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Do You Speak Compression Springs? Understanding Compression Spring Terminology

The process of ordering the right compression springs for your application begins with understanding spring terminology. Knowing the basics will not only help you take accurate measurements of your spring, but it will also ease the communication of your spring needs to our sales team. Both of which will aid in getting you the right spring for your application and lessen the chances of spring failure.

Here are just a few common terms to get you started with your first lesson in compression spring terminology:

Active Coils: Those coils which are free to deflect under load. (i.e. the coils with space in between)
Buckling: Bowing or lateral deflection of compression springs when compressed.
Close Wound: Coiled with adjacent coils touching. (i.e. no space between the coils)
Deflection: Movement of spring ends under the application of force.
Free Length: The length of a compression spring in the unloaded position.
Load: The force applied to a spring that causes a deflection.
Pitch: The distance from center to center of the wire in adjacent active coils.
Rate: Change in load per unit of deflection, generally given in pounds per inch.
Total coils: Number of active coils plus the coils forming the ends.

As an experienced spring specialist, W.B. Jones has compiled an extensive glossary of spring terms, providing you with a quick and handy reference for brushing up on the most widely used spring descriptors.

In all that we do, our goal is not only to provide the industry’s highest quality springs, but also to provide our customers with the best possible service. We are here to help you understand everything you need to know about the springs that will best meet your application needs. Contact us to discuss your project!

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