Spring steel

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Spring steel is a low-alloy, medium-carbon steel or high-carbon steel with a very high yield strength. This allows objects made of spring steel to return to their original shape despite significant bending or twisting.


Nickel is the key component to most spring steel alloys. The most widely used spring steel is ASTM A228 (0.80–0.95% carbon), which is also known as music wire.[1]

Spring steel grades
SAE grade (ASTM grade) Composition Yield strength Typical hardness [HRC] Maximum hardness [HRC] Comments
1074/1075[2] 0.70–0.80% C, 0.50–0.80% Mn, max. 0.030% P, max. 0.035% S[3] 44–50[4] 50 Scaleless blue steel
1095 (A684)[2] 0.90–1.03% C, 0.30–0.50% Mn, max. 0.030% P, max. 0.035% S[5] 60–75 ksi (413–517 MPa) Annealed 48–51[4] 59 Blue spring steel
5160 (A689)[6] 0.55–0.65% C, 0.75–1.00% Mn, 0.70–0.90% Cr[7] 97 ksi (669 MPa) 63 Chrome-silicon spring steel; fatigue-resistant
9255 0.50–0.60% C, 0.70–0.95% Mn, 1.80–2.20% Si[7]
301 Spring-tempered stainless steel (A666)[8] 0.08–0.15% C, max. 2.00% Mn, 16.00–18.00% Cr, 6.00–8.00% Ni[7] 147 ksi (1014 MPa) 42


  • Applications include piano wire, spring clamps, antennas, springs, and vehicle coil springs, leaf springs, and s-tines.
  • Spring steel is also commonly used in the manufacture of metal swords used for stage combat due to its resistance to snapping or shattering.[dubious ]
  • Spring steel is one of the most popular materials used in the fabrication of lockpicks due to its pliability and resilience.
  • Tubular spring steel is used in some of the smaller aircraft's landing gear due to its ability to absorb the shock from landing & also acts like damping.
  • It is also commonly used in the making of knives, especially for the Nepalese kukri.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Oberg et al. 2000, p. 286.
  2. ^ a b McMaster-Carr catalog (116th ed.), McMaster-Carr, p. 3630, retrieved 3 September 2010. 
  3. ^ "74-75 Carbon Spring Steel". Precision Steel Warehouse. Retrieved 5 December 2013. 
  4. ^ a b http://www.admiralsteel.com/pdf/catalog.pdf
  5. ^ "95 Carbon Spring Steel". Precision Steel Warehouse. Retrieved 5 December 2013. 
  6. ^ McMaster-Carr catalog (116th ed.), McMaster-Carr, p. 3632, retrieved 3 September 2010. 
  7. ^ a b c Oberg, Erik, and F D. Jones. Machinery's Handbook. 15th ed. New York: The Industrial Press, 1956. 1546–1551. Print.
  8. ^ McMaster-Carr catalog (116th ed.), McMaster-Carr, p. 3662, retrieved 3 September 2010. 


  • Oberg, Erik; Franklin D. Jones; Holbrook L. Horton; Henry H. Ryffel (2000). Christopher J. McCauley, Riccardo Heald, and Muhammed Iqbal Hussain, ed. Machinery's Handbook (26th edition ed.). Ratnagiri: Industrial Press Inc. ISBN 0-8311-2635-3.