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Compression Springs 101

At first glance you might not be able to tell the difference between a compression spring and any other type of spring, but they do have distinct and important characteristics. Compression springs are specifically engineered to apply resistance, and can also be customized with particular features for the work environment in which they will be used.

Compression Spring Characteristics

Compression springs are the most commonly used type of spring. The are made in a wide range of shapes and sizes, the cylinder shape being the most typical. A broad variety of materials are used for the development of compression springs, depending on the temperature, stress, and corrosion resistance requirements associated with the application.

In addition to being coiled at a constant diameter to form a cylindrical shape, compression springs can be made to be conical, concave (barrel), convex (hourglass), or other configurations, depending on specific application requirements.

Compression Spring Design

By design, compression springs apply resistance to keep components from coming together. To achieve this resisting characteristic, they are manufactured with a pitch, or space between the coils. The wider the space, the greater the resistance, but also, the less it can compress before becoming over stressed.

Compression springs can be coiled with a wide range of wire diameters and outside diameters to achieve different load resistances. The wire diameter used for a key board button is relatively small, since the force required is low, whereas, the diameter used to keep two train cars from crashing into one another is very large.

Compression Spring Applications

Compression springs work to resist force and store energy in many different kinds of products and equipment. Examples of compression spring application include door locks, compressors, switches, mattresses, watches, ball point pens, and electronic devices. The use of compression springs is very common in the manufacture of appliances, tools, vehicles, medical devices, and more.

W.B. Jones has over 100 years’ experience providing quality compression springs, both stock and custom to meet your needs.


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