spring-steel stainless wire-->draw round to square?

I am looking at a use for some spring-temper 304 stainless wire, .009" dia. It comes round, but it would be better suited for this use if it
was square-section. Can I run it (cold) through a couple pairs of rollers to form it into a square, without altering the other properties?
Alternately does anyone sell smaller quantities of such wire (~1-lb spools). I see there is flattened wire (about a 2:1 height/width ratio) but it appears to be once-rolled with the ends rounded from forming, and I want a (roughly) square cross-section with fairly sharp edges.
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If you deform metal, it will work-harden. So, no, you can not roll it without changing properties.
There are places that make square wire, for example: http://www.microdynetech.com/wire_shapes.htm http://www.radcliffwire.com/default.asp
A lot of custom spring companies will make springs with square wire, perhaps they will sell you small quanitites of such.
However, my experience as an engineer is that when you think you need something really unusual, then you are either not clever enough or too clever for your own good. There are very rare exceptions when working on really cutting edge stuff. In other words try to find a way to make do with round wire.
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On 8/18/2011 1:15 AM, anorton wrote:

I may try to do this with some soft-temper wire I have around,,,, maybe it will approach the spring-temper when done.

Generally I've not had good experience with such queries.

If it wasn't for the unusual things, I wouldn't be doing anything at all....
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Another thought is to grind an oversize round wire to square. This may need some special fixturing.
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On 8/18/2011 8:10 AM, anorton wrote:

does it need to be square over the whole length or just the ends, or can the ends be round? perhaps you only need to adjust the ends if so.
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Norton is sharing wisdom.. it shouldn't be too difficult to accept. Finding an existing spring product would be your best option.
I worked in plant maintenance at a steel wire mill facility. Soft mild steel wire (nails, large staples, MIG wire etc) is fairly difficult to resize and/or reshape, highly technical and the machines are generally sophisticated. The flatteners I saw used numerous (dozens of pairs of) rollers just for one dimension.
Shaping or sizing gold or silver jewelry wire is more along the lines of a workbench setup.
Reshaping stainless alloys and high carbon steel would be many times more difficult than mild steel.
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Spring temper and 304 stainless steel is an oxymoron. One can't harden 300 series SS with a heat treat. It will work harden but that will change it’s magnetic properties..
If one needs corrosion resistance and non magnetic properties I suggest looking at NiTinol. Buy a sheet then water jet cut strips.
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I have some 316 SS that was sold in a long roll. Cutting (tough) off a length - the metal is full of spring.
Martin
On 8/18/2011 10:51 AM, toolbreaker wrote:

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wrote:

From what I understand spring temper means its fully work hardened. However roll forming would be a form of working so if you set up a roller that will work for you to form it into square wire it will harden more if its not full hard. I don't see why you couldn't do it with larger wire, but I am having a hard time visualizing something that will work with such small wire. Well, something I could setup in my shop anyway. Maybe a series of alternating direction parallel roller pairs to draw the wire through. Each pair only a few 1/10000 close together than the last pair. Plain cold rolled steel might work for a little while if it’s a small job, but it will groove from the wire pretty quickly if it’s a bigger project.
Not sure, maybe a harder stainless or even titanium for the rollers if its to produce larger quantities of square wire?
Regardless I am pretty sure you will lengthen and reduce the gage of a wire by using this particular process.
How long of pieces do you need? For short pieces you might be able to just press them into a machined groove in a metal plate with another metal plate using a hydraulic press. They are going to curl rather severely I think when pulling them out of the groove, but I bet you could get square wire (roughly depending on your math skills) this way too. One side will have squarer corners than the other I suspect also. Or you may just wind up with a plate with a nicely pressed in stainless strip. LOL.
_________ ________ |_| ________ _______ \ / |_|
Try it and let us know how it works.
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On Sat, 20 Aug 2011 09:31:59 -0700, Bob La Londe wrote: [...]

Round carbide inserts are readily available, eg see links at link below for $5.50-each to $19-each inserts. Minor challenge: they have 7-degree tapered sides for clearance, ie, are like sections of a cone. So, would need to reverse one of each pair of rollers so that angles complement each other, and would need to tip the axles 7 degrees to avoid twisting the wire as it passes between the rollers. <(Amazon.com product link shortened)>
[...]
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jiw

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On 8/20/2011 11:31 AM, Bob La Londe wrote:

I would need continuous lengths (thousands of feet) and the process would need to be quick and easy. That's why I thought of the bearing-rollers. -Which is not really "drawing", I suppose, but anyway.
I know it normally takes a lot of pressure to power-roll metal, but this would be <.01" wire, pretty tiny. A final square shape with sharp edges would be wonderful, but I doubt I'd get that.
Somebody mentioned grinding,,,, and I discarded it initially but it might be useful also. An equilateral triangle shaped-wire might work even better, and there's no way to roll such a shape using common bearings as rollers.
I'll have to get a bit of the soft-temper stuff later on and see if it can be done. Nobody that I would buy small quantities from seems to make the dies or sell square wire this tiny.
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wrote:

I haven't seen 304 spring wire but have seen and used 302. And I know the way 302 is made into a spring is just through drawing. So the soft wire is work hardened. If you draw 304 wire through a die I imagine it would work harden too, considering that you can apparently buy the round stuff. Jewelry suppliers sell dies for round and oval wire drawing but I have not seen any for square. .009 round wire and .008 square have virtually the same cross sectional area so maybe you could set up some bearings (like you suggested above) but instead roll the soft stuff into hard. Run it through several times to work it a lot. Eric
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snipped-for-privacy@whidbey.com wrote:

Drawplates for square wire are readily available in the UK so I would expect them to be in the US also. The company I know that do various shapes is http://www.suttontools.co.uk/acatalog/Sutton_Tools_Drawplates___Benches_87.html
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On Thu, 18 Aug 2011 20:26:20 +0100, David Billington

Thanks for the posted link Dave. The smallest square hole listed in .5 mm, and while that's too large for the original poster the drawplate does have sizes I'm interested in for silver wire. Eric
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