They're the overlooked member of the spring family. Die
springs are the black sheep. They're the weird uncle everyone 'forgets' to
invite to the annual Labor Day BBQ. In essence, they're a lot like Uncle Joey from Full House:
weird, single, no legal identifiable source of income.
...via Asco Spring
But in reality, die springs are the backbone of the spring
family. In fact, they're 30% stronger than compression springs of the same size
due to their disfigured wire appearance. Die springs use rectangular wire
instead of circular wire. See what I mean? Manufacturers have it out for die
springs. Just think of it as a physical metaphor for the saying, "Square peg,
The spring family was nice enough to supply the surname
though, so there should be no confusion on how they operate. Utilizing
rectangular wire with a rounded profile, die springs take advantage of the
pitch between coils, allowing more wire per spring, reducing stress and
enhancing working loads. Die springs work similarly to compression springs,
where energy is stored when a load is applied and the spring tries to
keep two components separate. Tighter threads directly indicate a stronger
spring; chrome alloy wire also contributes to a high-load capability.
...via Spring Masters
So, how else are die springs the reject of the spring
family? They're the only springs that come in the colors of Skittles.
"Taste the rainbow"...via Mould Spring
Ug. All those bright colors. It's like looking at an 80's music video.
Warning, you cannot unsee
Those colors do serve some purpose though, as colors
indicate the springs intended use. Unfortunately manufacturers do not agree to
a uniform color code, so a manufacturer's reference chart should be
utilized. Colors indicate a working range of light-load to extra
heavy-load, depending on manufacturer.
The era of the die spring! ...via Fashion Freezer
So, we've established that die springs are that weird uncle
who's ridiculously stuck in his heyday, i.e., the 1980s. And just like that
loser-uncle, die springs need some support in order to have a serviceable life.
The uncle might need cash or food, but die springs need either a closed end or
ground to maintain a perpendicular, reliable return force. Finally, die springs
can be supported by the use of a rod insert, but that sounds more like your
uncle's girlfriend. The inner diameter of the spring must be accounted for. Fortunately
die springs are easy to clean thanks to their vinyl coating, and they do not
need oil. Your uncle is not very easy to clean after a night of rocking, thanks
to his PVC KISS costume.
...via Costume Gallery
What other allusions can I make between my your uncle
and die springs? Die springs come in handy around punch presses to hold the target material in place while the press perforates
the substrate. If the die set were to provide no yield to the punch, the punch
could be damaged; if it were to provide too much yield, the material would not
be perforated. Die springs occasionally find use in transportation and
agricultural industries. As for the uncle, he too finds use in the
transportation industry (cleaning up roadkill) and the agriculture industry
So, in review:
So there you have it folks, weird uncles and die springs are
cut from the same cloth. I wouldn't have been able to assemble this ridiculous
comparison without the help of GlobalSpec's awesome Die
Spring Selection Guide, so head on over there now!