Material Comparison

There are several materials that work well in the springs that Vulcan Spring designs and manufactures.  301 Stainless Steel is by far the most popular (and most cost effective), but it doesn’t  handle extreme environments like some of the other options.  The information below shows the basic capabilities of three choices available to our customers: 301 Stainless Steel, Inconel®, and Elgiloy®

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301 Stainless Steel $

301 is a chromium-nickel stainless steel that provides high strength and very good resistance to general atmospheric corrosion.   However, the material may be adversely affected when exposed to certain chemicals or environments, which may induce hydrogen embrittlement, stress corrosion cracking, and corrosion fatigue.

301 Stainless has a high tensile strength which maximizes the force output in constant force and constant torque springs.  Most of Vulcan Spring’s products are manufactured from 301 Stainless Steel.

  AK Steel Data Sheet

Inconel® $$

Inconel is a chromium-nickel based material that is classified as a “super-alloy.”  It is generally non-magnetic and capable of withstanding high temperature environments without losing significant force.  This material has a high level of oxidation and excellent corrosion resistance which greatly reduces pitting and crevice corrosion. 

Inconel does not have the same tensile strength as 301 stainless, which results in a less powerful spring than one made with the same dimensions in stainless steel. 



Elgiloy® $$$

Elgiloy is another ”super-alloy" consisting of cobalt, chromium, nickel, iron, molybdenum, and  manganese.  It is used to make springs with excellent corrosion resistance and high strength. This material has nearly identical tensile strength as 301 stainless steel, so similar force will result from the same dimensions as a spring made from 301 stainless steel.



Inconel® is a Registered Trademark of Specialty Metals Corporation
ELGILOY® Registered Trademark of Elgiloy® Specialty Metals