Benefits at a glance
- Low-cost tooling/design iterations
- Stress-and burr-free – no rough edges
- Zero distortion
- Production volumes
- All spring steel grades, regardless of hardness or temper
- Accuracy to ±0.025mm
Flatness, recoil and fatigue strength are attributes that must not be compromised during flat profile spring manufacture. Stamping deforms spring steel, compromising flatness. Laser cutting leaves a rough edge that could fatigue fracture. Both processes cause burrs that need to be removed by tumbling, a process that adds cost and compromises the material surface finish.
Photo etching does not alter the material properties or structure of spring steel
Burr- and stress-free spring manufacture
As a non-contact, non-heat inducing machining process, photo etching does not alter the material properties or structure of spring steel. This ensures burr-and stress-free springs can be manufactured with zero distortion or surface imperfections.
Zero tool wear
Because photo-etch tooling is digital, set-up costs are low and design iterations speedy. With zero tool wear –unlike expensive press tooling – etching is competitive in production quantities.
Photo etching is suitable for all spring steels, regardless of hardness or temper. We typically specify Sandvik strip steels and 301 and 17-7 PH stainless steel grades.
As one of the world’s few production etching specialists, Precision Micro supply over one million springs each month for a diverse range of applications, including ABS braking, fuel injection, catalytic converters, satellite cryogenic coolers, microphone diaphragms, camera image stabilisation and cochlear implants.
Want to know more?
The basic principles of photo etching can be demonstrated in nine process steps.
Created to guide you through designing for the photo etching process, outlining achievable tolerances and component features.
With backgrounds which include CAD, machining, technical and operations planning, our sales engineers have the photo etching know-how to answer your questions.