well. Applications such as firearm recoil springs generally fail much sooner than would be expected.

* Stresses:
As with a paper clip, you can only bend a piece of wire so much, and then it won't go back to its original position (That's "Yielding").
Even if you don't go that far, but bend it back and forth too many times, then it can break (That's "Fatigue").

Stress calculations are a bit tricky. A spring calculator should be used.
Some simple rules of thumb are handy though.
Stresses are propertional to the wire diameter cubed (Making wire diameter critical).
Stresses are proportional to the length of the wire in the spring (making the OD,and number of coils important; but much less so.)

A small increase in wire diameter can make a spring much stiffer.
The longer the wire (more coils or bigger OD) then the weaker the spring.

Compression Springs

Getting a better feel for loads

a) If you have an old spring or a similar spring, you can get a feel for how much load you want using a bathroom scale. Put the spring on the scale and push down on it. You can also use a ruler to see how far the spring moves when you are at the load you want.

b) If you like, you can also send a sample or broken spring to us. We'll measure and duplicate it for you.

c)Another way is to know something about the loads. Lets say the spring will hold a stack of plates that weigh 1 pound, and has a free length of 5 inches. You want it to compress 2 inches when the plates are placed on the spring. So, the spring needs to hold 1 pound at a length of 3 (5-2)inches.
We can and will try to help figure this out; but we don't pretend to fully understand your application. It is, in the end your application, and your decision, not ours.)

What's a spring rate?

a) The spring rate is how many pounds it would take to compress the spring 1 inch.
b) In the above example, that would be 1 pound divided by the 2 inches of compression. So the spring rate would be 1/2 pound/inch or .5 pounds per inch.
c) If the spring can't, or doesn't compress 1 inch that's fine, or compresses more than 1 inch. Just multiply the spring rate by the actual compression (in inches) to get the resulting load on pounds.

Getting a better feel for the dimensions

a) The most critical dimension is the wire diameter. We strongly recommend that you use dial calipers to measure the wire diameter.
b) Free length should be measured across the two highest spots on each end.

What's a Solid Height?

a) The solid height is the height of the spring when the coils are touching. b) At that point, you can't compress the spring any more. c) Continuing to put more force on the spring after this point can deform and dmaage it.

What's Buckling ?

a) Slender springs tend to bend to the side when compressed.
b) If that happens, then the loads will be lower than calculated.
c) Slender spring that are subject to buckling should operate over a pin, or in a hole to prevent buckling.

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Extension springs

Getting a better feel for loads

a) If you have an old spring or a similar spring, you can get a feel for how much load you want using a fish scale. Hang the spring on the scale and pull down on the other end. You can also use a ruler to see how far the spring moves when you are at the load you want.

b) If you prefer, you can also send a sample or broken spring to us. We'll measure and duplicate it for you.

c)Another way is to know something about the loads. Lets say the spring will hold a weight that weighs 1 pound. Also,lets say you need it to stretch 2 inches when the weight is applied.
We can, and will, try to help figure this out; but we don't pretend to fully understand your application. It is in the end your application, and the decision is yours, not ours.

What's a spring rate?

a) The spring rate is how many pounds it would take to stretch the spring 1 inch.
b) In the above example, that would be 1 pound divided by the 2 inches of compression. So the spring rate would be 1/2 pound/inch or .5 pounds per inch.
c) If the spring can't, or doesn't stretch 1 inch that's fine. If it stretches more than more than 1 inch, that's fine too. Just multiply the spring rate by the actual extension (in inches) to get the resulting load on pounds.

What's "initial Tension"?

a) Usually, extension springs do not have any space between the coils until you stretch them. b) In fact, it is possible to make an extension spring so that the coils are pressing against each other. c) If the coils are pressing angainst each other, then it takes some load before they begin to separate. That load is called "initial tension" d) The initial tension (if there is any) has to be added to the load calculated from the spring rate.

Getting a better feel for the dimensions

a) The most critical dimension is the wire diameter.
We strongly recommend that you use dial calipers to measure the wire diameter.
b) Free length is measured inside the loops; but at the far end of the loop. Another way of looking at this is to say that if the spring were to fit over two pins,it would be the outside distance over the two pins.

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Torsion springs

What's a "TORQUE"?

a)For torsions springs the load is a "TORQUE", NOT the weight on a scale.
b)To understand why, think of a childhood see-saw. In order to get it to balance, the heavy child needs to sit closer to the center, and the lighter child further away.
When the wheight of each child times their distance from the center is the same, the see-saw balances.
c) To calculate TORQUE multiply the load in pounds, by the distance from the load to the center of the spring.
d) For example if a load of 3 pounds is applied 2 inches from the center, then the torquo is 6 inch-pounds

Getting a better feel for loads

a) So, it is tricky to measure Torques.
b) If you prefer, you can also send a sample or broken spring to us. We'll measure and duplicate it for you.
c)As with other spring types, one can calculate load and torques.
To calculate the force exerted on other object, just divide the torque by the distance from the center of the spring to the load point.
d)To look at it another way, Lets say (as above) that the torque is 6 inch pounds.The torque on the other end of the spring will also be 6 inch-pounds. So the load times the distance on the other end must be 6 too. That can be 3 pounds at 2 inches, or 6 pounds at 1 inch, or 2 pounds at 3 inches or ..... any combination that results in 6 when multiplied.
We can, and will, try to help figure this out; but we don't pretend to fully understand your application. It is in the end your application, and the decision is yours, not ours.

What's a spring rate?

a) The spring rate is how many inch-pounds it would take to rotate the spring one revolution.
In all fairness, we have to say that others specify the rate as inch-pounds to rotate the spring 1 degree. The conversion is simple, If specified elsewhere as inch-pounds/degree, then multiply by 360. If you need to convert inch-pounds per revolution to inch pounds per degree, then divide by 360.)

Getting a better feel for the dimensions

a)The most critical dimension is the wire diameter.
We strongly recommend that you use dial calipers to measure the wire diameter.
b)For torsion springs the free position is the "Free Angle". Or the angle between the two legs.
c)If the legs point in the same direction the angle is 0 degrees (or 360 degrees).
If the legs point in opposite directions, the angle is 180 degrees.
To differentiate between 90 degrees and 270 degrees, deflect the spring 90 degrees.
 If the legs now point in the same direction, the the original angle was 270 degrees.
 If the legs now point in the opposite direction then the original angle was 90 degrees.

d)Leg length is usually shown as the ditance between the center of the spring, and the end of the leg. That makes sense for designers and calulating torques; but it is difficult to measure.
If you add onhalf the spring OD to the specified leg length, then you will have the overall dimension that can be measured mor easily.

Right hand or Left Hand wound?

a) Sometimes it makes a difference, sometimes not. Still, you need to order either right or left hand, or sometimes one of each.
b) To determine left hand or right hand, set the spring on a table with the leg on top pointing away from you.
Then answer one simply question and you'll know. If the top leg is on the right hand side of the spring, then the spring is right hand would. If it is on the left then the spring is left hand wound.

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