Choosing the Right Custom Springs for Your Machinery

As the name suggests, custom springs are types of springs designed and manufactured to meet specific application requirements of a particular machine or product, be it an automobile’s suspension or aircraft control and landing gear. Whether compressed, stretched, or twisted, custom springs are versatile mechanical devices that store and release energy, making them ideal components in numerous machines and mechanisms.

Industrial SpringsWhen it comes to choosing springs for an application, engineers need to have a clear understanding of what the spring will be required to do. This involves considering factors such as material, environmental conditions, sizing, load requirements, dampening requirements, and the like. Engineers must also take into account how the springs will interact with other components in the system, ensuring compatibility and optimal performance.

Types of Springs

There are many different types of springs to choose from for an industrial application. However, the three principal types of custom spring designs found in applications consist of compression springs, extension springs, and torsion springs.


Material consideration will, in large part, be determined by the type of spring and its application. That said, springs are manufactured, primarily, from various types of hardened spring steel. Though it is not that uncommon for non-ferrous metals like titanium or bronze to be used in a manufacturing application, the majority of springs are designed and manufactured with various metal alloys.

Environmental Conditions

Material selection can also be influenced by environmental conditions, like humidity, temperature, and exposure to chemicals, which can lead to corrosion. Such factors impact how the spring material functions and performs. Some springs may require certain materials or protective coatings to withstand harsh conditions. The selection of the most suitable materials and finishes for the springs begins with an assessment of environmental risks to protect the structural integrity of the spring.

Spring Size

Sizing is another important consideration when choosing the right spring for your machinery. Depending on its application, the size of a custom spring can vary considerably, ranging from micro springs used for medical devices to isolating springs used in foundations to stabilize buildings. Several considerations go into determining the best size for an application. Factors like load requirements, available space, material properties, and the desired level of spring deflection must be considered.

Load Requirements

Determining the load or force a custom spring needs to support or apply is another factor to consider when designing a custom spring for an application. This includes requirements for both static (constant) and dynamic (changing) loads. More than just the force or weight the spring needs to support or withstand must be considered, however. The frequency and duration of loading cycles, environmental conditions like temperature and corrosion, durability and fatigue resistance are also factored in determining the load requirements. Ensuring that a spring meets its load requirements is critical for maintaining safety, reliability, and performance in various industrial applications. For example, load requirements for automobile spring applications would involve considerations like the weight of the vehicle, passenger and cargo loads, road conditions, vibration, and temperature variations. Springs in automobiles must be designed to withstand these loads while providing appropriate suspension, stability, and ride comfort.

Damping Requirements

When choosing the right spring for your machinery, evaluate whether damping characteristics are needed in the application to control oscillations or vibrations. Certain types of springs, such as extension springs with built-in damping features, may be suitable for such applications. In the aerospace industry, aircraft parts such as control yokes, pedals, and engine components rely on extension springs for operation. Compression springs are widely used to meet specific dampening design requirements as well. They are essential for absorbing shock and dampening the vibration of the aircraft during landing. Compression springs provide stability, enhance the performance and efficiency of aircraft, and help to prevent excessive stress on the aircraft’s components to ensure smooth and stable flights.

Cycle Life

Determining the number of cycles a spring is expected to endure throughout its lifespan is crucial for ensuring its reliability. This information helps in understanding how the spring will perform under repeated compressive or tension forces over time. Factors such as the load applied to the spring, the material it is made of, and the design considerations can all impact the number of cycles the spring can withstand.

Custom Spring from James Spring

James Spring and Wire Company manufactures custom springs for numerous industries and sectors. We understand that choosing the right spring for your application is critical for its success and can manufacture custom springs to your specifications. For more information on our extensive custom spring manufacturing capabilities contact us today.